Category Archives: edtech

Seminar – Micro-credentials within the AQF: Who’s the winner here?

On Tuesday March 12, I attended the inaugural Victorian Edtech Seminar – ‘Micro-credentials within the AQF: Who’s the winner here?’ seminar hosted by Study Melbourne and Edugrowth.

The seminar provides an opportunity for interested people to hear from an erudite panel of representatives from across the education and edtech sectors on a topic of growing importance in education and technology: micro-credentials.

The focus of the inaugural seminar was micro-credentials within the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF), the national policy for regulated qualifications in Australian education and training.

Why do we need to talk about this?

The Australian Government is reviewing the AQF, and is currently exploring whether or not the AQF should include shorter form credentials (i.e. micro-credentials).

Shorter form credentials could enable easy recognition of credentials across sectors and providers, and could be included or linked to full qualifications.

  • However, what impact would this have on the edtech and education sector?
  • Would it stifle innovation or bring a badge of quality?
  • Would it provide an additional review stream for education providers or lessen the value of education products?

Who was there

The speakers were Prof. Liz Johnson (DVC Education, Deakin University), Amanda Pickrell (Director International Education, Victorian Government) and David Linke (Managing Director, Edugrowth) while the panel was made-up of Dr Asheley Jones (Head, Professional Practice and Industry Partnerships, DeakinCo), Anthony Morris (CEO, Cahoot Learning), Rohan Chandler (VP Partnerships, Go1 (Formerly SEEK) and Andy Giddy (Executive Director Business Innovation, La Trobe University).

Key takeaways

My key takeaways from the seminar were:

  • The big question for the seminar ‘Is there a winner?’ wasn’t answered.
  • Market or providers don’t necessarily want AQF governance, but it’s coming (so be a part of it).
  • Governance can be considered a good thing, particularly for demonstration of academic integrity/rigour and competitive point of difference from other ‘options’.
  • Branding and customer perception is important, unsurprisingly.
  • Universities should reconsider pre-occupation with degree only micro-credential offerings and be receptive to also offering micro-credentials for CPD (that demonstrate currency/capacity) for relevant industries.
  • If they’re not already, research-focused universities should consider how micro-credentials (short online courses) can support ‘research translation’ and getting their research out into public.
  • Industry/the market will determine and inform micro-credentials and collaborating/working with them is critical (Microsoft Certified Professional and Cisco certification are examples of industry doing it themselves).

Jim talks about preparing students for a connected future, and everything else

Five years later, I was finally able to attend one of Jim’s talks in-person when he spoke about ‘preparing students for a connected future’ at Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia.

The DS106 assignment bank was inspired in part by ravelry, and the patterns it shared.


I’m interested in the teaching and learning as well as art applications of this technology. What’s interesting about this as an exercise is the wasted opportunity to celebrate and showcase respondents of their input into the data gathering and research process. Metro and Monash could have actively showcase the exercise by representing the number of passengers/users on the platform in a creative way, personally and publically – on their device and on large screens and through speakers. Doing this may mitigate some of the possible resistance by passengers who only find out about their contribution to research after the fact – they see a small sign that gives them an option of opting-out by turning-off their WIFI (and therefore disabling their own WIFI connectivity – work/study), which isn’t really fair.


Who is conducting this trial?

This trial is a joint initiative between Metro, Public Transport Victoria (PTV) and Monash University.

What is this trial about?

Metro, PTV and Monash University are conducting research to gain real time data of passenger numbers on platforms at Richmond station and on board trains travelling from Richmond across the network.

This is about using technology to provide better information to improve the services we provide to customers.

What will the trial do?

Information will be collected on how people are using Richmond Station by counting the number of Wi-Fi enabled devices on the platforms and trains.

As a result of this collection of data, Metro will be able to further analyse how it can improve the customer experience by:

collecting data to better inform future network service planning
improving information available at stations and allocation of customer service staff
Identifying crowd movements on and around platforms
providing customers with a better overall service

When will the trial take place?

The trial will commence on the 17th of February 2017 and run until the 30th of June 2017.

Where will the trial be conducted?

The trial will focus only on passenger flow on platforms 7,8,9 and 10 plus the concourse at Richmond Station and on board four trains.

All areas where this technology is active will be clearly marked to advise customers.

How does it work?

Wi-Fi routers will be installed on platforms 7,8,9 and 10, plus the concourse at Richmond Station and on four trains. These devices will be able to count the number of active Wi-Fi devices in the vicinity of these platforms.

How can I opt out?

All you need to do is to turn off the Wi-Fi on your personal device and you will not be included in this trial.

Can you access my personal information from my electronic devices?

No. Personal information is never traced or tracked.

Your devices unique identification number (MAC address) is put through two levels of encoding. This ensures your personal information cannot be traced or tracked.

How will I know what trains I’m being tracked on?

All trains where this technology is active will be clearly marked with posters to advise customers.

Will I start being registered as soon as I step on one of the 4 trains or only when we approach Richmond Station?

The technology counts the number of active WiFi devices on board the trains regardless of their location on the network. However during analysis only trains that travel through Richmond station will be considered.

Who has access to this information?

The number of devices will be the only information collected. Your personal information is never traced or tracked and will remain completely anonymous.

The raw data is only held by Monash University and will be deleted 90 days after finalisation of the trial. The statistical information will be used to gauge the accuracy of this technology and will be shared with Metro and the PTV.

How can I get more information?

For more information you can contact the PTV call centre: 1800 800 007

Passenger advisory in context.


Detail of the exceptionally small notice advising passengers that they’re part of a trial.

EduGrowth pre-accelerator pitch night

And the winner is…