If you're unfamiliar with Market Motive, they provide a bevy of online classes to help Web businesses train staff on the intricacies of Internet business. Now they offer a certification program in SEM, with two levels.
The Practitioner track is for your marketing staff and covers the basics of search marketing. The Master Consultant track subjects the student to "stringent testing and a peer review by the Internet Marketing Dream Team." The cost is much higher, but so is the depth of coverage.
The certification program is conducted through video classes, live webinars and workshops and Q&A sessions with the staff. And the staff is the most attractive part of the course. It's a Who's Who in the Internet Marketing world including Bryan Eisenberg (New York Times best selling author), Greg Jarboe & Jamie O'Donnell, Dr. Alan Rimm-Kaufman, Matt Bailey, Avinash Kaushik & John Marshall, Todd Malicoat, Tim Ash and more. With this talented staff, it sounds like a pretty good alternative to outsourcing your SEM needs.
Courses start at $299 and cover SEO, Web Analytics, PPC, Social Media Practices, Online Publicity and Conversion & Landing Page Optimization.