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What are microcredentials?

The UG, along with 33 other educational institutions, is participating in the national pilot Microcredentials.

Microcredentials are digital certificates that allow learners to demonstrate the knowledge and skills they have acquired after completing a unit of education, smaller than a full degree program. Unlike a private course, the microcredential represents accreditation-worthy education, whose learning outcomes are traceable and verifiable. Microcredentials can be specially designed courses or units of study from an existing program. The size ranges from 3 to 30 EC. For the time being, microcredentials in the Netherlands can only be issued to professionals and not (yet) to regular students.

Participation in this pilot fits in with the UG's intention to make learning outcomes, content, grading and certification of educational units more transparent and courses more flexible and accessible.

Why Microcredentials

Taking a full course is often not feasible or useful for a professional: if there is a need for additional, upskilling, or retraining, smaller units of instruction are sufficient. Private courses do not allow learning outcomes to be traced and verified, and are therefore poorly comparable. Microcredentials therefore offer a solution:

  • Professionals get the opportunity to gain specific knowledge and be able to show valid proof of this, without going through a full retraining or training program.

  • The microcredential adds a seal of quality: you can be sure that the course is designed to achieve learning outcomes.

  • Third parties (job market, institutions, etc) can be confident that the recipient of the microcredential has mastered the associated knowledge or skills because the learning outcomes are traceable and verifiable. In addition, microcredentials are registered nationwide.

  • Because of the recognized value of microcredentials, professionals gain more control over their own development. They can design a development path through the years, at different courses and institutions, and be assured that learning outcomes achieved will be recognized elsewhere.

Logo pilot microcredentials

Would you like to participate in the pilot?

The national Microcredentials pilot was set up to further shape microcredentials. The pilot started in October 2021, with the first phase running until 31 December 2023. With start of the second phase in 2024, the pilot was transferred from the Acceleration Plan for Educational Innovation with ICT to the National Growth Fund (NGF) Npuls programme. The UG continues to participate in the pilot and will keep developing microcredentials and related frameworks and structures for quality assurance and administrative processes, among others, in this context. During the first phase of the pilot, microcredentials were awarded for the following educational activities:

A number of new microcredentials are already in development for the second phase.

For questions about the pilot and participation opportunities, contact project leaders Hans Beldhuis and Caroline Roth of the Strategy Education and Students department via microcredentials

Last modified:12 February 2024 3.44 p.m.
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