John Bowers, Doctoral Candidate
JAMES JACOBS SCHOLARSHIP AWARD
Does Stacking Work? The Academic and Labor-Market Value of Short-Term,
Stackable Certificates in Washington State
University of Washington
Short-term, stackable certificates are meant to increase earning potential and to deliver credits that can be â€śstackedâ€ť with future coursework toward a more robust certificate or degree. Current literature casts doubt on their correlation with improved earnings and is essentially silent on their academic benefits. Are students stacking short-term certificates? What does earning a short-term, stackable certificate predict about future college achievement? If short-term certificates alone lack labor market value, do they increase the likelihood that students will eventually earn a more robust credential with more certain labor market value? This study examines both the labor market value and academic value of short-term certificate s awarded by community and technical colleges in Washington State.