MOOC certificates get a social media bump

Completing a massive open online course (MOOC) means close to nothing even for the most engaged students. The social network LinkedIn could soon change that.

All major MOOC platforms are participating in the LinkedIn program.

LinkedIn, a professional jobs site with growing connections to higher education, announced Nov. 15 that course completion certificates from major MOOC platforms Coursera, Udacity, edX, Udemy, Pearson,, and Skillsoft can be displayed on LinkedIn profiles.

The move to make MOOCs part of a person’s online resume is part of LinkedIn’s Direct-To-Profile Certifications pilot program, designed to help LinkedIn members display their efforts to expand knowledge and understanding of key topics.

LinkedIn’s partnering with the biggest, best known MOOC platforms is the latest progression in the legitimizing of MOOCs as resume boosters for job hunters.

A MOOC student, upon completion of the class, will receive an eMail with an official link to a pre-populated online certificate. Clicking that link will automatically add the certification to the person’s LinkedIn profile, according to the company.

The move to demonstrate knowledge gained through online education extends well beyond LinkedIn’s partnership with the providers of experimental global classes, of course.

Merit, an application that  more than 500 colleges and universities now use to validate and promote students’ accomplishments, was meant to play a similar role.

From making the dean’s list to taking a service-oriented spring break, students on Merit are awarded standardized digital badges denoting successes on campus.

The badges, or merits, are then displayed on an individual Merit Page that is easily shared through social media.

Educators can join the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #eCNMOOCs.