Tuesday, May 31, 2022

New program helps IT professionals keep pace with ever-changing industry - Chris Bournea, Ohio State University

Advances in technology are continual, accelerating and impacting business like never before, and The Ohio State University Max M. Fisher College of Business is offering a new program to meet those demands. To help professionals working in the information technology (IT) industry keep pace, the Fisher College of Business is launching the graduate certificate in IT business strategy that will commence classes this fall.


Monday, May 30, 2022

Defining high-quality microcredentials for higher ed - Cynthia Proctor, eCampus News

Faculty wanted to ensure that microcredentials would have the same quality as SUNY certificate and degree programs and so, on campus, microcredentials follow a formal process that includes faculty governance—while still encouraging faculty innovation and responsiveness. Now four years in—with expansive growth in the past year as more campuses saw microcredentials as a means to serve learners, communities, and businesses impacted by the pandemic—SUNY’s policy-driven quality framework for microcredentials has proven to be effective.

Sunday, May 29, 2022

IBM Announces 6 HBCU Cybersecurity Leadership Centers - Rhea Kelly, Campus Technology

As part of its commitment to train 30 million people globally in tech skills by 2030, IBM has partnered with six historically Black colleges and universities and HBCU systems to establish Cybersecurity Leadership Centers that will work to build a diverse cyber workforce in the United States. The participating institutions — North Carolina A&T State University, Southern University System, Clark Atlanta University, Xavier University of Louisiana, Morgan State University and South Carolina State University — are the first six of a planned 20-plus HBCU partners that will receive access to IBM cybersecurity training resources including curricula, cloud access and immersive learning tools.

Saturday, May 28, 2022

MEPs push for steps to create an EU-wide lifelong learning system - European Interest -

In a resolution adopted on Thursday by 519 votes in favour, 59 against and 21 abstentions MEPs want to make sure that the proposed Council recommendations on micro-credentials, individual learning accounts and environmental sustainability studies are followed up by actual measures and legislative efforts to introduce new solutions. They call on the Commission to come up with a “robust instrument” for motivating member states to implement micro-credentials system for recognition of short learning outcomes and ask to set up national micro-credential registers to guarantee their quality.


Friday, May 27, 2022

Micro-credentials: Innovative opportunities for our evolving workforce - Rose Murphy, the Union

 Stackable credentials and digital badges are ways for individuals to acquire knowledge and skills in small portions. Learning can be directly aligned with workforce needs. By obtaining an assortment of credentials, rather than a single degree, learners progress in a current or future career pathway. By using digital badges and stackable credentials learners are finding opportunities to develop technical and soft skills to demonstrate their proficiencies.


Thursday, May 26, 2022

Credential Train Is Leaving the Station—Get on Board - Ray Schroeder, Inside Higher Ed

In 1997, Sylvia Manning, then VPAA of the University of Illinois system, later president of the Higher Learning Commission, declared, “The online learning train is leaving the station—get on board or be left behind!”  Now, decades later, Manning’s message is true for alternative credentialing programs in higher education. An equally large—or larger—positive impact is anticipated for higher education with widespread adoption of credentialing that is shorter-term, less expensive, more timely and more career-centric than traditional full-length degree programs. The public demand is clear. It is for shorter, less expensive, more relevant certificates and certifications that have value in the workforce marketplace.


Wednesday, May 25, 2022

An Analysis of Workforce Intermediaries, Part I - George Lorenzo, Workforce Monitor

This is the first part of a Workforce Monitor analysis of workforce intermediaries (WIs). We begin with a definition of WIs paraphrased and mashed up from some of the current research: 

WIs are entities who provide education and training advisement, support, and delivery services to workers and employers. Although there is no formal count, WIs number in the unknown thousands and embody an enormous landscape of companies, organizations, institutions, and partnerships who offer numerous and varied services to learners, employers, and the overall workforce development academic community. Basically, workforce intermediaries (WIs) form the multi-faceted connections between job seekers and workers and employers.


Tuesday, May 24, 2022

NSU develops micro-credential offerings to meet workforce in-demand skills - Tahlequah daily press

Northeastern State University officials are working with state officials and employers to create micro-credentials as an affordable, flexible way for students to earn in-demand skills. With no shortage of academic rigor, NSU micro-credentials allow students to “stack the workforce deck” for advancement and marketability, as well as provide a pathway toward a future degree should they choose.  “A micro-credential allows students to focus on a specific set of industry or discipline skills that employers are seeking,” said Director of Career Services at NSU Shannon Schwaebler. 

Monday, May 23, 2022

Coursera launches skills training academy for colleges and companies - Natalie Schwartz, Higher Ed Dive

Coursera, like other popular MOOC platforms, has made its name by bringing online classes to the masses. But lately, the company has been expanding efforts to provide these offerings to colleges and employers rather than solely to consumers.  The company doubled down on that strategy Wednesday, when it announced the launch of a career training academy that enables users to earn entry-level certificates from companies like Meta and IBM in fields such as data analytics, social media marketing and user experience design. Institutions — including colleges, businesses and government organizations — can sign up to make the platform available to their students or employees.


Sunday, May 22, 2022

Clarifying the Alternative: Why Higher Ed Needs to Better Define Microcredential Skills - Dennis Di Lorenzo, Modern Campus

“A digital marketing certificate from one institution means something very different than a digital marketing certificate from another,” Di Lorenzo says. “If I’m someone trying to understand what my next move is regarding my career, I don’t think people are asking ‘what is the value of the credential’ but ‘what am I going to learn?’” Asking employers to invest more in their own employees who need to upskill or reskill is going to show them some of that process.  However, the responsibility to ensure there is a return on that investment falls on the institution. Finding a way through the layers of complexity to get a clearer picture of what goes on in higher ed is critical to employers.  

Saturday, May 21, 2022

New Data Ethics Online Certificate Spearheaded by Liz Karns - Cornell

This is the lesson that lawyer and epidemiologist M. Elizabeth Karns embeds in every data science and statistics course she teaches in the Department of Statistics and Data Science.  Karns says it’s the accelerated and aggregated effect of today’s data science applications that’s so dangerous: individual, team or even a whole company’s worth of decisions, can instantly affect the lives of millions of people. Moreover, the torrent of new technologies is moving faster than our regulatory systems, leaving a gap in accountability. Even data scientists themselves often don’t know exactly what’s happening inside their algorithms. “This little magic box [the algorithm] is determining our life choices, often without any transparency, due process or a way to appeal,” says Karns. “That is why ethics is so important. We don’t have to further marginalize certain groups and individuals should not have to worry about their safety because of poorly and unethically conceived data applications.”

Friday, May 20, 2022

Finding Talent By Considering Alternative Credits - MH&L

While these credentials can bring value to the workplace there is a disconnect in that systems aren’t in a place that can easily identify an individual’s skills and talents as well as reluctance by employers to recognize a new way to validate these skills, says the report. “Alternative credentials are key to uncovering untapped talent, especially when it comes to those job seekers who may not have the opportunity to build skills in a traditional way but have the competencies they need to succeed,” said SHRM Foundation President Wendi Safstrom, in a statement. “A majority of executives, supervisors and HR professionals believe that including alternative credentials in hiring decisions can actually improve overall workplace diversity.”


Thursday, May 19, 2022

Thinking About Alternative Credentials - Michael Feldstein, eLiterate

One of the problems we currently face when discussing alternative credentials is that there are (at least) four distinct ideas of what we mean by the term which are poorly differentiated in our discussion. While these different meanings are not necessarily incompatible, they aren’t automatically complimentary either. We risk confusion and mistakes if we aren’t clear about which drivers we are most concerned about when we talk to each other about them.


Wednesday, May 18, 2022

3 Questions for Pearson’s Kathleen Carr - Joshua Kim, Inside Higher Ed

I work to ensure we use the right content, in the right product form, for the right audience so that students have amazing, impactful learning experiences and pathways. My team is particularly interested in content that moves a learner along a skill continuum while nurturing them toward credentials that have significance in their life and work. Typically, these are credit-backed with a degree progression. For example, nurses who responded to the pandemic by attaining certificates in telehealth and mental health. We are working with several partners to build learning paths and apply a data-backed strategy to ensure learning leads to meaningful career moves—from upskilling to new jobs entirely. 

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Owensboro CTC Gets $556K for Manufacturing Tech Program - Bobbie Hayse, Messenger-Inquirer

Owensboro Community & Technical College received a $556,314 grant from the National Science Foundation that it will put toward developing a program to help train the workforce in the manufacturing industry. The three-year grant initiative is called Reskilling Manufacturing Technicians Post-COVID with an Industry 4.0 Competency-Based Solutions. Through the competency-based model, students will have an opportunity to learn skills and complete certifications within the industry. The model will be accelerated, but students can work at their own pace. Students can also earn two national certifications through this course, said Sheri Plain, OCTC grant principal investigator.


Monday, May 16, 2022

'Stackable credentials' could be future of higher education in Colorado - Nicole Brady, Denver Channel

Metropolitan State University of Denver is one of Colorado’s largest four-year institutions, but some students are spending just months there — not years — before joining the workforce. They’re doing it by “stacking” credentials. “Stackable credentials are really a convergence of individuals wanting to learn in smaller chunks and industries being willing to accept those chunks,” said Terry Bower, associate vice president of Innovative and Lifelong Learning at MSU Denver.


Sunday, May 15, 2022

Three Ways Associations Can Prioritize Credentials and Certificates - Rasheeda Chldress, Associations Now

With people changing careers and needing new skills, certificate and credential programs are more important than ever. Two new reports from the Society for Human Resource Management Foundation suggest ways associations can ensure their credentials meet learner, employer, and employee needs.


Saturday, May 14, 2022

Guest opinion: FGCU micro-credentials can help fill skills gaps, boost careers - Kristen Vanselow and Aysegul Timur, The News-Press

Florida Gulf Coast University has established this kind of qualification badge or series of badges with community partners such as global tech leader IBM. The Lee County Economic Development Office has provided $1 million to FGCU to allow Lee County residents to participate in 14 select micro-credentials/digital badge programs at no cost for a limited time. The program was developed under the direction of the Lee Board of County Commissioners and funded through the federal American Rescue Plan Act.


Friday, May 13, 2022

More Non-degree Credentials Are Expected in Coming Years - Greg Varner, GW Today

As the pace of technological development and knowledge production increases, more and more people need to update their skills. Unforeseen developments such as the COVID-19 pandemic also may require a professional reset. This is why the need for non-degree certification and micro-credentials, or incremental recognition of job-related competencies, is becoming more important.

Thursday, May 12, 2022

HR departments more willing to recognize alternative credentials; most bots don’t - Jeff Clabaugh, WTOP jclabaugh@wtop.com

“Individuals who have been displaced or are opting to choose an alternate career path but don’t necessarily have the opportunity or perhaps the money to obtain a four-year degree or even a two-year degree, we found that more individuals are able to upscale at a rapid pace if they’re pursuing these industry certifications or professional certifications in the field in which they are interested and aligned,” said Wendi Safstrom, president of the Society for Human Resource Management. Alternative credentials are popular with workers. Nearly three-quarters agree they are an affordable way to gain the skills or experience they need to enter a new job. And three-quarters also believe they would increase their chances of being hired for a job.


Wednesday, May 11, 2022

'Alternative credentials' taking on more importance in the workplace - Joel Cranc, Benefits Pro

However, U.S. workers are turning to alternative credentials as a way to enhance and demonstrate skills and work readiness, according to a new report from the Society of HR Management (SHRM), The Rise of Alternative Credentials in Hiring. Nearly half (45%) of workers say they have some form of alternative credential and for those who don’t have one, 49% are considering earning one. Alternative credentials are defined as micro-credentials, industry or professional certification, acknowledgment of apprenticeship, or badging that indicates one’s competencies and skills within a particular field. They do not include traditional academic degrees or required occupational licensures.

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Where can microcredentials take higher education? - Laura Ascione, eCampus News

Unlike academic degree programs, microcredentials are bite-sized educational courses with a more specific focus. They could take months or weeks to complete. Because of their convenience, microcredentials appeal to employees looking for a highly personalized, flexible, and cost-effective way to further their education. As automation and technological advances change the job market, policymakers and employers recognize the potential of microcredentialing and professional certifications to help meet demands for new skills.


Monday, May 9, 2022

Microcredentials training in pharmacy practice and education: an exploratory study of its viability and pharmacists’ professional needs Peggy Lok, et al; BMC Medical Education

Microcredentials (MCs) are short courses that certify/recognise an individual’s achievement of specific skills or knowledge. Schools of pharmacy could be well-placed to contribute to the continuing professional development (CPD) of pharmacists through the inclusion of MCs training in their programs. This study aimed to explore pharmacy professionals’ views on the need and viability of MC courses globally.


Sunday, May 8, 2022

Lee residents eligible for free career-readiness programs at FGCU - Drew Sterwald, FGCU 360

Lee County residents are now eligible for scholarships and tuition assistance to earn micro-credentials at Florida Gulf Coast University. This innovative offering helps enhance workplace-relevant skills and expand career opportunities. The university developed an array of “digital badges,” or series of badges, in collaboration with leading employers in a variety of fields to address skills gaps in today’s fast-changing workforce. These non-credit micro-credentials are designed for working professionals as well as students.


Saturday, May 7, 2022

Where can microcredentials take higher education? - Laura Ascione, eCampus News

The COVID-19 pandemic ushered forth dramatic declines in college and university enrollments, widespread unemployment, and it cast a spotlight on the skills gap and the increased demand for upskilling and reskilling in today’s workforce. As more and more surveys reveal that employers are struggling to find workers who are highly-qualified and prepared for a global and always-evolving workforce, microcredentialing initiatives are becoming increasingly widespread.


Friday, May 6, 2022

SHRM backs ‘alternative credentials’ in report - Ryan Golden, HR Dive

Training certificates, course completion certificates, industry or professional certifications and other types of “alternative credentials” can help employers further their hiring diversity, equity and inclusion goals as well as bolster career development, the Society for Human Resource Management said in a report published Wednesday. SHRM’s report included research it said was sponsored by a grant from Walmart made to the SHRM Foundation, its charitable arm. A survey of 1,129 U.S. SHRM members found that 90% said they believed that workers who held alternative credentials brought value to the workplace, while 59% said alternative credentials could uncover untapped talent.


Thursday, May 5, 2022

Micro-credential programs surge at UB - Charles Anzalone, Niagara Business

In 2018, the University at Buffalo unveiled 10 micro-credential programs. Since then, interest in these nimble and innovative educational programs, which provide in-demand workforce skills and a more personalized higher education experience, has exploded. There are now 78 micro-credential programs, including everything from data science and clinical pharmacy research to quality engineering and social justice. More than 3,330 students enrolled in UB micro-credentials last fall semester, which accounted for roughly 75% of micro-credential enrollment in the State University of New York system.


Wednesday, May 4, 2022

Struggling to hire? Don’t overlook alternative credentials - Paola Peralta, Employee Benefit News

Long gone are the days of traditional resumes and cover letters. In this new, post-pandemic workforce, employers will need to be open to new and innovative means of understanding employees’ skill sets and qualifications. More workers are turning to alternative forms of credentials to showcase their job skills, according to new research by the Society for Human Resource and Management and Walmart. Nearly half of U.S. workers say they have some form of an alternative credential, and among those who don’t, 49% have considered earning one.


Tuesday, May 3, 2022

Google Launches New Digital Marketing Certificate - Google

Google is launching a Digital Marketing and Ecommerce Certificate endorsed by the American Association of Advertising Agencies (the 4A’s) and the American Advertising Federation (AAF).  Google’s new certificate program will train jobseekers in how to find customers online, sell products or services, and do marketing analytics and measurement.  addition, Google promises to give every US business up to 500 Google Career Certificate scholarships to help upskill their employees.  


Monday, May 2, 2022

In Search for Qualified Workers, Maryland Drops Requirement for 4-Year Degree - SHRM

Maryland's recent elimination of a four-year college degree as a job requirement for thousands of the state's jobs is shining a spotlight on the value of alternative credentials and experience. The aim of the state initiative—which the governor's office says is the first of its kind in the U.S.—is to ensure that "qualified, non-degree candidates are regularly being considered for these career-changing opportunities," Gov. Larry Hogan said in a news release. More than 38,000 people work for the state, according to Hogan's office, and the state's Department of Budget and Management (DBM) estimated more than half of those jobs can be performed by people whose experience, training and/or community college education can substitute for a four-year college degree.


Sunday, May 1, 2022

SHRM Report: Survey Finds a Rise of Alternative Credentials in Hiring

Increasingly, U.S. workers are turning to alternative credentials to enhance and demonstrate skills and work-readiness, according to new research from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), made possible by a grant from Walmart to the SHRM Foundation. SHRM's new reports, The Rise of Alternative Credentials in Hiring, released today along with Making Alternative Credentials Work: A New Strategy for HR Professionals, found that nearly half of U.S. workers (45%) say they have some form of an alternative credential. Among those who don't, about half (49%) have considered earning one.