Course set for micro-credentials

The feds are funding pilots – but not for any old m-cs mind, only those that are covered by the previous government’s framework (CMM March 23) and will come from HE providers

who gets what: First up public universities (Table A) can get $100 000 per m-c for design – with total funding capped at $2m. There’s a total $2m more for delivery.

All A providers can compete for a second pot of $14.5m “to support delivery” of micro-credentials, to 4000 students over ’22-’23 to ’25-26.

Why only them? Sorry, no idea.

A second and third round are open to all HE providers, providing funding for delivery. Applicants “who provide evidence of industry endorsement” will receive, ”additional weighting.”

The government is separately legislating for m-cs to be FEE HELP-able. And the long awaited “micro-credentials marketplace” will be live next month (CMM October 31).

reaction: Universities Australia was quick to welcome the pilots, which will, “support universities to work with industry in developing micro-credentials in areas of skill needs.”

But private provider lobby Independent Tertiary Education Council Australia lamented, the government’s “siloed approach,” which leaves out private providers and the mass of ”high utility” m-cs that already “upskill and reskill” workers.

And analyst Andrew Norton points out the government is getting into a market which is already operating. “Micro-credentials add certification and perhaps standardisation to short courses, which might increase short course informational value in the labour market. But lack of these things has not stopped this market functioning on a large scale,  he writes.

Meanwhile in the world of learning stuff for work: Engineers Australia announces it partners with the NSW Building Commissioner to provide very micro courses on practical needs, including cladding remediation for buildings. Couple of hours for $140-$200.