Online Courses for Aspiring Certified Meeting Planners

Find out about the variety of topics that are covered in online meeting planning courses. Read on to learn about different certifications that are available and how online courses work. Schools offering Hospitality Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Will I Learn in Online Courses for Aspiring Meeting Planners?

Meeting planners are responsible for making sure that business gatherings, conventions and other events go off without a hitch. You can find courses related to meeting planning online in a variety of areas of study such as event planning, meeting and event management, hospitality management, or managing virtual meetings. The following course descriptions provide an overview of the types of courses you might take online.

Fundamentals of Meeting Planning

Students are introduced to the responsibilities of a meeting planner. Topics of discussion include the basics of how to successfully coordinate and manage a meeting, along with job opportunities in this field.

Food and Beverage Planning

This course discusses topics such as policies, menu planning, order pricing, communications with catering staff, and understanding contracts. Students will learn about the roles of food and beverage in the context of an event and how to develop and manage a budget.

Legal Issues

In this course, students will discuss contracting, ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) requirements, how to handle employment disputes, and issues related to alcohol, food, and beverage. To enhance the learning process, students may review and discuss case studies to learn how to manage liability and conduct mock negotiations.

Financial Management

Through the development of a budget, students will learn how to stay on budget, forecast revenues, and prepare spreadsheets. Students will also learn how to communicate the return on investment to stakeholders.

Wedding Planning

In this specialized class, students will learn to identify a market, discuss themes and styles, and how to collaborate with the client to determine their needs. Students will also learn about different customs and traditions and how to network and conduct public relations.

How Do I Become a Certified Meeting Planner?

You can pursue a Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) credential, a widely recognized industry distinction offered by the Convention Industry Council. Requirements for this certification include prior experience in meeting planning and completion of certain educational activities. Depending on your prior experience, you may also need to have a degree or have been an instructor. The detailed requirements are available on the Council's website. An exam is also part of the certification process.

You may also choose to become a Certified Government Meeting Professional, a credential offered by the Society of Government Meeting Professionals (SGMP). To qualify to take the certification class and exam, you must have been a member for at least six months or show proof of at least one year in the hospitality industry.

How Do Online Courses Work?

Online courses are generally flexible and somewhat self-paced, so you can access coursework at any time. You can often communicate with classmates and instructors via Web chat or online discussion boards. Your classes may still be textbook-based, but supplemental video and audio lectures are often provided online. Assignments typically have scheduled due dates and can be turned in via e-mail or an online content management system; online tests may also be scheduled. Some courses for aspiring certified meeting planners are offered through hybrid programs, which have some short on-campus requirements, such as seminars or residencies.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

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