Panel Discussion 4

Non-degree Credentials Post the Pandemic: How should the HE Sector Adapt to the New Modern Workforce?

Monday 13th  July, 2020

17:00-18:30 UAE Time (+4GMT)


The Higher Education Sector has witnessed over the past couple of decades’ significant changes in the way it operates from the adopting of non-traditional forms of learning such as online, blended and competency based education to new forms of certifications and credentials.  The COVID-19 Pandemic is believed to have acted as catalyst to even faster and more impactful transformations within the sector; placing pressure on universities to re-visit their value proposition and re-invent themselves to ensure they remain agile and relevant to a very dynamic landscape.

Moreover, recent increase of unemployment as a result of the  pandemic, and the decision of many large corporate organizations such as IBM, Ernest and Young, Google among others to prioritize skills over degrees, may have added a whole new dimension to need to rapidly skill, upskill and reskill the workforce, bringing in new challenges but also opportunities to the sector.

Having more and more corporations entering into the education delivery for their own needs, HE sector can’t rely any more on monopoly gained during last century. Universities and colleges will need to be forward thinking and liberal about their offerings, and evolve to meet the needs of today’s and tomorrow’s economies and address significant post-COVID-19 challenges.

The aim of this panel is to:

  1. Identifying the key factors driving the need for micro-credentials; and how the pandemic may have accelerated such needs
  2. Discussing how is the pandemic impacting the future workforce and what role could universities and micro-credentials play
  3. Highlighting some defining features and models for micro-credentials and micro-degrees applicable within the formal post-secondary education.
  4. Providing examples of good practices on how micro-credentials/ degrees are helping meet the workforce demand
  5. Highlight the sort of future steps and actions required to establish an interoperable certification system

Panel Chair

Dr. Marko Savic

Senior Manager of International Relations, Higher Colleges of Technology, UAE

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Dr. Kathleen S. Ives

Director of Higher Education Transformation, National Laboratory for Education Transformation (NLET) ,  USA

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Prof. Mark Brown

Director of the National Institute for Digital Learning (NIDL), Dublin City University, Ireland

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Prof Maurits Van Rooijen

Rector, The University for Applied Sciences (UE), Germany

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Ms. Shoroke H. Zedan

Partner, International Development and Behaviour Change, ENVI-SAGE Consulting, Egypt

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Who should attend?

  • University Senior Administrators including University Presidents, Vice Presidents, Provosts, Vice Chancellors, etc.
  • Deans of Colleges and Faculties
  • Director of Continuing Education Centers
  • Career Counselling Experts


Registration in the Panel Discussion is free and open to anyone from the higher education community wherever located. However, there is a maximum capacity to the session and slots will be allocated based on ‘first come first served’; hence we recommend early registration.

The Center may reserve the right to limit the number of registrations from the same institution to provide the opportunity to other institutions to join.



Agence universitaire de la Francophonie: worldwide association, founded over 60 years ago, gathering more than 900 institutions of higher education and research in more than 100 countries spread over the 5 continents. It is also the operator of the Francophonie Summit for higher education and research.


87 member institutions in the region from 16 countries: KSA, Cyprus, Djibouti, Egypt, UAE, Ethiopia, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Pakistan, Palestine, Syria, Qatar and Yemen.
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  • Expertise and innovation skill development
  • Emphasis on quality and evaluation
  • Intercultural dialogue and mediation

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