Sunday, July 31, 2022

The Different Types of Potential Learners and What They Want - Doug Lederman, Inside Higher Ed

Accenture presents mind-set as an alternative, focused on learners’ goals and emotions rather than immutable characteristics such as age, race, geography or gender. The report separates learners into six categories, linked below from most to least likely to currently be enrolled in a traditional college or university or academic program. The proportion of all learners they represent are in parentheses.

Saturday, July 30, 2022

Degree vs. Experience: How important are degrees to employers? - Preston Wickersham, Remote (UK)

However, our research shows the gap between salaries offered to people with and without degrees is in many cases marginal, and there are a surprising number of roles where those without degrees can actually earn just as much (or even more) than those with bachelor's degrees. The table below shows the average salary available for candidates in 20 high-paying roles with varying levels of education, ranked from highest to lowest in terms of average salary across all degree levels.

Friday, July 29, 2022

AllCampus Announces More Than 15 New Programs and Several New University Partners

“It’s exciting to see the depth and breadth of the new programs that AllCampus continues to add to its roster,” said Joe Diamond, CEO of AllCampus. “With the current skills gap in the U.S. impacting nearly every industry, business and employee, certificate and upskilling programs are an accessible and effective way to develop and hone new skills. I’m looking forward to seeing all of the employees and employers we’ll be able to help by introducing these new programs with our impressive university partners.”

Thursday, July 28, 2022

Engineers Australia launches new micro-credentials to help boost engineering careers - Jonathan Bradley, Create Digital

A new series of micro-credentials promises to provide a more flexible and tailored learning pathway for engineers to build and verify in-demand skills.  An ageing workforce and a boom in new projects have left Australia with a problem: a shortage of engineers.  The challenge is a long-term one, but a new initiative from Engineers Australia and Engineering Education Australia (EEA) will help address the issue. Eight micro-credentials launched this week will provide engineers flexible pathways to build and verify their skills to a recognised standard, through previous or current work.  

Wednesday, July 27, 2022

Alternative Credentials: New Ways to Certify Learning - David Schejbal, UPCEA Unbound

One serious challenge to increasing educational attainment in the U.S. is the higher education credential itself, i.e., the degree. At best, it is a very blunt instrument that signifies in very general terms disciplinary knowledge and skill. At worst, it is a document noting only that the holder spent time in college, but provides no information at all about what the holder actually knows and can do. Even in the best circumstances, however, degrees are expensive in both time and money, and they meet the needs of only a fraction of the population that requires more knowledge and skills to remain gainfully employed. Many Americans need short bursts of education culminating in targeted credentials that clearly signal what they can do with the knowledge they have. Those credentials should be stackable, combinable, readily available, and clearly indicative of ability and expertise.

Tuesday, July 26, 2022

The emergence of alternative credentials - OECD

The landscape of post-secondary education is changing with the emergence of new credentials that are engaging millions of learners. So-called “alternative credentials” – such as micro-credentials, digital badges and industry-recognised certificates – have expanded their scale considerably, as a consequence of a rising demand for upskilling and reskilling, as well as a sharp reduction in the unit cost of provision made possible by digitalisation. Higher education institutions, businesses and other institutions are actively offering alternative credentials that help learners acquire new skills, update their existing skills and signal the competencies they already have.

Monday, July 25, 2022

Thinking About Alternative Credentials - Michael Feldstein, eLiterate

I haven’t written much about alternative credentials, partly because I’ve been waiting for patterns to become more evident to me. Oddly, my recent post about Web3 in education catalyzed my thinking about the credentials topic. In both cases, proponents want to decentralize power structures by using technology to make centralization less necessary. But while decentralization can be facilitated by technology up to a point, it is also limited by the nature of humans as social animals.

Sunday, July 24, 2022

Micro & Alternative Credentials. Size, Shape and Scenarios - Part 1 - HOLON IQ

As drivers for change in post-secondary education strengthen, micro-credentials are set to play a critical role in supporting ongoing learning and up-skilling, both within and outside traditional providers of education and training.  While the space is still forming, and multiple models and approaches abound, there are clear signals of emerging standards, definitions and recognition of micro-credentials. This, along with digital infrastructure to support adoption at scale, is likely to lead to broad acceptance of micro-credentials sooner rather than later.

Saturday, July 23, 2022

Top Findings in Coursera’s Global Skills Report for 2022 - Nerd Voices, Nerdbot

Presented data from more than 100 million users is a great way to show an industry progress. Coursera – one of the top ranked online learning platforms analyzes the data in 3 skill areas in their Global Skills Report for 2022.  The main 3 skill areas Coursera focuses on in the report are: Business, Technology, and Data Science. According to the report, there are an estimated 85 million jobs that might disappear, while 97 million new ones are expected to take place. So naturally, these new jobs will most likely be connected to the 3 most popular skill areas mentioned above. 

Friday, July 22, 2022

Microcredentials - Daniel Higginbotham, Prospects (UK)

Referring to 'mini' or 'small' qualifications, microcredentials are short-term learning experiences designed to help students and employees acquire new skills, progress with their personal development or even change careers. While some microcredentials may be delivered as in-person classes or training, they're typically offered as on-demand online courses lasting up to 12 weeks. In the higher education realm, these short courses are often described as 'microdegrees' or 'nanodegrees' and comprise a series of modules. They are becoming more commonly available at postgraduate level in particular - as well as for those who don't yet hold an undergraduate qualification but are interested in achieving credit at that level.

Thursday, July 21, 2022

How to Incorporate Skills-Based Training into Your Curriculum - Susan Fourtané, Fierce Education

For Dr. Jill Buban, some modern skills are more perishable than skills of the past and continuously re-skilling is a permanent feature of work. “Nearly one billion people will need to be up-skilled by 2032,” she said. “In addition, over 17 million American workers may need to switch occupations by the end of the decade.” As a sector well known to move a little slowly, higher education now must be innovative and increase activity in the skills-based area by increasing innovation and speed. “To keep up with that ever changing workforce, it’s so important to have some agility in the education sector,” Dr. Buban said.

Wednesday, July 20, 2022

Digital micro-credentials. A solution with a vision for tomorrow’s educational needs - ECCOE

This multiplier event, entitled “Digital micro-credentials. A solution with a vision for tomorrow’s educational needs” and organised as part of the ECCOE project, focused on the highly relevant and cutting-edge topic in the present and future of education: namely the role of micro-credentials (MCs) in the unbundling of higher education. Among the 25 participants who attended, there were 6 international (Croatia, Portugal, Iran, UK and Tunisia), and 19 national participants coming from other Spanish universities and from different professional contexts as commented below. During the event, different aspects of this topic were explored, such as the importance of personalised lifelong learning, the need to include more diverse and international types of educational offerings in formal education systems, how to relate such systems to the world of work, as well as the importance of the processes of recognition and accreditation of such learning experiences.

Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Microcredentials: A new category of education is rising - Alejandro Caballero, Sean Gallagher, Hanne Shapiro and Holly Zanville; University World News

A globally accepted definition doesn’t exist yet for these smaller learning units but microcredentials – also often referred to as alternative or non-degree credentials – are emerging as a term to describe education that falls between courses and degrees. Microcredentials include certificates, digital badges, licences and apprenticeships, the latter equating to full qualifications in Europe.

Monday, July 18, 2022


Quality is the result of considered and continuously improved policies and procedures impacting a variety of activities across an institution. The elements below are frequently identified in quality systems; however, they are sometimes arranged differently with greater or lesser emphasis. The following section outlines areas to consider as you build and refine your quality assurance system for micro-credentials, including some questions for building policy and related implementing procedures:

Sunday, July 17, 2022

MICRO-CREDENTIALS - Lewis University

Micro-credentials are digital representations of your learning, designed so that you can share the skills you’ve gained. Micro-credentials, while not a replacement for certificates, minors, or degree programs, are a supplemental designation to provide evidence that you are working towards mastering critical 21st century competencies. Our Micro-credential program allows students to gain relevant skills that enable them to distinguish themselves, academically and professionally.  A digital badge is a type of Micro-credential that allows students to show specific skills that they have gained through coursework or other formal learning experiences at Lewis. They are dynamic credentials that can be shared in social networks and professional contexts, including LinkedIn, resumes, e-portfolios and more.

Saturday, July 16, 2022

Ten Facts You Need to Know About Micro-Credentials - Contact North/Nord (Canada)

There is no absolute definition for micro-credentials in Canada or anywhere else, in terms of period of study, range of content or specific forms of assessment. Components are, however, widely recognized as key characteristics of micro-credentials.  In Ontario, it is widely agreed that a micro-credential is “transcriptable”(link is external) meaning it will appear on a learner’s college or university transcript and will be deposited to her or his digital wallet or e-portfolio. What is not agreed is how long a micro-credential takes to acquire (varying by content) or how portability between countries is assured.

Friday, July 15, 2022

Micro-Credentials - NEA

A micro-credential is a short, competency-based recognition. NEA offers over 175 micro-credentials that have been created by educators for educators. If you’re reading this, it means you’re interested in taking steps to improve your practice as an educator and create better outcomes for your students. Congratulations! Your commitment to lifelong professional learning is essential in helping NEA fulfill its mission to provide a great public education for every student.

Thursday, July 14, 2022

Future of education is identified in the OU’s Innovating Pedagogy Report 2022 - the Open University

‘Dual learning scenarios’ and ‘influencer-led education’ feature among the top 10 approaches to learning and teaching in this year’s landmark edition of the Innovating Pedagogy Report from The Open University. Every year academic researchers at the OU’s Institute of Educational Technology explore new advancements in pedagogy and how they can be effective in different learning, teaching and training contexts.

Wednesday, July 13, 2022

Why faculty need to talk about microcredentials - Loleen Berdahl, University Affairs

Badges and certificates and alternative credentials, oh my! As anyone working in university leadership has heard, non-degree programming is expected to play a big part in the future of higher education. Microcredentials – also known as micro-credentials (the hyphenation question has yet to be settled), nano-credentials, badges, certificates, alternative credentials, and probably several other names – were creating buzz before COVID-19. The pandemic has further fuelled momentum. While postsecondary leaders and governments are increasingly focused on microcredentials, it is not clear that they are fully on the radar for faculty. 

Tuesday, July 12, 2022

OPINION: Meet certificates and “microcredentials” — they could be the future of higher education - Arthur Levine and Scott Van Pelt, Hechinger Report

We now live in a time that is more open to rethinking college and university credentials. We are witnessing experimentation with competency-based education, through which students earn credits by demonstrating skills instead of spending time in courses. We are also seeing discussion of free or reduced tuition, along with subscription pricing that lets students take as many courses as they like for one low cost.

Monday, July 11, 2022

Microcredentials a ‘new frontier in higher learning’ – report - Julian Owen, EdTechnology

The UK’s tech skills gap can be vastly reduced via the widespread adoption of microcredentials, according to a report published today (8 June) by the Lifelong Education Commission. While there is currently no single definition, microcredentials, are essentially small units of learning that can be delivered online or face-to-face. The flexibility of their short-form nature, allowing the course-taker to quickly learn a specific skill, is thought by many to hold the key to overcoming the UK’s ongoing skills gap.

Sunday, July 10, 2022

3 reasons microcredentials are poised to go mainstream - Rusty Greiff, eCampus News

Two in five working-age adults have completed a non-degree credential and more than 80 percent of executives, supervisors, and HR professionals now say that alternative credentials bring value to the workplace. At a time of significant disruption in the economy, institutions, employers, and workers are all finding they must embrace a philosophy of continuous lifelong learning. It’s a shift enabled by the proliferation of short-term microcredentials. Over the past decade, the number of such offerings has sharply risen. There now exist at least 1 million different credentials, spanning apprenticeships, certificates, digital badges, industry-recognized certifications, and licenses.

Saturday, July 9, 2022

Does Microcredentialing work? - Gilbert & Tobin

Microcredentialising has been described by the EU’s vocations training authority as a “megatrend”. The Australian Government’s National Microcredentials Framework says that "technological change coupled with rapid transformation brought by Covid-19, has elevated the potential for microcredentials to rapidly upskill and reskill the workforce."  One of the first empirical studies of the impact of microcredentials has found their impact to be less transformative, more nuanced than the hype suggests, but nonetheless a valuable ‘signal’ for an employer of an employee’s ability to do the job.

Friday, July 8, 2022

How two institutions tackle microcredentials - Laura Ascione, eCampus News

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. Here’s how two institutions are leveraging their microcredential programs to help students with different goals, personal responsibilities, and professional obligations further their education.

Thursday, July 7, 2022


 In reviewing micro-credentials presented by eCampusOntario, the Ontario Ministry of Colleges and Universities (2021) and UNESCO (2021), the overarching consensus is that shared characteristics involve collaboration between an accredited educational institution and an employer or industry sector. Together, they can identify, create, and review workplace relevant training that is of value to the learner and the employer or industry sector. Micro-credentials should demonstrate that depth, rather than breadth, of a specific skill or area of focus, and that learners are assessed to ensure that new skills and competencies have been gained. However, ongoing questions involve how to assess mastery and related quality assurance of micro-credentials offerings with academic post- secondary institutions. Taking these common characteristics into account, the definition provided in A European Approach to Micro-Credentials (Futures et al., 2020) may be a good starting point for those newer to micro-credential development :

Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Online learning to be ‘big part’ of college business - Darren Taylor, Soo Today

“In the past five years there’s been tremendous growth in e-learning. I can’t say that we predicted it but in the pandemic a lot of people were displaced from their jobs and we were positioned very well to help those individuals get retrained in a very short time frame, right around that same time the government came out with what’s called microcredentials.” Kirkwood said there are over 30,000 registrations in Sault College microcredential courses. “It’s not big business for us but certainly in the future there is anticipation that this type of short duration training will become a bigger part of our business,” Kirkwood said.

Tuesday, July 5, 2022

External Engagement and Communications Officer - Maynooth University - Times Higher Ed

The Irish Universities Association (IUA) is the representative body of the university sector. It has recently secured funding for a major new project to develop a micro-credentials system in Irish Universities, providing a coherent national framework for quality assured and accredited micro-credentials. This full-time contract position is funded by this project.

Monday, July 4, 2022

Meta Launches Five New Professional Certificates on Coursera - Sue Gee, I-Programmer

Meta is expanding its training offering on Coursera with five new professional certificates for those wanting to embark on a programming career - for the web, for mobile or as a database engineer. Pre-enroll before the starting date to enjoy your first 30 days free. Recognizing the need to recruit new entrants into developer roles Meta, as Facebook is now known, has announced online training aimed at job seekers who don't have a college degree.

Sunday, July 3, 2022

It Pays To Get Certification - Sue Gee, I-Programmer

The Open Source Jobs Report 2022, published today, reinforces the message that gaining certification is very worthwhile for developers. Meanwhile the Stack Overflow Developer Survey 2022, published today, reveals that over half of developers engage with the video-based online courses that lead to certification. Being encouraged to acquire new skills via online courses is something that appeals to developers. Findings from Stack Overflow's 2022 survey, which gathered information from 73,268 software developers from 180 countries around the world, indicated that almost half (46.63%) respondents had learned from Online Courses or Certification. With over two-thirds of hiring managers more likely to hire  certified open source professionals it does seem that gaining a credential from an online course provider is a really good idea.,

Saturday, July 2, 2022

Credential stacking drove 1.1% increase in undergraduate degrees earned last year - Rick Seltzer, Higher Ed Dive

Undergraduate credential earners totaled 3.7 million. That’s up 1.1%, or about 39,000 people, from the number reported in each of the last two years. Growth came from students with prior awards who were stacking credentials. About 1 million students graduating in 2020-21 had prior awards, up 3.9% or 37,800 students from 2019-20. First-time graduates, meanwhile, held steady at 2.69 million after dropping from 2.71 million in 2018-19.

Friday, July 1, 2022

Accreditation and endorsement - eCampus Ontario

A micro-credential is a type of claim made by the issuer stating that a learner has achieved a quantum of learning. A micro-credential also contains evidence to support that claim about this learning, and sometimes includes direct evidence demonstrating how the individual learner achieved the learning outcomes. Beyond direct evidence, how can the consumer or viewer of the credential trust that the claim is true and significant?