Micro-credential Observatory

The Research Observatory on Micro-credentials (ROM) provides a regularly updated collection of major reports, policy initiatives and research-related publications on the growth, development and impact of micro-credentials in higher education and lifelong learning more generally.

NIDL Activities

The NIDL is playing a leading role in helping to shape the rapidly evolving micro-credentialing movement, including:

• Strategic partnership with Digitary to support development of micro-credentials using this leading international platform

• Launch of credit-bearing, stackable micro-credentials on the FutureLearn platform

• Leading development of a new MOOC, "Higher Education 4.0: Certifying Your Future", on micro-credentials on the FutureLearn platform

HE 4

• Leading and contributing to important ECIU University white papers on the future of micro-credentials

• Leading parts of a major workpackage related to micro-credentials as part of the ECIU University initiative 

• Contributing expert advice to the European Commission's Micro-credential Consultation Group 

• Contributing to national and international events on micro-credentials including the MicroHE conference

• Hosting major global thought leaders and keynote speakers during the 2019 ICDE World Conference on Online Learning

NIDL Research

The NIDL is involved in several externally funded research projects investigating the growth and potential of the micro-credentialing movement, including:

• 2021 A Micro-credential Roadmap for Ireland: Currency, Cohesion and Consistency - TBA

• Micro-credentials: An Evoling Ecosystem - Insights Paper 

• European survey of Micro-credentials across ECIU University partners 

• Investigation of Micro-credential design and delivery on the FutureLearn platform 

National survey of Micro-credentials in Ireland partnership with ICBE and Skillnet

• Leading a special issue of an international journal devoted to the micro-credentialing movement

• Preparing external funding applications for further research and development projects with external partners

Major Policy Initiatives

A collection of major policy initiatives related micro-credentials:

2021 2020 Final Report: A European Approach to Micro-credentials - Output of the Micro-credentials Higher Education Consultation Group  2020 Towards a European Approach to Micro-credentials - A Study of Practices and Commonalities in offering Micro-credentials in European Higher Education - Analytical Report
2020 Micro-certifications: Policy and Regulatory Context in Ontario 2020 A European Approach to Micro-credentials - Institutional Incentives to Develop and offer Micro-credentials in the EU 2020 A European Approach to Micro-credentials - Background Paper for the First Meeting of the Consultation Group on Micro-credentials
2020 A European Approach to Micro-credentials 2020 European Skills Agenda  2020 Micro-credentials Linked to the Bologna Key Commitments
2020 Europass Platform 2020 Europass Digital Credentials 2020 MICROBOL
2020 New European Skills Agenda 2020 Australian Government to Build Online Micro-credential Marketplace 2020 Canada's Higher Education Sector Selects Digitary
2020 ECIU Towards a European Micro-credential Initiative 2020 Joint ETUC-ETUCE Position on Micro-credentials 2020 Joint ETUC - ETUCE Position on Micro-credentials
2020 Malaysian Guidelines to Good Practices  2019 Review of Australian Qualification Framework 2019 EMC Common Micro-credential Framework
2019 Malaysian Guide on Micro-credential 2019 UNESCO Global Convention on Recognition of Qualifications 2018 NZ Approval of Micro-credentials

National & International Reports

A collection of national and international reports relating to micro-credentials:

2021 Paving the Road for the Micro-credential Movement: ECIU University White Paper 2021 Micro-credential and the Skills Agenda: Twelve Fundamental Questions 2020 A European Approach to Micro-credentials
2020 Micro-certification Business Models in Higher Education 2020 HE for Lifelong Learners: A Roadmap for Ontario 2020 The Future of Ontario's Workers
2020 The Potential of Micro-credentials in Education 2020 Embedding Certifications into Bachelor’s Degrees: Certification-Degree Pathways Project 2020 Micro-credentials Mainstreaming Mid-career Skills Development
2020 Background Paper for EU Consultation Group on Micro-credentials 2020 Micro-credentials: An Evoling Ecosystem - Insights Paper 2020 Survey of Micro-credentialing Practice in Australasian Universities
2020 Lessons Learned Pilot Edubadges  2020 OECD Emergence of Alternative Credentials 2020 OpenCreds Framework
2020 Recognition and Verification of Credentials 2020 Recognition and Validation of Micro-credentials 2019 Micro-credentials in the EU and Global
2019 ACODE Micro-credentialing as a Sustainable Way Forward 2019 The Present and Future of Alternative Digital Credentials 2019 Value of Open Microcredentials to Earners and Issuers
2019 Making Micro-credentials Work 2018 Educational Credentials Come of Age 2019 Designing and Implementing Micro-Credentials
2019 MOOC based Alternative Credentials  2019 Micro-credentials in EU and Global 2019 Challenges & Opportunities of Micro-credentials in Europe
2019 Micro-credentials and Educational Policy in the US 2019 Digital Badge Credentials in the Irish Food and agri-food Sector 2019 EduTrends Alternative Credentials
2018 UNESCO Digital Credentialing and the New Learning Landscape 2018 Educational Credentials Come of Age 2018 Potential and Limitations of Micro-credentials
2017 Alternative Credentials 2016 Foundation of Digital Badges and Micro-Credentials 2016 The Promises and Challenges of Digital Credentialing

Useful Journal Articles

A collection of published journal articles relating to micro-credentials:

2021 The Evolving Landscape of Micro-credentials: A Global Insights Paper
2021 An Integrative Literature Review of Micro-credentials 
2021 Higher Education's Microcredentialing Craze   2021 Micro-Credentials and Badges in Education: Historical Overview
2020 Recognition of open courses in teaching and learning through digital badges
2020 The EvoLLLutions 2020 Year in Review eBook 2020 Building Digital Capacity for Higher Education Teachers 2019 A Content Analysis of the Emergent Scholarship

2019 Value of Open Microcredentials to Earners and Issuers 

2019 Instilling purpose and value in the implementation of digital badges in higher education

2019 MOOC based Alternative Credentials: What's the Value for the Learner? 
2018 Digital badges, do they live up to the hype? 2018 An exploration of the utility of digital badging in higher education settings
2018 Goal Setting and Open Digital Badges in Higher Education
 2017 The potential of digital credentials to engage students with capabilities of importance to scholars and citizens 2017 Open Badges: A systematic Review of Peer-Reviewed Published Literature (2011-2015)
2015  Developing Open Badges: a comprehensive approach

Events, Conferences and Webinars

A collection of events, conferences and webinars relating to micro-credentials:

2021 2021  2021 AI and Blockchain-enabled Assessment, 11 March
2021 IMS Digital Credentials Summit, 1-4 March 2021 Micro and Alternative Credentials - HolonIQ, 24 Feb  2021 Micro-credentials in the United States, 24 Feb
2021 The Missing Pieces - CoL, 23 Feb 2021 ECIU University: A to Z of Micro-credentials, 22nd Feb 2021 Micro-credentials: Lessons from Australia, 2nd Feb
2021 ECIU Expert Event on Micro-credentials 28th Jan 2020 Microbol Kickoff Conference 2020 Global Voices on Micro-credentials
2020 MicroHE Conference Session A  2020 MicroHE Conference Session B 2020 MicroHE Conference Session C
2020 Certifying Your Future  2020 EURASHE Micro-credential Workshop  2020 Clicks Non Degree Credentials
2020 MicroHE Expert Panel Webinar 2020 Academic Portable Credentials with Digitary 2020 RIDE2020 Micro-credentials
2019 Better Credentials: Living, Learning and Earning in 21C 2016 Better 21C Credentials 2026 Learning is Earning Edubloc Video



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