University Certificate in Computing and Information Systems

At a glance

  • Credential: university certificate
  • Credits: 33
  • Next start: monthly

Learn the general principles of computer information systems and their applications with the online University Certificate in Computing and Information Systems. You will also gain essential programming and web development skills.

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About University Certificate in Computing and Information Systems

At Athabasca University, our online University Certificate in Computing and Information Systems offers a robust foundation in both computer science and information systems. The program goes beyond theory to blend practical skills in programming, web development, algorithms, and more, giving you a well-rounded understanding of the computing and information systems discipline. Plus, our elective courses allow you to dive deeper into specialized areas like system administration and web development, so you can tailor your learning to fit your interests and career goals.

Admission requirements

There are no formal admission requirements for this program. All you need is to be 16 years of age or older. You can enrol anytime and start right away, regardless of your previous education.

Program details


Computer science and information systems come together in the discipline of computing and information systems (CIS). CIS differs somewhat from other purely academic disciplines in that it combines theory and practice into comprehensive skill sets. The University Certificate in Computing and Information Systems will give you the opportunity to develop a sound understanding of the general principles of computer information systems and their applications.

You will learn about:

  • programming languages
  • algorithms
  • data structures
  • operating systems
  • computer networks
  • database management
  • systems design and analysis

Through this program you will be able to demonstrate a general understanding of each of these major subject areas that define the discipline, as well as the relationships that exist among them.

Also, with Athabasca University's selection of elective courses, you can develop specialized skills in areas such as:

  • system administration
  • design and analysis of algorithms
  • computer programming
  • human-computer interaction
  • distributed computing
  • web development

Routes and options

Ladder to a degree

Completing this certificate puts you on your way to achieving a Bachelor of Science, Computing and Information Systems Major.

Completion times

Finish this program in as little as 1 year of full-time study, or work at your own pace and take as long as you need. There is no time limit for completion.

However, to ensure success in the program, you should be certain that you have a basic understanding of computers and reasonable skills in mathematics. Are you ready to start a School of Computing and Information Systems program or course?

How to apply

You can apply to AU online, anytime. Once you’ve completed the online application form and paid the one-time general application fee (and transfer credit evaluation fee, if applicable), you’re officially an AU student and can start registering in courses.

How to enrol in an undergraduate program

Transfer and advanced credit

If you have previous post-secondary education or significant life and work experience that relates to this program, you may be eligible for transfer credit or Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR). This could mean fewer courses to get your AU certificate.

If you transfer credit, you must complete a minimum of 18 credits at AU.

Learn about transfer and advanced credit at AU

Keep in mind, if you completed your computer science courses more than 5 years ago you will need to provide proof you are current in the field in order to be considered for transfer credit. This proof can be in the form of a current resumé and letter of employment showing activity in the field in the past 5 years. Other evidence may be accepted if a letter of employment and resumé cannot be supplied.

Science courses that are over 10 years old will only be accepted for transfer credit if you can provide evidence of employment in a science or engineering field.

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Resources and links

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