Course Spotlight: 3 Reasons to Rethink Credentialing Prep for Time-Strapped Professionals
For today’s workforce, learning is a lifelong process. Whether these workers need a license to practice in a certain field or are pursuing a certificate to advance their career, credentialing exams are a part of the modern professional journey. While these learners have traditionally had to squeeze prep classes into their packed schedules, the shift toward digital learning is making credentialing prep more accessible, convenient, and effective.
In our ongoing series on digital learning for different course types, we look at how a modern, configurable learning platform like BenchPrep makes it easier for professionals to prepare not just for a high-stakes exam, but for a fulfilling career.
Professionals are seeking credentials to boost career potential
Depending on the industry, workers may need to earn credentials to perform their job or to rise through their industry’s ranks. For example, a registered nurse in critical care must be licensed as an RN and certified as a CCRN. Obtaining credentials can significantly improve a person’s career trajectory; a PayScale survey of 10 common certifications found that they boosted a professional’s earning potential by up to 75 percent.
Credentials can fall into several categories:
- Licenses are required by the government, usually at the state level, to perform certain jobs legally and ensure public safety. Licensing exams assess mastery of material and skills in a certain field and whether someone is ready to perform their job.
- Certifications are offered by public agencies, private associations and certification boards to confirm a person’s competence in a certain professional area. Certifications are sometimes, but not always, required to practice in a specific field.
- Certificates demonstrate someone’s knowledge within a narrow scope, as opposed to certifications, which generally cast a much wider net across an entire field of study. Certificates are not required to practice in a field, but can make a candidate more competitive.
People usually study for licenses and certifications separate from the credentialing body that requires and administers the exam, while certificate programs tend to have education integrated into them. Certificates don’t usually need to be renewed, but certifications and licenses tend to expire and need to be maintained through continuing education, like conferences, courses and presentations.
Efficient and effective prep is key to learner success
There are a number of options when it comes to preparing for a credentialing exam, including:
- Open education resources, including MOOCs, Khan Academy, forums, and video tutorials
- Online and in-person classrooms, which provide programs and courses to earn certificates
- Training, which is required, in addition to exams, to earn a license or certification
- Websites or social media resources from the credentialing body administering the exam
Effective prep is a must for students, since these exams are often quite expensive and require a big time investment. The fewer times a student has to take the exam, the sooner they can move ahead professionally. In addition to providing essential information, supplementary materials, and mock exams to prepare learners, prep courses can also help students navigate the test more efficiently and ensure they meet credentialing eligibility requirements.
For organizations that offer credentialing prep, helping learners prepare effectively is a win-win. The better a student performs on the exam, the more likely they are to do well on the job itself, reinforcing the value of that certification. The best courses help students go beyond merely preparing for the test to set them up for a successful career. With traditional prep methods, though, professionals may struggle to fit study time into their schedules, and many ultimately fail to follow through on credentialing.
Digital learning can improve the credentialing prep experience
BenchPrep's all-encompassing, scalable online learning platform helps organizations deliver credentialing prep that fits into professionals’ lives, not the other way around. Through personalized learning and on-demand access, BenchPrep has empowered partners like CompTIA, the world’s leading tech association, to reimagine the entire prep experience – and drive measurable improvements for the organization and its learners.
BenchPrep provides a few different methods to help students succeed and achieve their credentials:
- Omnichannel accessibility and a bite-sized learning approach help students make progress anytime they have a few minutes to study. Learners can log on with any device, and the platform syncs seamlessly to let users pick up where they left off.
- Mock exams follow real test-day conditions to show students how it will feel to take the exam and how they will score. Our mock exams mimic the scoring, timing, exam structure and topic weighting to increase a student’s familiarity and confidence for the final exam. Students also have a chance to brush up on time management and gain strategies for approaching and answering questions efficiently.
- Flexible study plans organize all course material into an easy-to-follow curriculum. Students can choose from a standard plan or an adaptive plan, which customizes the course based on individual strengths and weaknesses. Both options offer the user real-time feedback areas where they excel and where they need to improve, as well as their confidence levels for different study areas.
- Gamification keeps learners engaged and motivated to finish their courses, whether they’re scoring points on the leaderboard, earning an achievement badge, or continuing to learn while taking a break with one of seven built-in games.
Interested in learning how CompTIA certified 15,000 new professionals and increased revenue by 20 percent? Download our case study to find out!