Government, Private Sector to recognise Coursera certificates

The Ministry of Education, the Ministry of the Public Service and the Private Sector Commission have signed an MoU agreeing to recognise the certificates earned by students who have completed online courses via the Commonwealth of Learning and Coursera.

The agreement was signed on Thursday at the National Centre for Educational Resource Development.

“These certificates will be recognised for what they are worth, not for more than their worth but what they are … an enhancement, indication of someone who is personally motivated to study, as an indication of someone skilled for as many hours in a particular area, that is how it will be recognised in both public and private sector,” Minister Manickchand said.  

In explaining the genesis of the initiative, she said the COVID-19 pandemic exposed the weaknesses in the education and labour sectors which the initiative aims to address. It is expected that the agreement will see job opportunities for the graduates and help curb unemployment.  

The initiative provides free access to 4,000 certified online courses offered by Ivy League and other reputable universities through Coursera.

“This presents an opportunity for the people who are doing this upscaling, registered and graduate from these programmes not only to self-develop but possibly re-entering or entering the workforce,” the Minister added.

Minister Manickchand stated that individuals can be selected for employment by the Private Sector through a database provided by the Ministry, with the individual’s permission.

To date, 35,000 persons have registered for the programme; 17,500 persons are active participants and 970 persons have graduated. Interested persons can still sign up as the registration deadline has been extended by a month to October 31.

Statistics showed that 66 per cent of the applicants are pursuing these courses through their smartphones while just two per cent utilise a desktop computer.

Meanwhile, Minister of Public Service, the Hon. Savitri Sonia Parag agreed that the initiative also provides an opportunity for Public servants to enhance their qualifications.

“The Ministry of Public Service will recognise the certificates from the various course[s], from the various field[s] of study as a qualification within whatever job description is being applied for. I must say that the certificate acquired will not be looked at differently as a Diploma or Master, but we are looking at it as an enhancement of qualification,” she explained.

PSC Chairman, Mr. Nicholas Deygoo-Boyer lauded the participants for investing in their education.


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