What Employers Think of Badges, Nanodegrees from Online Programs

by Jordan Friedman, US News

A degree or certificate may tell an employer about your education, but it won’t necessarily highlight your specific skills. Online education, however, has facilitated the rise of “microcredentials,” namely digital badges, and nanodegrees, that aim to do just ​that. “I would say over the past three years or so, we’ve seen a rise in this arena in a way that we really haven’t seen in the past,” says Lauren Griffin, senior vice president of the recruitment ​agency Adecco Staffing USA. In some online classes, whether it’s MOOCs or for-credit courses offered through universities, instructors have begun incorporating digital badges into their curricula. Students earn these badges once they achieve a certain milestone or develop a particular skill and can then post them on social media or an online portfolio. When somebody – such as a potential employer – clicks on the badge, it will link to information on how and when the badge was earned.​


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