40 Amazing Certificate of Excellence Templates

A certificate of excellence is an incentive given to students, employees and business partners. All those who have done something exceptional in their work deserve it. There are other ways to reward people for performing excellently at something.

These include raises, bonuses, and even public announcements of the efforts. However, a certificate of excellence award remains to be one of the best. It is the most symbolic way to show your appreciation for the individual’s efforts.

If you’re a teacher or a leader of an organization, such certificates can convey a great message. It will show that you appreciate and recognize the work of your employee or student. This way they get a reward in return for accomplishing his/her task.

Especially, if you made the certificate yourself, you can customize it. You must design it to suit the personality of the recipient, making more of an impact. You may create your own certificate of excellence template or download. Also, you can use one from this page.

Giving a high-quality certificate to employees or students is a way to motivate them. And we all know that motivation is a huge part of the academic as well as the professional world.

Certificate of Excellence Templates

Creating an effective program for excellence

Many times, educators and employers are unsure about the effectiveness of programs. But, real-world situations have shown that these programs spread positivity.

They help in increasing morale and motivation of employees and students. Because of this, you may want to think about starting this kind of program at your school or in your workplace.

Try it out and you might see a positive change in your institution. Create an effective program for excellence to increase the performance of students or employees.

In order to come up with such a program, you need to consider some key elements. Let’s go through these elements to think about:

The right timing.

When launching a program for excellence, make sure to pick the right time to do it. Don’t introduce such a program for the very first time. Avoid it when your students or employees are feeling stressed or pressured.

Create the program with the best possible time to introduce it in mind. Aside from the program, also think about the best time to give out the certificate of excellence.

Give your people enough time to prove themselves after you’ve told them about the program. In doing this, you’re likely to get a more positive response from your students or employees.

Driven by context

There are certain things to keep in mind before giving an award for excellent performance. Make sure that the performance is in accordance with institutional or educational goals.

Think of all your long-term goals and create your program around them. When you link your program to your goals, it will motivate more efficiently. Without context, the program will prove to be nothing.

However, a random occurrence has no real meaning. 

Appropriate for your institution

You should also make the program and the awards appropriate for your institution. Also, make sure the documents, and the awarding ceremony, match your institution.

Otherwise, your employees or students might not get the point of the whole thing. So your program and your awards might turn out to be meaningless.


It’s not recommended to schedule regular events for recognition. The reason for it is that when the events become routine, they begin to lose their significance time.

Eventually, such an event will become another part of their daily routine. You can convey a message of authenticity along with a certificate. For this conduct a ceremony each time there’s something or someone to celebrate.

Coupled with motivating rewards

Usually, having a program to recognize excellent work is enough. This will encourage your students and employees always. And on coupling them with incentives – such as a certificate or material reward; it appeals more.

But again, don’t fall into the routine of giving the same thing over and over again. You may also match the reward with the task or the accomplishment done by the individual.

On keeping all things in mind when you’re creating a program for excellence, it turns out to be effective. You’ll get the results you’re hoping for. These are small gestures that will never disappoint you.

Blank Certificate of Excellence

Basic parts of a certificate

When it comes to making a certificate of excellence template, there are no standard rules. You can make them however you want to, just as long as you include all the basic parts of a certificate.

If you include all these aspects, it will make your document look sleek and professional. Here are the 7 basic parts for you to add to your template:


The title is one of the most important parts of a certificate. It should convey the purpose of the document, so make sure it’s big, bold, and totally readable. You don’t have to use the same font as all the other text, just make sure it’s clear enough to understand.

You may use whatever title you want, just as long as it suits the purpose of the document. There are different ways to make certificate of excellence wording. Also, you need to consider what to write in all the different sections.

By far, wording for the title is the easiest to think of. When writing the title, make sure it’s at the top of the page and it’s in the middle. Do this so it’s easy to see and read.

On top of the title, you may include the name of your organization as well as your logo if any. It’s not a requirement but it does make the document more official.


Write the presentation line after the title. The font may be significantly smaller and simpler than that of the title. Also, it’s easy to come up with the wording of the presentation line. Just 3 or 4 words would suffice.


This is another important part of the certificate. Without the recipient, the document would be totally useless! The recipient may be an individual, a group or even an organization.

No matter who or what it is, make sure to spell the name correctly. You need to write the full name and make sure there are no errors.


Usually, certificates would contain a line stating who the giver of the award is. In this case, write the name of your company or your school. You don’t need to emphasize this section as much but you should include it.


This section elaborates the details about an individual, group or organization. It explains the reason that why he or she deserves an award. Although this section is optional, it is quite essential for some types of certificates.

Here, you may place the reason why the person deserves the award. What task he did excellently to merit the honor. You don’t have to place a long description. Usually, 1-2 brief sentences would be enough.


When it comes to the date, you may use different formats. You can arrange the month, day, and year, however, you want to. It may also come before or after the description section.

Usually, you place the date when you will award the certificate.


When a certificate has signatures, it shows that it’s an official document. That’s why this part is important. Write down the name/s of the signatory or the signatories and add a signature line.

There may be one or more people who will sign your certificate. In any case, you need to think about how you will lay out their names. If there’s just one signatory, you may place his/her name in the middle of the signature line.

If there are more, then lay them out accordingly. Before asking the authorized person to sign it, please proofread the document. When you’re 100% sure of what’s written, only then should you print it out and have it signed.

These are the basic parts of a certificate template. You may add more sections if you wish but try to keep all these parts to keep it as complete and official as possible.

Now, let’s go through some steps in how you can make this type of certificate.

Sample Certificate of Excellence

How to make a certificate of excellence

It is important to recognize student or employee’s effort for doing an excellent job. Thus, the best and easiest way to do so is through a certificate of excellence award.

Now that you know all the basic parts to include, it’s much easier to make one for yourself. Keep the parts in mind and all you have to do is think of the wording and the formatting.

Here, we have some steps to guide you in making such a certificate using Microsoft Word.

  • First, launch the program to open a new document. On opening the program, change the orientation of the page. Follow the landscape format by changing from the default style (portrait).
  • Usually, you make certificates horizontally rather than vertically. Also, set the margins as well as the page size. Typically, margins are 1-inch all around and you use the standard letter size.
  • Next, insert a border to your page. You may choose a border from what’s available in Microsoft Word or paste a border you found online. Either way, go to the “Insert” tab and place your border.  You may choose from the “picture,” “clip art” or “shapes” options.
  • Then it’s time to add your text. Place the title first at the very top of your page and add the sections from there. You may use 2-3 different fonts. This helps in emphasizing and differentiating the parts of your certificate.
  • When you’re done, look at the layout of your document. You may add other graphics or images if you wish or keep it simple and professional. It all depends on who you’re giving the award to.
  • Proofread your work to ensure that there are no errors. You may even ask someone else to proofread the certificate. Another person may find errors that you missed.

While finalizing your certificate ensure that everything written on it is correct. Next, proceed to get it printed out on high-quality paper. Then, have the signatories signed the certificate. In end, the prepare it for the presentation ceremony.

Presenting a certificate of excellence

Presenting a certificate of excellence award can serve as a powerful tool. It keeps your employees or students motivated. They would show achievement, honor, and appreciation for their achievements.

When someone receives such an award, it would give him good feelings. They come to know that you notice how well he performs at work or in school. Here are some of the best times and ways to present such awards:

When institution hosts a community service, you may present a certificate to individuals. This would be a great time to acknowledge the excellent work your employee or student did.

Include the presentation in the program to recognize the awardees.

If one of your employees or students does something that stands out, you give the certificate. It would take more effort creating an impromptu certificate but it will give more of an impact too.

Sometimes when you present an award right after a job well done, the person appreciates it more. He or she places more value on it.

Also, you may award when one of your employees or students have completed a milestone or a difficult task. In such cases, you may already prepare the certificate beforehand. Next, award it as soon as they finish the task.

This is another great time to present the certificate. It comes along with feelings of accomplishment on finishing a task. This task can be they’ve been working on for a long time.

No matter how and when you present the certificate, make sure to do so with sincerity. It leads to appreciation to make more of an impact.