Office of Continuing Education

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September 5th, 2018

Professional development

Current HR priorities have gone far beyond employee onboarding and dealing with benefits.

HR certifications are a good way to demonstrate skills to employers and can make you stand out from other HR professionals when applying for a job. These certifications must be renewed every few years to ensure that skills are up to date and that those with certifications are exposed to new skills and ideas in the field.

Recertification usually involves taking a certain number of continuing education credits over the course of the recertification period. These courses can be used to gain new skills in the HR field or for professional development to gain an advanced degree or certification.

A Changing HR Landscape

The field of human resources is constantly changing and developing. Years ago, HR was mainly involved with onboarding new employees and dealing with benefits administration, employee reviews, and record-keeping. Now, HR can involve all of that along with career pathing, database management, grant-writing for diversity funding, compliance with anti-discrimination laws, cybersecurity protections for confidential employee data, and other new priorities.

Keeping up with these rapid changes is impossible without intentional career development through continuing education courses designed to cover these new aspects of HR comprehensively enough to master them and apply them in a job. A career in HR can be advanced through professional development that builds new skills.

Professional development

Professional training and employee development may be a skill an HR professional learns in continuing ed courses.

Professional Development Options

While some skills can be learned through self-study programs or professional readings, mastery of these skills is best accomplished by taking continuing education courses. As those who have received them know, HR certifications are challenging, and in-person instruction with supportive classmates is a superior way to learn the material required for recertifications.

For some recertifications, students can pursue professional development opportunities outside of just taking courses like writing and conducting trainings, writing an employee handbook, helping another organization with HR leadership and activities, or publishing HR research in a journal. These opportunities definitely bolster professional development, but alone will not provide sufficient growth to advance your career as much as taking courses that provide new information and ideas and methods that can be used in your current or future job.

The new ideas, information and methods offered in continuing education courses combined with the process of discussing them with faculty and classmates are indispensable parts of the professional development process, and those who are able to advance in their careers through internal or external promotions or growth as the company expands need the input of continuing education courses in order to do so.

Continuing education courses can help HR pros be better strategic partners at work and better handle organizational change, even when they aren’t facing recertification. And there may even be more advanced certifications they can earn by taking courses, which will only improve their skills even more and provide more opportunities in the field.

CCSU offers continuing education courses in HR management and related fields that can provide these benefits to HR professionals who want to continue in their learning and skills development. View our open courses to see if they can benefit you as you seek further professional development and training.