Excel Literacy Credential

Excel is an extremely popular and highly utilized spreadsheet software offered by Microsoft. Spreadsheets are frequently used in the business world to store and manipulate data, and you’ll likely find that it will be a productivity tool that you will utilize each day in your business career. In addition, Excel is a leading tool in helping build decision and executive support systems; therefore, Excel supports the creation of descriptive, predictive, and prescriptive models. Also, new versions of Excel help with building visual data models. As a result, employers seek new employees and interns who have strong Excel skills. Because of the importance of data in business decisions, it is imperative that Smith students become proficient users of this software in order to compete effectively in the job market.

Information about the credential

Zeinab Karake, clinical professor in the decision, operations and information technologies (DOIT) department at the Smith School, has developed an Excel credential to enhance student learning of Excel. All Smith students are invited to accept the Excel Literacy Credential course into their Canvas site. The credential consists of the following five modules.

Module 1 – Excel Fundamentals

Module 2 – Excel Functions

Module 3 – Data Manipulation

Module 4 – Charts

Module 5 – Design, Extras, and Customization

To earn the Excel Literacy Credential, students must earn a 70% or higher in all 5 modules. By earning the credential, students will demonstrate that they have developed an Excel proficiency, and they will be prepared for future courses that utilize Excel (ex. BMGT301 Introduction to Information Systems). Those who complete the Smith School Excel Literacy Credential can place the credential on their resume, which will show employers comprehension and mastery of the topic and elevate their resume in the eyes of future employers.

Smith students have access to the Excel Literacy Credential in Canvas each semester and during winter and summer breaks providing lots of flexibility to complete the modules.

The Excel credential instructional videos are from LinkedIn Learning (formerly Lynda.com). UMD students have free and unlimited access to LinkedIn Learning, an online library of instructional videos covering the latest software, creative, and business skills. Access LinkedIn Learning for free. LinkedIn Learning offers advanced training in Excel, and it also offers training in graphic design, data analysis, data science, computer programming, web development and much more.

How do I present the credential on my resume?

Smith students who have successfully completed the credential should list the credential on their resume. Below are a few examples of how the credential can be presented on a resume.

Highlight Credential in Education Section



University of Maryland

May 2023

Robert H. Smith School of Business
Bachelor of Science, Finance & Marketing

GPA: 3.67

Smith School Excel Literacy Credential

Completed September 2019

  • Completed 5-module online course to develop Microsoft Excel skills applicable for building spreadsheets for business
  • Enhanced Excel skills in areas such as PivotTables and advanced chart types for functional use in spreadsheet manipulation


Highlight Credential in Skills Section


Smith School Microsoft Excel Literacy Credential (Completed September 2019)

  • 5-module online course covering mathematical functions, advanced chart types, PivotTables, and more

Additional Computer: Access, InDesign, Photoshop

Languages: Proficient in Spanish

If you have questions about completing the Excel credential or any of the Excel modules that appear in Canvas, please contact Zeinab Karake at excel-credential@rhsmith.umd.edu. If you have questions about presenting the credential on your resume, please consult the Smith School’s Office of Career Services at ocs_ug@rhsmith.umd.edu or visit the office in 2520 VMH.

Robert H. Smith School of Business
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University of Maryland
Robert H. Smith School of Business
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