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Earning a Human Resources Certificate Online

written by: Leigh A. Zaykoski•edited by: Laurie Patsalides•updated: 2/11/2010

If you want to earn a human resources certificate online, then there are many options. Find out what types of certificates are available and how to apply for HR certificate programs.

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    Human Resources Certificate Online Programs

    If you want to earn an online human resources certificate, then there are many types of programs to choose from. Many colleges and universities offer undergraduate and graduate certificates, while career training centers and professional development schools offer certificates in specific areas of human resources such as recruitment, compensation and benefits, labor relations, and strategic human resources planning. Before you can choose the online human resources certificate that is best for you, you will need to determine how you plan on using your new credential. If you have no background in the human resources field, then an undergraduate certificate that provides training in all of the functional HR areas would be best for helping you to break into a career in the field. If you've been in the human resources field for some time, and just need to brush up on one or two areas of the field, a professional certificate is a cost-effective solution to your needs.

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    Undergraduate Online Certificate in Human Resources

    Because the educational needs of students have changed over the past decade, many schools are now offering the undergraduate online certificate in human resources. Students who enroll in online programs have a better chance of balancing their work and family obligations with education if they are able to access their coursework when they have the time. University of Maryland University College/UMUC Online offers an undergraduate human resources certificate that can be completed while pursuing a B.S. in human resource management. The core courses for this certificate program include management and organization theory and the analysis of human resources problems. Southern New Hampshire University also offers an undergraduate online certificate in human resources. Students in this certificate program complete coursework in compensation and benefits administration, labor relations, and organizational behavior.

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    Graduate Human Resources Certificate Online

    Some colleges and unversities offer a graduate online certificate in human resources for students who already have a basic understanding of human resources principles and need advanced study to further their careers. UMUC Online offers a graduate certificate in human resources that involves coursework in intercultural communication, human resources leadership, employee relations, and organizational development. Strayer University's graduate certificate in human resources is for students who want to advance their careers or those who want to shift careers from one field into the field of human resources. Enrollees must have already earned a bachelor's degree and may choose to apply the credits from this program to an M.B.A. if they want to complete a graduate degree.

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    Human Resources Professional Certificates

    Professional certificates in human resources are offered by colleges, universities, professional development centers, career training centers, and professional organizations. These certificate programs may count towards continuing education requirements or they may be credit-free courses that are for the purposes of professional development only. Some of these certificate programs might also earn the recipient college credit. eCornell, Cornell University's online education system, has several human resources certificates available. Some of the most popular programs include selection and staffing, compensation and benefits, performance management, and employee relations. Post University also offers an online human resources certificate. This program includes core courses in human resource management and electives in occupational safety and health, labor relations, training and development, and compensation and benefits.