Reports & Research

We are always looking for the latest research. Here are some of our favorite reports.

Credentials in a Digital Era

Cindy Lyons and Kimberly Elias

This brief highlights how UCSD created a series of tools to help encourage student engagement, reflect on and articulate the competencies developed and share a holistic picture of a student’s learning.

Making Credentials Portable

Joellen Shendy and Mark Leuba

This paper highlights why University CIOs and Registrars, technology suppliers and employers must work together to transform the credential.

Credentials and Competencies: Demonstrating the Economic Value of Postsecondary Education

Dr. Anthony Carnevale

This paper focuses on the economic value of college education and training and its economic emphasis to the broader postsecondary mission.

The Coming Transformation of the  Credit and Degree System in American Higher Education: An Historical Perspective

Dr. Arthur Levine

This paper provides a historical context of the credit and degree system to provide a foundation for the coming changes in the future of credentialing.

Quality Dimensions for Connected Credentials

American Council on Education

This paper provides context for understanding the value of connected credentials.

Extending the Credential; Empowering the Learner


This paper introduces the Credential Innovation Framework, five clusters of credential innovating activities for higher education institutions.

Bridging Higher Education and the Workforce

Dr. Anthony Carnevale

This presentation identifies changes in the relationship with postsecondary education and the economy and proposes new rules for learning and earning.

College is Just the Beginning

Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce

College Is Just the Beginning focuses on employer investment in formal training for workers in the context of the broader postsecondary education and training system and the primary institutions involved in skill development in the US.

Better 21C Credentials

Professor Beverley Oliver

This paper identifies micro signifiers, 21C Credentials, and contends that to be deemed excellent, must meet or exceed specific criteria.

Lessons from the National Summit on Credentialing

Connecting Credentials

This paper introduces the lessons from the national summit on credentialing and next steps in the national dialogue.

Reforming the Credentialing System

Connecting Credentials

This paper highlights the reasons the lack of transparency about the meaning of credentials is a growing problem.

A Beta Credentials Framework

Connecting Credentials

This paper provides a framework to build a system for communicating about and connecting diverse credentials.

The Rise of
Competency-Based Education

Inside Higher Ed

“The Rise of Competency-Based Education” is Inside Higher Ed’s compilation of articles.

Extending the Credential

Inside Higher Ed

“Extending the Credentialis Inside Higher Ed’s compilation of articles.

Changing Student Pathways

Inside Higher Ed

“Changing Student Pathways” is Inside Higher Ed’s compilation of articles.

Moving the Goalposts

Burning Glass

Credential inflation, or “upcredentialing” is affecting a wide range of jobs from executive assistants to construction supervisors and has serious implications both for workers not seeking a college degree and for employers struggling to fill jobs.

Measuring Alternative Credentials: 2012

United States Census Bureau

A main focus of this report is to see how credentials are distributed in the population, independent of, and in supplement to, existing levels of educational attainment, i.e., “traditional” academic degrees.

Why It’s Time to Disrupt Higher Education by Separating Learning from Credentialing

Information Technology & Innovation Foundation

Creating alternatives to traditional degrees would let students pursue their best options for learning and apply competitive pressure on colleges and universities to improve quality and reduce the costs of education.

Communicating the Value of Competencies

American Council on Education

This paper provides context for understanding the value of competencies among higher education institutions, students, and employers.