SHRM-CP/SHRM-SCP HR Certification Preparation

The SHRM (Society for Human Resource Management) Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) and SHRM Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP) credentials are the new standard for all HR professionals around the globe. These HR certifications focus on teaching and testing the practical, real-life information HR professionals need to excel in their careers today, including knowledge, skills and competencies.

The SHRM Certified Professional course (SHRM 301-0) is offered remotely and in-person in September and April. This intensive 36-hour program combines expert instruction with the SHRM Learning System® for SHRM-CP/SHRM-SCP, so you will learn faster, retain more knowledge and stay on track for success on the exam.


Upcoming Sessions
Fall 2024 Registration deadline:
SHRM 301-0 SHRM Certified Professional (Remote) September 11, 2024


About SHRM Certification Preparation

Kristin Byrnes

I was able to be implement the knowledge gained in the class immediately into my day-to-day work. [The class] changed my thinking to that of business strategy, which is a focus throughout the program. Overall, I feel that my job performance improved and I am now more confident in my decision making, thanks to the excellent foundation gained through this course and my subsequent certification. ”

— Kristin Byrnes, SHRM-CP, Human Resources Manager, The James Hotel

The Value of SHRM HR Certification

Hear what Tim Sackett, SHRM-SCP and president of HRU Technical Resources, has to say about the importance of SHRM certification in the marketplace.

Benefits of the SHRM-CP/-SCP Certification Program
Benefits To You
  • An experienced, SHRM-certified instructor.
  • The SHRM Learning System, historically ranked the #1 HR certification prep tool.
  • Ability to acquire the knowledge and understand the behavioral competencies to help you prepare for the exam.
  • A structured learning experience that keeps you on track.
  • Opportunities to network and learn from your peers.
  • Eligibility for tuition reimbursement.
  • Earning up to 36 professional development credits (PDCs) if you are attending this program for professional development only.
Benefits To Your Employer
  • It demonstrates that your HR professionals have mastered the application of HR technical and behavioral competencies.
  • Certification prepares your HR staff to assume greater leadership roles and contribute to the strategic direction of your organization.
  • Exam preparation helps HR professionals bring new ideas to your organization that will help drive success.
  • It helps create a common HR language that optimizes consistency and effectiveness.
  • Certification is relevant worldwide, as exams cover the global SHRM BASK™.



SHRM Certification Preparation Program Audience

1) Individuals Seeking SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP Certification

HR certification is a great choice for human resource professionals who want to increase their knowledge, advance their skills, and earn recognition from the global community.

SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP Exam Eligibility Requirements


  • The SHRM-CP certification is for individuals that perform general HR/HR-related duties; or for those pursuing a career in Human Resource Management.
  • Candidates for the SHRM-CP certification are not required to hold an HR title and do not need a degree or previous HR experience to apply; however, a basic working knowledge of HR practices and principles is recommended.


  • The SHRM-SCP certification is for individuals that have a work history of at least 3 years performing strategic level HR/HR-related duties; or for SHRM-CP credential holders who have held the credential for at least 3 years and are working in, or are in the process of transitioning to, a strategic level role.
  • Candidates for the SHRM-SCP certification are not required to hold an HR title and do not need a degree to apply.
  • Applicants must be able to demonstrate that they devoted at least 1,000 hours per calendar year (Jan. – Dec.) to strategic level HR/HR-related work. 
  • Individuals who are HR consultants may demonstrate qualifying experience through the HR/HR-related duties they perform for their clients. Contracted hours must meet the 1,000-hour standard.

For more information about the SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP credentials visit

2) Individuals Seeking Career Advancement

For those not seeking certification, the SHRM Certified Professional course (SHRM 301-0) provides a comprehensive and accelerated option for professional development. Participants gain a generalist viewpoint, refresh key ideas and concepts, strengthen their understanding of core HR competencies and increase productivity.

Not sure which SHRM course is right for you? Compare programs and find out more.

SHRM Certification Preparation Course Content

As part of your course, you will receive the SHRM Learning System for SHRM-CP/SHRM-SCP. The curriculum is designed by global subject matter experts and covers the entire SHRM Body of Applied Skills and Knowledge (SHRM BASK).

Comprised of comprehensive learning modules in print and e-reader formats, and advanced online resources, these study materials streamline study time, accelerate learning and build confidence for passing the SHRM-CP/SHRM-SCP exam.

SHRM logo


SHRM Certification Preparation Certificate Requirements

To earn a "SHRM Certified Professional" certificate from Northwestern University, students are only required to successfully complete the SHRM Certified Professional core course (SHRM 301-0).

The SHRM Essentials of Human Resources (SHRM 201-0) core course is a separate program and is NOT required for this certificate.

SHRM Certification Preparation Tuition and Financial Aid

Tuition for the SHRM-CP/SHRM-SCP certification preparation program is $1,500. Complete details can be found on the SHRM Certification Preparation Tuition and Financial Aid page.

SHRM Certification Preparation Faculty

Instructors for this program have a range of expertise, specializations and work experience. Read about their qualifications on our SHRM Certification Preparation Faculty page.

Careers for SHRM Certified Professionals

Read more on the Careers in SHRM Certification Preparation page.

Related Professional Development Programs at SPS

Learn more about our three-course Leadership Certificate.


Find out more about Northwestern's SHRM HR Certification Preparation

Contact SPS Enrollment Advisers

SPS Enrollment Advisers at Northwestern University School of Professional Studies can be a resource to you for inquiries regarding our certificate programs.

SHRM Certification Preparation Core Courses

Core Courses:Course Detail
Essentials of Human Resources <> SHRM 201-0

The SHRM Essentials of Human Resources course is 18 hours.

Throughout this course, you will develop the following HR critical competencies:

  • Identify areas where and how HR should be a strategic partner to your organization.
  • Build your knowledge of HR practices, behaviors and activities.
  • Apply newly learned HR knowledge to practical activities, similar to those required on the job.
  • Plan for ways to transfer the knowledge and skills learned from training to on-the-job tasks.
  • Explore career opportunities within the world of HR and how you can drive your future.

Registered students can access their online course site here. An activated NetID and password is required for login. *Please note: It may take up to 24 hours for registered students to be added to the online course platform.

View SHRM 201-0 Sections
SHRM Certified Professional SHRM 301-0

This is an exciting and pivotal time in the HR profession. Now, more than ever, HR teams are required to assume a greater leadership role, contributing to the strategic direction of their organization.

The SHRM Learning System for SHRM-CP/SHRM-SCP includes four modules covering the comprehensive SHRM BASK so you'll learn everything you need for the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP exam.

This class is the same for students interested in either the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP. The difference is based on your experience and which test you take, as determined by SHRM rules. See the Eligibility Requirements Matrix on our SHRM webpage. Northwestern University does not administer the test or make the eligibility determination.

Registered students can access their online course site here. An activated NetID and password is required for login. *Please note: It may take up to 24-hours for registered students to be added to the online course platform.

View SHRM 301-0 Sections