Requirements/Courses

Admission Requirements:

    1. A Bachelor’s degree from a college or university that is accredited by its regional association.
    2. Two prerequisite courses, one in graduate level research methods (qualitative or quantitative) and one in graduate level statistics.
    3. An internship in an Institutional Research related office at a higher education institutional (e.g., college, university, or system-wide office). Applicants who do not currently work in an IR related office will receive assistance to find and establish an internship in their local area.
    4. A strong desire to work in Institutional Research or a closely related field. If you are unsure what IR is, please visit: www.airweb.org/EducationAndEvents/Publications/Pages/FunctionsofIR.aspx

Hardware/Software Requirements:

    1. You will need access to a computer and the Internet. Our course management system (Moodle) has a mobile friendly interface, and you can complete several tasks via a smart phone; however, you will have reading and writing assignments, which will be difficult to complete without a keyboard and full-size screen.
    2. You also will need word processing and presentation software (e.g., Microsoft Office or Google Apps).

Certificate Conferment Requirements:

The typical student will complete 18 credit hours, which includes the two prerequisite courses and the 12 credit hours earned from the three core courses. Students must successfully complete the following three courses with a grade of a “B” or better:

IR Certificate CoursesPSYC 550 – Introduction to Institutional Research (4 units)

This course will give an overview of the field of institutional research, planning and assessment. It will introduce students to the concepts utilized in institutional research and the types of data analysis performed by this entity. It will examine IR functions such as data analysis, institutional planning, institutional effectiveness, assessment, internal and external data requests as well as effective methods of data presentation.


data picturePSYC 551 – Applied Research in Institutional Research (4 units)

This course is designed to familiarize students with the research procedures necessary for performing Institutional Research. Students will be able to utilize quantitative and qualitative research methods to analyze institutional databases and assess university outcomes, such as retention and degree completion rates. Students will also understand what factors influence educational outcomes across diverse populations in California and, more broadly, across the country. As a component of this course and PSYC 552, students will receive hands-on experience by working on a project in an IR office.


data imagePSYC 552 – Diversity Research in Institutional Research (4 units)

Designed to familiarize students with the research procedures necessary to collect and analyze primary data in Institutional Research, with Institutional Review Board procedures that are required when doing primary research in a university/institutional setting and how to utilize quantitative and qualitative research methods to create instruments necessary for the collection of primary data and to use statistical tools to analyze it appropriately.