WASHINGTON — Sept. 10, 2020 — Credential Engine today announced the expansion of its quality assurance and state policy work to include National Skills Coalition, Education Quality Outcomes Standards (EQOS) Board, and Education Strategy Group (ESG), each of which is working with states to improve the ability to define and describe the quality and value of various credentials.
“As states continue down the road to recovery from the pandemic, building a more resilient economic future will include equipping learners, workers, and employers with the data they need to clearly identify which pathways will lead to the outcomes they seek,” said Scott Cheney, CEO of Credential Engine. “We’re excited to welcome the National Skills Coalition, the Education Quality Outcomes Standards Board, and Education Strategy Group to our broadening coalition of organizations all focused on increasing transparency and quality.”
The addition of the new partner organizations adds to a growing coalition of advocacy groups, nonprofits, and strategy organizations partnering with Credential Engine to boost the transparency for displaced workers navigating a maze of more than 730,000 unique credentials with varying costs and labor market value.
“In an economy where skills and credentials are increasingly important to labor market success, it is more important than ever for all stakeholders—students, workers, businesses, and policymakers—to understand which credentials matter and why,” said Kermit Kaleba, federal policy director at National Skills Coalition. “Through our partnership with Credential Engine, we look forward to supporting federal and state policy changes that will strengthen credential quality and increase economic opportunities for all.”
Although the broader U.S. economy added 1.8 million jobs last month, unemployment is still hovering at record highs, fueling unprecedented demand for workforce-relevant education and training. Against that backdrop, the joint state and policy work will encourage adoption of the Credential Transparency Description Language (CTDL) to describe credentials, competencies, and pathways, powering the development of consumer friendly tools to help displaced workers evaluate and compare the quality of education and training options using the common infrastructure. CTDL is open-source and is being used to describe important information about credentials, competencies, pathways, industry and occupational alignments, and outcomes in 19 states and regions and hundreds of education and training providers.
“As unemployment rises and the economy adapts, it’s never been more critical for states, students, and employers to understand the real-world success rates of different training providers,” said Kristin Sharp, Chief Executive Officer at Education Quality Outcomes Standards Board. “This is about figuring out what works to help people find jobs and advance in them. We can only find and scale the best programs if we have clear, consistent outcomes data.”
“A successful and equitable economic recovery requires that individuals looking to get back to work are armed with quality credentials that open doors to well-paying jobs,” said Matt Gandal, President and CEO of Education Strategy Group. “Unfortunately, not all credentials have equal value in the labor market. In a shifting economy, it is critical that displaced workers understand how to navigate their options and pursue credentials that lead to real economic opportunity.”
To learn more, visit www.credentialengine.org.
About Credential Engine
Credential Engine is a nonprofit organization that develops and maintains the technology infrastructure to enable a transparent and connected credential marketplace. The Credential Registry, started in 2016, currently houses nearly 20,000 credentials and competency frameworks from more than 450 providers — including close to 2,500 healthcare credentials — and includes everything from apprenticeships and certificates to certifications and degrees. Credential Engine receives funding from Lumina Foundation, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Walmart, Google, Northrop Grumman Foundation, Microsoft Philanthropies, the Siegel Family Endowment, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the ECMC Foundation.
About Education Quality Outcomes Standards (EQOS)
EQOS is an independent, non-profit organization that partners with education providers to collect and report outcomes-based quality assurance data. The organization’s voluntary standards give innovative educational providers a set of metrics to measure and show the real-world impact of their programs on learners’ economic mobility.
About National Skills Coalition
National Skills Coalition is a broad-based coalition working toward a vision of an America that grows its economy by investing in its people so that every worker and every industry has the skills to compete and prosper. NSC engages in organizing, advocacy, and communications to advance state and federal policies that support these goals – policies that are based on the on-the-ground expertise of its members.
About Education Strategy Group
Education Strategy Group is a mission-driven consulting firm that works with K-12, higher education, and workforce leaders to achieve greater impact. ESG works across sectors and across the aisle to move the needle on issues that are critical to improving student success and advancing equity, including increasing higher education attainment and ensuring that postsecondary credentials offer real labor market value.