Certificate in Real Estate Development


The Certificate in Real Estate Development (CRED) is designed to help current and aspiring real estate developers and city planners prepare for successful real estate development careers.  Students acquire the knowledge and skills needed to initiate, navigate, and manage real estate development projects located in existing communities of Northern California.

To complete the certificate, students take four 3-unit graduate-level courses offered through the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at San José State University.  Students enroll in either one or two courses a semester and complete the program on a part-time basis, allowing them the option to hold full-time employment while studying.

The curriculum emphasizes experiential learning techniques, such as analysis of local real estate projects, discussions with local real estate professionals, and team-based studio projects that mimic realistic real estate development scenarios.

All courses will be delivered using a combination of online virtual classrooms and face-to-face meetings.  During online weeks, students will often have the option of joining the virtual classroom or attending the session in person with an instructor.  Class sessions meet once a week in the evening.


Program Structure and Course Sequence

Students will earn the CRED by completing a total of 12 credits (four 3-unit classes):

URBP 205 – Private Development and Urban Planning (syllabus)

URBP 206 – Market Analysis, Appraisal, and Finance of Real Estate Development (syllabus)

URBP 207 – Real Estate Development Business and Planning (syllabus)

URBP 208 – Urban Real Estate Development Studio (syllabus)

The first three courses will be delivered using mostly online sessions, while the capstone studio class will have more intensive face-to-face sessions.  During online weeks, the students will be required to interact at specified times online using interactive software.

Students have the option of taking individual courses if they do not wish to complete the full certificate.  The first three courses (URBP 205, 206, and 207) are designed so that students can take any of them without needing prerequisites.


Eligibility for the Certificate

The CRED program is open to matriculated students enrolled in any graduate program at San José State University (SJSU).  In addition, the program is open to students who hold a Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution and have a GPA of at least 2.5 (where A=4).

It is strongly recommended that prospective students consult the department's Graduate Student Adviser or the CRED Director to discuss eligibility and options for enrolling in the CRED program.


Have questions?

If you have questions, please contact:

  • Graduate advisor
  • Professor Hilary Nixon, Graduate Student Adviser and Admissions Director for the Department of Urban and Regional Planning
    • (408) 924-5852


Advisory Board for the Certificate in Real Estate Development Program

  • Scott Lefaver, Cabouchon Properties (Board Chair)
  • Michael Bethke, Independent Consultant
  • Jan English-Lueck, SJSU College of Social Sciences
  • Ray Hashimoto, HMH Engineers
  • Art Henriques, Independent Consultant
  • Mark Lazzarini, DAL Properties
  • Maryanna McSwain, DTZ
  • Hilary Nixon, SJSU Department of Urban and Regional Planning
  • Kevin Riley, City of Santa Clara
  • Lydia Tan, Bentall Kennedy