Cannabis Science Certificate


  • College of Health Professions

Institute of Emerging Health Professions

Degree Earned

  • Certificate

Program Length
1 year

Program Type

  • Online


Name: Ruth Charbonneau, JD, RN
Position: Program Director
Contact Number(s):
Name: Brooke Worster, MD
  • Medical Advisor, Cannabis Programs
  • Associate Professor
Organization: Institute of Emerging Health Professions
Contact Number(s):

Contact Admissions

Contact Number(s):

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Join us for a Virtual Information Session on July 10, 2024 at 7:30 PM

This is a great opportunity to ask questions and learn about the curriculum, career opportunities, and degree requirements. Please register by July 9, 2024.

Across the globe, cannabis medicalization and legalization are having a profound effect on the world. The cannabis industry is rapidly growing into a multibillion dollar enterprise, offering many jobs in farming, processing, research, sales, and medical treatment. There are, however, few educational programs that prepare scientists, researchers, and clinicians to join this burgeoning field.

Program Overview

The Cannabis Science Certificate provides an in-depth view of the botany and chemistry of the cannabis plant, cannabinoid pharmacology and resultant effects, and how to identify and quantify the different chemical components and potential toxicants in cannabis.

This certificate program prepares students for the cannabis business in growing or processing cannabis plants, developing new cannabis strains, or researching the potential of many different cannabinoids, terpenes, or flavonoids of new combinations of these chemicals. Students also learn how and why cannabinoids produce their positive and negative effects, and how our bodies absorb, distribute, metabolize, and excrete cannabinoids.

This certificate is offered in partnership with the Center for Forensic Science Research & Education. For more than 20 years, the Center has been at the forefront of the forensic community, providing novel developments in research, training, and education in the forensic sciences. Their internationally recognized staff have partnered with the Institute of Emerging Health Professions at Thomas Jefferson University to provide an unparalleled learning experience in this emerging field.

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the certificate, students will:

  • Understand the chemistry of the cannabis plant and how plant genetics change over time.
  • Know how to utilize advanced analytical technologies to identify potential toxins in cannabis and to monitor the concentrations of cannabis constituents, to improve the quality of cannabis-based products.
  • Be able to describe the mechanisms of action and functional roles of endogenous cannabinoids in humans.
  • Understand how plant cannabinoids interact with the endogenous cannabinoid neurotransmitter system, to produce both positive and negative effects.


The Cannabis Science certificate is one of the stackable certificates leading up to the MS in Medical Cannabis Science & Business.

The courses in the certificate program are designed to accommodate and interest students with diverse academic background and career interests. All cannabis courses are online and mostly asynchronous. Students may enroll into the program in fall, spring, or summer .

Course Number Course Name Credit Hours Term
CSC 511 Botany and Chemistry of Cannabis 3 Fall
CSC 512 Forensic Analysis of Cannabinoids & Cannabis Derived Products 3 Spring
CSC 513 Cannabinoid Pharmacology   3 Summer

If you are not ready to commit to an MS degree or a full certificate, take a course or two as a non-degree student (non-matriculated option) – See information.