What is the difference between degree programs and UC Berkeley Extension’s professional certificates?
Degree programs are more focused on the theory of the subject major. UC Berkeley Extension’s certificates balance theory and practical skills. This allows students to acquire specific skills to change career paths or to upgrade to a better job position within an industry.
What are the advantages of a professional certificate from UC Berkeley Extension vs. industry associations or private vendor certificates?
The academic nature of UC Berkeley Extension's professional certificates ensures that you will have a traditional transcript. Extension's rigorous courses designed to meet academic standards and taken for a letter grade are much more likely to be accepted as transfer credit towards a master's degree or an M.B.A. program.
Most of the time, employers are willing to provide tuition reimbursement for academic courses taken from a well-respected and accredited university like UC Berkeley. Some employers resist paying fees for a private workshop packaged to look like an academic course (but is not actually accredited).
In the IT field for example, vendor specific certifications are often really just confirmations that training to a specific level of keystroke familiarity has been reached with the current version of a vendor's product. Such product training often needs to be repeated every few years to stay current with the vendor's product line. In contrast, the broader academic design of UC Berkeley Extension's professional certificates contains a balanced mixture of theory and practical application approaches that is designed to equip the student with a strong lifelong knowledge foundation.
What is the difference between the core courses in the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in ISM and the required courses in other UC Berkeley Extension professional certificates?
In the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in ISM, you are allowed to choose your classes from the core list as long as you take a minimum of 6 semester units. In other certificates, all required courses have to be fully completed as listed.
I have noticed that professional certificates and specialized programs of study are offered. What is the difference, and will I get a certificate from both of them?
Professional certificates acknowledge the highest level of academic achievement offered by UC Berkeley Extension. An academic advisory board consisting of industry experts, University of California Berkeley professors, and UC Berkeley Extension academic staff oversee and approve the curriculum. Certification is an academically and professionally recognized credential that provides a competitive advantage in the pursuit of a career of your choice. Professional certificates consist of a minimum of 140 hours of coursework, generally 6–8 required and elective courses, in more than 20 subject areas. Nearly all of the coursework is university accredited, recorded in a permanent transcript, and thus eligible for transfer credit. Completion of a professional certificate is acknowledged by Award Documentation that includes the full name of the professional certificate, the academic unit granting the certification, the duration of the professional certificate, and explicit acknowledgement that all academic work has been successfully completed.
Specialized programs of study offer a specialized concentration in a subject, enabling students to develop and hone a skill set within a specific area or discipline. Each specialized program of study typically consists of three or more coordinated courses exploring a targeted subject area and typically consists of 30–90 hours of coursework. Many specialized programs of study carry Continuing Education Units (CEU) or other professional licensure credits. Many of the specialized programs of study acknowledge that all required coursework has been successfully finished with an Award of Completion.
If during the specialized program of study you decide that a related professional certificate would be more appropriate, most coursework can be applied toward certification.
How many classes do I need to take in order to complete the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in ISM?
This will depend on the combination of core and elective classes you choose to take to fulfill the 10 semester-unit requirement. On average, this translates to about 5 classes of 2 semester units each.
Can I earn the ISM certificate completely online?
It is certainly possible to complete all of the 10 semester units online, though not all of the wide array of core and elective courses are available online.
International students in evening programs are not allowed to take online courses to earn the certificate. Please visit UC Berkeley Extension's Evening Certificate Programs.
What is the difference between semester units and continuing education units (CEU)?
Semester units are associated with academic level courses, and are designated with an X number (X403, X412.1, or X33 for example). Such courses have final projects and/or exams to ensure the student has learned the class material. One semester unit in UC Berkeley Extension equals 15 hours of in-class instruction. Such classes are transferable on a case-by-case basis with other accredited institutions.
Continuing education units, unlike academic level course credits, are not transferable to an accredited institution. Such classes are required for those who need to renew various licenses (the renewal process requires a certain number of hours of instruction to maintain the license).
What are the minimum requirements to earn the certificate?
You must complete all courses with a grade C or better, and maintain at least a cumulative 2.0 Grade Point Average (GPA) in order to earn the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in ISM.
What are the requirements to earn a Certificate with Distinction?
For the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in ISM, you will need at least a 3.5 GPA to receive a Certificate with Distinction.
How long does it take to complete the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in ISM?
The certificate can be completed at your own pace. However, all coursework must be completed within three years of registering for the certificate.
How many classes should I take in a given term (spring, summer or fall)?
It all depends on your schedule. Most students working a full eight-hour workday take one course per term. Some students devote full time to studying, and could take two to three classes per term, depending on availability.
After completing the professional certificate, how do I obtain the certificate of completion?
You are expected to complete the course requirements for the professional certificate within three years of registering for the certificate. Once you have completed the certificate coursework, notify UC Berkeley Extension that you have completed the curriculum and request your certificate. Send an email to email@example.com or call (510) 642-4151. After your records have been reviewed, verified, and approved, your certificate will be sent to you in the mail. The review of your records is usually completed within six to eight weeks after you request the certificate.
Is job placement assistance available for graduates of UC Berkeley Extension’s certificates?
UC Berkeley Extension does not provide job assistance. Some instructors, however, may have information about job opportunities within their companies or industries.
A bachelor's degree is necessary for Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Information Systems and Management (ISM). You will need to provide the following documents prior to registration: a copy of your bachelor's degree; an official transcript of courses taken for your degree; and, if the degree was awarded outside the United States, a credential evaluation report. Any major is acceptable for the bachelor's degree requirement. In addition, it is strongly recommended that you have the ability and willingness to install Linux and/or other programming environments for Java, C, Perl, PHP, etc. as needed to complete assignments in class.
Please note that the application form will be denied or put on hold until the above documents are received and approved by the academic department. Send the official transcripts and the copy of the degree to:
Engineering and Technology Programs
UC Berkeley Extension
1995 University Avenue, Suite 110
Berkeley, CA 94704-7000
I have a degree from a foreign country. What are the steps I need to take to show that my foreign degree is equivalent to a bachelor's degree in the United States?
You will need to go to the World Education Services (WES) to obtain a credential evaluation from that organization. After you receive a credential evaluation, please submit an official copy to Stephen Chang at the department address.
I have a baccalaureate degree that is not related to the Information Systems and Management field. Is it acceptable for admission into the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in ISM?
Yes. Any baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution, regardless of major, is acceptable.
How much does it cost to complete the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in ISM?
Each course is priced individually, but the certificate has an estimated cost of $3,600 (not including course materials). Course fees are subject to change.
When do I need to apply for the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in ISM?
Courses start throughout the year. You may apply for the professional certificate in any semester. You should register for the certificate before you complete your second course in the curriculum. You can apply online using our secure Registration Form, or print out a PDF version of the form and mail it with the nonrefundable fee.
Is financial aid available to students taking classes at UC Berkeley Extension?
UC Berkeley Extension is a self-supporting organization, so the professional certificates are not currently eligible for federally sponsored financial assistance. Private financial aid may be available to you, though. For more information, please visit our Information and Policies section.
My company or organization has tuition assistance. Can I use this to pay for courses in UC Berkeley Extension?
Yes. You can pay for a course by purchase order with a tuition voucher. For more details, please visit our Information and Policies section.
What kinds of grading options do I have?
On the first day of class, the instructor will circulate the official grade roster for the class. The grading options are:
CLG–Credit Letter Grade
CP/NP–Credit Pass/No Pass
NC–Not for Credit
Remember, courses must be taken for a Credit Letter Grade (CLG) in order to earn the certificate. For more general information about grading policies at UC Berkeley Extension, please review our grading policies.
When the official grade roster is passed to me, how do I fill it out?
Find your name on the roster. There is a column that allows you to input the abbreviation of the desired grading option (CLG, CP/NP, or NC). In addition, you must sign your name to the right of the grading option column to make the decision official.
Can I change my grading option at any time?
You can change your grading option at any time before the final exam is administered. After the final exam is administered and the class is finished, you cannot change the grading option.
Can I take a class Pass/No Pass and use it towards earning my certificate?
No. Candidates must take all classes for a credit letter grade (CLG) to earn the certificate.
I noticed that one of the requirements for earning a certificate is earning a grade C or better in each course. What does this mean?
While it is possible to pass an individual course with a C-, you may not apply any courses in which you received a C- towards completing the professional certificate. You must either retake the course and earn at least a C or work with your adviser to determine if you may take another course to meet the requirements of the certificate.
An emergency has come up. Is there any way I can complete all coursework after the last day of class?
Yes. If the emergency has come up and you feel that you will not be able to complete the coursework before then, please take the following steps:
I understand the Petition for Incomplete process. But what does an "I" mean on my transcript?
An "I" on a course is defined as student work of passing quality but not finished. An "I" designation will be issued only if you have made prior written arrangements with your instructor to make up work missed.
How much time do I have to complete all coursework to change an "I" to a letter grade?
UC Berkeley Extension does not allow more than three months (ninety days) after the last day of the course to complete all coursework. If you do not complete the coursework within the time limit, the incomplete will become an "F."
Can I substitute any of my courses into the professional certificate?
Prior to applying to the certificate, substitutions can be made on a case-by-case basis with pre-approval from the department. Courses from an accredited institution with a grade B or better can be substituted for up to 3 semester units worth of classes. Once you are registered for the certificate, no substitutions or waivers will be allowed.
Can I transfer credit from a professional certificate to a specialized program of study?
In curriculum areas with both professional certificates and specialized programs of study, you may transfer from the professional certificate to the shorter specialized program of study format if required courses are shared by the two programs. No additional fee is charged if you elect to transfer from a professional certificate to a specialized program of study in the same curriculum area.
Can I advance from a specialized program of study to a professional certificate?
Some programs share course requirements with more in-depth certificate coursework in the same subject area. After you have completed the requirements for a specialized program of study, you may find that you need only a few more courses to be eligible for a professional certificate. If you wish to go on to earn the certificate, you may apply for candidacy at a reduced application fee. Please contact the program director for more information.
To contact the department office, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call (510) 642-7343.
For additional information about Extension's online learning, send an email to email@example.com or call (510) 642-7343.Top