States are Shifting to Competency-based Training and Licensure

Several U.S. states have begun leveraging micro-credentials, a form of micro-certification, to improve the process for educator training and licensure. This practice-based alternative is being used to ensure educator readiness and effectiveness.

Why Micro-credentials Matter

Each micro-credential earned signifies that an educator has met the profession’s highest standards for demonstrated practice of a specific competency. Together, with our state, district, and training development partners, we are advancing the next generation of professional learning by bringing a cohesive system of skills-based training to educators, that can help them achieve authentic growth and career advancement.

What’s in a Micro-credential

Micro-credentials are a form of certification earned by demonstrating competency in one specific area at a time. BloomBoard’s micro-credentials are earned through our learn-by-doing process, allowing teachers to submit evidence from their own classroom practice to demonstrate their skills. What sets BloomBoard micro-credentials apart is the depth of instruction, coaching, peer support and rigorous assessment we provide.

14 States Have Started State-level Micro-credential Initiatives

Tennessee Adopts a Phased Approach to Implementing Micro-credentials

The Tennessee Department of Education worked with BloomBoard to design a phased approach to implementing micro-credentials that allowed for effective asynchronous collaboration and aligned to key competencies. Feedback from educators showed that they value the flexibility, personalization, and job-embedded nature of micro-credentials.

Micro-certification Addresses State Challenges

State departments of education face many challenges that can be mitigated by micro-credentials such as licensure and re-licensure, validating professional development hours, and of course improving educator effectiveness to ultimately improve student outcomes. 

Challenge: Licensure / Re-licensure

The typical process for licensure and re-licensure is based on seat time hours and multiple choice tests, not actual classroom practice. This does not ensure educator readiness or effectiveness.

Micro-credentials require evidence of practice and demonstration of competence which ensures educators develop the skills essential to prepare them for their job.

Challenge: Instructional Improvement

Current research shows that traditional seat-time based professional development has very little impact on change in instructional practice or student outcomes. Additionally, research shows low levels of teacher satisfaction with many current forms of professional development as well.

Micro-credentials, a competency-based form of professional learning, focus on the application of professional learning in the classroom. Educators work on one skill at a time, and demonstrate improvement in their practice via a portfolio of evidence from their classroom practice.


Challenge: Validating Professional Development Units

Not all professional learning is created equal. There are a staggering number of professional development programs out there with little control over the quality or level of rigor in some programs. Micro-credentials on BloomBoard are based on a rigorous, standardized blueprint, grounded in instructional design best practices, and developed in partnership with reputable educator training organizations.

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