Are you ready to get credit for what you already know? Are you ready to get skills you can put to use today? Are you ready to take control of your learning? Then you’re ready to get started on your personalized professional learning journey with micro-credentials.
What is a micro-credential?
A micro-credential is a short, competency-based recognition that allows an educator to demonstrate mastery in a particular area such as Bully Free Schools or English Language Learners. The OEA/NEA micro-credentials are created by educators, for educators and are grounded in research and best-practices designed to be:
- Personalized: Create your own learning journey, based on your interests and career goals; gaps in your skills; and the needs of your students, school, district.
- Flexible: You can study when it’s convenient for you, alone or with your peers.
- Performance-based: Unlike “sit-and-get” training, micro-credentials are awarded based on demonstrated mastery of the subject matter.
Micro-credentials are free, high-quality, self-directed professional development. Educators demonstrate mastery of specific competencies, and earn digital badges to share with networks, on resumes, or in an educator profile. Browse the NEA micro-credential catalog at nea.certificationbank.com.
There are some micro-credentials you can complete even when school is out of session. Check out these options here.
MICRO-CREDENTIAL PLC GRANTS
OEA can support members in creating their own learning community to work on micro-credentials through mini-grants of $400 each. The process is rigorous, so working with a group can help you earn your micro-credential sooner. You can read more about the grant and process in this OEA micro-credential PLC guide, or read through the Frequently Asked Questions below.
Complete the Micro-Credential PLC Mini-Grant form. Then, recruit your PLC and get started. OEA will provide a collaborative support group for all mini-grant recipients and tools to run effective PLCs.
The micro-credential PLC cycle has four steps:
- select a micro-credential,
- collect evidence of proficiency,
- submit artifacts for review,
- share your digital badge upon complete.
Members can apply for mini-grants at anytime in the school year. Each micro-credential requires approximately 15 hours of work including research, preparing artifacts, and writing reflections. PLC mini-grant recipients should plan for a 6 to 12-week PLC cycle. Any OEA member can apply for a grant and become a micro-credential PLC leader. Any educator can join the PLC; they do not need to be members. OEA will ask for a roster of PLC participants.
- OEA will provide $400 per mini-grant. The funds provide a $350 stipend for the PLC leader and $50 for PLC supplies such as food or other materials (receipts required).
- Members can apply for additional grants after completing one PLC cycle.
- PLC leads sign a memorandum of understanding outlining OEA and member responsibilities.
- Upon completion, OEA will issue PDU certificates for the PLC and the micro-credential, for a total of 21 PDUs.
INDIVIDUAL MICRO-CREDENTIAL JOURNEY
You can also work through a micro-credential on your own. This works best if you want to show competency in an instructional or leadership skill you already have and feel confident about. To increase the quality of your submission, follow these tips:
- Choose your micro-credential wisely. Consider the evidence required, what you already know, and the submission requirements.
- Study the guidelines and scoring rubrics carefully. There is a lot of information and a close read will improve the quality of your work.
- Answer all the prompts completely, and ensure you provide all the required evidence.
If you don’t pass the first time, you can resubmit your evidence using the feedback you receive from the educator reviewers to improve your submission.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions about micro-credentials!
Read our FAQ on Microcredentials.