The Boom in Micro-Credentials


Micro-credentials are really capturing the imagination of Irish higher education institutions right now. While the term micro-credential is new, the infrastructure for small qualifications has long been established in Irish higher education. What is really new for Ireland is that the concept of small HE qualifications has gained international acceptance and ther​efore recognition.​

QQI early exploration into Micro-credentials in Higher Education, 2014-2020, a new publication from QQI reveals that:

  • micro-credentials are not a new phenomenon in Ireland, but their number is growing significantly;
  • the majorit​y are made at NFQ level 6 with 10-30 ECTS, and are delivered on a part-time basis;
  • micro-credentials seem to be typically sought by learners for work-related reasons, as they focus on narrow components of a learning area; 
  • micro-credentials have the potential to fulfil the needs of upskilling or reskilling the workforce, support continuing professional development and lifelong learning
  • the provision of micro-credential programmes is diversifying, targeting a wider group of learners who are becoming more diverse in terms of age and gender. 

You can delve into the data behind these findings in the full report here. ​​​​