Micro-credentialing is the non-traditional education path where the learner gains skill sets in a specific area and receives a credential. The micro-credential is what you earn and the badge is what you display. Innovative districts across NC are already piloting the use of micro-credentialing and offering digital badges as a way for educators to demonstrate competency and application in their classrooms. The Agency has convened a Micro-credentialing and State Policy Workgroup consisting of DPI staff, district stakeholders, and partner organizations (Winston-Salem Forsyth, Newton-Conover, Surry, CMS, UNC-G, and NCSU-FI) to inform and define a framework for using micro-credentials to transform professional learning for educators. This Workgroup is exploring the lay of the land in NC as it relates to micro-credentialing and how we can support this across the state.

Other documentation:  Micro-credentialing & State Policy: North Carolina Work Group

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   Infographic Overview                         Infographic Transcript
Micro-Credential Infographic.  Click for transcript.

Competency-Based Professional Learning Learning activities that result in the participants demonstrating evidence of achievement of specified outcomes.
Continuing Education Unit (CEU) Credit for hours spent participating in professional learning at a ratio of 1 CEU per 10 hours of learning.
Micro-credential Recognition achieved through demonstrating mastery of a defined skill or competency, including industry-recognized competencies.
Credential The acknowledged completion of a thoughtfully designed series or multiple sets of recognized competencies that an educator earned by demonstrating mastery of the defined skills or competencies. (see Micro-credential)
Stack One organized set of credentials that an educator earns by demonstrating mastery of the described skills or competencies. Also referred to as a cluster, collection, assemblage, or amassment.
Stackability The idea that micro-credentials build upon or complement each other to represent a carefully assembled set of professional skills.
Badge Digital or physical representation of a micro-credential, stack, or credential.
Earner The educator or professional submitting evidence for the micro-credential.
Issuer The group or organization that has created the micro-credential and validates the educator's competence in the defined skill or set of skills.
Recognizer The person or organization (often the Local Education Agency or school administrator) that recognizes and accepts the micro-credential, stack, or credential as a representation of the educator's skill or competence (formally, through CEUs or licensure procedures, or informally through hiring practices and recognition).
Reviewer An expert, oftentimes an educator that has previously demonstrated mastery of skill(s) required for the micro-credential, evaluates evidence to determine if the competency has been demonstrated.
Review Process A reviewer utilizes a rigorous rubric and scoring guide to evaluate evidence.
Backpack A repository where earners can collect digital badges from a variety of issuers.
Portability The ability to earn badges from anywhere, then share them wherever you want—on social networking profiles, job sites, email signatures, and on your personal website.
Verifiability There is metadata attached to the badge that provides information about who issued the badge, when it was earned, what was required to earn it, and any additional relevant details.
Open Badging Initiative (OBI) A Mozilla-Created program that created standards for micro-credentials/ badges. The OBI states that micro-credentials must be a) portable, b) stackable, c) verifiable, and d) open. OBI created a free, open software designed to help individuals earn and organizations design OBI compliant badges.