The Skills Senior Officials Network has released a discussion paper on micro-credentials.

This is the latest in a number of articles and reports about them.

The story so far

Previous VDC News editions have featured items about micro-credentials. In September 2018 Are micro-credentials a way to go bro? looked at New Zealand work. The review of the AQF has given some impetus to them too.

VOCEDPlus produced a feature on them in late 2018, entitled Focus on micro-credentials.

This most recent work and  discussion paper on micro-credentials forms part of the VET Reform Roadmap site, and the last issue of VDC News featured an item on the Reform Roadmap’s consultation draft.

The paper and what it says

The paper is the first step in ‘fast-tracked’ work on micro-credentials and how they might be implemented and work. It seeks to “to explore issues on the use of micro-credentials in the national VET system to better respond to student and job-need.”

What is a micro-credential?

The paper presents a number of alternative definitions to draw upon. ‘’Skill sets’ would be their most recognised form in Australian VET, but – collectively – their key features represent (1) a means of certifying the attainment of assessed learning of (2) a discrete module undertaken in a short time frame that is (3) “additional, alternative, complementary to a component part of a formal qualification.”

So, what are we looking at?

First, maintaining full qualifications remains the primary focus of tertiary education, but micro-credentials might be used in both accredited and non-accredited forms to help promote work readiness, assist upskilling and reskilling, transition workers and provide additional necessary skills outside qualifications.

Where to now?

The consultation process for this paper finished in the middle of last month, but we, like you, will keep our eyes out for the next developments.