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Making Micro-credentials Meaningful and More Accessible

New research on continuous upskilling shows room for cross-sector cooperation to build better opportunities for skills development

Press Release

From D2L Fusion’s Executive Summit, D2L, a global learning technology company, today released a new research report, Enabling Learning for Life: New Realities for Work and Education, showing that American workers are struggling to locate relevant micro-credential programs—and often don’t understand how they relate to career advancement. The study indicates that American workers want to learn but continuous upskilling is still not the norm, despite its critical importance in economic environment of accelerating technological change. 

“We know how important learning is to both individuals and organizations to help stay competitive, but we can also see that workers are still finding the micro-credential environment difficult to navigate,” says John Baker, CEO of D2L. “Collectively, we’ve made great strides in bringing high-quality education opportunities closer to the workers that need them to help develop their skills, including with new technology. Together with organizations and higher education partners, we can keep working to help make micro-credentials more accessible, make their adoption frictionless, and make employee progress easier to track, for far greater overall impact.” 

D2L found that among U.S. workers surveyed, only about a third (35%) had taken any professional development education or training over the previous year, but they are generally interested in doing so – and that interest grows with age.  

While micro-credentials are increasingly helpful in providing targeted skills development options for working adults, D2L found little awareness of micro-credentials, nor of their value, among those U.S. workers surveyed. A quarter of those polled (25%) said they were not sure where to find providers that offer micro-credentials, and nearly the same proportion said they were unsure how a micro-credential could help them progress in their career. 

Many American workers said that they are looking for an easy way to help find and compare upskilling programs—even more than they are seeking more financial support. And roughly two in five of respondents said they would like to take those courses online. 

Filled with original research and compelling interviews with 15 leaders in education, Enabling Learning for Life: New Realities for Work and Education offers recommendations for employers, higher education institutions and governments to help make continuous upskilling simpler and more accessible. For corporations and institutions, those may include making further investments in continuing education and skills development – like partnerships with D2L Wave – pooling resources and creating new partnerships. And for governments, recommendations may include introducing supportive policies including incentives and financial supports. 

Read and download the full report here.


D2L is transforming the way the world learns—helping learners of all ages achieve more than they dreamed possible. Working closely with clients all over the world, D2L is supporting millions of people learning online and in person. Our growing global workforce is dedicated to making the best learning products to leave the world better than they found it. Learn more about D2L for K-12, higher education and businesses at


Tory Waldron
Director, PR, D2L Corporation
[email protected]

Twitter: @D2L

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