The complete eDiscovery certification overview!
Certificates are a popular means of improving your resume in the world of e-Discovery. When looking on LinkedIn, you will notice that many eDiscovery professionals certify in at least one specialty. Whether it’s a vendor-agnostic course like ACED’s eDiscovery specialist, or the challenging Relativity Certified Administrator, you will certainly enjoy the advantages of getting certified!
We’ve scoured the web for every single certificate which is currently available in eDiscovery and have created an overview with what we consider the most essential aspects of every certificate exam or course:
- Course/Exam Setup
- Course/Exam Duration
- Whether it’s online or a test center location
- Any mandatory training or courses
- Any recommended prerequisites
- If there are any CLE credits to be obtained
- How to maintain the certificate,
- The retake policy (if any)
You will notice that it’s quite hard to compare the certificates with one another. For example, some certificates might require a 3-day course, while others will allow you to take the exam without any mandatory prerequisites. The pricing is also wildly different, ranging from tens to thousands of dollars.
The purpose of this page is, therefore, not to compare certificates one-on-one but for you to get a full overview of what’s out there for the eDiscovery tools that you use on a daily basis, and your amount of experience in the industry.
This article is made for informational purposes and might contain outdated or incorrect information. We will try our best to keep every certification up to date with the latest information available. If you find any inaccuracies or if you notice any missing eDiscovery certificates, Please send us a message by using the contact form or leaving a comment at the bottom of the article. We are happy to include any new certification limited to the world of eDiscovery. New submissions will be approved per eDiscovery.jobs’ discretion.
Information in the ‘Certificate overview” section for each certificate is intended to be factual. The company/vendor and certificate description can contain the personal opinion of the writers of this article. In any case, please let us know if you find any inaccuracies.
Thank you, and enjoy the article!
– The eDiscovery.jobs team
Independent eDiscovery certificates
We kick-off the overview with two institutes that offer certification, which is not tied to a specific vendor or software, but seek to improve your general eDiscovery skill-set: ACEDS and Arkfeld’s EDEC.
Association of certified E-Discovery Specialists (ACEDS) Certification
ACEDS (A BARBRI Professional Association) is a member organization for e-discovery professionals. The organization is vendor-neutral and has no commercial or financial ties. The membership for eDiscovery professionals includes, among other perks, a mentorship program and live webinars.
The ACEDS Certified E-Discovery Specialist exam is one of the most popular certificates in E-Discovery. For good reasons, as nearly 40 experts have collaborated to construct one of the most challenging exams in eDiscovery!
Since 2018, ACEDS offers a new certificate designed for e-Discovery professionals at all levels: The eDiscovery Executive Certificate
ACEDS Certified E-Discovery Specialist (CEDS)
The ACEDS ‘CEDS’ certificate is the first independent e-discovery certification program and covers a wide range of subjects, including: project planning, litigation hold, implementation, processing, and review.
Since 2010 the certificate has been one of the most popular exams to take and is definitely a worthwhile addition to your resume.
The exam is considered quite a challenge, with a passing grade of 66.4%, so make sure to prepare well by studying the materials and viewing the three 90-minute webinars planned every quarter.
ACEDS eDiscovery Executive Executive (eDEx)
The EDEx exam is a relativity new exam by ACEDS, created in 2018. The exam is obtainable for legal professionals on every level with the intention to educate beginners and professional who wish to broaden their knowledge
The exam includes a mandatory 12-plus hour ‘eDiscovery essentials’ course of interactive online training and several lectures on advanced subjects, offering you an economical way to get your first steps in eDiscovery!
Arkfeld's eDiscovery Training Center
Arkfeld is an organization that provides instructional content to the legal community in the areas of eDiscovery, digital evidence, and forensics, and data analytics.
Unlike most of the other companies on this page, Arkfeld offers the basic and advanced courses on a team subscription basis, where a full team can get certified for a fixed price per month. Arkfeld strongly believes that everyone who “touches” eDiscovery should have access to the same testing and training content.
Arkfeld offers a basic, advanced, and mastery class. Certification on every level!
Arkfeld EDEC eDiscovery Basic & Advanced course (Group Subscription)
Arkfel'd subscription model gives you full unlimited access to 4 basic and advanced on-demand courses:
- Basic - Information Technology (IT) for Legal Professionals
- Basic - ESI Pretrial Discovery: Critical Issues, Strategy and Tactics
- Advanced - Information Technology (IT) for Legal Professionals
- Advanced - ESI Pretrial Discovery: Critical Issues, Strategy, and Tactics
The 'Information Technology for Legal Professionals Course' serves as an overview and essential primer of the field of computer and data forensics aiming to provide an understanding of how the law and the technological issues interconnect.
The 'ESI Pretrial Discovery: - Strategy and Tactics' course identifies and addresses the strategy and tactics for handling electronically stored information (ESI) issues throughout pretrial discovery. These include scope of discovery, preservation obligation and legal holds, controlling costs, search methodology, form of production, accessibility of ESI, limitations on discovery, clawback agreements, cost allocations and much more!
Arkfeld EDEC Master eDiscovery Course
The Master eDiscovery course has a ten-week curriculum which will give you an in depth look at the technological and legal issues affecting electronic discovery and evidence. This course features an online live, interactive instructional approach; instructional on-demand videos, factual scenarios, and pre and post-tests that are designed to engage you in active learning methodologies.
Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:
- Understand the ethical implications and consequences for failure to preserve data
- Demonstrate an understanding of the basics of information technology and electronic discovery
- Understand when to use computer forensics in eDiscovery cases
- Establish an appropriate legal hold
- Counsel clients in regard to the retention and preservation of ESI
- Negotiate eDiscovery compliance with the opposing party
- Grasp and apply the federal and state rules and case law that govern the world of eDiscovery
- Identify, request, process, respond and admit ESI
- Understand the foundational requirements for admission of electronic evidence
Vendor eDiscovery certificates
Many vendors offer eDiscovery certification to improve your knowledge and show on your resume that you’ve got what it takes to manage a certain tool or platform.
Vendor certificates are listed in alphabetic order.
There’s a big chance that you have run into AccessData’s famous FTK images if you’re an eDiscovery professional! AccessData is not only a leader in digital forensics but also offers the eDiscovery platform ‘AD eDiscovery‘, an End-to-end e-discovery platform supporting preservation through production.
AccessData has a wide range of certificates for all of it’s products, one of which is aimed at the eDiscovery platform:
AccessData eDiscovery Certified Administrator (eDCA)
The AccessData eDiscovery Certified Administrator exam is specifically focused on the IT professional responsible for administering AD eDiscovery. The certification focuses on defensible data collection, practices in an e-discovery investigation, and how the use of AD eDiscovery can ensure electronic evidence can be self-authenticated to comply with Federal Rules of Evidence 902 and 902.
The EDCA exam is one of the most affordable exams in this overview, you can get certified for only $100.
Brainspace is becoming an increasingly popular eDiscovery analytics platform, and offers a very thorough certification platform to go with it: Brainwaves.
Several certificates are currently available for every level: Analyst, Specialist, and Administrator. Furthermore, Brainspace is introducing Brainspace Sales Certification and Brainspace Expert Certification in September and December 2020 respectively.
Brianspace certification is currently on sale with high discounts, get certified for only $100 for Analyst, Specialist, or Sales, and $150 for Administrator.
Brainspace Analyst Certification
The Brainspace Analyst certification teaches you how to use all of the major features of Brainspace as well as training you on the standard use cases and their associated workflows.
Before you can do the exam and get certified you need to complete the accompanying course. The curriculum contains subjects such as Brainspace basics, Visualisation Features, and Standard Use Cases & Workflows
Brainspace Specialist Certification
The Brainspace Specialist Certification is designed for individuals who are primarily responsible for the data ingestion process into Brainspace. This course will train users on how to manage Datasets, Users, Connectors, and perform basic troubleshooting of the Brainspace environment.
Before you can do the exam and get certified you need to complete the accompanying course. The curriculum contains subjects such as: Brainspace Architecture, Creating a Dataset, and Basic Troubleshooting
Brainspace Admin Certification
The Brainspace Administrator certification teaches you how to support a Brainspace environment including software installations and upgrades. This certification is ideal for users who are tasked with ensuring the Brainspace environment is up and running and all hardware components are being monitored for application stability.
Before you can do the exam and get certified you need to complete the accompanying course. The curriculum contains subjects such as: Application components, Installation & Upgrading, and Environment Monitoring
Brainspace Sales Certification
TThis online Brainspace certification course teaches you how to explain the value proposition of Brainspace to a prospect, customer, or decision-maker. This course provides an overview of the current market challenges and how Brainspace solves those challenges along with a review of our standard use cases and key features.
Before you can do the exam and get certified you need to complete the accompanying course. The curriculum contains subjects such as how to describe Brainspace including key benefits, and an overview of how Brainspace solves current market challenges
CloudNine is one of the leaders in eDiscovery automation and boasts an extensive eDiscovery platform after having acquired LexisNexis’s eDiscovery suite in 2018, containing well-known products such as: LAW PreDiscovery, Early Data Analyzer (EDA), and Concordance.
The current software offering of CloudNine are six products:
- CloudNine Collection manager
- CloudNine Data Wrangler
- CloudNine Explore
- CloudNine LAW
- CloudNine Concordance
CloudNine offers a great number of courses and education, 5 of which have certifications:
CloudNine LAW 201, Processing Certification
The LAW 201 certification teaches you to solve common problems during data processing.
- Creating a Case for the Project
- Importing Electronic Documents
- Quality Control of the Import
- Exporting Documents
- Producing Images
- Creating a Case & Importing ED
- QC Imported Documents
- Working with Duplicates
CloudNine LAW 301, Administrator Certification
This two-day course will teach you administrative duties including installing LAW, maintaining cases, and license administration.
- Selecting a Database Type
- Establishing Case Items
- Batch Processing
- Working with Cases
- Commands & SQL Statements
- Application Directory
- INI Files
- Important Index Fields
CloudNine Concordance Certified Systems Administrator (CCSA)
Concordance v10 301
This course covers advanced administration focusing on the Concordance server setup and the Concordance Admin Console.
This three-day course teaches you specifically how to:
- Installing Concordance
- Creating an E-docs database
- Instructs how to globally replace delimiters
- Updating Image path in an OPT and how to append to an existing imagebase and how to export an imagebase
- Managing Security and Making fields read-only
- Adding Custom Menu Items
- Backing up Databases
Concordance - Desktop 201
If you need to become proficient in advanced searching and tagging, reviewing and saving searches, advanced editing, concatenating databases for searching, creating advanced reports, this two-day class is right for you. Topics include:
- Concordance Desktop Overview
- Advanced Searching
- Reviewing & Saving Searches
- Advanced Tagging
- Sorting Documents
- Editing Data
- Marking Up Documents & Images
- Working with Transcripts
- Concatenating Databases
- Printing and Reports
Concordance - Desktop 301
This two-day course covers advanced administration focusing on Concordance Desktop’s server setup and the Concordance Desktop Admin Console, including the following topics:
- Managing clients and matters
- Managing User Sessions
- Managing Logs
- Scheduling Jobs
- Back-Up and Data Recovery
EDIT is an E-Discovery provider that integrates processing, analytics, review, and production in a single platform, with a focus on cost-effectiveness and ease of use.
The company offers several training and accreditation courses with the EDT Acadamy.
We will update the certificates below once we know more!
Exterro is an E-discovery, Privacy, and Risk Management vendor and currently offers the free “E-Discovery Masters Series” which will earn you a “Masters in E-Discovery 2020” certificate.
Exterro E-Discovery Masters Series
To earn the certificate you must complete all 4 courses, which are completely free! There is no exam or quiz at the end. The 4 courses are:
- Mastering Cost
- Mastering Defensibility
- Mastering Strategy
- Mastering Technology
iCONECT is an award-winning eDiscovery vendor and one of the early industry leaders. With ICONECT XERA, users can organize and analyze documents through a visually rich and intuitive web-based interface.
iCONECT currently offers 4 certification training tracks, all of which can be obtained for free if you have the latest version of the software! If you manage to obtain the three iCONECT foundational certifications then you can call yourself an iCONECT Certified Administrator. The foundational certifications are:
- Certified Power Reviewer
- Certified Project Manager Course
- Certified System Manager
iCONECT Certified Power Reviewer
To become an iCONECT Certified Power Reviewer, students must watch all the videos in the Power Reviewer series. The Power Reviewer series has 11 modules comprised of 34 videos.
Iconect Certified Project Manager
iCONNECT Project Manager classes are designed for litigation support analysts, database and project managers, and others who want to learn how to create databases, load data, and manage their iCONECT servers.
In this course you will learn to:
- Set up a workflow for a pre-loaded client and project so users can easily review documents and their relationships in the collection
- Create users, user groups, and user roles for optimal system setup and security
- Create and manage fields, and create folder and coding layouts that are easy to use and speed up review
- Create annotation, comment, and batch sets to ensure different review groups have access to the content they need
- Learn to set up and run iCONECT’s Search Term Report to quickly and easily find key content and folder it without opening the project
- Explore powerful mass actions.
- Set up Productions and Quick Productions in iCONECT
iCONECT Certified System Manager
To achieve the iCONECT System Manager certification, students must take the instructor-led System Manager course. The System Manager course is hosted over Zoom, where an iCONECT expert teaches you advanced functions and server tasks for iCONECT.
In this course you will learn to:
- Create clients, user groups, user roles, and projects, including creation of project structures for optimal review purposes
- Use project and user group templates to easily set up new client-matter setup with consistent security
- Data integration: images, natives, OCR; best practices to ensure that rolling loads are optimally integrated; add data easily using iCONECT templates and imports
- Retain your brand in the interface using branding options
- Use iVIEW graphs to give team members insight into data, review status, and more
iCONECT Certified Analytics Reviewer
To become an iCONECT Certified Analytics Reviewer, students must watch all the videos in the Analytic video series. This series consists of 8 videos.
In this course, you will learn Clustering, Email Threading, Near Duplication, and more!
OpenText is one of the biggest players in the world of eDiscovery since their strategical acquisitions the last couple of years, and now offers an end-to-end eDiscovery solution!
OpenText’s eDiscovery products are Axcelrate, Insight, and Legal Hold, and there are currently 3 certificates available for you to acquire, one of which is the EDAX250 certificate, which is completely free!
OpenText EDAX150 - Axcelerate Data Processing Specialist Certification
This in-person certification course is intended for data processing and/or legal team members. These users will ingest data, conduct data processing, cull data and make it available for review in the Axcelerate Review and Analysis application.
OpenText EDAX200 - Axcelerate Review and Analysis - Case Manager
This in-person certification course is intended for Case Managers who will set up new Review and Analysis projects. This user might also manage the review team and review process once review batches have been created and will create productions.
OpenText EDAX250 - Axcelerate Review and Analysis – Investigator Certification
This guided lab session takes you through all the basic skills necessary to hit the ground running for your next investigation. You’ll learn about metadata filtering, phrase and keyword searching, visualizations, and structuring different analytics to rapidly find documents of interest.
Relativity will almost need no introduction, one of the leaders in eDiscovery has an extensive certification and learning platform. Today Relativity offers 10 certificates, of which the “Relativity Certified Administrator” is one of the most popular (and difficult!) to obtain.
Relativity offers a certificate for almost every specialty imaginable such as processing, infrastructure, and analytics. The most recent certification is the RelativityOne Review Pro, specifically designed for review on Relativity’s cloud platform.
One of the more unique certificates is the Relativity Certified Training Pro course which is a very rigorous crash course to become a Relativity trainer!
Relativity Certified Administrator (RCA)
Relativity Certified Administrator (RCA) is Relativity's main certificate and one of the most popular certificates in the eDiscovery world. The certificate is an essential requirement for many eDiscovery and Litigation support job listings.
The exam requires you to understand most administrative aspects of Relativity which makes it not only hard to pass but also ensures that you will know the platform inside-and-out for the rest of your career
For this certificate, it's recommended to use to official study guide since there's a lot to cover! Relativity will also provide you with an "RCA Prep Environment" so you don't have to practice with your employer's instance.
The certificate exam has a notorious hands-on part on which many eDiscovery professionals have already stumbled, so make sure to prepare well!
Relativity specialist exams
The Relativity specialist exams are interesting for those that wish to specialize or are already specialists in certain aspects of the Relativity platform. You will also need to obtain 2 specialist exams + RCA to call yourself a “Relativity Expert“, and if you are really crazy about Relativity then you can attempt to become a “Relativity Master“. You will only need to complete 4 specialist exams in addition to your RCA to obtain master status!
Certificate overview, All Specialist Exams have a similar setup:*
Relativity Analytics Specialist
The Relativity Analytics Specialist exam covers everything analytics, from clustering to Relativity's famous active learning. Make sure to have a couple of projects with extensive analytics applied under your belt before you attempt this one!
At least 6 Months of experience managing analytics projects. It's recommended to take 'Analytics and Active Learning' training
Relativity Infrastructure Specialist
The Relativity Infrastructure exam is notorious among students for being very difficult, mostly because of the high level of detail you are expected to be knowledgeable about when it comes to infrastructure. Be prepared!
At least one year of experience as an infrastructure specialist/manager. It's recommended to take 'Relativity Infrastructure' training
Relativity Project Management Specialist
The Relativity Project Management Specialist certificate is specifically for those that spend many hours finding creative solutions for their clients within Relativity workspaces. This certificate is also considered a great first exam to take on your way to Relativity Expert and Master
At least 6 Months of experience managing projects. It's recommended to take 'Relativity 101', 'Processing', and Analytics and 'Active Learning' training
Relativity Processing Specialist
If you ingest data into your Relativity workspaces on a daily basis then this certification is for you. Expect detailed questions about workflow and best practices.
At least 6 Months of experience hands-on experience processing data. It's recommended to take ''Processing' training
Relativity Certified User
The Relativity Certified User exam is the go-to certification for review team leads or project managers to test proficiency in using the platform to ensure efficient and smooth reviews.
It's recommended to take the RelativityOne Overview online class.
Relativity Pro Exams
RelativityOne Certified Pro
The RelativityOne Certified Pro exam is a popular choice among professionals who are making the switch to Cloud. It's a good way to prepare yourself for all the changes that come with switching from on-premises.
Relativity Certified Sales Pro
The RCSP exam measures your understanding of how the platform’s differentiating features and functionality translate into value for the customer. Sales professionals and others who frequently engage with prospective customers are the best candidates for this certification.
RelativityOne Review Pro
Relativity's newest certificate is designed for the RelativityOne reviewer.
Much like the RelativityOne Certified Pro exam, the review Pro exam does not have any prerequisites is relatively short with 50 questions, and will only cost $50.
We expect that a thorough review of the study guide and the RelativityOne Overview training (or some hands-on experience with the platform) should be sufficient to pass.
Relativity Certified Training Pro
Relativity Certified Training Pro (RCTP) is a new and very rigorous certification project to become a Relativity trainer.
It's the only certificate from Relativity which required mandatory prerequisites:
- One year of training/facilitation experience
- A valid Relativity Certified Administrator certification
- A sponsoring company
Once accepted you will have to attend a virtual meet-and-greet session and complete six hours of pre-work for a weeklong bootcamp.
During the bootcamp you will learn the following:
- The fundamentals of adult education
- Best practice facilitation methods for classroom training
- Techniques required for clear technical instruction
- How to apply evaluation methods and give constructive feedback in a supportive environment
Having completed the program you are allowed to host Relativity 101 training yourself, for half the cost of a standard Relativity training.
Nuix has been a leader in eDiscovery for some time now, especially with their processing platform Nuix Workstation. Since acquiring Review platform Ringtail in 2018, Nuix has been one of the leading End-to-End eDiscovery providers with Nuix Discover.
Nuix currently offers seven courses, three for Nuix Workstation and four for Nuix Discover. Acquire all exams of either track to become a Nuix Certified Master!
Nuix Workstation Data Discovery Core & Specialist
Nuix Workstation Data Discovery Core is a one-day introductory hands-on certification training course that teaches students new to Nuix Workstation the foundational knowledge including creating cases, data processing, searching, and reviewing. This class is ideal for users new to Nuix including litigation support staff, vendor data analysts, project managers, and litigation analysts.
The Nuix Workstation Data Discovery Specialist is a two-day hands-on certification course focusing on case data processing, early case assessment, deduplication, searching and analysis, email threading, production sets, and exports which will show you the practical steps of determining the relevancy of collected information. This course is intended for advanced Nuix users who would like to become more efficient with Nuix Workstation
Nuix Workstation Data Discovery Administrator
The Nuix Workstation Data Discovery Administrator is a one-day hands-on certification course that highlights the required knowledge needed to administrate, configure, license, optimize, back-up, restore, troubleshoot, and more.
This class is ideal for those administering Nuix including IT, technical manager, litigation support manager, vendor specialist.
Nuix Discover Portal Administrator
The Nuix Discover Portal Administrator is a four-hour certification course designed for those who need to gain the skills to oversee a Nuix Discover portal, create cases and users, manage tenant organizations, and gather important metrics about platform usage, hosted data, and user activity.
This class is designed for IT staff, vendors, case management staff, and litigation support professionals.
Nuix Discover End User
The Nuix Discover End User is a one-day introductory hands-on certification course that teaches features and terminology used during document review. You will learn reviewing and searching, review setup, coding documents, printing, and reporting.
This course is designed for the reviewer, paralegal, case management, and litigation staff who are new to Nuix Discover.
Nuix Discover End User - Analytics
The Nuix Discover End User - Analytics is a one-day hands-on certification course that teaches students advanced review tasks such as conducting review quality control, generating reports, and strategic data analysis to build a case or conduct an investigation. This course is designed for those that have previous experience with Nuix Discover end-user functionality including advanced reviewers, paralegals, review team leads, case management staff, and litigation support professionals.
Nuix Discover Case Manager
The Nuix Discover Case Manager is a hands-on certification course that teaches students to manage and administer cases in Nuix Discover including data processing, importing data, working with file repositories, creating and managing analysis tools including cubes and mines, exporting data, and deleting data. This class is designed for case management staff, review team leads, vendors, and litigation support professionals.