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What are workforce credentials?

Workforce credentials include the various methods used in the workplace to measure on-the-job competency, such as educational degrees, licenses, certifications, and experience. Read articles for more information on credentialing.

What are the types of workforce credentials?

  • Licenses are knowledge and skill credentials that are legally required for some occupations. Licensing requirements often vary by state. To identify requirements for specific occupations and states, search Career InfoNet's Licensed Occupations.

  • Certifications are examinations that test or enhance your knowledge, experience or skills in an occupation or profession. To identify certifications by occupation, industry or keyword, search Career InfoNet's Certification Finder.

  • Apprenticeship Programs offer supervised, structured on-the-job training combined with related technical instruction. Find Registered Apprenticeships.

  • Military training and experience help earn credentials for military or civilian careers. Learn about military apprenticeships at the U.S. Military Apprenticeship Program USMAP and matching your military experience with civilian opportunities at the U.S. Army's Credentialing Opportunities On-Line.

  • Educational degrees or training courses often serve as qualifications for many professions. Find college opportunities online.

  • Work experience including on-the-job training, internships and volunteer or temporary employment, can help develop skills and qualifications. Research opportunities in Career InfoNet's Career Resource Library.
What is accreditation?

Accreditation refers to the process through which colleges and other institutions of higher education are credentialed. Learn more about this process and find lists of approved accrediting agencies at the U.S. Department of Education's Database of Accredited Programs and Institutions.

What are competency models?

In today's demand-driven workplace, many industries are defining their own competency models that clearly define the knowledge, skills, abilities, and other characteristics required for particular occupations. The U.S. Department of Labor is currently collecting examples of competency models that will be available through a searchable database. Look at examples of competency models in various industries.

Who uses credentials and competency models?

Businesses and employers can use workplace credentials and competency models (sometimes called skill standards) to ensure they remain competitive by recruiting the highest-performance workers and efficiently measuring workers' ongoing competencies. Several industries have developed competency models that provide clear descriptions of the knowledge, skills, abilities and other characteristics required for particular jobs.

Workforce professionals can use workplace credentialing information and competency models to provide details about in-demand skills and other competencies.

Educators can design curricula that focuses on competencies needed in the workplace.

Workers, job seekers and students can look at competency models to determine what credentials, skills, knowledge and abilities are important to their career. They can then examine the various types of credentials - including on-the-job experience, licensing, certification, apprenticeships and degrees - to determine what makes the most sense for their individual goals.

You can build an Occupation Profile detailing skills, knowledge, abilities, required education and other characteristics of specific occupations.

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