Graduate Certificate in Institutional Research

A student studies on a computer in a library


Credits Required
Tuition per Credit

Demand Increases for Trained Institutional Research Professionals

Institutional researchers provide quantitative and qualitative information and analysis services that support academic planning, decision making, accreditation, and assessment for academic institutions, while also maintaining reporting requirements for external agencies and organizations.

If you are an institutional research professional who wants to enter this field, Penn State’s online Graduate Certificate in Institutional Research can help you develop the skills you need to support institutional planning and policy formation and methodologies and research practices.

Institutional Research at Penn State

With support from the Association for Institutional Research (AIR) and the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the Penn State Higher Education program has partnered with World Campus to offer you an entirely online and accredited Graduate Certificate in Institutional Research. The curriculum includes topics such as research design, assessment and evaluation, and the integration of strategic planning with institutional finance.

In addition to the standard online curriculum, you may also earn credits by participating in the AIR Summer Institutes, Penn State assessment workshops, in-person courses completed at University Park campus, and the AIR and NCES Data Policy Institute in Washington, D.C.

Act 48 Approved

Penn State is an Act 48-approved provider for Pennsylvania educators, so the courses for the graduate certificate in institutional research may count toward professional development hours.

Who Should Apply?

Enrolling in this program can greatly benefit you if you are an in-career professional, institutional researcher, graduate student, or employed in a related field.

Please note that this program does not lead to initial teacher certification, however, this program may help you to renew your certification. Check with your state's Department of Education for exact requirements for recertification.

Career Opportunities for Graduates

Many career paths exist for trained institutional research professionals. In addition to working for an academic institution, you can follow a career path in finance, accrediting associations, state governments in the department of education, or in private consulting firms that provide research assistance to institutions that lack institutional research offices.

Information for Military and Veterans

Are you a member of the military, a veteran, or a military spouse? Please visit our military website for additional information regarding financial aid, transfer credits, or application instructions. 

Online Education at Penn State

Penn State has a history of 100+ years of distance education and more than a decade of experience in online learning. We create an online learning environment that offers you the same quality education our residential students experience in a face-to-face setting. Learn more about Penn State World Campus.