CCE Theses and Dissertations

The EC Institute's Certification in Electronic Commerce: From Development to Implementation of a New Professional IT Credential

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences


Laurie Dringus

Committee Member

Sumitra Mukherjee

Committee Member

Steven R. Terrell


Electronic commerce has changed the way business is done both domestically and internationally. The Internet provides businesses with a level playing field, a new delivery channel, enhanced customer relationships and added consumer convenience. Web consumers demand greater ease, faster speed, more choices, and have higher expectations. With the recent popularity of both business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) e-commerce, institutions of higher learning are developing courses and majors in electronic commerce. In addition, industry is demanding that employees have qualifications in various areas of e-business. There is a need for industry and academia to identify common skill sets required for careers in the electronic commerce industry. As many universities begin to offer degrees in electronic commerce, it is necessary to identify a common body of knowledge. Until now, curriculum has varied significantly from program to program. The EC Institute (ECI), a consortium of key electronic commerce association, industry and university professionals, contends that professionals in the electronic commerce industry have discussed the possibility of professional accreditation for many years. The ECI will serve as the national authority on professional development and training standards and as the competency testing and certification body for EC professionals. This dissertation documents as a case study the process by which the EC Institute creates a professional certification in electronic commerce. Using Stufflebeam's Context, Input, Process & Product (CIPP) model, the method used to create the body of knowledge and certification is evaluated.

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