AACRAO Alternative Credentials Work Group Launching July 2021

June 1, 2021
  • Credential Evaluation
  • Professional Development and Contributions to the Field
  • Research
  • Alternative Credentials
  • Work groups
Microcredential Workgroup

Getting Started

The AACRAO alternative credentials work group will be focused on providing campus guidelines and best practices for alternative credentials, primarily certificates and micro-credentials. AACRAO Board of Directors liaison Kristi Wold-McCormick will be leading this initiative.

The current lack of guidelines and requirements for alternative credentials from other accrediting bodies and associations spurred the creation of this work group.

Some of the considerations that will be addressed include:

  • Minimum/Maximum standards for credit and non-credit based credentials
  • Target audiences
  • Learning outcomes
  • Alignment with workforce or professional standards
  • Propose/Review/Approval protocol
  • Budget Models
  • Vendor considerations
  • Academic Record and SIS considerations,
  • Assessment
  • Digital/Open Standards
  • And more

Goals and Outcomes

The alternative credentials work group, comprised primarily of AACRAO members, will be responsible for researching, interviewing, surveying, discussing, writing guidelines, and best practices for members and their institutions. These guidelines and best practices will be especially useful for institutions that are already offering or are considering offering certificates and micro-credentials. 

Outside of establishing guidelines and best practices for alternative credentials, this work group would also like to:

  • Create broader awareness of micro-credentials and certificates among higher education institutions
  • Provide definitions and parameters for credentials to promote consistency in the future
  • Highlight the importance of registrars and admissions officers in campus micro-credential initiatives

According to Wold-McCormick, “as more institutions of higher education diversify their offerings through alternative credentials, creating more consistent definitions and common understandings for them will be critical for learners and industry alike.”

Get Involved

The goals of this workgroup are broad and AACRAO members from a variety of institution types are needed to ensure that the guidelines and best practices developed will meet the diverse needs of AACRAO members. Apply today to be considered for the work group, and join our list to receive updates.