Publications and Events: Presentations


For information on our upcoming presentations, see the Thought Leadership page.


Developing a Standard for Competence-Based Workplace Learning Programs
November 9, 2023 Currently, work-based learning programs are designed by individual organizations, corporations, educators, and trainers with no national guidance. This lack of standardization allows for a wide variance of quality and makes it difficult for employers to make good hiring decisions or educators to understand the amount of credit that can be given toward an academic certificate or degree. Creating a work-based learning standard will formalize this important form of workplace preparation as a credential and will increase the number of Americans who hold post-secondary credentials, helping meet the nation's need for skilled talent. More importantly, the standard would have a positive impact on workers/learners from underserved populations, since many of those individuals develop their skill sets while on the job.
Featuring: Roy Swift
Hosted by: CAEL
Developing a Standard for Work-Based Learning
July 12, 2023 Workcred joined this virtual event on July 12 to moderate a panel defining industry certifications, national issues, and the benefits of embedding them in academic programs. Other panels included educational, training, and certification providers who shared their experiences in aligning industry certifications with academic programs to highlight who was involved, resources required, and lessons learned, and a third panel responding to the previous panels and providing an open discussion.
Featuring: Karen Elzey
Hosted by: Credential As You Go
Developing a Standard for Work-Based Learning
March 27, 2023 Workcred, SOLID, and Dallas College teamed up during the spring 2023 Non-Degree Credential Research Network meeting to discuss work-based learning and the efforts that are underway to create an American National Standard and formalize work-based learning as another type of a credential that can be built into credential and career pathways.
Featuring: Karen Elzey
Hosted by: Non-Degree Credential Research Network
Moving Forward with Exploration of the Changing Credential Environment
March 27, 2023 During the Higher Learning Commission Annual Conference, Workcred highlighted recent changes occurring with credentials and new resources that are available to assist institutions, learners, and employers during this session.
Featuring: Roy Swift, Workcred; Mike Niederpruem, AHIMA
Hosted by: Higher Learning Commission
ISO/IEC 17024 – A Primer
March 14, 2023 Workcred and Professional Testing teamed up to explain the basics of the international standard ISO/IEC 17024: Conformity assessment — General requirements for bodies operating certification of persons during the 2023 ATP Innovations in Testing Conference. The presentation provided an overview of the components of the standard, the current uses for accreditation in the U.S., and the process for revising the standard.
Featuring: Workcred and Professional Testing
Hosted by: ATP Global
February 14, 2023 Despite their prevalence in the workforce, there is no complete, centralized source of data on the outcomes or impact of certifications. While there have been isolated efforts to collect this data by several U.S. states, as well as self-reported data from certification bodies, outcomes data are fragmented and incomplete. To help provide the much-needed transparency for certifications, Workcred and partner certification bodies are working to match data from certification service providers, educational attainment and enrollment data from universities, and aggregate wage data from the U.S. Census Bureau. On February 14, Workcred, Pearson VUE, and partner certification bodies hosted a free webinar to provide more information about this work and the importance of outcomes data.
Featuring: Workcred staff
Hosted by: Pearson VUE


November 10, 2022 A growing number of students are engaging with alternative degrees, credentials, and micro-credentials to improve and retain their employability. As a result, the need to measure the effectiveness of these new pathways calls for expanding the data sets required to measure outcomes. These include measurements incorporating socio-economic mobility, equity measures, and re-engagement in higher ed and workforce outcomes. View the recording to hear more about how Workcred and the National Student Clearinghouse are addressing the education revolution supporting evolving pathways and data needs beyond traditional measures.
Featuring: Isabel Cardenas-Navia
Hosted by: National Student Clearinghouse and Inside Higher Ed
September 22, 2022 Workcred presented during the Institute for Credentialing Excellence webinar series on September 22, 2022, on the research that supports embedding certifications into academic degree programs, the benefits to certification bodies, the implementation challenges, and how to mitigate those challenges.
Featuring: Karen Elzey and Isabel Cardenas-Navia
Hosted by: Institute for Credentialing Excellence
June 15, 2022 On June 15, Workcred and the Inter-American Development Bank debuted a report that highlights one of the most significant changes to the credentialing system – the emergence of skills-based credentials as both complements and alternatives to traditional degrees. The presentation discusses the report and identifies the benefits of non-degree credentials and makes recommendations on ways to increase their value and acceptance in the labor market.
Featuring: Isabel Cardenas-Navia
Hosted by: The Inter-American Development Bank
May 17, 2022 More and more job seekers and working professionals see non-degree credentials as quicker and easier ways to gain necessary career skills than traditional two- or four-year degrees. Yet despite their popularity, there is also uncertainty about their value. How can colleges ensure that certificates and other credentials actually help students develop the core competencies they’re after? Isabel Cardenas-Navia joined a panel of experts on May 17 to clear up the confusion surrounding the programs and to offer ideas for colleges looking to help students and their employers navigate this new and changing landscape.
Featuring: Isabel Cardenas-Navia
Hosted by: The Chronicle of Higher Education
April 20, 2022 Dr. Isabel Cardenas-Navia moderated a panel on April 20 during the workshop series that explored how to best use advances in information technology to share information about programs and participating students, and what it means to have the IT infrastructure/capacity to share data across organizations/systems.
Featuring: Isabel Cardenas-Navia
Hosted by: National Academy of Engineering
April 14, 2022 Workcred presented during the Institute for Credentialing Excellence webinar series on April 14, 2022, on the critical need to elevate the visibility, relevance, and value of certifications, and highlighted how certification bodies should reinvent themselves to address the shifts in the credentialing marketplace and workforce development.
Featuring: Roy Swift and Isabel Cardenas-Navia
Hosted by: Institute for Credentialing Excellence
Data: Why Collect It?
March 22, 2022 Workforce data is the key to success for any credential in the current information technology world. In this session, Workcred, Professional Testing, and the Board for Certified Safety Professionals discussed valuable insights related to workforce outcomes for certification bodies, state and federal policymakers, and credential seekers from recent Workcred survey, which pieces of data are most valuable for connecting credentials to workforce needs, and encouraged participants on ways to reshape their approach to data collection. This session also explored the need for a data repository for the certification industry as the workforce is increasingly reliant on data for better decision-making.
Featuring: Roy Swift
Hosted by: ATP Global
Certification in the Time of COVID
February 8, 2022
Certification in the Time of COVID: A Black Swan Opportunity: How Associations Can Take the Lead in Reskilling a Post-Pandemic Workforce
The COVID-19 pandemic caused massive shifts in the workplace and economy. Yet, it also produced an opportunity for associations to help their members reskill and upskill through credentialing programs so they can thrive in a world of remote work, automation, artificial intelligence, and an ever-increasing pace of change

Karen Elzey, associate director of Workcred, joined expert panelists Andrea Wieters, senior manager of industry research and engagement strategy at the ASAE Research Foundation, Denise Roosendaal, CAE, executive director of the Institute for Credentialing Excellence, and J David M. Rozsa, CAE, ICE-CCP, ACA, CEO of Metacred, a division of META Company, to discuss the role of associations in reskilling. The conversation focused workforce development, changes, such as an increase in remote proctoring, that may continue after the pandemic, trends that credentialing bodies should be watching, and opportunities to become more involved with efforts to link administrative data sets or embed certifications into academic degree programs.

Featuring: Karen Elzey
Hosted by: ASAE


How Credentialing is Preparing for the Future of Work
December 15, 2021 On December 15, 2021, Workcred joined a panel of experts to discuss the future of work and how Workcred views the role of credentials in the new world of work and how upskilling can help organizations meet current labor challenges.
Featuring: Isabel Cardenas-Navia
Hosted by: Certiverse
November 18, 2021 During the CAEL Annual Conference, Workcred’s Karen Elzey joined partners APLU/USU and UPCEA to highlight the role certifications can play in bolstering student success and improving employability outcomes through embedding, aligning, and integrating independent certifications with four-year degree programs. In this session, panelists presented the framework developed to guide implementation of Certification+Degree pathways, as well as the challenges and opportunities for these pathways, and showcased ways higher education institutions, certification bodies, and employers can better connect with one another to establish more meaningful pathways for students.
Featuring: Karen Elzey
Hosted by: CAEL
Judging the Relevance of Skills Credentials
October 26, 2021 As job seekers reset their expectations, employers must expand the definition of qualified candidates and consider non-traditional hires. View the recorded presentation to explore best practices in identifying quality credentials.
Featuring: Roy Swift
Hosted by: AARP and From Day One
Trends in Credentialing: A Call to Action
October 1, 2021 During the ANAB 2021 Credentialing Conference, Dr. Roy Swift presented about the state of the workforce and Workcred’s latest efforts to strengthen workforce quality by improving the credentialing system.
Featuring: Roy Swift
Hosted by: the ANSI National Accreditation Board
September 23, 2021 The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed a growing demand for education and training beyond the confines and commitments of traditional multi-year programs. While many Americans remain unemployed and hungry for education and training, over 60% of Americans say they would now prefer to pursue non-degree options, according to new research from the Strada Education Network. A proven solution to these challenges is stackable short term credentials that includes embedded certifications which have the power to help students quickly, efficiently, and cost-effectively gain transparent in-demand skills that lead to employment.

Roy Swift joined panelists on a dynamic discussion about how stackable credentials and bundling and building skills can more readily address employer needs, while also providing students a path for lifelong learning. Other panelists included Jennifer Marquez of Kaiser Permanente, Angie Bush at UTMB Health, and Eric Bing with the College of Health Care Professions. It was moderated by Paul Fain from Work Shift.

Featuring: Roy Swift
Hosted by: Whiteboard Advisors
Connecting Certification and Education Data
September 22, 2021 Karen Elzey joined panelists on September 22 to highlight the National Student Clearinghouse’s Industry Credentials Initiative, which is a public-private data infrastructure that links together academic and industry credential information for the first time, as well as to share information about the network that Workcred has created for certification bodies to learn about the value of linking data. Moderated by Karen Elzey, the panel include Vanessa Brown of the National Student Clearinghouse, Christy Uden of the Board of Certified Safety Professionals, and Holly Zanville of the George Washington Institute of Public Policy.
Featuring: Karen Elzey
Hosted by: the Certification Network Group
Industry 4.0 Workforce Summit Webinar Series
September 10, 2021 Dr. Roy Swift joined the American Society for Engineering Education’s workforce webinar series on September 10, 2021, to discuss how alternative credentials can power diverse pathways and increase the value of engineering education.
Featuring: Roy Swift
Hosted by: American Society for Engineering Education
Quality and Relevance
August 2, 2021 With more than one million credentials in the United States – and more than 6,000 industry certifications – it is no surprise that educators, students, and parents are confused about what credential to choose and how to determine if it leads to a successful career pathway. It is estimated that only 10-15 percent of the more than 6,000 certifications are accredited. This means that stakeholders have to have some validated criteria for judging the quality and relevance of these certifications outside of accreditation. This presentation given by Dr. Roy Swift on August 2, 2021, provides some specific guidelines for determining a quality certification, the market value and relevance of the certification, and how to determine if there is an alignment of learning outcomes/competencies to specific CTE programs.
Featuring: Roy Swift
Hosted by: New Hampshire CTE Summer Learning Series Convening
STEMM Workforce Report Release
July 26, 2021 On July 26, Workcred’s Karen Elzey joined a panel to showcase the new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The report reveals key findings on addressing workforce issues laid bare by the COVID-19 pandemic and how regional communities across the nation are expanding their science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and medicine (STEMM) workforces to position them for success going forward. Other panelists included Lee Wellington, founding executive director of the Urban Manufacturing Alliance; and Rachel Lipson, director of The Project on Workforce at Harvard University.
Featuring: Karen Elzey
Hosted by: National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine
Utilizing Credentials to Speed Up the Job Hunt
June 16, 2021 Workcred’s executive director, Dr. Roy Swift, and Pearson VUE’s director of market development for government and military, Sue Jackson, co-presented for the Council of College and Military Educators (CCME) Annual Symposium, "Bridging the Gaps – Credentials that Lead to Sustainable and Successful Outcomes." The conference featured sessions for service members and their families, educators, veterans, and other workforce experts. Through the presentation, Swift and Jackson highlighted the importance of certifications to the military.
By: Roy Swift, Workcred; Sue Jackson, Pearson VUE
Hosted by: Council of College and Military Educators
June 15, 2021 During the JFF Horizons 2021 National Summit, “Building a Future that Works,” Karen Elzey, Workcred’s associate executive director, joined panelists to showcase the results of the 2020 National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine workshop series addressing regional STEMM (science, technology, engineering, math, and medicine) workforce needs in the wake of Covid-19. The series sought to foster nationwide conversations about shifts in the U.S. workforce as a result of the pandemic, and strategies and partnerships for aligning displaced workers with regional STEMM workforce needs. Other participants included moderator LaChaun Banks, Ash Center for Democratic Governance Harvard Kennedy School, and committee member Rachel Lipson, Harvard University Malcolm Wiener Center for Social Policy.
Featuring: Karen Elzey
Hosted by: JFF
Quality Credentialing
June 9, 2021 Dr. Roy Swift, Workcred’s executive director, presented Workcred’s recent work to increase the quality, market value, and effectiveness of credentials in the U.S. to the Midwestern Higher Education Compact’s Comprehensive Learner Records Advisory Group (MHEC CLR AG). This group of individuals from a variety of constituencies explores specific areas of interest and helps MHEC strategize and prioritize additional projects within the area of digital credentialing and comprehensive learner records to bring value to MHEC’s member states. The advisory group looks at areas where technology and higher education intersect, seeking collaborations across the region that can produce benefits for the Midwest that otherwise would be difficult to achieve at state and institutional levels.
By: Roy Swift
Hosted by: Midwestern Higher Education Compact
Transforming Higher Education
May 20, 2021 During HEInnovate webinar focused on micro-credentials, Karen Elzey, Workcred's associate executive director, provided insights into the work already done on micro-credentials in the U.S., particularly within bachelor’s degree programs. Moderated by Rebecca Allinson from the Technopolis Group, Elzey joined panelists Klara Engels-Perenyi, from the European Commission, and Alisson Avila and Christian Friedl of the FH Joanneum University of Applied Sciences.
Featuring: Karen Elzey
Hosted by: HEInnovate
Variable Impacts of New Credentials for the Older Worker
February 3, 2021 Workcred's director of research, Isabel Cardenas-Navia, Ph.D., shared the findings during a recent Federal Reserve event on “Uneven Outcomes in the Labor Market: Understanding Trends and Identifying Solutions.” Researchers, policymakers, and practitioners at the conference examined disparities in employment, labor force participation, income, and wealth across demographic groups. Dr. Cardenas-Navia joined panelists Julie L. Hotchkiss of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta; Ryan James Parsons, doctoral candidate at Princeton University; and Chauncy Lennon of Lumina Foundation during the education and credentials session of the conference.
By: Isabel Cardenas-Navia
Hosted by: the Federal Reserve Board of Governors and the Federal Reserve Banks of Atlanta, Boston, Cleveland, and Philadelphia


Certificates, Certifications and Degrees
October 29, 2020 Refining credentialing language will help clarify understanding for workers and employers alike. Dr. Roy Swift, executive director of Workcred, amplified this message to construction industry experts at the 5th Annual Industry Forum on Personnel Qualifications presented by the NCCCO Foundation. He also emphasized the need to address differences between certifications and certificates, and spoke about the urgency to better define various types of credentials, as well as regulation on training.
By: Roy Swift
Hosted by: the NCCCO Foundation
Elevating the Visibility, Relevance, and Value of Certifications
October 7, 2020 As the COVID-19 pandemic has created a social and economic divide that disproportionately affects workers who had jobs in industries that may not recover to previous employment levels, Workcred provides recommendations to the certification community for action. Through this presentation given to certification experts at a Certification Network Group webinar, Workcred discusses ways to elevate the visibility, relevance, and value of certifications to help close the pandemic divide.
By: Roy Swift
Hosted by: The Certification Network Group