Back in March the Continuing & Professional Studies launched its CompTIA A+/Network + certification program drawing upon industry talent and expertise to develop a fully online foundation training program for entry level IT professionals. Continuing along with our goal to build a catalog of continuing education programs, from the ground up, while utilizing Towson University faculty talent and expertise, we have developed and launched our newest online program Professional in Human Resources (PHR).

About the PHR Certification

The PHR certification is a globally recognized credential awarded through the Human Resource Certification Institute (HR Certification Institute) and signifies that those who’ve passed the exam thoroughly understand the PHR Body of Knowledge, which outlines the responsibilities of and knowledge needed by today’s HR professional. The PHR certification is not industry specific and can be applied to the framework of any company’s human resources department. Furthermore, certified PHR employees earn about $15,000 more than their non-certified counterparts [1] and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 55 percent increase in number of HR jobs in the next decade. In fact, certified PHR employees also have a higher chance of receiving a promotion than their non-certified counterparts.

Course Development

The workforce appeal of the PHR certification made it a decision for us to pursue the development of this new program. However, our first hurdle was to find the right instructor to build the content. Dr. Tobin Porterfield, who developed our flagship Project Management Professional online program, suggested that we reach out to Dr. Alan Clardy, who is the Director of Human Resource Development (HRD) Graduate Program here at Towson University. Not only does Dr. Clardy head the HRD graduate program, but has years of experience in the field as well as an expansive array of book and paper publications and presentations. Leading up to our first meeting with Dr. Clardy we were not sure what to expect and if he would be open to working with us on developing this content, however after we laid out our plan and intent, he was more than willing to jump right in and begin building the content. Dr. Clardy even enlisted the help of two of his past students in the Human Resource Management graduate program to review and double check his content. The team dynamic helped ensure that the content is in alignment with the PHR Body of Knowledge, while Dr. Clardy dove deep into churning out the course content. This resulted in a deep and robust course that fully prepares students to successfully sit for the PHR certification exam. Dr. Clardy also wrote an entire module on ‘taking the PHR Certification Exam,’ that details the overall nature of the exam, what to expect, how to gather the relevant information and apply through the HR Certification Institute, and even how to schedule your exam through the Prometric testing center.

We are all very pleased with the end result of our PHR program and even more excited about enrolling students into this new course. Our catalog of Towson University developed Continuing Education programs is growing and we hope to keep up with this pace and continue to provide high quality course offerings.