PPMI completed mapping microcredentials in European labour market-related education, training and learning: take-up, characteristics and functions
While short courses and credentials that support labour-market-related education and training have existed for many decades, microcredentials have only recently become prominent in Europe-wide policy-level debates. The increasing role of microcredentials is emphasised in the 2020 EU skills agenda, which sees credentials as a way to support adult upskilling and reskilling policies. The topic of microcredentials has gained importance primarily in the context of higher education and their influence on further and continuing training in the labour market is less understood. To fill in this gap Cedefop has launched Microcredentials for labour market education and training project. The project aims to provide a better understanding of the role played by microcredentials in supporting labour-market-related and employment-relevant education, training and learning.
As part of this project PPMI has completed mapping of microcredentials in labour-market-related education, training and learning in the EU 27, Iceland, Norway and the United Kingdom. Cedefop has recently published a research paper "Microcredentials for labour market education and training: First look at mapping microcredentials in European labour-market-related education, training and learning: take-up, characteristics and functions" based on PPMI’s work. This paper is the first in the series and offers new knowledge on the take-up, characteristics and functions of microcredentials. Following research papers will examine the impact of microcredentials on existing qualifications systems as well as their added value to individual learners and employees.
The study collected information through an online survey among mostly European VET providers, national authorities, employee and employer organisations, in-depth country case studies and interviews, as well as Cedefop’s ReferNet network. Results highlight that microcredentials, which certify learning outcomes of short-term learning experiences, have benefits for lifelong learning given their flexibility and responsiveness to the labour market needs.
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