Why Take a Micro-credential at Trinity College Dublin

By Steven Galvin - Last update


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For career-minded individuals looking to upskill to gain a promotion or reskill to change industries there are many options available when it comes to lifelong learning.

Many of us are familiar with terms such as Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and short courses but less is known about micro-credentials. So, what are they, how do they differ from CPD courses and what are some of the reasons that you should consider a micro-credential the next time you want to engage in professional learning?

How are micro-credentials different from some other short courses?

Micro-credentials are flexible, short-term learning experiences that result in the awarding of credits. This means that as part of a micro-credential your learning is assessed, and you are awarded an official transcript of your studies, and a corresponding amount of ECTS credits. 

What are ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System) credits?

The European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) is an academic credit system based on the estimated workload required to achieve the learning outcomes of a programme of study. It provides academic recognition for periods of study, facilitates mobility and credit accumulation and transfer. The ECTS is the recommended credit system for higher education in Ireland and across Europe.

Why should I take a course for credit, such as a micro-credential?

Credits gained from successful completion of a micro-credential are formally recognised by Higher Education providers and employers across Europe, and even further afield. Taking a micro-credential for credit, and having your learning assessed, lets your current or future employers see that you have actively developed a skill or competency, as opposed to gaining a certificate for attending a non-assessed course. The credits and transcript are proof that you have met certain objectives and learning standards. 

What can I do with the credits that I achieve?

Once ECTS credits have been gained, a learner may be able to use these to get access to or exemptions from further study (a PG Certificate for example). Alternatively, they may choose to keep earning ECTS by the completion of more courses with a view to combining or ‘stacking’ these into an award in the future.

What do micro-credentials have in common with other short courses?

Micro-credentials vary in length from as little as 5 weeks so they are a low-commitment option for furthering your career or increasing your knowledge in a certain area. Like many other forms of CPD they are closely aligned to industry and are carefully designed to meet the needs of specific sectors. In some cases, a micro-credential is co-created with an individual company or public sector partner. 

You will meet other learners on your micro-credential course, and this can be a fantastic opportunity for peer-to-peer learning, or for networking. You will also be taught by an experienced practitioner in the field. Upon completion of your micro-credential, you can add this to your CV and LinkedIn to assist you in your search for a career move or promotion.

Why take a micro-credential at Trinity College Dublin?

Trinity’s world-leading academics and researchers teach on Trinity micro-credentials. This means that as a Trinity micro-credential learner you will get access to leaders in your field or industry and benefit directly from their research and experience. 

Trinity College Dublin is the top ranked university in Ireland, and joint-101st in the world (QS World University Ranking, 2022). Trinity is also ranked 1st in Ireland for employer reputation and alumni outcomes, so a micro-credential from Trinity makes an excellent addition to your CV.

All micro-credentials being offered at Trinity are at Level 9 on the Irish national framework of qualifications, meaning that they are at the same level as a Postgraduate Diploma or Masters degree. 

How do I find out more about micro-credentials at Trinity College Dublin?

You can explore the range of micro-credentials offered at Trinity, and find more general information at www.tcd.ie/courses/micro-credentials

You can view the entry requirements and make an application online. If you have specific questions about micro-credentials at Trinity you can contact the team at micro-credentials@tcd.ie 


Trinity College Dublin, located in the heart of Dublin city, is steeped in scholarly and national history. Today it remains Ireland’s highest ranked university and within the world’s top one hundred. TCD provides an excellent variety of courses throughout areas in the Arts and Humanities, Business, Law, Engineering, Science and Health Sciences.

Learn more here.


Steven Galvin

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