CEUs and Other Professional Development - Digital Promise

CEUs and Other Professional Development

Facilitators: Stephanie Hirsh, Learning Forward and Jim Beeler, Digital Promise
Essential Question: How might micro-credentials be included in professional learning structures?


CEUs and Other Professional Development

This group focused on how states and school districts can integrate micro-credentials into professional learning recognition structures such as Continuing Education Units (CEUs). To ensure that they did not narrowly limit the discussion to CEUs, participants determined that they wanted to find ways to promote and message multiple currencies.

The group then defined their challenge statement: Design systems that recognize micro-credentials in professional learning recognition structures.

A series of guiding questions informed their discussion:

  • What stakeholders should be part of the discussions, decisions, information sharing, and potential policy changes?
  • Do micro-credentials earned from different organizations have the same level of rigor? How would one know?
  • Should there be varying levels of recognition?
  • How might micro-credentials become universally recognized and transferable?
  • What system shifts might help an institution incorporate micro-credentials in professional learning recognition structures?

CEUs and Other PD Credit Symposium Presentation

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The group proposed a three-part solution to begin the process of designing this system:

  • Convene a working group of stakeholders to verify a universal set of valid, reliable, research-based standards for transferable micro-credentials. The working group would help define rigor by developing a common language and setting standards for development and assessment calibration, among other points. Members would include content experts, evaluators, issuers, earners/educators, etc.
  • Build a Toolkit on Critical Systems Shifts for Micro-credentials that includes sections on mindsets, professional learning and support, roles and incentives, infrastructure/technology, and policies. The toolkit is intended to help shift organizational mindsets, culture, and vision to support micro-credentials and curate examples and promising practices of states, districts, and schools.
  • Seek philanthropic/foundation funding to build a community of practice for educators and administrators pursuing micro-credentials for PD credit.

As next steps, group members hope to develop working groups to focus on standards development and the toolkit described above, as well as begin to explore possible funding avenues.

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