An eleven-week program designed as a rapid immersion into Big Data analytics with Apache Spark. IT professionals will be given a broad understanding of the different leading Big Data/Spark technologies and will learn the technical skills required to successfully implement and maintain Spark clusters. The program begins with an introduction to the Spark cluster and teaches ways to interact with the Spark Resilient Distributed Datasets (RDD), Data Frame, and the job process using different shells. Topics also include different higher-level interfaces and tools to manage data process in the Spark cluster, such as SparkSQL, R, etc. The program consists of an effective mix of interactive lecture and extensive use of hands-on lab exercises. Students will build their own Big Data applications using different Spark platforms from commercial-level distributors such as Cloudera, Hortonworks, Databricks, IBM, Microsoft, Amazon, and others.
For a complete program description,
download the program's brochure.
Dates & Location
Autumn Quarter 2018:
The next session of this program is scheduled to begin the first week of September 2018. Scheduling information will be available in late June.
On-campus section: Classes usually meet one evening per week (5:45pm-9pm) at DePaul's Loop Campus at 243 S. Wabash Avenue, Chicago.
Online section: Students may elect to register in an online section of this program. For more information about the online section, click
Autumn Quarter 2018
$2,600.00if registering for the undergraduate-level section (IPD 341)
$3,400.00if registering for the graduate-level section (IPD 441)
Regular DePaul University students are charged the above rates based on their degree program. The tuition fee for this program is not included in the university's tuition package for full-time undergraduate students.
Full payment of tuition must be received before the start of the program. Students who elect to pay tuition using a credit or debit card will be assessed a non-redundable 2.75% convenience fee.
Refund/Cancellation Policy: DePaul reserves the right to cancel any program before that program’s first scheduled meeting, in which case tuition fees (but not convenience fees) will be refunded. The university's refund policy allows a return of 100% of tuition if the student drops the Big Data Using Spark Program within the first two weeks of the program (convenience fees will not be refunded).
Each program requires a $40.00 (non-refundable) application fee that can be paid online (via credit card) during the online application process. If you need to pay this fee by check or money order, please make the check or money order payable to DePaul University and send it to:
DePaul University Institute for Professional Development
243 S. Wabash Avenue
Chicago, IL 60604
Textbooks are a separate purchase to be made by students.
Reading materials for certificate programs consist of textbooks and supplementary handouts. Textbook readings are considered preparatory in nature and are typically assigned prior to lectures; supplementary handouts are frequently distributed in class to provide additional information.
Title: Learning Spark
Author: Karau, Konwinski, Wendell & Zaharia
Publisher: O'Reilly Media 2015
While access to most Cloud services explored in the program will be provided to students in class, there may be some Cloud services that are only accessible via the use of a student's own credit card. Students should expect to spend a small fee to access these services.
CTA U-Pass Fee: Beginning Autumn Quarter 2016, any IPD certificate program student who enrolls in a full-time course load (8 graduate or 12 undergraduate credit hours) and where at least one course is taught at an on-campus location will be automatically enrolled in the University’s CTA U-Pass program. The CTA U-Pass program provides unlimited rides on CTA transport and it requires that all eligible students participate in the program. The cost of the CTA U-Pass is $90.00 per quarter. Students who meet the eligibility criteria will have this fee added to their student accounts. Students are responsible for this fee regardless of benefit use or card pick-up. Students who are taking courses exclusively online do not qualify for this program. Further information about the U-Pass program is found at
Fees are payable by check made out to DePaul University, or by credit card. Students who elect to pay tuition using a credit or debit card will be assessed a non-redundable 2.75% convenience fee.
Applicants who are eligible for a tuition reimbursement program offered by their employer and are interested in deferring their tuition payment using the university's Employer Tuition Deferral Plan must return the Employer Tuition Deferral Plan application to the Institute for Professional Development Office. Submitting this application to any other DePaul office may delay the student's registration process. Information about this plan, along with an application form, is found
Applicants who wish to use the university's In-Term Payment Plan or a third-party billing arrangement should contact the Institute for Professional Development office at (312) 362-6282 for details.
Applicants should have basic programming experience and understanding of Windows and Linux commands. Basic understanding of Big Data and Hadoop would be a plus. No prior Spark experience is necessary. In addition, students are required to bring their own laptop computers to class.
The Big Data Using Spark Program is an accredited course of DePaul University, which follows the quarter system (as opposed to the semester system). Credit hours are awarded to those who successfully complete the program's academic requirements. Academic requirements may include reading and homework assignments, written assignments, labs, projects, and other assignments. No midterm or final exams are conducted.
- Course #: IPD 341; 4 undergraduate credit hours
- Course #: IPD 441; 4 graduate credit hours
Applicants select to register in either IPD 341 (undergraduate level) or IPD 441 (graduate level), unless they are currently degree-seeking students of the university. In that case, they are required to select the level that corresponds with their degree program. Additionally, applicants interested in enrolling in the graduate section must have completed a bachelor's degree.
IPD 341 and IPD 441 are combined courses, with students attending the same lectures or viewing the same lectures (for those completing the program online). However, students in the graduate section are required to perform additional coursework than those in the undergraduate section.
Once the program begins, a student cannot switch from undergraduate level to graduate level or vice-versa and must remain in the level chosen or withdraw from the program. Please contact the Institute office for advice on which academic level to select.
The ability to apply these credit hours to a degree program is always determined by the college granting the degree. To view course transfer guidelines for DePaul's College of Computing and Digital Media (CDM), click
Application & Registration Procedure
All interested parties should apply for admission using the Institute for Professional Development's
online application; or, to apply via fax, mail, or in person, print out and complete the
Application Form. Upon admission, the Institute office will contact the prospective student with information and instructions about the registration process.
Registration is restricted to admitted students. IPD staff will register students upon receipt of payment and registration form. Regular DePaul students cannot register themselves via the university's registration system.