The Best Professional Development Courses in San Francisco

By Stacy Zeiger , last updated November 14, 2011

Professional development courses help individuals learn skills and stay up-to-date with the latest information in their field. In San Francisco, many universities and organizations offer professional development courses for a variety of career fields. If you’re interested, you may choose to take courses on your own or your company may partner with these programs to provide professional development opportunities at no-cost to you, their employee.

San Francisco State’s College of Extended Learning
This school has classes in professional development and continuing education courses in multiple fields. Students do not have to be enrolled at San Francisco State to take courses through the college. Classes are held at the university’s main campus and downtown campus. Weekend courses are also held to make it easy for working students to engage in professional development. Those involved in education and healthcare may also find online professional development courses to meet their needs. Some courses offer tuition assistance to make them more affordable. For students over age sixty, the college also offers Eldercollege, which allows adults to audit regular university courses, and Sixty-Plus hold special lectures and tours.
The UC Berkeley Extension
UC Berkeley has plenty of courses that lead to specialized certificates or advanced knowledge in specialized areas of study. Available programs include teacher certification courses and professional development for educators, courses in healthcare and psychology, art and design and 10 other areas of study. Courses are held online or at the UC Berkeley center in downtown San Francisco and are open to the general public. For companies who want to provide specialized professional development courses to their employees, the UC Berkeley Extension helps develop customized courses and offers on-site instruction to make it easy for employees to receive the training they need.
The University of California, San Francisco
This university offers professional development opportunities through the Office of Career and Professional Development (OCPD). The OCPD offers multiple resources for those in the healthcare and science fields, including programs related to dentistry, nursing and pharmacy. Also part of the OCPD is a resource library which offers some of the latest professional publications in a variety of fields for professionals to peruse. In addition to professional development courses, individuals may also take courses related to developing communication skills, writing grants and improving job search skills or engage in counseling with one of the office’s career counselors.
The California College of the Arts
For those interested in art and design, the California College of the Arts offers a series of courses open to the general public. Computer courses help build skills in webpage design, using graphic programs and design apps for the latest devices. Courses are also offered in basic areas of design and 2D and 3D fine arts. All courses are held on either the San Francisco or Oakland campus of the California College of the Arts. Art teachers may also benefit from professional development opportunities through the San Francisco Art Institute, which provides courses designed to give teachers new techniques and advanced instruction to take back to their classrooms and improve their instruction.
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