Certificate of Packaging Science

Open Enrollment – Apply Anytime!


    • 6-credit, 60-hour Professional Certificate
    • 12-month flexibility to complete program
    • Learn the science, technology, art, language, math, and business of packaging
    • Become a packaging professional
    • Prerequisites not required


The Certificate of Packaging Science is a one-year online program that teaches the materials, processes, and influences shaping the advancement of the industry. From design conception to production to end-of-life, learn how to speak the language of packaging and utilize it as a key differentiator for you and your company.

The Foundations of Packaging is a self-paced, online course that provides an essential introduction to the art, science and business of packaging. Packaging is a complex process that must be seen as part of a greater system, where each activity has an impact on the final package. Factors such as packaging material production, selection and procurement; package design, engineering and manufacturing; package branding, printing and labeling; packaging laws and regulations and packaging distribution all play a critical role in the efficiency of the global supply chain for consumer and industrial goods. These packaging functions impact company departments such as marketing, sales, procurement, legal, distribution, quality control, manufacturing and warehousing. After taking this course, students will possess the thought process required of a successful stakeholder in the packaging industry.  

The paper segment of the global containers and packaging market is the most lucrative, boasting a 40% market share of revenue. From Fortune 500 brands to emerging startups, paperboard is a top-used packaging substrate. It’s no wonder because paperboard has amazing graphics and printing capabilities, a high degree of sustainability, and enhanced usability. As a packaging designer, marketer, converter, or supply chain manager it is beneficial to understand the ins and outs of paperboard in order to produce the best carton possible. This eLearning course will focus on helping you understand the foundations of paperboard packaging from sourcing raw materials to the finished good. This understanding will serve as an important context for your future advancement, on your own and in your company.

Corrugated board is a highly customizable substrate and the knowledge to use it well can be greatly advantageous for your company in terms of saving waste and money. There are many stock options you can choose from when ordering standard shipping containers, but a box suited specifically to your exact product may need a custom design, and with corrugated you have that option. We’ve made an informative course with easy to digest information that will get you up to speed on corrugated containers. In this course, you will learn both the art and science of corrugated. From learning how corrugated fiberboard is manufactured, to how corrugated containers are designed and produced on packaging machinery, you will get a 360° view of the corrugated industry.

Glass is a material that is widely used in the alcohol, soda, and food industries due to its perceived quality image, barrier properties, and tactile feel. Glass is the only material that is 100% recyclable and can be recycled endlessly without loss in quality or purity – something no other food and beverage packaging option can claim. This eLearning course teaches you how to source different types of glass packaging. It also covers the manufacturing, sustainability and design of glass containers.

In this course, we’ll cover the metal packaging industry and outline raw materials and processing. We will detail the different types of metal that are applicable to packaging and go through the process of making cans and closure systems. From an applied perspective, we will cover how consumers perceive metal packaging, where it makes sense in your decision-making strategy, along with real-world case studies of companies moving into or away from metal. As a takeaway, you will gain a stock container selection strategy for food, beverage, pharmaceutical, cosmetic, industrial and chemical metal packaging applications. 

Polymers play a big role in packaging. To be a proficient and well-rounded packaging professional, you need to be comfortable with polymers. When you are working on a project involving plastics, it’s important that you are able to speak this language and bring value to the table concerning polymer selection, polymer processing, and plastic applications in packaging. In this course, you are going to learn about the different types of polymers, their roles, functions, pros and cons of each, and real-world applications. From this, you are going to take away which polymers are suitable for the applications you are working on.

This course focuses on how machinery is used in the packaging industry to produce high volumes of quality packages. These individual machines can be connected to create a packaging line. You will learn: how to be realistic in selecting a co-packer, how the structural design of a package influences the efficiency of the line, and how you can optimize your package design and machinery to produce the most proficient packaging line. 

This course will overview the different printing methods such as flexography, lithography, gravure, screen printing, and digital printing. You will learn how these processes impact your packaging cost and quality. We will tie in the graphic development workflow including color management strategies, artwork generation, pre-press workflows, plate making and going to print – colors, roll and sheet stock technical specifications, timelines, budgets, and tips & tricks from industry veterans. 

Getting products from the point of manufacture to the customer safely is a serious task. Well designed transport packaging considers many factors: internal packaging equipment, carrier mode, transport strategy, fulfillment, inventory, and environmental factors. This e-learning course will teach you about the various types of carriers and modes of distribution. You will learn the four fundamental categories of hazards and the corresponding tests used to design packaging systems that withstand the forces of distribution. Packaging systems using wood containers, pallets, corrugated containers, and returnables are evaluated. At the end of this course, you will walk away with a complete understanding of the distribution system for both industrial and consumer packaged goods. 

In this course, we map out the major regulatory agencies such as FDA, EPA, USDA, CFR, ASTM, and ISO. Once defined, we break down relevant and applicable laws into cheat sheets for you to have immediate access to when working on projects. By no means is this course a replacement for legal review, but it is the absolute first step in educating yourself on regulations and agencies that impact the product categories you design within. 

Are you looking for ways to make more sustainable decisions in your packaging line? In this course, you’re going to get a solid foundation in sustainable design thinking- the tools and resources you can apply today to make better decisions. We will cover LCA, energy sourcing, design optimization and effective recovering. Consideration of the 3Ps (people, planet and profit) together are absolutely essential in crafting a convincing sustainable strategy. 

In this course, we are going to review design terminology, highlight important design theories, such as typography, color, imagery and materials. We are going to discuss how to best approach a project with your team and leverage iterative development to build winning designs. There is a lot of cover in packaging design, but this is the first step: making sure you have a solid foundation and workflow when starting a project. You will receive Dr. Andrew Hurley’s RFP guides and the design brief template and strategies he’s used to launch over 100 package designs to market.


Brand Managers, Graphic Designers... CPGs, Packaging Suppliers, Retailers... with less than one year experience up to 40+ years in the business... if you have any contact with the packaging process, our program will raise your packaging IQ.

Admission is by application only.

Online Learning


Whether this means getting into a new position or proving you deserve that promotion you've been waiting for, the Certificate will show your employers that you're dedicated and possess a hard work ethic.

Expanding your knowledge base is an excellent way to discover new ideas in packaging and make yourself stand out.

Apply your learning right away while you enhance your resume with a specialization in packaging.

Packaging is a field of science, which means materials, processes, and technologies are constantly evolving. We'll keep you informed.

We exist in a rapidly-changing marketplace where company ownership, business cultures, and packaging responsibilities vary. You'll encounter different markets and who the respective stakeholders are in each industry.

Throughout the program, you will have the opportunity to ask questions, share experiences, and learn from people who have the experience and expertise to help your business flourish.







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12 monthly payments.


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