Irish universities have been offering mini courses by MicroCreds.ie for several months now, but the platform was officially launched today.
The Irish Universities Association (IUA) is officially rolling out MicroCreds.ie, a platform that offers learners accredited short courses at university level. The courses have been designed in consultation with industry to fill specific skills gaps and all offer flexible learning to fit around learners’ schedules.
The IUA has been piloting the MicroCreds project for several months. At today’s (12 July) launch, seven universities are listed as on board – Trinity College Dublin, Dublin City University, University of Limerick, University of Galway, University College Dublin, University College Cork and Maynooth University.
There are hundreds of courses on MicroCreds.ie in areas such as fintech, digital health, coding and legal technology. When the project was still piloting, SiliconRepublic.com spoke to Dr Lynn Ramsey, former programme lead for MicroCreds, who explained all about the initiative’s industry links.
Commenting on today’s launch, MicroCreds programme lead Jools O’Connor said, “It is very fitting that we are launching MicroCreds.ie during the EU Year of Skills which aims to be a catalyst for the uptake of lifelong learning and upskilling opportunities. The core objective of MicroCreds.ie is to create a national platform for short, accredited courses that makes it easier and more accessible for people to engage with lifelong learning and upskilling opportunities in a way that better suits their personal and work commitments.”
O’Connor’s nod to the EU Year of Skills is particularly topical given that micro-credential courses are catching on across the continent as a way of certifying learners in areas where skilled people are urgently needed, such as cybersecurity and AI.
Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris, TD, also mentioned the EU Year of Skills in his comments at today’s launch. He said he was encouraging “everyone during the European Year of Skills to embrace lifelong learning and learn a new skill”.
“It is vitally important that we make upskilling and reskilling opportunities easier and more accessible for everyone so that we can address skills shortages. The launch of the MicroCreds.ie platform is a prime example of the innovation that has been fostered in Irish higher education through the Human Capital Initiative Pillar 3. It will allow learners to re-enter the workforce, progress in or futureproof their careers,” he added.
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