Spotlight on National Career Readiness Certificates
September 16, 2013
Certificate programs While there are a number of industry-specific certifications that validate the skills and competencies of workers, the National Career Readiness Certificate ACT, Inc., which administers the NCRC, is a not-for-profit organization perhaps best known for producing the ACT standardized test on college readiness for high school students. However, the Iowa-based organization also provides more than 100 other assessment, research, information, and program management services for education and workforce development. "The ACT National Career Readiness Certificate is a professional credential, which is quite different from a certificate awarded for completing an educational or training experience," said ACT spokesperson Katie Wacker. Launched in 2006, the NCRC complements traditional credentials like high school diplomas and community college degrees. Awarded at four levels, the certificate emphasizes competence in a specific set of skills and technical knowledge that are directly applicable to job performance and career advancement. Earning an NCRC requires successful performance on three standardized tests called WorkKeys "The NCRC credential certifies skills that are linked to occupational success, not to academic achievement, making it accessible and meaningful to more American workers," Wacker told IMT Career Journal. The NCRC demonstrates achievement and a certain level of workplace employability skills in three key areas:
- Applying mathematical reasoning to work-related problems.
- Using information from such materials as diagrams, floor plans, tables, forms, graphs, and charts.
- Comprehending work-related reading materials that range from memos and bulletins to policy manuals and regulations.
- Work Discipline - Productivity and dependability
- Teamwork - Tolerance, communication, and attitude
- Customer Service Orientation - Interpersonal skills and perseverance
- Managerial Potential - Persuasion, enthusiasm, and problem solving