Utilizing Micro-Credentials to Support Professional Learning

We are pleased to introduced you to Dr. Katie Martin who is the Co-Founder and Chief Impact Officer at Learner-Centered Collaborative.  Katie is the author of “Evolving Education and Learner-Centered Innovation” (2021).  She has served as a middle school English language arts teacher, instructional coach, and led her district’s new teacher mentoring program. Dr. Martin teaches in the Graduate School of Education at High Tech High in San Diego, California, is on the board of Real World Scholars, and works in diverse contexts to learn, research, and support authentic and purposeful learning for all students. Katie is also a mom, who wants her kids to have learning experiences in school that build on their strengths and interests, and as an educator; she is passionate about making sure we do the same for all children.

Leaders are crucial in setting the culture and tone for how teachers learn and take risks in their practice. In the Juab School District in Utah, micro-credentials are used as a system to support professional learning. Educators can choose micro-credentials to pursue individually or in cohorts. They can choose a micro-credential that highlights their strengths or challenges them in an area of growth. Teachers receive a stipend for each micro-credential earned and are also recognized as teacher leaders if they complete multiple micro-credentials in certain aspects of their learning model, such as “student reflection and ownership.”  As Kody Hughes, Juab Schools Superintendent, reflected, “It is not just a micro-credential, it’s fundamentally changing the paradigm of professional learning.” 

This competency-based approach allows for teachers to choose their own path, place, and pace for learning, while ensuring that all educators demonstrate competencies aligned to district priorities as they earn a micro-credential and develop critical skills to evolve their practice.

Here are some resources you may find informative.

1. Building confidence and competence. This article from Digital Promise expands on how micro0credentials honor teachers’ existing knowledge while still allowing them to deepen and explore new skills.

2. Digital Promise’s micro-credentials. Explore hundreds of micro-credentials educators can earn through a competency-based approach aligned to their goals and interests.

3. Learning is a process, not an event. Learn how we collaborate to design professional learning experiences tailored to your goals that engage educators in the process in my blog post.

Interested in discussing how you might create more opportunities for educators to evolve in their practice? Let’s connect! You can read more at KatieLMartin.com and connect on social media: @katiemartinedu.

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