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posted: 8/12/2020 1:00 AM

DeVry offers new stackable certificate programs

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Submitted by DeVry University

With learning and career needs evolving due to the COVID-19 crisis, DeVry University is launching two stackable, Title IV-eligible technology certificate programs in high demand fields so students can earn skills-based credentials more quickly.

Both certificate programs offer entry points along DeVry's newly launched Continuum of Learning. This learning pathway framework aligns programs with industry and workforce needs by providing multiple entry points for learning and skills acquisition to help create or expand career opportunities.

The new stand-alone Cyber Security certificate program can be completed in as few as seven 8-week sessions and stacks into select existing technology bachelor's degree programs. The new IT Essentials certificate program helps prepare students with fundamental skills for entry-level IT roles. This short certificate program can be earned as a stand-alone credential, and upon completion the credits are embedded into qualifying associate and bachelor's degrees, a 2-in-1 or 3-in-1 pathway allowing degree-seeking students to earn additional credentials along the way that can demonstrate their knowledge and workplace value.

"Facing an uncertain economic outlook, students and working professionals recognize the need to upskill quickly with applied technology skills that can be used in many fields and roles," said Shantanu Bose, Ph.D., provost and chief academic officer of DeVry University. "Designed to be stackable right from the start, DeVry's certificate programs are structured to fill critical marketplace needs with hands-on learning combined with skills aligned with industry-recognized certifications."

According to recent research into the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, 59 percent of adults who are considering an education or training program within the next six months are more interested in nondegree programs, with 26 percent preferring a certificate, certification or license. Additionally, "90 percent of employers would hire candidates who validate their knowledge using a certification, digital badge or coursework, instead of a college degree," according to a 2019 Closing the Skills Gap research report by Wiley Education Services.

DeVry's new programs deliver industry-aligned curricula that can help prepare students to pursue certification exams. DeVry also offers career preparation courses and opportunities to collaborate on industry-inspired projects, review certification exam materials and pursue internship opportunities. A portable IoT (internet of Things) kit enables students to gain hands-on experience with IoT technologies without having to leave home.

"We are responding to these marketplace needs by providing a continuum of learning that meets learners where they are and offers valuable content at the pace and format they need," said Bose. "For example, our IT Essentials certificate program focuses on foundational 'tech core' skills that are applicable to any tech field, whether that's engineering, software or IT. Similarly, as online information security concerns grow in importance, in an increasingly virtual world, our Cyber Security certificate program is aligned with industry needs to help ensure our students are positioned to tackle these issues."