architecture meeting

Graduate Certificate inBusiness Architecture

Program summary

Gain the expertise to align your organization's higher-level strategic objectives with tactical enterprise-level projects and technology initiatives to improve overall effectiveness and efficiency. This program is recognized by the Business Architecture Guild.

100% Online

Complete your Penn State course work at your own pace and 100% online.

Application deadline

Apply by April 15 to start May 13

Credits and costs

9 Credits$1,017 per credit

Gain Skills to Drive Strategic Execution and Transformational Change in Your Business

  • Help your organization successfully execute its business strategy.

  • Apply business architecture approaches in the execution of business strategy and facilitation of enterprise change and transformation.

  • Align tactical resources and projects with strategic objectives to drive change in business performance.

  • Develop a blueprint of an enterprise that provides a common understanding of the organization.

Online Business Architecture Courses

The discipline of business architecture allows companies to see where they are, where they want to be, and how to achieve the end goal. This 9-credit online certificate will help you understand how business, information, and technology work together to achieve strategic and tactical goals.

As a student in the program, you will: 

  • develop and link components of business architecture to create a holistic understanding of the enterprise 
  • explore the concepts and practical applications of effective enterprise modeling and business information 
  • develop meaningful representations of real-world aspects of a business, along with how they interact 
  • delve into barriers that affect disruptive innovation 
  • investigate emerging trends and disruptors in technology and industry that create new markets and influence product development, business models, and business practices associated with innovation 
  • understand how business architecture as a discipline is developed and structured, as well as current and future trends

All courses are asynchronous, meaning you are not required to log in at a particular time each week. Optional synchronous discussions will be available throughout the semester for those students who prefer a higher level of engagement.

Courses are structured to allow you to complete weekly assignments when and where it's most convenient for you. While courses are autonomous, you will have the opportunity to interact and engage with your classmates through integrated experiences. This peer-to-peer interaction enhances your learning experience while strengthening your professional network on a global scale. 

Required Courses (select 9 credits)

  • 3
    credits

    Focuses on the development and application of business architecture as a holistic discipline that produces a common understanding of the organization that is used to align strategic objectives and tactical initiatives.

  • 3
    credits

    Surveys emerging trends and disruptors in technology and industry that create new markets and influence decision-making, product development, business models, and business practices associated with innovation.

    • 3
      credits

      Explores the use and effectiveness of architectural modeling to describe an organization and examines model-based products as tools to support, influence, and enable organization planning and decision-making.

      • Prerequisite

        BA 809

    • or:
      3
      credits

      Integrating multiple functional business areas to resolve global business problems and improve organizational performance.

Course Availability

If you're ready to see when your courses will be offered, visit our public LionPATH course search (opens in new window) to start planning ahead.

Start or Advance Your Career

Hiring manager reviewing a resume or CV with a job candidate

You can use the knowledge gained from this program and the support of Penn State career resources to pursue careers in a variety of fields, depending on your goals.


Career Services to Set You Up for Success

Student having a virtual meeting on a laptop with a career counselor

From the day you're accepted as a student, you can access resources and tools provided by Penn State World Campus Career Services to further your career. These resources are beneficial whether you're searching for a job or advancing in an established career.

  • Opportunities to connect with employers
  • Career counselor/coach support
  • Occupation and salary information
  • Internships
  • Graduate school resources 

Ready to Learn More?

Get the resources you need to make informed decisions about your education. Request information on this program and other programs of interest by completing this form.

* required1/3

I agree to be contacted via phone, email, and text by Penn State World Campus and affiliates. I understand my information may also be shared with select providers to offer ads that may be of interest to me.Privacy Policy. reCAPTCHA protected. Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

Learn more about this program

Download Program Brochure All my programs

Ready to take the next step toward your Penn State graduate certificate?

Apply by April 15 to start May 13. How to Apply 

Costs and Financial Aid

Learn about this program's tuition, fees, scholarship opportunities, grants, payment options, and military benefits.

Costs and Financial Aid

Graduate Tuition

Graduate tuition is calculated based on the number of credits for which you register. Tuition is due shortly after each semester begins and rates are assessed every semester of enrollment.

2023–24 Academic Year Rates

Tuition rates for the fall 2023, spring 2024, and summer 2024 semesters.

How many credits do you plan to take per semester?Cost
11 or fewer$1,017 per credit
12 or more$12,203 per semester

2024–25 Academic Year Rates

Tuition rates for the fall 2024, spring 2025, and summer 2025 semesters.

How many credits do you plan to take per semester?Cost
11 or fewer$1,027 per credit
12 or more$12,325 per semester

Financial Aid and Military Benefits

Some students may qualify for financial aid. Take the time to research financial aid, scholarships, and payment options as you prepare to apply. Military service members, veterans, and their spouses or dependents should explore these potential military education benefits and financial aid opportunities, as well.

Paying for Your Certificate

Students pursuing a certificate are considered "nondegree," a status that is not eligible for federal student aid, including the Federal Direct Stafford Loan program. A private alternative loan may be an option to consider.

Additionally, Penn State offers many ways to pay for your education, including an installment plan and third-party payments. Penn State World Campus also offers an Employer Reimbursement and Tuition Deferment Plan. Learn more about the options for paying for your education.

Students pursuing a degree and meeting all other eligibility requirements may qualify for financial aid.

Penn State Smeal Advantage

This is a photography of the Business Building at Penn State.

Smeal College of Business is committed to being your partner in lifelong learning. Smeal offers programs, support, and resources for every career stage and life circumstance that will prepare you not only for your next great opportunity but also for the one after that.

More options, greater flexibility, and a commitment to lifelong learning

The desire for knowledge and professional growth spans a lifetime. That is why the Penn State Smeal College of Business offers a portfolio of professional graduate programs for all stages of your career. In partnership with Penn State World Campus, Smeal makes it easy to customize a learning plan to your unique career aspirations and busy schedule. Penn State Smeal offers you a lifetime of learning with more concentrations and one of the most integrated, flexible offerings of online and residential programs in the United States.

Penn State Business building

An entire team dedicated to your success

Personal advising — Our experts will explain the many options that Penn State Smeal offers and will help you refine your career strategy and craft the educational experience best suited to your interests. It all starts with a simple, but critical question: “What are your goals?” 

Career coaching* — Our Alumni Career Services team will support you across all career stages with professional advancement opportunities and coaching to help you stay focused on achieving your goals.

Delivering the best of online and in-person learning for a rich educational experience

We understand that today’s professional learners want meaningful discussion and interaction with faculty and classmates along with the technologies and flexible approaches of contemporary online learning. By aligning the best of both worlds, we bring richness, depth, and diversity to the overall educational experience.

Courses designed to engage and motivate the professional student

Creative Teams consisting of a lead faculty member, a Teaching Support Specialist (TSS), and an Instructional Designer use advanced analytics to develop and deliver contemporary graduate courses that promote application and engagement. We strive to innovate in ways that others don’t. 

A real-world perspective

  • Industry professionals inside the virtual classroom — Many of Penn State Smeal’s courses feature industry professionals who have been in the trenches and work hard to make an impact every day. These individuals, most of whom hold a Smeal graduate degree, partner with our renowned faculty to provide a rich academic context with real-world application.
  • Global immersion* — This unique, optional experience will enhance your ability to communicate cross-culturally, adapt to evolving business environments, and manage the risks and benefits of operating on a global scale. Any student pursing a full degree from Smeal may participate in this optional, faculty-led experience for elective credit. Previous destinations have included Shanghai, China; Johannesburg, South Africa; Prague, Czech Republic; Santiago, Chile; and Zagreb, Croatia.

One of the largest and most influential networks in the country

At Penn State, you are part of a worldwide community of instructors, learners, and more than 750,000 alumni who support one another and make a meaningful impact. 

More than 90,000 Smeal alumni benefit from connections around the globe as well as networking events, podcasts, webinars, a powerful LinkedIn community, and opportunities for volunteerism.

Impact Smeal Day — This day provides alumni and professional graduate students with the opportunity to come to campus and interact with current students, network with other alumni, gain professional insights, and hear about college initiatives. The day is designed so that you can sign up for the sessions that work for your schedule.

* Services are available only to students and alumni of Penn State Smeal’s degree programs and online degrees led by Smeal and delivered through the World Campus. Students and alumni of online graduate certificates are not eligible to receive these benefits unless they are also enrolled in a degree program.

A Head Start toward a Master’s Degree

A figure standing halfway up a set of stairs leading towards a graduation cap

Not only can this program help create opportunities in your career, it can also give you a solid head start toward a full master’s degree.

Degree Programs Related to This Certificate

Some or all credits earned for this certificate can be applied to the following Penn State World Campus degree programs:

Learn to strategically manage high-performance teams and solve complex, real-world business challenges. With more than 25 concentrations available, you can customize this top-ranked online MBA to suit your unique career goals.

Learn more about the Master of Business Administration

Learn to strategically manage corporate innovation; develop new products, services, and business models for companies; and launch startups. With multiple concentrations to choose from, you can customize this online degree program to support your goals.

Learn more about the Master's in Corporate Innovation and Entrepreneurship

This online master's program in enterprise architecture and business transformation (EABT) integrates both business strategy and enterprise technical execution. EABT improves organizational efficiency, effectiveness, and agility by delivering holistic business-aligned and digitally focused systems.

Learn more about the Master of Enterprise Architecture in Enterprise Architecture and Business Transformation

Who Should Apply?

This program is ideal for a wide range of students, including business analysts or those working in business analysis who aim to move into business planning and execution, or professionals in the IT industry who wish to move into a more business strategy–based role within their organization.

Students will more than likely be working as: 

  • business analysts 
  • business strategy analysts 
  • consultants 
  • business managers 
  • innovation analysts/managers 
  • project/program managers 
  • enterprise architects 
  • solution architects 
  • business capability and process analysts/architects 
  • information/data architects 
  • IT architects 
  • business architects

Nationally Recognized Program

The Graduate Certificate in Business Architecture is recognized by the Business Architecture Guild, an international, professional association that promotes best practices and expands the knowledge base of the business architecture discipline.

AACSB Accredited

This program is AACSB Accredited

The Penn State Smeal College of Business is AACSB accredited, an honor reserved for the top 5% of business schools worldwide. This program is competitively priced compared to other AACSB–accredited programs.

Set Your Own Pace

Adult student doing course work online while a child plays nearby

Whether you are looking to finish your program as quickly as possible or balance your studies with your busy life, Penn State World Campus can help you achieve your education goals. Many students take one or two courses per semester.

Our online courses typically follow a 12- to 15-week semester cycle, and there are three semesters per year (spring, summer, and fall). If you plan to take a heavy course load, you should expect your course work to be your primary focus and discuss your schedule with your academic adviser. 

To Finish Your Certificate in Less than a Year

  • Take 1–2 courses each semester

To Finish Your Certificate in One Year

  • Take 1 course each semester

 

Convenient Online Format

This program's convenient online format gives you the flexibility you need to study around your busy schedule. You can skip the lengthy commute without sacrificing the quality of your education and prepare yourself for more rewarding career opportunities without leaving your home.

A Trusted Leader in Online Education

Penn State students wearing caps and gowns at their commencement ceremony

Penn State has a history of more than 100 years of distance education, and World Campus has been a leader in online learning for more than two decades. Our online learning environment offers the same quality education that our students experience on campus.

Information for Military and Veterans

Four sergeants major in the Army pose for a photo with Army uniforms and military honor cords

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, and application instructions.

How to Apply to Penn State

A new student holding a sign that reads, We Are Penn State and #PennStateBound

Apply by April 15 to start May 13

Application Instructions

Deadlines and Important Dates

Complete your application and submit all required materials by the appropriate deadline. Your deadline will depend on the semester you plan to start your courses.

  • Summer Deadline

    Apply by April 15 to start May 13
  • Fall Deadline

    Apply by July 20 to start August 26
  • Spring Deadline

    Apply by November 15, 2024, to start January 13, 2025

Steps to Apply

  1. For admission to the Graduate School, an applicant must hold either (1) a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or (2) a tertiary (postsecondary) degree that is deemed comparable to a four-year bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution. International applicants must also satisfy the English proficiency requirement.

  2. You will need to upload the following items as part of your application: 

    Test Scores — GRE or GMAT test scores are NOT required.

    English Proficiency (International Applicants Only) — The language of instruction at Penn State is English. All international applicants must take and submit scores for the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS), with some exceptions. Minimum test scores and exceptions are found in the English Proficiency section on the Graduate School's "Requirements for Graduate Admission" page.

    Program-Specific Questions/Materials

    Vita or Résumé — A one- to two-page listing of your professional experience and education. 

    Statement of Purpose — Describe how your professional experience and goals align with the Graduate Certificate in Business Architecture. Please do not exceed 500 words. 

  3. To begin the online application, you will need a Penn State account.

    Create a New Penn State Account

    If you have any problems during this process, contact an admissions counselor at [email protected].

    Please note: Former Penn State students may not need to complete the admissions application or create a new Penn State account. Please visit our Returning Students page for instructions.

  4. You can begin your online application at any time. Your progress within the online application system will be saved as you go, allowing you to return at any point as you gather additional information and required materials.

    • Choose Enrollment Type: "Certificate Admission"
    • Choose "WORLD CAMPUS" as the campus

    Checking Your Status 
    You can check the status of your application by using the same login information established for the online application form. 

    Technical Requirements  
    Review the technical requirements for this program.

  5. 5. Complete the application.

Admissions Help

If you have questions about the admissions process, contact an admissions counselor at [email protected].

Contact Us

Customer service representative wearing a headset

Have questions or want more information? We're happy to talk.

For questions about the curriculum or the status of your submitted application, contact:

Penn State Smeal College of Business
Office of Professional Graduate Programs
220C Business Building
Phone: 814-865-5290
Email: [email protected]

For general questions, contact:

World Campus Admissions Counselors
Phone: 814-863-5386
Email: [email protected]

Learn from the Best

Offered in partnership with the internationally ranked Penn State Smeal College of Business, this program gives you the opportunity to learn from the same faculty who teach in our residential programs.


Ready to take the next step toward your Penn State graduate certificate?

Apply by April 15 to start May 13. How to Apply