Mapping Upward:
Stackable Credentials that
Lead to Careers

Stackable credentials focus career and technical education programs on building the critical skills needed for students to advance in growing sectors of the economy. By awarding credit for a range of education, training, and workplace learning and skill building experiences that "stack," toward associate degrees, stackable credential programs help working students develop the skills they need to advance on the job and earn credentials that enable further study – at the same time. This accelerates credit attainment and may increase the likelihood of degree completion.

The Mapping Upward project is providing technical assistance to four community college networks comprising 12 colleges as they work to embed stackable, industry-recognized credentials within technical associate degree programs.

Stackable Credentials Tool Kit
This tool kit, developed by the Mapping Upward project, provides community and technical colleges an overview of the stackable credentials approach and strategies for tracking success, course correcting, and measuring impact.

Download: Tool Kit (PDF 3.2 MB) | Word Version (DOCX, 2.9MB)

Podcast 1: Interview with Dr. Maria Coons, September 2016
Dr. Maria Coons, Chief of Staff and Vice President of Workforce Planning and Institutional Effectiveness at Harper College, offers her perspectives on leveraging stackable credentials to increase completion and inspiring college staff to sustain this change in program design.

Download: Audio (MP3, 7.7MB) | Transcript (DOCX, 29 KB)

Podcast 2: Interview with Dr. Annette Parker, September 2016
Dr. Annette Parker, President of South Central College in Minnesota, discusses curriculum redesign approaches that allow students to earn stackable college credentials aligned to industry certification.

Download: Audio (MP3, 5.1 MB) | Transcript (DOCX, 29 KB)

Podcast 3: Interview with Debbie Davidson, September 2016
Debbie Davidson, Vice President of Business and Workforce Solutions at Gateway Technical College, shares her perspectives on collaborating with employers to design stackable credentials and building capacity for industry partnership development at the department level.

Download: Audio (MP3, 12.5 MB) | Transcript (DOCX, 32 KB)

Stackable Credentials in the News:


Fact Sheet | Print Version

Stackable Credentials
Tool Kit
(PDF, 3.2 MB)


Erin Berg