University of Maryland

Executive Certificate in Data Literacy and Evidence Building

University of Maryland logo

The Executive Certificate in Data Literacy and Evidence Building at the University of Maryland’s Social Data Science Center in conjunction with the Coleridge Initiative is a not-for-credit certificate program that trains participants in valuable data literacy skills and how to apply best practices when working with data. Participants will learn how to scope a policy problem, understand the data generation process, how to manage, combine, and structure data, how to create, measure and analyze the effect of different data decisions on key measures such as non-completion and job quality measures. Participants will also learn the basics of machine learning and visualization as well as inference, bias, privacy, and ethics issues. The specific use case is focused on the integration of education and workforce data using the Multi-State Education Dashboard as a concrete example. The focus will be on understanding the impact of COVID-19 on the labor market in a way that can be transferred to a wide range of policy contexts.

The program was first created in collaboration by the New York University’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, the University of Maryland’s Social Data Science Center, and Accenture in conjunction with the Kentucky Center for Statistics and the Coleridge Initiative, drawing on almost a decade of successful experience to train participants in how to work with synthesized real world data drawn from different sources to produce new insights and products. 


Frauke Kreuter, Ph.D.
Professor, Joint Program in Survey Methodology, Co-Director, Social Data Science Center (SoDa), University of Maryland
Chair of Statistics and Data Science in Social Sciences and Humanities, Ludwig-Maximilian, University of Munich

Angie Tombari, Ph.D.
Senior research Analyst & Chief Methodologist, Kentucky Center for Statistics


This training program was created for federal, state, and local government agency staff, graduate students in public policy, and practitioners who seek a high value credential. Program participants are expected to use their knowledge to inform executive decision making at all levels of government.


  1.  Submit your CV
  2.  Submit a letter describing your hands-on data experience and how your participation will serve the public good through contributing to the mission of your agency
  3.  Submit a supporting letter from your supervisor (or instructor) describing how your participation will serve the public good, as well as their assessment of your hands-on data experience. 

Seats for the course will be filled on a first come first served basis. Applications open on April 15, 2024 and close August 9, 2024.


Some hands on data experience, such as managing or supervising data collection and analysis, developing data products and tools, or presenting and using data products to inform evidence-based policy.


Watch the Webinar: An informational webinar provides an overview of the structure and content of the training program. See the full presentation which includes information on curriculum and program structure. 


Dates:  The Fall 2024 lectures and group sessions will be held 12-2 Eastern via zoom on Wednesdays and Thursdays.  The first block of classes will be on September 4, 5, 11, 12, 18, 19, 25, 26, with an interim presentation on October 3.  The second block will be October 9, 10, 16, 17, 23 with the final presentation October 30.

Commitment: 2 hours lecture, 2 hours group work per contact week (7 weeks total, Wednesdays and Thursdays); additional group presentation preparation time

Format: Online

Program Cost: $6,000 for full 12 class program

– Note: Partial scholarships (up to $3,500) available for eligible state and local government employees and enrolled students in public policy programs.