In this fast-changing world, fresh graduates who have certifications or micro-credentials are viewed as more competitive while trying to land a job. Micro-credentials offer students a way to add value to their resumes with industry-specific skills.
According to Straits Times Opinion “Is it skills that will count in the post pandemic world of work” by Sandra Davie, published 20 April 2020,
Increasingly, employers will not be looking at just degrees, but also at certifications, badges and various other forms of skills assessment. It’s already happening in some fields, such as computing, with tech companies. Many also believe that the future lies not with degrees, but with micro-credentials – a certification indicating competency in a specific skill.
What are Micro-Credentials?
Micro-credentials are like certifications. Students (or professionals) take courses and develop specific skills in certain fields/industry.
Micro-credentials are also sometimes called:
- Digital Badges
- Web Badges
Why are Micro-Credentials important?
Micro-credentials are fast gaining importance for reasons such as:
- The gig economy, which requires a fluid and diverse approach to work
- Dynamic and modern industries that demand nuanced skills
- Preferences for workers with experience and specific skills
Take for example, your computer science degree now may become outdated in 3 to 5 years’ time. To survive in the software industry, you would probably need to be a capable coder, have some knowledge of cybersecurity, some basics of artificial intelligence, and a whole lot more. Micro-credentials can certify your competencies to the employer—professional skills validated by a digital badge, to be displayed on your CV, portfolio, or LinkedIn profile.
How are they earned?
Earning a micro-credential is like taking a shortened version of a module in your degree programme. Some are online, some are in a classroom setting. For a badge, you might be asked to:
- Attend workshops/seminars.
- Complete a number of assignments.
- Complete and pass an assessment or skills test.
- Complete a project or do a presentation on the project.
How long will it take to earn one badge?
Earning a micro-credential can take anywhere from 2 days to 6 weeks, or up to a year, depending on the competency levels achievable, and the types of credentials you are undertaking.