Post-Baccalaureate Certificate of Professional Studies in Information Risk, Privacy, and Security (CIRPS)

Advance your skills in data privacy, data security, and managing information risk for organizations


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1800+ Students
from 37 Countries

The Information Risk, Privacy, and Security certificate (CIRPS) program is designed for professionals in the information management field who are looking to boost their knowledge on relevant information governance and assurance topics.
This is the program for you if you:

  • Are in or entering the information risk management field
  • Would like to advance your knowledge of information privacy policies and methods
  • Would like to enhance your information and data security career

Why choose the CIRPS program?
The iSchool is uniquely positioned to take a primary role in providing education and training to existing information management professionals who want to take on the challenges of information risk management. We have focused our curriculum on a select few courses that will help professionals transform themselves into information policy analysts and architects. Individuals completing this program will be positioned to review data protection legislation, legal requirements for information policy specifications, implementation of information policies, data governance, data validation, and business rule compliance, as well as help architect, socialize, and deploy corporate information governance programs. The Information Risk, Privacy, and Security certificate focuses on practical application and hands-on learning, making sure you have the skills to apply your knowledge immediately in your career. Some of the other benefits of our program include:

  • A prestigious institution ranked #2 in the USA by and #8 by US News & World Report
  • Fully online to fit your schedule
  • Designed to accommodate working professionals
  • Can be completed in as little as one academic year

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INST-612: Information Policy: The access, exchange, and management of information have been key recurring issues in the United States and in other countries. This course examines selected information policy questions relating to information and communications, with special attention to complex policy issues that involve value conflicts among information ownership rights, personal privacy rights, and public access rights to information. The course will focus on information policy on all scales, ranging from rules enforced by public and private organizations– voluntary and de facto standards to constitutional principles, statutory provisions, laws and regulations, and federal policies. Topics include access to information laws both in the government and private sector, corporate information policies, e-government, privacy, secrecy, government surveillance, intellectual property, censorship, and international issues. The course aims to provide library and information professionals with a fundamental understanding of the importance and impact of information policy on the information profession.
INST-753: Data Governance and Data Quality: INST-753 surveys the methods and practices for understanding the relationship between organizational performance objectives and their effective oversight, use, and management of information. Examines methods for instituting information governance, data governance, and data quality in the context of information policies for assessing information risk, observing data policies, and enforcing accountability for protection of sensitive information. Explores models of data ownership and accountability, roles and responsibilities for data governance and data stewardship, and processes for soliciting and documenting information and data requirements. Covers techniques for data quality assessment, specification of data quality rules, and applications for validating compliance with data quality expectations, monitoring levels of data quality, and notifications and dashboards for monitoring data compliance.
INST-754: Data Integration and Preparation for Analytics: This course provides a comprehensive overview of the end-to-end processes for acquiring, ingesting, managing, cleansing, transforming and integrating data sources for the purposes of reporting and analytics. Concepts include data acquisition, data streaming, data staging, standardization, data quality, concept and metadata harmonization, transformation, and data modeling. Students will learn how ingested data sets can be transformed, integrated, and prepared for analytical use
INST-756: Information Risk Management: Over the past two decades there has been a plethora of government legislation and regulation impacting organizational information management. At the same time, the risks of exposure of protected information has intensified due to a widening array of cyber threats and attacks originating from both outside and within the organization. This course looks at information system threats, vulnerabilities, risk assessment and management, as well as exploring how regulations scope and define what is considered to be protected information. The course considers how data assets are assessed and classified in terms of their levels of sensitivity. In addition, the course discusses specifying data protection policies and the techniques for enforcing compliance with those policies.
Anticipated Course Schedule
Fall INST-753
Winter INST-612
Spring INST-612
Summer INST-754

From the table of anticipated course offerings, you will see there are a number of ways to structure your schedule. You can complete this certificate in as little as one academic year or take your time completing the courses.
Here are some sample timelines, but there are several more combinations that are possible depending on the semester in which you begin the program. The courses are non-sequential, so you may take them in any order.
Example 1

Semester 1 (Fall) Semester 2 (Winter) Semester 3 (Spring) Semester 4 (Summer)
INST-753: Data Governance and Data Quality INST-612: Information Policy INST-756: Information Risk Management INST-754: Data Integration and Preparation for Analytics

Example 2

Semester 1 (Fall) Winter Semester 2 (Spring) Summer
INST-753: Data Governance and Data Quality N/A INST-756: Information Risk Management N/A
INST-754: Data Integration and Preparation for Analytics INST-612: Information Policy
The following list represents the specific criteria for admission to the certificate program, based upon the admissions criteria for the Graduate School and the iSchool at the University of Maryland.
Application Requirements

  • Complete the UMD Graduate School application.
    • The Graduate School’s Step-by-Step guide is a helpful resource for prospective applicants.
  • Pay the application fee of $75 to the UMD Graduate School.
  • Upload transcripts for all undergraduate and graduate courses at each institution you have attended.
    • Unofficial transcripts may be submitted initially. Official transcripts will be required upon admission and enrollment.
    • Applicants must have earned a four-year baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or an equivalent degree from a non-U.S. institution. If you have questions, read more about this requirement.
    • Applicants must have earned a minimum 3.0 GPA (on a 4.0 scale) in all prior undergraduate and graduate coursework. If you do not meet this, provide more detail in your Statement of Purpose.
  • Provide a Statement of Purpose describing your experiences and interests that will help you succeed in UMD’s Certificate in Information Risk Management program.
    • In your Statement of Purpose, please address and/or demonstrate the following:
      • Your interest in information risk management (including but not limited to data quality, data privacy, data protection and information security, compliance, and/or information/data governance).
      • Your experience with data modeling, relational and NoSQL databases, database design, business intelligence, reporting, and analytics methods and tools, and data integration and preparation that would typically be covered in prerequisite coursework in a master’s program.
  • Submit the names and e-mail addresses of three academic or professional references.
  • Upload a current resume or CV.
  • Send TOEFL/IELTS scores to the University of Maryland (international applicants only).
    • During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Graduate School will accept the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition and the IELTS Indicator test. Learn more about the at-home tests here, as well as alternative exams if you are applying from mainland China or Iran
Application Deadlines & Admissions Decisions
The application deadline is June 1, 2023 for Fall 2023 enrollment.
Tuition & Fees

Please see our Tuition & Fees page for more information.

Contact CIRPS Academics Home

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