Halima Mohiuddin is the founder of Leadership Think Tanks Inc. She is a respected higher education visionary. She has also been a professional development coach and a leadership capacity-building expert to numerous S&P 500 corporate giants like P&G, Nestle, etc. She has also served on the Executive Development teams hired by several government entities and global institutions like The World Bank and The Commonwealth. Some of her many specializations are in Finance, MIS, Healthcare Management, Process Engineering, and Innovation. She is passionately invested in transforming the global education landscape. With over 20 years of experience in the corporate and education sectors, she has a proven track record of transforming educational institutions, building leadership capacity, and driving innovation encompassing all stakeholders.
The job market is rapidly evolving, and higher education institutions must adapt to the changing demands of the workforce. One way to address this challenge is by providing industry-recognized micro-credentials to build the capacity of higher education stakeholders. In this article, we will explore the significance of micro-credentials in building higher education stakeholders’ capacity, the role of micro-credentials in higher education, their benefits for students and employers, and the impact of micro-credentials on the future of work.
The Significance of Micro-Credentials in Building Higher Education Stakeholders’ Capacity
The changing job market requires higher education institutions to offer programs that provide students with practical skills and competencies in high demand by employers. Micro-credentials provide a way to address this challenge by offering targeted certifications in specific skills or competencies. These micro-credentials can be stacked with other credentials to create a comprehensive portfolio of skills and competencies that can help students stand out in a competitive job market.
Micro-credentials can also be used to upskill and reskill existing employees, which can help to improve their job performance and increase their job satisfaction. According to a report by McKinsey, the demand for skills that can only be acquired through non-degree programs, such as micro-credentials, is increasing (Martin et al., 2020). Therefore, higher education institutions must offer programs that provide students with the skills and competencies in high demand by employers.
The Role of Micro-Credentials in Higher Education
The traditional model of higher education focuses on broad-based knowledge and theory. However, with the changing job market demands, this approach may not be sufficient to prepare students for the jobs of the future. Micro-credentials provide a way to bridge the gap between the knowledge and skills that students acquire in higher education and the skills that are in demand by employers.
Micro-credentials are shorter in duration and focus on a specific set of skills or competencies. Ivy League schools such as Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have introduced micro-credential programs to provide their students with practical and relevant skills and competencies (Harvard University, 2021; MIT, 2021). These programs have been designed in collaboration with industry partners to ensure that they provide students with the skills and competencies that are in high demand by employers.
Benefits of Micro-Credentials for Students and Employers
Micro-credentials offer several benefits for both students and employers. For students, micro-credentials provide a way to acquire specific skills and competencies in high demand by employers. This can help students to increase their employability and stand out in a competitive job market. According to a study by the Lumina Foundation, students who earn industry-recognized credentials have higher earnings and are more likely to be employed (Lumina Foundation, 2019).
For employers, micro-credentials provide a way to quickly identify and verify the skills and competencies of job candidates. This can help to reduce the time and cost associated with the recruitment process. Additionally, micro-credentials can be used to upskill and reskill existing employees, which can help to improve their job performance and increase their job satisfaction.
The Impact of Micro-Credentials on the Future of Work
The future of work is changing rapidly, and the traditional model of higher education may not be sufficient to prepare students for the jobs of the future. Micro-credentials provide a way to bridge the gap between the knowledge and skills that students acquire in higher education and the skills that are in demand by employers. By providing targeted, industry-recognized certifications, micro-credentials can help to ensure that students are better prepared for the jobs of the future.
According to a report by KPMG, the adoption of micro-credentials is expected to increase significantly in the coming years (KPMG, Micro-credentials offer numerous benefits to students, including increasing their employability, improving their job performance, and helping them stand out in a competitive job market. According to a report by UPCEA and Pearson, students who earn micro-credentials report a 63% increase in their job performance and a 37% increase in job satisfaction (Kamenetz, 2020).
Micro-credentials can also help to increase student enrollment rates and retention. A study by the Lumina Foundation found that students who earn micro-credentials are more likely to continue their education and complete their degree programs (Lumina Foundation, 2021). This is because micro-credentials provide students with the skills and competencies they need to succeed in their academic programs and future careers.
In addition to improving student outcomes, micro-credentials can also create value for higher education institutions. By offering micro-credentials, institutions can attract and retain students looking for programs that offer practical and relevant skills and competencies. This can help to differentiate institutions from their competitors and increase their reputation as providers of high-quality education.
Micro-credentials offer numerous benefits to students and employers, including increasing employability, improving job performance, reducing the cost of recruitment, and upskilling and reskilling existing employees. Micro-credentials can create value for higher education institutions by attracting and retaining students looking for programs that offer practical and relevant skills and competencies.
As the demand for skills that can only be acquired through non-degree programs, such as micro-credentials, continues to grow, higher education institutions must offer programs that provide students with the skills and competencies that are in high demand by employers. By doing so, they can ensure that students are better prepared for the jobs of the future.
- Kamenetz, A. (2020, November 17). Microcredentials and online learning: Big growth and big challenges. EdSurge. (https://www.edsurge.com/news/2020-11-17-microcredentials-and-online-learning-big-growth-and-big-challenges)
- Lumina Foundation. (2021). Impact of microcredentials on student success. (https://www.luminafoundation.org/resources/impact-of-microcredentials-on-student-success)
- Martin, R., Lahart, J., Manyika, J., Roxburgh, C., Chui, M., & Spatharou, A. (2020, June). The future of work after COVID-19. McKinsey Global Institute. (https://www.mckinsey.com/featured-insights/future-of-work/the-future-of-work-after-covid-19)
- UPCEA & Pearson. (2018). Making digital credentials work: A case study of Purdue University’s implementation of a digital credential system. (https://www.pearson.com/content/dam/one-dot-com/one-dot-com/us/en/pearson-ed/downloads/digital credentials/Purdue_Digital_Credentials_Case_Study.pdf)