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04.02.2020 - 2 min. Read

eCampusOntario leads education-industry collaboration through micro-certification

TORONTO, Feb. 4, 2020 /CNW/ – Funded by the province, eCampusOntario is leading Ontario’s micro-certification strategy to establish strong education-industry connections for faster workforce development and job placement.

Through eCampusOntario, the Government of Ontario is helping public colleges and universities to adopt micro-certification, a new model that uses short, focused credentials to verify mastery of a particular skill or competency. Micro-certifications are designed to target high-demand skills, resulting in job applicants who are both qualified and easily recognizable to companies and sectors looking to hire. A shorter timeframe to complete and lower costs make micro-certification accessible to a larger talent pool.

“Micro-credentials are an important part of preparing our students and workers to be successful in their careers,” said Ross Romano, Minister of Colleges and Universites. “Whether developing new or building on existing skills and competencies, these certifications support life long-learning and allow our workforce to remain up to date and responsive to the needs of local labour markets.”

Because micro-certification is a relatively new strategy to address the skills gap, eCampusOntario is using an agile prototyping approach so that higher education and industry leaders can work together to explore new employment-to-industry pathways. Recently, eCampusOntairo convened a cross-sector working group to develop a framework to guide micro-certification development. The first of its kind in Ontario, this collaborative framework identifies key principles and practices to ensure that micro-certifications will be labour market relevant and maintain their integrity through a digital verification and validation process.   

This year, eCampusOntario is running 14 pilot projects in which Ontario post-secondary institutions and industry partners design micro-certification pilot projects that test the principles and framework established by the working group. The first set of credentials will be awarded using a blockchain-based portable credential system.

On February 21st, eCampusOntario will host its 2020 Micro-Certification Forum, which will bring 200 employers and academic leaders from all over North America to share pilot project success stories and build a community of practice around micro-certifications. 

For more information, see the links below or contact Lena Patterson, Senior Director of Programs and Stakeholder Relations at lpatterson@ecampusontario.ca.

Learn more about eCampusOntario’s leadership in micro-certification

Download the Micro-Certification Framework

View the 2020 Micro-Certification Forum site