DAMA Corner – October 2004

Published in TDAN.com October 2004

DAMA International’s
Certified Data Management Professional (CDMP)
Certification Program

By Patricia Cupoli, CCP, DAMA International ICCP Liaison
Past President: DAMA International, Chicago & Philadelphia/Delaware Valley Chapters


The DAMA International Board decided at its January 2004 Board Meeting to adopt the DAMA professional certification designation (CDMP) as a strategy for moving data management toward maturity as well as defining the body of data-oriented knowledge.

DAMA International and the Institute for Certification of Computing Professionals (ICCP) have jointly constructed the Data Management Professional certification designation for the global data industry. Flexibility is the key to professionals being able to move into different job roles within organizations throughout the world. This certification gives data professionals the opportunity to show professional growth that can enhance their personal and career goals. DAMA’s certification effort is coordinated with the work being done on a model education curriculum and job ladders for the data industry.

DAMA International is a constituent member of the ICCP, a consortium of professional IT associations creating international standards and certification credentials since 1973. The ICCP offers internationally recognized product and vendor neutral certification programs that test stringent industry fundamentals for the computing profession. The ICCP office administers the testing and recertification programs for the CDMP.

CDMP Certification Criteria

The CDMP credential is a test based certification program using the new DAMA / ICCP developed data-oriented exams (Data Management, Database Administration, and Data Warehousing) along the IT Core exam and other ICCP exams within the ICCP certification framework. This credential is awarded to those individuals who qualify based on a combination of criteria including education, experience and test-based examination of professional level knowledge.

This credential is offered at the Practitioner or Mastery level. These levels are specified and used in the DAMA International Committee on the Advancement of Data Management in Post Secondary Institutions, Sub Committee on Curriculum Development work on model curriculum, careers and job clusters. This ties in with the use of similar levels for career ladders: Proficient (Practitioner) and Expert (Master) by NWET (National Workforce Center for Emerging Technologies) [1].

For the CDMP Practitioner certification, all three ICCP exams must be passed at 50% or better. This level demonstrates that the candidate can contribute as a team or group member for he or she is proficient in the concepts, skills, best practices, techniques and technologies used in a particular data specialization.

The CDMP Mastery certification is awarded to professionals who scored 70% or higher on all three exams. This level demonstrates that the candidate can lead and mentor a team or organizational group for he or she is an expert in the concepts, skills, best practices, techniques and technologies used in a particular data specialization.

If a candidate desires to go from the Practitioner to the Mastery certificate level, these exams may be retaken to improve their score. You may be able to substitute select vendor certifications for up to one specialty exam based on currency and acceptability to the ICCP Certification Council. The DAMA CDMP certification is issued from the ICCP office.

The following criteria are required for the CDMP:


  CDMP Practitioner Certificate CDMP Mastery Certificate
# ICCP Exams to take 3 3
Passing Score for all exams 50% or higher 70% or higher
# Years Data Professional Work Experience 2 4+
Substitute Up to 2 Years –Bachelor or Master Degree in an appropriate discipline for Work Experience 2 2
Recertification Continuing Professional Education / Activity Required Yes
120 hours every 3-year cycle
120 hours every 3-year cycle
ICCP Code of Ethics Yes, and signature required Yes, and signature required

Professional Examinations:

The CDMP requires three ICCP exams: IT Core, one specified data-oriented exam (e.g. Data Management, DBA or Data Warehousing), and one other exam of your choice depending on your work experience and skillsets (e.g. another data exam, IT Management, Systems Development, Object Oriented Analysis & Design, Integrated Project Management or Systems Security). If you already passed one or more ICCP exams, these exams can be used toward a CDMP if considered current by ICCP standards, and the exams qualify for the CDMP. For information on your status, contact the ICCP.

If you wish to demonstrate expertise in exam specialty areas specifically, the ICCP will issue Expert (Proficiency) Certificates for each specialty exam passed at 70% or higher.

Qualifying Work Experience:

Examples of qualifying data oriented position/ role titles are the following:

  • VP, Director, or Manager of Data Management
  • Data Architect, Data Administrator, Data Analyst, Data Modeler
  • Data Specialist, Database Administrator, Data Warehousing Analyst
  • Systems Architect, Systems Analyst, Project Manager, Project Leader
  • Business Analyst, Repository Analyst, Repository Architect

Qualifying Education:

Examples of qualifying degrees and majors are the following:

Bachelor of Science Degree

Major in:

  • Computer Science
  • Information Systems
  • Management Information Systems
  • Information and Communications Technology
  • Major in another discipline with minor in any of the above

Masters Degree

  • Computer Science
  • Information Systems
  • Information Resource Management
  • Information and Communications Technology
  • MBA with concentration in one of the above

Other qualifications may be accepted. Check with the DAMA CDMP contacts or the ICCP office.

Preparation for Taking Exams

There are various ways of learning the process of taking ICCP exams:

  • Sponsor ICCP Exam Review courses for your DAMA chapter membership
  • Refer to the exam subject outlines (at level 1 & 2) posted on http://www.iccp.org/iccpnew/outlines.html to become familiar with the subject coverage of each exam
  • Contact the ICCP for various Exam Guides (depending on exam topic) which have sample questions for self-study

The ICCP exams are offered at the DAMA International Conference (2005 in Orlando). Arrangements for taking the examinations or purchasing study materials can be made through the ICCP office in Chicago: 800-843-8227 or via email: office@iccp.org

Current and Future Exam Development Efforts

To develop exams for the CDMP, the joint DAMA / ICCP exam development teams use the ICCP exam development methodology. The teams examine in detail the tasks, knowledge and skills of data practitioners. They then define the knowledge areas or domains that each exam should contain to reflect the various roles of data professionals. This is done through the development of an exam outline that also contains the number of questions and the depth levels needed in each knowledge area.

The exam outlines are then reviewed by leading data industry experts who generously volunteer their time to ensure that the exams cover the appropriate topics. The experts’ comments are incorporated into the finalized outline. Team members then write multiple choice questions or items that cover the exam topics. When enough questions have been written, an item review is held where the team members review and create a beta exam.

The beta exams are offered to DAMA chapter members for free to take. If an examination participant finds their score respectable, then the exam score can be applied toward the CDMP for a discounted conversion fee. Three exams have been beta tested in 2004: Data Warehousing, Data Management and DBA. The exam development team uses item analysis statistics (psychometrics) when it meets after the beta exam period ends. The performance of each question is reviewed, and the test item revised as deemed necessary by quantitative data analysis.

Once this is done, the exam is then put into production. The ICCP Certification Councils then maintain the exams using performance statistics collected on each question. Overall, the exam development process can take upwards of 1000 hours of volunteer team members’ time for each exam.

Future exams planned for the CDMP include Enterprise Information Systems Architecture, and Data and Information Quality.

Contact Information

For Questions on the CDMP Certification Program –

Contact DAMA International:

Brett Champlin, ICCP_Director@dama.org
Patricia Cupoli, ICCP_Liaison@dama.org
The DAMA website is www.dama.org.

For Questions on CDMP Testing, Administration and Recertification –

Contact the ICCP Office:

847-299-4227 or 800-843-8227 (phone)
847-299-4280 (fax), or office@iccp.org
The ICCP website is www.iccp.org.

The CDMP application is available on both websites.

[1] National Workforce Center for Emerging Technologies, Building a Foundation for Tomorrow – Skill Standards for Information Technology, 1999.

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DAMA International

DAMA International

DAMA, the Data Management Association International is a not-for-profit, vendor independent association of technical and business professionals dedicated to advancing the concepts and practices for data resource management and enterprise information. The primary purpose of DAMA International is to promote the understanding, development, and practice of managing data and information to support business strategies. DAMA International has chapters and members throughout the world.  Visit and become a member of DAMA by clicking here.

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