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Spot the difference: Micro-credentials vs Skill Sets

Micro-credentials, skill sets and short courses sound like the same thing, but there are differences between them. Whether you want to dip your toes into a new area or need to update your industry knowledge, TAFE Queensland has the right option for you.

Choosing what to study isn't just about choosing the right study area, but also about choosing the right type of qualification. If you're not ready to take on a full qualification, or just need a little something extra to boost your resume, a short course might be right for you.

Skill sets and micro-credentials are both types of short courses, but they can help you progress your career in different ways. Let's break down the key differences between them.


Micro-credentials are short courses based around very specific skills.

At TAFE Queensland our free online micro-credentials only take about an hour to complete. They are non-accredited and there is no assessment involved. Once completed you will receive a digital badge to share on your social media profiles, and a statement of participation.

Among other benefits, micro-credentials are a great option if you want to try something new or just pick up a little extra knowledge. They can also demonstrate to potential employers that you have skills in a particular area, and are willing to participate in ongoing professional development. 

Skill sets

A skill set is one or more units of competency grouped together to give you the skills and knowledge to perform practical tasks. They can be non-accredited resulting in a statement of participation, or accredited resulting in a statement of attainment.

They typically take longer to complete than a micro-credential, and there is assessment required to demonstrate your competence. 

If you decide you want to do a full qualification later you may be able to use the units you completed in your skill set as credits towards your course, saving you both time and money.

For example, our Health Support Skill Set will help you develop essential, entry-level skills needed work in a range of health support, community services, and direct client care contexts. In the future you could continue your study in health assistance or even nursing

Whether you choose a Micro-credential or a Skill sets, TAFE Queensland's short courses are designed to give you an introduction into a new area without the time and cost of a formal qualification.