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Releasing the potential of micro-credentials

Releasing the potential of micro-credentials

Last updated 1 August 2018
Last updated 08/01/2018


The Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) welcomes NZQA’s decision to include micro-credentials as part of New Zealand’s regulated education and training system and is keen to hear from providers who are thinking about developing and delivering micro-credentials.

“We are excited by this decision because micro-credentials have the potential to help learners, communities, and employers to acquire the skills they need, when they need them, at low cost,” said TEC Chief Executive Tim Fowler.

“We see them as an important contribution to an innovative and responsive tertiary education system.

“We’ve already put our toes in the micro-credentials water through feasibility studies as part of the Engineering e2e project, and now we’re working out how we can best support incorporating delivery of high quality micro-credentials into mainstream tertiary education.”

Mr Fowler said that tertiary education organisations (TEOs) that were thinking about delivering micro-credentials should talk to their TEC investment manager.

The TEC hoped to provide more information to TEOs in September.

Background information on micro-credentials

  • The New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) is introducing a micro-credential system as part of New Zealand’s regulated education and training system
  • Micro-credentials are new stand-alone education products intended to enable learners to access specific knowledge and skills in a cost-effective and time-efficient way. They are smaller than qualifications, with a tight focus on developing skills to meet the immediate needs of industry, employers, iwi and/or community.
  • Micro-credentials will provide industry with an opportunity to work with Tertiary Education Providers and Industry Training Organisations to bring emergent skills to market quickly, so employers can access employees with the expertise they need and so that learners can continue updating their competencies.
  • Micro-credentials are becoming important as the nature of work continues to change. Individuals will need new up-to-date skills across their lifetime. Sometimes these skills will require a full and formal qualification. In other cases, employers have indicated that learning packaged as a micro-credential would be more appropriate.
  • A micro-credentials system will allow New Zealand learners to access a wide range of education and training options, both domestically and internationally. They will support learners to participate in a way that suits their individual needs and circumstances.