Credential Transparency Initiative Launches

by Rachel Zinn
December 18, 2015

The Credential Transparency Initiative (CTI) Collaborative launched this month, with the goal of creating a credential registry that contains key facts about about certifications, degrees, certificates, licenses, and other credentials.

Eighty stakeholder organizations, including WDQC and several of its national partners, took part in the inaugural meeting at the American Council on Education headquarters in Washington, D.C.

The CTI seeks to create online resources that inform employers, students, job seekers, and workers about particular credentials. Its proposed credential registry will contain standardized types of information about credentials, such as competencies, transfer value, assessment rigor, and third-party approval status.

To build the credential registry, CTI is recruiting dozens of schools, industry associations, and other organizations that award credentials to voluntarily provide information. CTI hopes that over time, credentialing organizations will post information online in consistent formats, so that the registry can automatically pull in this data and be continually updated.

The registry will be the foundation for a series of web applications (apps) that will display the information for specific audiences. For example, the Credential Directory app will allow users to access the websites of participating credential issuers, build customized directories of credentials based on their own criteria, and publish the results. WDQC will advise on the app and other parts of the project as it moves forward.

CTI leaders are particularly interested in recruiting pilot sites that work within sector partnerships, or collaborating with a state workforce agency to test how the credential registry could assist with managing eligible training providers under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). Organizations interested in participating in the pilot may contact Bob Sheets, research professor at George Washington University.

The CTI is led by a partnership between the George Washington University’s Institute of Public Policy; Workcred, an affiliate of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI); and Southern Illinois University Carbondale’s Center for Workforce Development. Strategic direction of the initiative is provided by an executive committee consisting of the American Council on Education, the American Association of Community Colleges, Business Roundtable, the Committee for Economic Development of The Conference Board, the Manufacturing Institute, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, and the University Professional and Continuing Education Association.