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Disrupting the Diploma

See on Scoop.itM-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications

How updating the communication device known as a “diploma” will help students acquire the right skills and help companies hire the right talent.Every year, millions of Americans embark on

Danielle M. Villegas‘s insight:

I found this thanks to Adriane Hunt, who had posted it on LinkedIn. I think the author of the article makes a very good point, that with a changing economy and workplace, having a degree means different things to different people, and the curriculum of many "standardized" degrees of yesteryear don’t cut it when looking for employment. I was fortunate that the program where I earned my Master’s degree in technical communication is always trying to stay ahead of the game, as it tries to involve its students and alumni who are out in the field to provide some insight so the program can continue to be useful upon graduation. The issue of credentials and matching skills is going to be undergoing a revolution in the next few years, I think, and that’s much of what this article talks about. I think making education more affordable and making sure that actual skills that can be used in the workplace are going to have a stronger emphasis going forward. 


I know that this is something that’s very much on my mind, because I’m still debating whether to pursue another graduate certificate, another Master’s degree, or perhaps even going for a PhD. My husband was supportive of the idea, but the first questions he had were why I wanted to do it, and what would I be able to achieve with the new credential once I had it? Would it help me with my career or find a specific kind of job that I wanted? Valid questions, and they are ones that are worth asking. This article definitely complimented that discussion–at least at my house. 


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Danielle M. Villegas is a technical communicator who currently employed at Cox Automotive, Inc., and freelances as her own technical communications consultancy, Dair Communications. She has worked at the International Refugee Committee, MetLife, Novo Nordisk, BASF North America, Merck, and Deloitte, with a background in content strategy, web content management, social media, project management, e-learning, and client services. Danielle is best known in the technical communications world for her blog,, which has continued to flourish since it was launched during her graduate studies at NJIT in 2012. She has presented webinars and seminars for Adobe, the Society for Technical Communication (STC), the IEEE ProComm, TCUK (ISTC) and at Drexel University’s eLearning Conference. She has written articles for the STC Intercom, STC Notebook, the Content Rules blog, and The Content Wrangler as well. She is very active in the STC, as a former chapter president for the STC-Philadelphia Metro Chapter, and is currently serving on three STC Board committees. You can learn more about Danielle on LinkedIn at, on Twitter @techcommgeekmom, or through her blog. All content is the owner's opinions, and does not reflect those of her employers past or present.

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