Introduction: The State Cohort on Credential Attainment is a collaboration of the Employment and Training Administration (ETA); the Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education (OCTAE); and the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA).
This cohort consisted of nine state teams (i.e., Alabama, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Utah, and Vermont), of cross-agency participants who joined forces from January 2020 through May 2020, in the development of solutions to specific issues related to the WIOA credential attainment indicator.
These State teams explored different methods for determining which degrees, certificates, certifications, and licenses qualify as credentials (according to the definition outlined within federal guidance), addressed common and state-specific challenges related to the indicator, and developed a system-wide resource to assist states in similar efforts.
Cohort participants had an opportunity to develop actionable solutions to some of the common challenges around collecting the required data and reporting on the credential attainment indicator. Each team drafted a state action plan outlining a new or enhanced process for assessing and determining which degrees, certificates, certifications, and licenses qualify as federally defined credentials.
As a final project, cohort teams developed a resource (capstone) which serves as a companion to the Credential Attainment Decision Tree Tool. The capstone provides various scenarios which aid in the determination of which credentials are recognized as postsecondary credentials under WIOA. The decision tree is an online interactive tool designed to assist grantees in understanding the requirements of recognized education and training programs related to the WIOA credential attainment indicator, and in developing policies and procedures for applying previously released Federal joint guidance. The credential attainment decision tree tool and capstone are intended to be used in conjunction with federal policy and other related resources.