The Rise of Short Term Certifications and Diplomas as Opposed to Full-Fledged Degrees


Acquiring education both in terms of enhancing knowledge and earning degrees is an important aspect of every person’s life but the road to acquiring education has been tarnished with pits and falls and obstacles of one kind or the other. Majority of the population in the world would opt to study and enroll themselves in graduate programs if they were not faced with difficult circumstances.  Such circumstances have led to the birth and subsequent rise of short term certifications and diploma based programs in Pakistan with an increasing number of students preferring such programs over four year degrees.

What is meant by Short Term Certification and Diploma based Programs?

Take the example of Aptech, teaching short two months web development and designing and other IT Programs and producing a lot of skilled IT based populace. While studying a four year Computer Science degree requires time, dedication and of course, financial support; completing a certificate course or diploma course reduces constraints on all mentioned factors; time, dedication and financial support. Degree based programs consist of six months semester periods amounting eight semesters meaning forty-eight months. If an institute is teaching you to study Web Development in two months in a practical manner and then hires you as an intern as well so that you would get hands on experience of the work which in turn increases your job prospects, what would you prefer honestly?

Do such short term certificate and diploma programs offer more prospects than a degree?

The eminence of any degree will never be questioned. Students who opt for short courses definitely finish up their degrees in a later period when they believe that they are stable in all matters. Each educational program carries its own virtue. An operation theatre technician may be highly skilled in assisting the doctor in the surgeries but the value of the doctor will remain cemented in society and academia. An operation theatre technician will continue to have their own value while the value of the doctor will remain undeterred.

Job prospects remain fine for any skillful person who can cope well with the job description and due to the nature of such short term courses; they tend to gain you meaningful employment in one way or the other. If you have done a diploma in Human Resource Management but majored in Humanities in your Bachelor’s or Master’s, you are still very likely to land a job in the Human Resource department of any organization. During your period of tenure, you can further nourish your present skills and prosper towards increments and promotions as well. You could study Content Writing and work for organizations providing thesis editing and proofreading service.

Are short term certificate courses and diploma programs beneficial to graduates?

Short term certificate courses and diploma programs are beneficial to all; every single person. We are living in the digital era where we are bestowed with innovative technologies on a regular basis so updating and enriching your existent skills and knowledge will further provide you with the updated knowledge and skills required for survival.

You are a Chartered Accountant and studied Chartered Accountancy around two decades ago, in retrospect you may have been at the top of your field, but in the prevailing era; if you cannot operate a financial accounting software or Microsoft Excel the simplest of all, you will most likely be deemed a failure in your field and denied any employment. You may be brilliant and creative in terms of graphic designing, possessing the most artistic mind of all but if you refuse to move on to Adobe Illustrator from Macromedia Freehand, you will not be doing yourself any favors and instead you will end up being ridiculed for being ‘outdated’.

To pursue or not to pursue? Situation differs for every person. In our country, many students have had their education pace disrupted owing to countless issues and due to lack of innovation in the education sector; many students still continue to suffer. A lot of these students stabilized their lives after acquiring skills and knowledge from such courses. However, degrees will remain dominant in their domain and such courses can and will not dent the significance of a full-fledged degree. The comparison is rather futile and each certification holds its own importance in life.