The completed Collaborative Cluster project page contains further information on micro-credentials and digital badges.
During 2021-23, QAA Scotland is undertaking a tertiary sector-wide project entitled 'Understanding Micro-credentials and Small Qualifications in Scotland'. This project aims to enhance understanding and practice in the Scottish sector's micro-credentials field. A Scottish Tertiary Education Network for Micro-credentials has been established to support the project and to gain a sector understanding of the development, use and delivery of micro-credentials and small qualifications. Network members include:
- Chair - Professor Jonathan Powles, Vice-Principal, Learning and Students, University of the West of Scotland
- Deputy Chair - Dr Anne Tierney, Assistant Professor, Learning and Teaching Academy, Heriot-Watt University
- Representatives from higher education, colleges, students and stakeholder groups.
EXPLORING THE POTENTIAL OF MICRO-CREDENTIALS AND DIGITAL BADGING
Research undertaken by QAA Scotland to support this project, including a practitioner survey undertaken in winter 2021, has shown a wide range of micro-credentials and small qualifications available in Scotland. Still, it is difficult for potential learners (and employers) to navigate the various providers’ websites to find out what is available, including details about the size, level, and portability of awards and the need for consistency in the language used.
The Network has produced a glossary of a shared language for the tertiary sector to help address the language issue and to aid the understanding of micro-credentials among key stakeholders (including students, employers and PSRBs).
During 2022-23, we will seek a snapshot of the micro-credentials and small qualifications available through a survey to colleges, HEIs and other credit-rating bodies in spring 2023.
The Network is currently focused on developing a good practice guide for micro-credentials in Scotland. If providers adhere to the agreed good practice, it will provide some consistency across the sector to aid further understanding and support the portability of awards. In addition, a range of international practices informs this work, including activity in Malaysia, as discussed in the international webinar held in May 2022.
To further enhance the awareness and understanding of the range of micro-credential practices in Scotland, we are publishing a range of case studies on this page.
The Enhancement Theme project builds on previous collaborative cluster work, collaborative models of practice in Scottish colleges and the UK-wide QAA Characteristics Statement for Micro-credentials.
We hosted a micro-credentials webinar on 9 May 2022 to consider international perspectives. A recording of the webinar is available to listen to. It featured:
- Professor Jonathan Powles, UWS
- Professor Dr Khairul Salleh bin Mohamed Sahari, Deputy CEO Malaysian Qualifications Agency
- Marsyitah Ismail, Head of Learning Services, SEA, OpenLearning.
Here are a range of case studies of micro-credentials and small qualifications. These case studies provide examples of the wide range of practice currently available in Scotland, including specific micro-credentials and short courses, as well as related processes. Further case studies will be added as the project continues over spring and summer 2023.