Scaling Digital Credentials with Community College Systems to Empower Underserved Adult Learners

Last Updated: 01/17/2024

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The Scaling Digital Credentials with Community College Systems to Empower Underserved Adult Learners project is a collaborative effort aimed at enhancing access to education and employment opportunities for underserved adult learners.  The initiative was funded by Walmart, supported by the American Council on Education (ACE) and aims to support the transition to a skills-based economy by partnering with various community colleges and systems.

The project focused on supporting community college systems, students, and workers in the use of emerging and existing digital resources, such as learning and employment records (LERs), blockchain, and digital credentials. ACE piloted with three state-level community college systems - Ivy Tech Community College in Indiana, the College System of Tennessee, and community colleges within the Oregon Higher Education Coordinating Commission - to support the acceptance of digital credentials and LERs to strengthen workforce partnerships and learner outcomes.  The goal of these partnerships is to understand what higher education institutions and systems need to do to establish and grow a Learning and Employment Record (LER) system.

The outputs of the project are an LER Playbook and an LER Engagement and Implementation Tool. These resources provide guidance for colleges and universities that are ready to establish or grow an LER system. They offer strategies for engaging faculty and other stakeholders, and they outline the stages of development for an effective LER system.

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