Register Access Control Course Fall 2016

Author: Brian Rhodes, Published on Oct 06, 2016

Register now Fall 2016 Access Control Course.

IPVM offers the most comprehensive access control course in the industry. Unlike manufacturer training that focuses only on a small part of the system, we look at the whole picture - design, operation, maintenance and how all parts of an access system work together.

What the IPVM Access Fundamentals Course Covers

In 12 sessions, we examine the following topics in-depth:

(1) Credential Basics

We start with the most common, but frequently misunderstand access component, teaching you the tradeoffs of iClass vs 125kHz Prox vs 13.56 Mhz vs Smartcards vs DESFire.

(2) Advanced Credentials

In this session, we build on the first class digging deeper into multi-factor authentication, credential vulnerabilities (e.g. the unencrypted but popular 125 kHz cards), and emerging technologies including mobile, BLE and NFC.

(3) Readers

We then teach you how to select readers, explaining Wiegand vs. OSDP, and contrasting the different types, shapes, and technologies behind readers including vulnerabilities and weaknesses like 'prox card snooping', identity spoofing, and keypad PIN 'tells'.

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(4) Controllers

Moving onto controllers, we explain how they coordinate activities at openings, breaking down the differences between IP, hardwired, standalone, proprietary or 'open'. You learn the major controller vendors, their tradeoffs and (in)compatibility.

(5) Management Software

Here you learn the five core elements of access software: 1) Live View, 2) Door Management, 3) Cardholder Management, 4) Reporting and 5) Access Levels & Schedules.

(6) System Operation

Then we pull together the entire system, teaching where decisions are made and key vulnerabilities exist such as tailgating and passback. You learn how to counter those vulnerabilities through door-prop alarms, forced-door events, using multiple credentials, and video surveillance integration.

(7) Life Safety Codes & Building Codes

We teach globally applicable access specific safety laws, including the International Building Code (IBC) and NFPA 101 and NFPA 72. Regardless of where you are located, you will learn which codes apply, who to contact locally for clarity, and how to improve security while keeping people safe at the same time.

(8) Doors, Openings, & Locks

You need to know door hardware to do electronic access control systems. We teach you the core function of doors, frames, opening types, and the electrified hardware options to keep each type locked securely, regardless if they are hollow metal, solid wood, or glass doors. You will learn the security benefits of revolving doors, turnstiles, mantraps, electric locks, and exit devices.

(9) Electric Strikes

Strikes are a core component of access control systems. You learn the strengths, weaknesses, and applications that characterize this lock type. We cover how to choose the 'right strike' for your opening, how to avoid expensive installation mistakes, and where avoiding use of strikes can prevent big problems.

(10) Maglocks

Many simply hate maglocks but you need to know how and when to use them. Often misunderstood, misused, and maybe even illegal, we teach the entire scope of electromagnet lock use in access, including bond ratings, voltage, operation and action types.

(11) Networking & Cabling

You learn the role of cabling types in connecting access devices (e.g., 6 vs 4 vs 2 conductor), and why 'wireless' is different than 'wifi'. You will also learn how overlooked concepts like cabling shielding, drain wire use, and bonding/grounding are critical.

(12) Access System Design

In our capstone session, we pull everything together, describing how to select and use different access components and principles together for the best possible result in writing a specification, designing a new system, or just optimizing the one already in use. We teach you what to look for during the 'job walk', and how best to customize the design for your specific needs.

Who Should and Should NOT Take this Course

Even if you have lots of hands on experience with access control and manufacturer training, you should take this course. It teaches access more broadly and in depth than what regular field work or product specific training provides.

However, if you have no experience with access control, you should not take this course unless you can commit to spending 10 to 15 hours per week studying. We have had many people take this course without experience and do very well, but only if they dedicate sufficient time to studying. You cannot pass this course simply by reading a few hours the night before the exam.

Course Calendar

The Access course will meet live online, starting October 11th, 12 times over 6 weeks (Tuesday and Thursday for 1 hour from 11am ET to 12pm Noon ET).

Here is the schedule / calendar:

Classes Recorded

Additionally, all classes are recorded so you can watch on-demand on-line anytime.


At the end of classes, you will take a comprehensive final exam. If you pass, you will become IPMVU Access Control certified (see list of IPVM Certified Professionals)

Register Now

The member's price is $299. This covers classes, personal help and certification:

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