Posted by: crudbasher | May 10, 2012

What Can Replace Degrees?

I have been critical of the concept of a degree for a while now. I think it’s an outmoded and very blunt instrument that doesn’t really tell you much about the bearer besides generalities. The other big problem is it doesn’t encompass any learning outside the structured curriculum.

So are we ready to replace degrees yet? The short answer is no. We might, however, start to see some disruptive innovation around the edges of credentialing.

Credictive is a new web service that allows people to give credit for creative works. For example, if you see a music video on YouTube you will be able to get a list of who worked on it. It’s not a bad idea but as the article mentions, it could be abused. Still, if it works it will help creative people connect up with each other and provide a method of validation and credentialing of creative people outside a university.

So could there be a site that does the same thing about scientific research? How about humanitarian works? Pretty soon everything we do in life will be recorded on the Internet. Perhaps the sum total will then replace our degrees?

Somebody is going to crack the credentialing problem, and probably fairly soon. I imagine it will be a fairly well known name brand but we will see.

For further reading on this topic check out my other posts about credentialing.

    • Credictive, which just went into invite-only beta, wants to solve the problem of crediting who did what online. It’s pitched as an “IMDB for creative content” where people who create videos or music or other kinds of content or just appear in that media can also be connected. Think LinkedIn for creatives.
    • So say you’re watching a video online and want to know who created it without having to go to their page, then click on the username, find their original web site/blog or Twitter handle etc etc. That’s where Credictive comes in. In a similar manner to the way Pinterest will tell you where an image was re-pinned from, that’s what Credictive wants to do.
    • The problem out there is the lack of transparency on who does what online. If you are a company that wants to recruit talent, how do you know someone isn’t simply cutting and pasting the work of others?
    • I asked them how they are join got stop people gaming the system so they fool Credictive? Right now it’s a closed community to try and keep quality high but their idea is to build a community-based and community-enforced reputation system employing verification, flagging and blocking users.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.



  1. I don’t think that degrees are going anywhere soon, but I do think that there will be a crowdsourced alternative emerge. Not sure it will be credictive, but I think they are moving in an interesting direction.

    • Hi Jesse,,
      I agree degrees won’t go away tomorrow certainly, but I think we will see many alternatives. In a way we already have this. If you want to be a lawyer, you need a law license in addition to a degree.

      Perhaps a licensing scheme is a model for an alternate system?

      Thanks for commenting!!

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