Compare Positive Coaching to Other Top Programs

If you are visiting this page, I’m guessing you are seriously considering making an important investment in your career and your life. We know that you have several excellent options to consider. We also recognize that many factors will affect your decision — location, schedule, program format, philosophy, faculty, and cost among them.

After we decided to get our coach certification, and before we began to design Positive Coaching in 2006, we found the research process to be daunting and almost overwhelming. There are so many variables to try to sort out, and the most complicated was costs--real total costs. It was quite hard to tease out ALL the costs of each program so that we were looking at apples and apples, not oranges and plums.

  • Some programs incorporate all the mentor coaching hours that you need for ICF certification, but many do not.
  • In some programs, you receive real practice and coaching for the ICF exams, but others do not.
  • Attractive payment plans are available with some institutions, but a few require all or most to be paid at the time of registration or before the start of the program.
  • Some programs provide all the course material and text books you need while others do not. Textbooks alone cost more than $200 in several programs.
  • Travel expense is obviously going to vary by destination. For sure, it doesn’t apply to virtual programs. Of course, there’s a big reason most top-notch programs are face-to-face: it’s a more effective, stimulating, and powerful learning environment. It’s that simple.

Because of all this confusion and the fact that you really have to dig, dig, dig to find all the relevant costs, we’ve tried to summarize below the essential economic factors for several well-known programs as best we could.

Based on our research, we believe that besides being the most

comprehensive, practical, and exciting

coach training program available today, at an

all-inclusive, in-person price of $5,995 early bird tuition or $6,995 full tuition,

Positive Coaching is also one of the most affordable, productive, and

the BEST OVERALL VALUE in the market.

See for yourself.


Program Name and Location

Total Cost

Breakdown of costs

Program Overview

Structure, Admission Requirements, and Financial Considerations

Positive Coaching Solutions Expanded Coach Certification Program

Both In-Person (Dallas, TX) and Virtual Formats

$5,995 Early Bird $6,995 Regular

All in-person training in an intensive 8-day format expanded now to  provide individualized feedback and personal support to assist candidates in creating a successful recording now required for ACC candidates. The program is ACSTH approved for 75.5 hours coach-specific training by the ICF and also approved by the Center for Credentialing and Education for its Board Certified Coach (BCC) credential. Payment plans are available with a $10/month admin fee. Tuition INCLUDES 10.5 hours of mentor coaching over six (6) months following the class, easily worth $1,800 – $3,000. All texts, materials, and special class supplies are provided. No hidden costs. We meet in Addison, TX. Breakfast every day is included in the tuition, 5 lunches, and very attractive group room rates have been negotiated. The hotel is easily accessible and equidistant from both Dallas airports (Love Field and DFW).

Rice University CoachRICE: A Leadership Coaching Program

In-Person, Houston, TX

$7,825 $5,950 tuition

+$1,675 for mentor coaching
+$200 textbooks

Conducted in-person by Rice University’s Glasscock School of Continuing Studies on the Rice campus, the program consists of four (4) 12-hour modules (Thursday-Friday) plus 12 hours of self-study assignments for a total of 60 training hours. The program appears to be squarely targeting leadership/executive coaching. Mentor coaching is available separately but not included in the base tuition. A $400 discount is available if you register for the mentor coaching at the same time that you register for the program. No apparent hidden costs. Dinner is provided on Thursdays, and coffee provided on Fridays. Requirements for admission: Bachelors Degree (submit official college transcript), five (5) years relevant work experience, comprehensive online application. Tuition is payable in full approximately 6 weeks prior to the start of the first module. There may be an application fee, but this could not be determined. Required textbooks costing approximately $200 must be purchased separately.

University of Texas at Dallas The Executive and Professional Graduate Certificate Coaching Program

Totally Virtual Format

$14,000 $13,500 tuition or
$12,000 non-credit tuition

+$200 nonrefundable application fee
+$300 textbooks (est)

All distance learning program serving a global audience in a university setting. The classes are delivered via an Adobe platform that allows the instructor to be live on camera, and students to have voice interaction with the instructor and chat with each other. NO in-person classes. In three semesters, there are weekly 60-90 minute web-based classes covering approximately 24 modules with 3-6 hours of self-study, writing, peer-coaching, and client coaching per week.  Selected assignments are graded. Students can choose between a non-degree coaching certificate track and a degree-seeking masters track.  Students in the certificate program receive 15 graduate credit hours that can transfer into the Master of Science degree, along with the mentor coaching hours required by ICF. Requirements for admission:  Bachelors Degree(submit official college transcript), five (5) years satisfactory work experience, comprehensive online application, application essay, three (3) letters of recommendation. Tuition is $13,500 payable at the beginning of each semester. As in typical universities, there is a $200 nonrefundable application fee. Required textbooks costing approximately $300 must be purchased separately.

Coach U Core Essentials Program or Core Essentials Fast Track Program

Totally Virtual Format
A variety of time zones worldwide

$5,595* $5,595 tuition (Fast Track)

$400 early bird discount

*plus possibly $2,000 for mentor coach

The Core Essentials (CE) Program, Phase 1, is delivered via Zoom in two formats: self-paced (design your own learning schedule) over 15 months ($4,495), or 2) accelerated Fast Track over 6 months after a 6-day intensive ($5,595) with pre- and post-work required. The programs involve 77 – 78 hours of coursework. Mentor coaching is referenced but it is not clear whether it is included in the tuition for the CE program. All program materials are included in the tuition. A variety of payment plans are available. It is unclear what the additional fees might be.

Columbia University Columbia Coaching Certification Program

Tarrytown, NY (24 miles north of Midtown Manhattan)
Blended Format


8-month partially in-person program consisting of an initial 5-day “intensive”, plus a field “practicum” that is on-line and over the phone, and then a final 5-day “advanced intensive”. Participants who complete the first intensive must apply and be accepted into the Coaching Certification Program. Practicum includes mentor coaching. $1000 non-refundable deposit. One half the cost of the program ($9,300) is due 1 month before the first intensive. There is no fee for the 7-8 month practicum. Then, the second half ($9,300) is due 1 month before the advanced.

Fielding Graduate University Evidence Based Coaching Certificate Program

Santa Barbara, CA
Blended Format

$11,895 $11,520 tuition

+$300 textbooks
+$75 nonrefundable application fee

15-month certificate program consisting of three 12-week online courses (36 weeks total of self-study), 30 hours telephone training, plus 4 in-person skills training workshops, 2-3 days each. 7 hours group mentor coaching included. Receive 12 graduate credit hours plus Fielding’s Evidence Based Coaching Certificate. Requirements for acceptance: Bachelors Degree and several years of work experience with decision making responsibility, resume, 1-2 page Statement of Purpose, official college transcripts from all colleges attended, and one reference letter. Required books are not included. Tuition is paid at registration with the balance paid in two additional installments, plus the out of pocket costs for books and other session costs paid when necessary. A 2% service fee is charged for all credit card transactions.

Georgetown University School of Continuing Studies Certificate in Leadership Coaching

Washington D.C.
Primarily In-Person plus Homework

$14,325 $13,995 tuition

+$50 application fee
+$280 textbooks

Eight-month cohort program: 148.5 hours, six 3-day (Wednesday-Friday) on-site sessions once a month, plus additional virtual team meetings, plus 6-10 additional hours per week for required reading, reflection, and writing papers. Final written paper of 9-10 pages. Rigorous set of final assessment requirements. Applicants mush have a bachelors degree plus at least five years of education, training and/or professional experience in coaching, human resources, leadership, organization development, or a related field. Resume, two recommendation letters, and essay required with application. Required books are not included. A variety of payment plans, private loans, and tuition discounts are available.

Hudson Institute The Professional Certification in Individual and Organizational Coaching

Santa Barbara, CA

$14,495 (not including required mentor coach)

$2,995, 1st tuition
$11,500, 2nd tuition-Spring
$12,500, 2nd tuition-Fall
+$1,250 – $5,000 for required mentor coach

1-year program. First, a 4-day “foundational” seminar, then if your application is accepted, three 4-day (Thursday-Sunday) in-person sessions over 8 months plus 8-12 additional hours per week for conference calls, required reading, journaling, case studies, and other assignments including 6 taped coaching sessions, an oral presentation, and a formal written paper. Plus 25 hours of personal coaching with a trained coach is required but not included in the tuition (fees range from $50-$200 per hour). No practice exams. $2,500 deposit. No payment plans-total tuition is due 45 days in advance.  Required textbooks must be purchased separately.

New Ventures West Professional Coaching Course

San Francisco, CA
5 other major US cities

$11,895 $11,200 tuition

+$695 prerequisite class

1-year program, starting with the prerequisite two-day Coaching to Excellence class followed by one 5-day in person session and three 4-day in-person sessions (9 am to 7 pm) plus 5-10 additional hours per week spent on reading 10 assigned books and completing written assignments like case studies and essays. The year includes a self-development plan and extensive coaching. No practice exams. Some mentor coaching. No reference letters. Various payment plans are available with applicable finance charges that vary.

Newfield Institute Coaching For Professional And Personal Mastery

Boulder, CO
Reston, VA


11-month program in two modules consisting of four in-person conferences of 3 or 4 days each (Thursday or Friday – Sunday for a total of 14 days) plus 5-7 hours per week for additional reading and writing assignments, study groups, learning groups, teleconferences, group coaching and teaching what you’re learning to a group of 6-10 people who are not participants in the program. Some individual coaching sessions (30-60 minutes each) are included. Payment plans are available but fees are undetermined.

The Coaches Training Institute (CTI) CPCC Certification Program

San Francisco, CA
Chicago, IL
Boston, MA
7 other major US cities

$12,700 $10,900 tuition

+$1,800 for mentor coach

One-year program in two components: Core Coaching and Certification programs. The Core program consists of monthly 3-day weekend sessions in-person over five months. The Certification program is all over the phone with small “pods” of participants working with a supervising coach. Upon completion and successful exams, receive Certified Professional Co-Active Coach (not an ICF credential). Required books not included. Also a recording device is required and not included in the costs.

iNLP Center Life Coach Certification

Totally Virtual Format

$3,800 $2,400 tuition

+$1400 for mentor coach

Focused primarily on life coaching. Entirely online training. Two required books are not included and must be purchased individually. No exam preparation or practice exams. Payments of $420 per month available.

iPEC Coach Training Program

20 Locations Worldwide
Blended Format


Program takes approximately 9 months to complete. It consists of three face-to-face modules followed by 12 weeks to complete a combination of peer work, mentor coaching, webinars, required reading, self-study assignments, and mentor coaching.  There’s an oral exam after the last module. Loan options and payment plans are available. Tuition includes a mentor coach for 6 months, business development program, and all texts and materials. No hidden costs. Appears to be a straightforward application process with no application fee or transcripts required.

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