Immersive Experiences to Build Problem-Solving Skills
Looking for targeted training to sharpen your product support skills for a new job or task assignment? Look no further than the Integrated Product Support (IPS) Element-based portfolio of Life Cycle Logistics Defense Acquisition Credentials.
Although the defense acquisition credential program was launched over two years ago, there are still some misperceptions about what credentials are and why they are an important resource for professional development. Permit me to help dispel some of those misperceptions.
Credentials vs. Certification. Defense Acquisition Credentials provide the knowledge and associated skills to perform job-centric functions and improve your performance. Different from “certification,” which is mandatory and comprised of two or more tiers with specific education, training, experience, and assessment (if applicable) requirements for acquisition-coded positions, credentials are self-directed or optional, unless directed by Service or unit policy. Credentials follow a defined structure, generally composed of three parts: (1) a bundle of courses; (2) a capstone scenario; and (3) an assessment. Once earned, unlike certifications, credentials “expire” and must be renewed (more on this later).
Life Cycle Logistics Credentials. Carrying the “CLCL” designation, there are currently 15 Life Cycle Logistics credentials, with three more in development. Each LCL credential was designed with a specific product support focus area in mind, and generally include only online training courses, which learners can self-register for and complete at their own pace. Most LCL credentials are multi-disciplinary, including courses from other functional areas to round out your perspective on a given topic. LCL credentials all feature immersive capstone scenarios, with animated characters or recorded live-action sequences with professional actors playing the role of Program Manager, Product Support Manager, Life Cycle Logistician, etc. The scenarios, which feature fictional programs with realistic challenges, immerse the learner with the “characters” as they solve problems using DoD policies and procedures, innovation, and creativity. LCL credentials are creative and engaging, featuring characters who sometimes time-travel, “break out” of rooms by following clues and solving riddles, or engage in other “interesting activities” with plenty of humor and good-natured fun representative of the kind of workplace we’d all like to serve in.
“Unofficial” Credential Tips.
- If your position or Service doesn’t require a specific credential, search the iCatalog for those that interest you; or, find a credential for which you’ve already completed some or most of the courses
- You don’t have to “enroll” in the credential before completing the required courses; you can enroll after you’ve completed some or all, just leaving the capstone scenario and assessment (Note: credentials are periodically revised, e.g., with “A” suffix when courses changes, so if you delay enrollment, check the iCatalog frequently to make sure you have the latest list)
- Retain and consult “Print Files” of courses within the credential as a memory jogger during the end of credential assessment, if needed
- Mind the renewal e-mail when received toward the end of the expiration period (e.g., 5 years); generally, you will only need to complete any new courses added since you first completed the credential, or re-take the assessment to prove you’ve retained (and are using) the knowledge and skills gained
- Use credentials to focus your efforts to complete your 80 Continuous Learning Points (CLPs) every 2 years; although you may take a different path, using a credential(s) as an initial plan gives you something to aim for
- Provide DAU feedback! Fill out the survey so we can make YOUR credentials better!