Vijay Krishna, Ed.D., senior director, credentialing programs, American National Standards Institute (ANSI), shared insights on ANSI's role in supporting quality credential recognition from employers and industry through accreditation during the U.S. Department of Education's (DoE) Rethinking Higher Education Summit in December in Washington, DC.
The meeting was the first of two "Rethink School" summitsan initiative announced by U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos in 2017aimed at improving student achievement through open dialogue with educational leaders, entrepreneurs, and other experts on innovations and opportunities to "eliminate structural educational barriers" and expand opportunities for students in K-12 and higher education.
Dr. Krishna noted ANSI's 100-year track record in supporting quality products through standardization efforts, and its progress in recent years to leverage the credibility and quality of certifications and certificates with accreditation programs and other initiatives.
ANSI accredits two types of personnel credentialingcertification and certificate programs. Accreditation under the certification program is based upon ANSI/ISO/IEC 17024, Conformity assessment - General requirements for bodies operating certification of persons. ANSI's Certificate Accreditation Program (ANSI-CAP) was established in 2009 to provide a neutral, third-party attestation that a given certificate program leads to better educated and qualified workers. ANSI-CAP is based on an American National Standard, ANSI/ASTM E2659-09, Standard Practice for Certificate Programs.
Dr. Krishna said that while ANSI credentialing accreditation programs are recognized by various federal agencies including the Department of Defense (DoD), it does not fall under the traditional accreditation recognition system for higher education. He explained that there should be a way to recognize alternative accreditation bodies that focus on recognizing innovations in education by accrediting quality training certificates and personnel certification.
"Industry-recognized certifications have labor market value, as well as competency-based certificates, which are very tightly aligned toward industry needs," he said. "These typically fall outside the purview of the traditional accreditation system."
Dr. Krishna also highlighted the value of Workcredan affiliate of ANSI and 501(c) 3 not-for-profit corporationwith a mission to strengthen workforce quality by improving the credentialing system, ensuring its ongoing relevance, and preparing employers, workers, educators, and governments to use it effectively.
"The summit was a great opportunity to amplify the importance of quality recognition from employers across industries and emphasize how we can get the best value of credentials and certifications," said Dr. Krishna.
About ANSI Accreditation
ANSI provides accreditation services in the areas of product and personnel certification as well as greenhouse gas verification and validation. The Institute recognizes the competence of bodies to carry out these activities in accordance with requirements defined in international standards. ANSI's accreditation programs themselves operate in accordance with international guidelines and have been verified by government and peer review assessments.
For more information on ANSI accreditation services, visit the ANSI accreditation website.
Workcred, an ANSI affiliate organization formed in 2014, is led by executive director Roy Swift, Ph.D., the organization's vision is a labor market which relies on the relevance, quality, and value of workforce credentials for opportunities, growth, and development. Dr. Swift, a retired U.S. Army colonel, previously served as ANSI's chief workforce development officer and senior director of personnel credentialing accreditation programs. For more information, visit www.workcred.org.