Professional Development Certificates - Frequently Asked Questions

Here's a list of the questions we get most often. Have additional questions or concerns? Give us a call at 612-624-4000 or send an email to ccapsinfo@umn.edu.

General Certificate Questions

 

What is a certificate program?

Professional development certificate programs offer a cluster of courses that provide knowledge and training in a specific competency. The knowledge and skills you gain can be used immediately in the workplace and offer you:

  • applied knowledge to help you stay current
  • information to help you be an effective manager and leader
  • preparation for a new field or career
  • skills that position you for advancement

Completion of a certificate demonstrates:

  • commitment to master a specific body of knowledge or set of skills
  • breadth and depth of skill and understanding that comes from planned learning
  • dedication to professional advancement

How long do I have to complete a certificate program?

Participants have four years from the date of the first course to complete a professional development certificate, whereafter you will need to reenroll.

Will I receive an actual certificate?

Yes. Upon completion of each course, you will receive a certificate of completion. Once you have completed all of the courses required for the certificate program, you will receive a formal certificate from the University of Minnesota's College of Continuing and Professional Studies. You can also request that an official notification letter of completion be sent to an identified employer, supervisor, personnel manager, or association.

How do I get a transcript of the courses I've taken?

You can receive an unofficial transcript of the professional development courses you've taken via email or postal mail. Contact the Information Center at 612-624-4000 or via email at ccapsinfo@umn.edu. You can also stop by 20 Ruttan on the Saint Paul campus.

For an official University of Minnesota transcript, send a written request with a check for $5 made payable to:

University of Minnesota College of Continuing and Professional Studies
Information Center
20 Ruttan Hall
1994 Buford Avenue
Saint Paul, MN 55108

Is there a fee to enroll in a certificate program?

There is no enrollment fee for these certificates.

Are meals included in course fees?

Many all-day courses include a continental breakfast, lunch, and afternoon snacks. Evening courses may include beverage service and optional dining services.

Do you offer any customized plans or scheduling options?

Yes. We can conduct any of our existing certificate programs at your location. We can also work with you to tailor or develop an original course to best suit your organizational goals. In addition, certificate programs may be started on site at your location as a group and then completed individually through open enrollment courses at the Saint Paul campus. More information is available on our Customized Training website.

What type of credit is available?

A variety of professional credits is awarded for successfully completing the entire course.

  • Continuing Education Units (CEU)
    The CEU is a nationally recognized unit of measurement awarded to participants in a qualifying noncredit continuing education program. One CEU is defined as 10 contact hours. Six-contact-hour courses earn 0.6 CEUs.
  • Continuing Professional Education (CPE) 
    Continuing professional education credits are frequently needed by accountants, finance professionals, and others. One CPE is awarded for every 50 minutes of instruction. Six-contact-hour courses award 7.2 CPEs.
  • Professional Development Units (PDU) 
    These are required for certified project managers, business analysts, and others. One PDU is awarded for every hour of instruction. Six-contact-hour courses earn six PDUs.
  • Profession Development Hours (PDH) 
    These are awarded to engineers, architects, surveyors, and related professionals. One PDH is awarded for every hour of instruction. Six-contact-hour courses earn six PDHs.

Agile Certificate

What are the qualifications of your instructors?

Instructors come from industries with considerable experience in the Agile philosophy. All have earned their Certified ScrumMaster (CSM™) credential and several have the Certified Scrum Training (CST) credential.

Do the courses have to be completed in a certain order?

No, although it is best to begin with Agile Fundamentals.

How is the Agile Certificate different from the Certified ScrumMaster course?

The CSM™ is an exam preparation course for anyone wishing to earn the CSM credential. It focuses on Scrum values, practices and applications, and processes for organizing, planning, and executing a Scrum IT project. The Agile Certificate provides a broader study of the Agile methodology as it is adopted by an organization.

If I have completed the Certified ScrumMaster course, can I skip any of the Agile courses?
Possibly. If you complete our Certified ScrumMaster course and our Introduction to Agile course, you can skip the two-day Agile Fundamentals course.

Are classes offered at night?

Not at this time. The Agile Certificate is offered only during the day.

Didn't see an answer to your question? Try looking here.

Business Analysis

Is the Business Analysis certificate available online?

Yes. We also offer an online version of the BA certificate.

Do the courses need to be completed in a certain order?

If you are new to business analysis, yes. Each required course builds on the topics addressed in the previous class. The proper order is: 1) Introduction to Business Analysis, 2) Business Solution Scoping and Eliciting Requirements, 3) Business Requirements Analysis, 4) Supporting Requirements—Documenting, Managing Requirements, and Validating the Solution and 5) Stakeholder Management, Business Analysis Planning, and Estimating.

If you are an experienced business analyst, the order is less critical. The elective course can be taken at any time.

If I complete this certificate, will I be ready to sit for the Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP) exam?

No. The CBAP exam is a rigorous test of your knowledge of the contents of the Guide to Business Analysis Body of Knowledge (BABOK™), requiring concentrated study. Our program provides practical skills that BAs can put into practice immediately. Earning the CBAP credential could be the next step in your BA journey.

Are classes offered at night?

Not at this time. The business analysis classes are currently offered only during the day.

Is this program recognized by the International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA)?

Yes. All our courses are reviewed for alignment with the current version of BABOK™. We are an Endorsed Education Provider (EEP) with the IIBA.

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Project Management

What are the qualifications of your instructors?

Instructors come from industries with considerable experience managing projects. Those who teach required courses typically have earned their PMP credential. They represent a variety of industries and disciplines, which we feel helps the student gain a broad perspective of how to apply project management principles in practical situations.

Do the courses have to be completed in a certain order?

Sequence is important for the required courses, but not for the electives. Of the required courses, the most important to take in order are: 1) Initiation, 2) Planning, 3) Risk and 4) Execution, Monitoring & Control.

If you are new to project management, starting with the Foundations course is recommended but not required.

If I complete this certificate, will I be ready to sit for the PMP exam?

No. The PMP exam is a rigorous test of your knowledge of the contents of the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK™). We do offer a separate PMP Exam Preparation course for those who are qualified.

Are classes offered at night?

Yes, most of the courses in the certificate are offered at night. Students may attend a mixture of daytime and evening classes.

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Online Business Analysis Certificate

Participants will have access to the online course one day prior to the course start date.

Participants should register themselves in online registration. The registrant will receive a username and password to use throughout the course. Registrations cannot be transferred.

How do I log in to the online course?

Upon completing your online registration, you will receive an e-mail confirmation of your registration that includes a link to access the course. Click the link provided, and log in using the username and password that you created in the registration system for access. Access to the online course is available one day prior to the course start date.

How long does it take to complete this certificate program?

You have 10 weeks from the listed start date to complete this certificate. There are both synchronous and asynchronous elements to this course, meaning there will be times when students and the instructor will be online at the same time and self-paced activities and assignments that you will be required to complete on your own, usually within a one- to two-week time frame.

Participants will have access to the online course one day prior to the course start date.

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Business Process Improvement Questions

Why is your program 48 hours?

Improving organizational processes requires both an understanding of the tools needed to identify existing processes (current state) and make improvements (future state), and the soft skills necessary to implement the organizational changes that will be required.

About how long will it take to complete the certificate?

The four courses are delivered approximately one month apart, so you should be able to finish in four months. If you miss a class, you can take it the next time it is offered. The certificate is offered twice each year (fall and spring).

Are classes offered at night?

Not at this time. The Business Process Improvement program is offered only during the day.

Is this program recognized by the Association of Business Process Management Professionals (ABPMP)?

Yes. We are a Registered Training Provider (RTP) with the ABPMP.

Is attendance mandatory?

Absolutely. If you miss a class session or a portion of a class that is greater than one hour, you will be required to repeat it. If you miss less than an hour of a class, you can talk with the instructor about making up the content you missed.

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