A strategic reset: micro-credentials for higher education leaders

Rory McGreal, Don Olcott

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Articlepeer-review

47 Citations (Scopus)


This article provides university leaders an introduction to the emerging micro-credentials field, including a snapshot of the global landscape. Despite the accelerated interest in micro-credentials, this article also raises a fundamental strategic question for leaders at the outset: Are micro-credentials right for our university? Part I discusses the basic elements of mcro-credentials, definitions, types of micro-credentials, and affordances and barriers and various providers of micro-credentials. Part II presents a snapshot of what is happening on the global playing field and the challenges inherent in trying to standardise micro-credentials globally. The final section of the article provides some general observations by the authors, lessons from practice, and brief example of how institutions may implement a strategic reset using micro-credentials. The authors close by emphasising micro-credentials are not a panacea for resolving institutional challenges and they are unlikely to become a major revenue enhancement. They may provide strategic value in their integration with other major institutional initiatives.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9
JournalSmart Learning Environments
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec. 2022


  • ADC
  • Alternative credentials
  • Competencies
  • Economic development
  • Employers
  • Micro-credentials
  • Mission
  • Strategy


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