MOOC-Based Micro Master’s Degrees

MIT and 13 other universities are launching “micro-master’s degrees. Students would complete up to one half the courses required for a master’s degree, taught via a MOOC, earn a credential, and then, decide if they wanted to complete the master’s program. MIT is charging $150 for each of its MOOC courses. Initially MIT is offering a master’s degree in supply chain management, which is endorsed by Walmart.

Pearson Launches Open Badge Initiative

Pearson Launches Acclaim Open Badge Platform

Pearson has launched Acclaim, an Open Badge platform designed for academic institutions, professional associations and other credentialing programs.

A digital badge “an online representation of a skill or achievement you have earned,” according to a Pearson news release. “Open Badges take that concept one step further, allowing a learner to verify skills, achievements and learning outcomes through credible organizations and then share and display them on the Web.”

Using Mozilla’s Open Badge standard, the badges can be shared and validated online and displayed on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, blogs, Web sites or elsewhere.”

Organizations that hire people seem to be moving in the direction of hiring people who can demonstrate the knowledge and skills they are hiring for, rather than just hiring based on the college degrees they have earned. I am not saying that possession of a college degree won’t always be important in many fields. I must plead guilty to owning four college degrees plus a postgraduate certificate. I learned 99% of what I know about instructional design after I got this job, not in the classroom though.

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