Graduate certificate in data privacy

Graduate Certificate in Data Privacy

Fall 2023 Application Portal Information

We are extending our admission deadline to provide further access and support to our applicants. The Fall 2023 deadline will now be August 15th 2023, 11:59 MST for Canadian/Permanent Residents.

The application portal is now closed for international applications.

Information Session

Please stay tuned for our next information session - details about the session will be posted here.

Expand your career with a 4-course Certificate in Data Privacy

The Graduate Certificate in Data Privacy is a 12-unit (4 half-course equivalent (HCE), graduate-level program. This certificate will provide professional development and training to computer science and IT professionals who desire additional skills and knowledge in data privacy to either advance in their current career, or to shift their career focus. It will equip graduates to solve realistic problems related to data privacy, to address privacy issues and assess threats to data privacy, and to develop policies, standards and procedures. Students will take courses from the University of Calgary’s leading researchers and professors in cybersecurity, and will benefit from guest lectures from academic staff in the Faculties of Science, Environmental Design, and Law. This Certificate has a relevant and timely curriculum that will be updated at least annually to ensure students are equipped with the most recent knowledge, and have the skills to work with the latest technology.

Why get a Graduate Certificate in Data Privacy?

Data privacy is an increasingly important topic for the general public, and information security professionals must ensure proper management and protection of data privacy and conformance to legal requirements. This issue is regularly highlighted by mainstream media outlets with the reporting of high profile data breaches. Recent, high-profile data privacy breaches including those that occurred at Cambridge Analytica and Facebook, along with the implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in Europe, have brought public attention to the ongoing competing interests of personal privacy, data protection, and business practices. Companies and organizations world-wide must ensure the security and privacy of the data they collect, and there is a growing need for highly-trained professionals to work in this area.

By the end of the program you will be able to:

  • Identify legal and regulatory requirements and develop policies, standards, and procedures in privacy and security.
  • Describe and address privacy issues and evaluate privacy claims.
  • Describe and assess privacy threats and possible mitigations.
  • Communicate privacy-relevant organizational issues to both specialists and non-specialists.
  • Integrate and apply knowledge and skills to solve realistic problems related to data privacy.


Once you have initiated your application, be sure to choose " Data Privacy - Certificate " from the list of programs offered.

To be considered for admission to the certificate program in data science and analytics, you must meet the requirements outlined in the Academic Calendar.

In case of discrepancies between this page and the Academic Calendar, the Academic Calendar shall prevail. The minimum requirements are the same for all three credentials in the Information Security and Privacy graduate program, as such we recommend that students apply to the highest credential they are interested in.

Tuition information can be found here.

The expected completion time for full-time for the graduate certificates is 8 months, the maximum time allowed is three years.

Certificate Courses

Students enrolled in the Data Privacy Certificate will complete all “required” courses, ISEC 643, 611, 631 and ONE OF 2 “optional” courses, either ISEC 601 or 651, depending on their preference, for 4 courses or 12 credits total.

Privacy issues in data collection, analysis and dissemination. Identify and mitigate threats to privacy in various data processing environments. Understand the scope of privacy issues and ethical/legal frameworks. Data anonymization protocols and their applicability.

Identification of privacy-critical components of large software systems. Design of privacy-focused systems. Privacy for data storage and compliance issues.

Development of security policies. Policy compliance and enforcement. Policy considerations for social engineering and insider attacks. Information security standards. Security awareness and training programs. Privacy policies and compliance. Privacy Impact Assessment.

The basics of cryptographic algorithms and protocols including encryption and authentication algorithms and key establishment protocols. Security evaluation in computational and information theoretic settings, and attacks on cryptographic applications and systems.

Advanced topics in information security and privacy.