The Industrial Data Communications Certificate is an instructor-led 100% online program. The certificate consists of three modules covering the different aspects of industrial data communications, configurations, and application of these technologies from a non-mathematical and practical point of view. The material has many practical examples and features many exercises (labs) using various free (open source) software to help understand the important concepts covered during the certificate. Live online sessions run once a week for the duration of one hour during each of the three modules.

What You Will Learn

  • To select appropriate communications standards when given specific scenarios
  • To define, and determine industrial network models and their rationales when compared to the ISO-OSI Reference Model
  • How to determine from a list of transmission line facts and principles, what are necessary constraints on digital data communications
  • To determine from a list of modem techniques, the correct modem technique or modem technique attributes appropriate to that technique or modem scheme
  • To define a local area network (wireless and wired), LAN boundaries, and contemporary data rates
  • How to determine the attributes applicable to a specific local area network topology or media access scheme
  • To select from a list of requirements those attributes applicable to an Ethernet network topology, data rate and Ethernet network packet structure
  • The requirements for an industrial network in terms of performance, availability, security, and data integrity
  • When given an industrial scenario, to determine the differing attributes of selected Fieldbuses and whether they meet the scenario requirements
  • How to determine from a list of WAN attributes those meeting the requirements of selected WAN communications such as data rate, distance, ownership
  • To determine and select the appropriate response to statements pertaining to inter/intra networking
  • How to define, describe, and determine industrial network solutions (performance, distribution, reliability, safety, availability, cyber security, costs) for selected scenarios

Who Should Attend?

The training is intended for preparing the automation engineer, technician or interested technologist for the numerous networked systems throughout industry; to solve data communications problems and propose solutions. The participant will gain the requisite vocabulary and basic system concepts necessary to select and maintain modern contemporary automation systems. It is presumed that participants work in a technical environment where they can apply the knowledge received. This course requires a basic working knowledge in automation, rudimentary knowledge of computer hardware and/or programming, along with an acquired background in fundamental electrics (electronics helpful but not required).

Course Content

This online certificate has three modules. Live online sessions of approximately 60 minutes will be held every Thursday, 7:00 – 8:00 pm Eastern Standard Time (EST). 


The fee for each module is $1195 OR Register and pay $4400 for the entire Certificate in advance and save $380! Please contact Chris Abraham at 902-494-8042 or 1-800-565-8867 for more information.

Certificate Requirements

It is highly recommended that participants take the modules in sequential order, however this is not a requirement. The certificate is awarded after the completion of the three modules, including all quizzes and final exams. This represents approximately 90 hours of training which includes online sessions, home study, labs, assignments, and exam preparation. The participants must attain a minimum of 65% for each module and an aggregate average of at least 75% in the program.

Required Textbook

Industrial Data Communications, 5th Edition,Tim Shaw and Lawrence (Larry) Thompson, ISA, available at, ISBN-13: 978-0876640951; ISBN-10: 0876640951.

Course Materials

  • Downloadable copies of the class slides used each week
  • Downloadable step-by-step instructions for the labs

Computer Requirements

A Microsoft Windows-based computer (preferably Windows 10) with a minimum of the PowerPoint Office 365, or any after PowerPoint 2010, along with Microsoft Excel (p/o Office 365) or greater then Excel 2010 along with Adobe Acrobat Reader these are required for doing the practical exercises.


William (Tim) Shaw – PhD, CISSP, C|EH, CPT, CAP

Tim has 40+ years of experience in computer-based automation, instrumentation and communications. Former Asst. Professor of Computer Science at Loyola University in Baltimore where he taught Graduate courses in Operating Systems and Telecommunication. Responsible for the development of three generations of SCADA products and two generations of DCS products. Wide range of industry experience from pipelines and refining to steel production and electric power generation/transmission. Author of “Computer Control of BATCH Processes”, “Cyber Security for SCADA Systems” and co-author of “Industrial Data Communications”. Contributing editor for security issues to “T&D Online Magazine”. Shaw has developed and teaches several courses for the International Society for Automation and is a Subject Matter Expert to them on Industrial Cyber Security and Industrial Networking.

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