Create New Systems of Credentials
Today’s students can earn a dizzying array of postsecondary credentials – from digital badges and workplace-earned certificates … to associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees … to the doctorate and beyond. Unfortunately, it’s difficult to accurately gauge the value of many credentials, and it’s all but impossible for students to discern clear pathways among them.
In fact, the nation has no true organized system of credentials; rather, we have a poorly aligned patchwork – a fragmentary, complex framework that can no longer meet the needs of students or society at large.
To extend opportunity to a much larger and more diverse student population, and to maximize our collective potential as a society, we need a revamped system of postsecondary credentials – a fully integrated system that is learning-based, student-centered, universally understood, and specifically designed to ensure quality at every level.
At Lumina, we’re working to encourage a wide-ranging and thoughtful national dialogue that can lead to the development and adoption of such a credentials system. Recently, much of our work in this area has focused on the Degree Qualifications Profile and Tuning. That work will continue, along with many other efforts that aim to define educational quality according to actual learning outcomes rather than time.