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Micro-Credentials to Support English Learners from Digital Promise

January 30, 2018

Last year I had the chance to dive into Digital Promise’s micro-credential program. If you haven’t seen their online platform before, these on-demand, micro-credentials let educators jump into course content and work through the material at their own pace and on their own time. I love professional learning that is customizable and ready when you are. The team at Digital Promise has lots of resources available, and I was excited to learn about their courses specifically designed to support English Language Learners.

There are many reasons why micro-credentials are important to educators. Micro-credentials are personalized which means you can select the course on a topic you’d like to dedicate time to learning more about this year. If you’ve ever sat in on professional development that wasn’t relevant to your practice or current interests, you know just how refreshing it can be to take advantage of this type of opportunity. Known as a competency-based professional learning model, micro-credentials focus on how to best personalize learning opportunities for educators instead of merely counting seat-time.

In addition to being personalized, you can earn digital badges when you take part in a micro-credential course. Once you’ve completed the coursework, you can display your digital badges on your learning management system profile, your social media sites, or a personal or professional blog. Since micro-credentials are competency-based, you focus on a specific skill. This means you can learn about a new topic and put it into practice right away. Lots of micro-credential courses encourage attendees to show off what they’ve learned through classroom videos or examples of student work.

To earn a micro-credential from Digital Promise, all you have to do is follow these steps:

  1. Choose a skill or area to focus on (this could include an area you’ve already mastered or one you’d like to grow in)
  2. Collect evidence to show off your mastery of content (this could include a video, a writing sample, or even samples of student work)
  3. Submit the evidence you’ve collected (each micro-credential will tell you exactly what to submit)
  4. A group of assessors will review the evidence you submitted (if you show that you’ve mastered the skill you’ll be awarded the digital badge that corresponds to that micro-credential)

English Language Learner Micro-Credentials

As a former classroom teacher, I know how challenging it can be to meet the diverse needs of all students in your classroom. Supporting English Learners is essential and sometimes finding the right strategies to reach every student is a daunting task. The micro-credentials offered by Digital Promise can help teachers at all levels support their students.

The folks at Digital Promise have a handful of courses you’ll totally want to check out:

The team at Digital Promise developed each micro-credential using a framework to make sure each course: (1) focuses on a single competency, (2) is supported by research, (3) require evidence of competence, and (4) includes a rubric for evaluation. Teachers can earn their digital badge upon completion of a micro-credential course. Although I shared a few specific courses above, you’ll find lots of options on Digital Promise’s website.

Micro-credentials are designed to give learners an opportunity for a deep dive into a specific topic – and you’ll definitely find this to be the case with the resources from Digital Promise. I really like how these micro-credentials focus on cross-curricular connections and provide lots of ways to apply the new knowledge you’ll gain from participating in these activities.

Whether you work with a large English Learner population or simply want to grow your skill set in to meet the need of every student, check out the new micro-credential opportunities from Digital Promise!

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Monica Burns is a former classroom teacher, Author, Speaker, and Curriculum & EdTech Consultant. Visit her site for more ideas on how to become a tech-savvy teacher.

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