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Certification Central

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Topics: Aerospace and Defense, Benefits Realization, Talent Management
Certifications vs Degrees
Do you believe the widely more recognized certifications have somewhat devalued college education?
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It depends. To say that ALL degrees have been devalued by certifications would be a big stretch. Some degrees? Possibly.

I think it's not the only factor in devaluing college education, which increases the difficulty of quantifying it. Another, possibly bigger factor is low/no ROI degrees. By this, I mean expensive degrees that teach no practical skills and do not help the person get a job that pays enough to cover student loans.

Then there are jobs that pay well that do not require "university" education.

And then there are certifications that require degrees, or are easier to get with a degree. These should have a positive impact on education, but again, possibly difficult to quantify how much.

I think the number of certifications might have a bigger negative impact on certifications than they do on education. You can only get so many degrees, but you can get enough credentials that you have more acronyms after your name than letters in your name. I call it alphabet soup.

From a job hunting perspective, the alphabet soup can be more damaging than the degree. I've been cautioned against including too many credentials on my resume. The degree and a couple of certifications is usually enough (I'm not a consultant; I don't know if it's different for consultants). But, both the degree and the certifications ARE important if I want to get past HR and get an interview.

With the rapidly evolving world and diversity in specialities, I personally noticed that industry specific credentials are more valued by employers than universities degrees.

Of course university degrees are great but they are too general and do not concentrate on certain speciality or industry.

Have both credentials and degrees would be ideal but if someone has a Bachelors degree and they are thinking of either Masters or Industry credentials, I would personally chose the latter.

Aaron has a point in what he is saying but I don’t know if this can be damaging, at least it wasn’t for me as I hold more than 50 credentials and university degrees.

I think it depends on what the certification and/or degrees are.

I also think that some people have very narrow views as to what constitutes as "worthwhile" education, and think something "technical" matters more, when they hold a very narrow view as to what is technical. My MLIS (Master of Library and Information Science) has since been "rebranded" by some schools as a MI (Master of Information), because too many people assume that one can only work in a public library with it, and/or it was a waste of university for someone to learn how to reshelve books.

Education is important regardless as to whether it is a certification, a diploma, or a degree.

It is up to the individual to make their education worthwhile, and to not just assume once they obtain the piece of paper, they are done learning and evolving. Having a slew of letters after your name means nothing if you don't use what you have learned and continue to build upon the foundation that the piece of paper has laid.
A college education is fundamental and helps with developing your overall skills (mainly analytical, writing and reading). It is important that you have basic degree. Then additional certifications can be done based on your industry experience or niche area you choose for career growth.
Sometimes, even an associates degree with good work experience and a good certification works, but in the competitive world today most companies ask for degree as a basic requirement. And this will be a barrier for entry.

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