Advanced ecology training that builds on your knowledge in the field.

The Ecological Restoration (ER) professional specialization certificate program provides advanced ecology training for professionals working in the environmental sector. The courses will prepare you to conduct site assessments and restoration projects with special attention to the unique challenges presented by altered environments. View more ecological restoration programs.


Jump to:

Program description

The Ecological Restoration program offers specialized training in high-level ecosystem functioning and is designed for practitioners working in restoration and related environmental fields that see problems with current practices and want to investigate alternative and innovative solutions. This program develops critical thinking skills and asks challenging questions that require students to deal with the uncertainty that is present with problems in ecological restoration.

Upon completion of this program, students will be able to conduct detailed site assessments and restoration projects that pay special attention to the unique conditions and challenges presented by built and otherwise highly altered environments.

Courses in the certificate are offered online, appealing to professionals from across North America as a means to meet their annual professional development requirements or to update their skills and understanding. 

The certificate builds on the success of the Restoration of Natural Systems program to offer more advanced training for working professionals.

This program is certified by CIFAL Victoria. CIFAL provides certification for training courses that build the capabilities of individuals and communities towards the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Participants who successfully complete this course are eligible to receive a Certificate of Completion co-signed by UNITAR (United Nations Institute for Training and Research) and CIFAL Victoria.

Program features

  • flexible program completion timeline
  • online courses
  • courses taught by restoration practitioners
  • current course content with real-world applications
  • a recognized university credential for professionals

Program outcomes

By the end of the program, students will be able to:

  • incorporate native species into design
  • use an ecosystems approach in planning and designing restoration activities
  • develop restoration prescriptions patterned on natural processes
  • understand urban ecosystems and the urban/rural interface
  • practice and plan for invasive species control and management
  • incorporate plant propagation techniques into restoration project design

StongerBC logo

Through the StrongerBC future skills grant, students may be eligible to receive funding for this program. View details and eligibility

UNITAR-CIFAL certification

CIFAL Victoria


UVic logo

View current UNITAR-CIFAL courses and programs.

Program partners

The University of Victoria logo

Faculty of Social Sciences, School of Environmental Studies

View our Advisory Committee

Who is this program for?

This non-credit certificate program has been designed for professionals who are working in the fields of:

  • ecological restoration
  • environmental practice
  • biology
  • landscape architecture
  • landscape design and management
  • forestry
  • agrology

Career options

Some of our learners pursue careers in the following roles:
  • Ecologist/Biologist
  • Environmental Consultant
  • Restoration Specialist
  • Parks Employee (Municipal, Regional, Provincial, National)
  • Environmental Organization/Not-For-Profit Employee
  • Environmental Project Director/Manager/Coordinator
  • Graduate Student

Labour market data

Location Greater Vancouver
Data source: EMSI 2022

Currently employed

Average salary

Job postings

Employment trends

Past growth

Projected growth

Graph of Annual Employment Numbers


News and resources

Courses and fees

To earn the certificate, you must successfully complete four of the five course options, totalling approximately 156 instructional hours. You have up to six years to complete the program. 

New non-refundable fee policy 

Course fees will be fully refundable if you withdraw a minimum of 10 business days* prior to the start date of a course. After that, a non-refundable fee of $50 will be charged in addition to the regular UVic fee reduction deadlines listed in the UVic Calendar. 

This non-refundable fee policy will take effect Jan. 1, 2019.

*A business day is considered an official work day and does not include statutory holidays or weekends.

= Courses open for registration

Program planning

A different selection of courses are offered every term. To see upcoming offerings, please view the anticipated course schedule. To assist in your program planning, you can also view all course descriptions

Graduation information

For students who have completed the program, please complete the Application to graduate. The deadline to apply for Spring Convocation is December 15 and the deadline to apply for Fall Convocation is July 15.

Estimated fees

Description Fee
Program application fee $125.00
Four required courses $3,300.00
Estimated Total $3,425.00*
Fees listed in this section are an estimate. Total program fees may vary depending on delivery format, course selections, student fees, textbooks and taxes.

Application information

Admission requirements

The program content is equivalent to advanced undergraduate or graduate level work. We recommend that students applying to the program or taking individual courses have one of the following:

  • an undergraduate degree in environmental studies, biology, forestry, geography or landscape architecture
  • an undergraduate degree in any other discipline plus a minimum of two years of work experience in the field of environmental studies, landscape architecture, landscape design or restoration
  • permission of the Academic Administrator

Students admitted into the program do not need to be accepted for credit study at UVic.

Applicants who speak English as a second language must meet the University of Victoria's English language proficiency requirements before applying to the program.

If you require a biology upgrade course, we offer a low-cost online self-study option: ER099 Biology and Natural History, which is open for registration at any time.

How to apply

  1. Contact us at if you want to discuss your education and experience prior to submitting your application.
  2. Click the APPLY ONLINE button. You will be asked to create an account if you are new to Continuing Studies. Please fill out the application form carefully: incomplete applications will result in increased processing times. Note that you will be asked to provide a credit card number to pay the $125 application fee.
  3. Upon acceptance into the program, you will receive an acceptance letter, information about how to register for courses and a list of upcoming courses.

StrongerBC future skills grant

Through the StrongerBC future skills grant, students may be eligible to receive funding for this program from Sept. 1 - Dec. 31, 2023. To view eligibility and how to register, please view our StrongerBC future skills grant page.

Application dates

Starting in
September 2024
Accepting Applications
Apply by
Aug. 1, 2024
Apply online Contact us for more info
Starting in
January 2025
Accepting Applications
Apply by
Nov. 30, 2024
Apply online Contact us for more info