This certificate is being retired. The last date available to sit exams will be Wednesday 30 June 2021.

Who is it for?

  • This qualification is for anyone who needs to understand data protection and who has already passed the original BCS Foundation Certificate in Data Protection prior to January 2018, and that wishes to update their understanding of GDPR with the enactment of the UK Data Protection Bill.

Entry requirements

  • Candidates must hold the BCS Foundation Certificate in Data Protection - 2011 Syllabus (with a pass prior to 31 January 2018). It is recommended that candidates take a BCS accredited training course, although not mandatory. 

What will I learn?

By achieving the GDPR Update qualification, candidates will be able to: 

  • Hold an up to date recognised qualification in data protection.  
  • Gain an understanding of the key changes and associated implications that the GDPR introduces for your organisation. 
  • Be prepared for the GDPR changes that occurred with the enactment of the UK Data Protection Act in 2018.


The syllabus includes training objectives, details of modules and learning hours, plus a recommended reading list:

Download the current syllabus (PDF)

How do I get this certification?

Training and exam (recommended)

Take this course with one of our accredited training providers.

How long will it take?

Classroom courses normally last for one day.

Where can I study?

At a BCS accredited training provider near you.

How much will it cost?

Course prices vary depending on your chosen training provider and course format.

Find a provider

Exam only (self study)

Ideal if you’re self-motivated and have a good understanding of data protection.

How long will it take?

It usually takes a minimum of 10 hours to prepare for the exam.

Where do I sit my exam?

At any Pearson Vue test centre across the world.

How much does it cost?

Exam price: £72 (£60 + VAT)

Book your exam

What format is the exam?

  • 30-minute-long ‘closed book’ examination with 25 multiple choice questions
  • Pass mark is 16/25 (64%)

Download specimen paper (PDF)

What's next?

Practitioner level certifications

Consider taking the BCS Practitioner Certificate in Data Protection - 2017 Syllabus to further enhance your knowledge of data protection. Data protection practitioners are in demand since the GDPR changes came into place in 2018.

This qualification is not regulated by the following United Kingdom Regulators - Ofqual, Qualifications Wales, CCEA Regulation or SQA.