COVID-19 UPDATE: Beginning immediately, all in-person Sauder Continuing Business Studies classes starting between now and June 18, will be delivered online. Read more

Behavioural Insights

UBC Advanced Professional Certificate Program


Behavioural Insights (BI) uses decision science (psychology and economics) to help people make better decisions that promote health, wellness, and happiness. By accounting for the ways that people make decisions and behave in the real world, BI improves programs, policies, and products in ways that encourage positive changes in consumers, citizens, and employees.

This certificate is designed for professionals seeking to add Behavioural Insights (BI) and evaluation tools to their skillset.  

Learning Objectives

Advance your career by using the science of BI to make evidence-based decisions. Learn: 

  • The theory and practice of BI
  • How to design and conduct exploratory user research
  • How to design BI solutions that shift behaviour
  • How to design and conduct randomized controlled trials (RCTs)
  • How to analyze and interpret data to evaluate BI solutions
  • How to evaluate BI projects using ethical frameworks 
  • Project management, strategic thinking, and creative problem solving skills

The program steering committee partners include:

Ontario Behavioural Insights Unit (BIU)



4 months coursework & 5-month project  (9 months total) 


Part-time, evenings and weekends

Tuition & Fees

$5,995 – the cost includes a $400 non-refundable deposit required upon acceptance into the program

Hours of Study

Approximately 10 hours per week.


Comprised of 12 Modules, the UBC Advanced Professional Certificate in Behavioural Insights program is designed to provide you with the skills required to advance your career using the science of Behavioural Insights to make evidence-based decisions. Delivered by leading BI experts, the program is grounded in industry best practices and equips graduates with the knowledge and skills required to improve their understanding of decision-making and help people make better choices, choices that are better for the individual and for the world.

  • Pre-requisite: Introduction to Behavioural Insights (BI) & Evaluation
    • This 2-week online course is required for all students enrolled in the UBC Advanced Professional Certificate in Behavioural Insights program. This course is designed to provide an overview of behavioural insights and evaluation within the wider innovation space and across sectors.
  • Coursework: 8 modules delivered over the course of 4 months, offered in a blended format combining online and in-class instruction.
  • Capstone Project: The project consists of 4 modules completed over the course of 5 months, beginning with the research proposal and ending with the final report. Online coaching support and project milestones provided along the way.

Program curriculum may be subject to change.

Dale Griffin

Dale Griffin

Dale Griffin is a professor of Marketing and Behavioural Sciences and was the interim Academic Director of the Dhillon Centre for Business Ethics at UBC Sauder School of Business. He has taught at leading universities in Canada, Great Britain, and the United States, most recently at the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University. Professor Griffin teaches courses in Responsible Business, Marketing Research, and Strategic Decision Making at the undergraduate, MBA and PhD levels, and lectures on strategy and decision-making for executive audiences, and provides legal consulting on consumer behaviour and risk perception. He is the co-editor, along with Thomas Gilovich and Daniel Kahneman, of Heuristics and Biases: The Psychology of Intuitive Judgment. He received his PhD from Stanford University.

Kate White

Kate White

Kate White is currently Professor of Marketing and Behavioural Science at the UBC-Sauder School of Business. She holds a professorship in Consumer Insights, Prosocial Consumption, and Sustainability and is Academic Director of the Dhillon Centre for Business Ethics. Kate’s research focuses on how to encourage ethical, prosocial, and sustainable consumer behaviours. Kate has consulted on various behaviour-change projects with industry collaborators such as The City of Calgary, Health Canada, BC Women’s Hospital, My Sustainable Canada, BC Hydro, Big Rock Brewery, The United Way, and Celgene Health Care.

Jiaying Zhao

Jiaying Zhao

Jiaying Zhao is the Canada Research Chair in Behavioural Sustainability, and an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology and the Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability at the University of British Columbia. Jiaying uses psychological principles to design behavioural solutions to address financial and environmental sustainability challenges. Specifically, she examines the cognitive consequences of poverty and designs interventions to alleviate the cognitive burdens in low-income individuals. In addition, she develops behavioural interventions to encourage recycling, composting, and biodiversity conservation. Jiaying has served as a research advisor and consultant for a number of organizations, including Financial Consumer Agency of Canada, Policy Horizons Canada, City of Vancouver, and the U.S. Social and Behavioral Sciences Team. She received her PhD in cognitive psychology from Princeton University in 2013.

David Hardisty

David Hardisty

David Hardisty is Assistant Professor of Marketing & Behavioural Science at UBC Sauder School of Business. His research focuses on decisions about the future, including sustainability, financial planning, and impulsivity. He also studies attribute framing and social dilemmas. At UBC Sauder, he teaches Ethics & Sustainability and Consumer Behaviour. His ultimate goal is to develop tools to improve long-term decision making. He received his PhD in Psychology from Columbia University in 2011.

Kirstin Appelt

Kirstin Appelt

Kirstin Appelt is Adjunct Professor of Marketing and Behavioural Science at UBC Sauder School of Business. Her research explores why people struggle with important decisions about the future and how to use choice architecture to help them make the best decisions for themselves and for society. Kirstin is also a behavioural science consultant for organizations including the BC Behavioural Insights Group (BC BIG), the California Health Benefit Exchange (Covered California), the Columbia University Center for Decision Sciences, Google, the Pacific Business Group on Health (PBGH), Temple University, and WorkSafeBC. She received her Ph.D. in Psychology from Columbia University and her B.A. magna cum laude in Economics from Dartmouth College.


The UBC Advanced Professional Certificate in Behavioural Insights employs a formal admissions process designed to support a high quality educational experience that meets the needs and expectations of students.

Admissions to the program is based on a combination of academic qualifications, work experience, and interest in the field. Prior study or experience in behavioural insights, while helpful, is not mandatory.

Criteria – Minimum Requirements

Academic Achievement – Four year undergraduate degree, or enrolled in their final semester of an undergraduate degree, and 11th-grade math skills

Work Experience – Work experience is an asset, but not required

English Language Proficiency – Strong written and spoken English skills. Applicants who completed an undergraduate degree in a language other than English may be required to submit official test results as follows:

  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) minimum overall band score: 6.5 with no individual score less than 6.0
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) overall score: 90 with a minimum score of 22 in reading and listening, 21 in writing and speaking

Please submit questions to dibs@sauder.ubc.ca

Share with friends

Sauder Logo UBC Crest AACSB Logo Certificate Program