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Microsoft LinkedIn Learning - Imagine Academy & Lynda.com

From automation and artificial intelligence to environmental issues and the rise of the gig economy, the way we work is transforming. These changes bring new jobs, new skill sets, and new industries that our workforce, educators, and government must respond to in order for Washington to stay competitive in the global economy. As one of Washington’s largest employers and a global industry leader in information technology Microsoft is in a unique position to provide solutions at both ends of the IT workforce development spectrum – labor and industry.

The Microsoft LinkedIn Learning supports the most in-demand, future-forward IT careers with resources that build skills and knowledge and prepare learners for industry-recognized certifications that lead to education credits and living-wage employment. LinkedIn Learning is home to the Lynda.com online learning platform of video courses taught by industry experts in software, creative, and business skills. It is a subsidiary of LinkedIn, which is owned by Microsoft. 

The Washington State Library (WSL) funds statewide access to the Microsoft Imagine Academy and to LinkedIn Learning, underwritten by discounts from Microsoft, and made possible through Legislative appropriation. Imagine Academy resources are provided through the WSL’s Central Library, and facilitated by our 11 Institutional and Correctional Center Libraries and the Washington Talking Book & Braille library, and public and tribal libraries, and community and technical colleges across the state, ensuring easy and equitable local access and support for all Washingtonians. LinkedIn Learning is accessible with a library card from any Washington public library (including the State Library), via the libraries' website.

Microsoft Imagine Academy supports Learning Pathways for 4 areas of study identified by industry experts as leading to high-demand, future-ready employability; these are productivity, computer science, IT infrastructure, and data science. Access the Microsoft Imagine Academy through the Washington State Library’s website; you will be asked to self-attest that you reside or work in Washington State before gaining access; no library card is required.

Many of Washington's public and tribal libraries, and community/technical colleges offer Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS)Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA)Microsoft Certified Educator (MCE), Quickbooks, Adobe Associate, Unity Certified User and IC3 digital literacy certifications. Learn more about taking certification exams in Washington, and find preparation resources on our Learn, Practice, Certify page. Certification exams are free for Washington residents and employees, although some may charge a proctoring fee of up to $30 per exam. Find an authorized testing center near you; contact the testing center directly for information on specific fees and scheduling. 

*****NOTE*****In response to COVID-19 closures, online certification is available. To begin the process of scheduling an exam, contact Elizabeth Iaukea at [email protected] Please note that WSL requires proof of proficiency before scheduling; you may present a high school or college transcript showing a passing grade in a course covering certification exam objectives, or achieve scores of more than 85 percent on at least 2 GMetrix practice exams corresponding to the certification exam you wish to take. Access codes are provided free of charge to Washington residents; please contact your local public or tribal library, or visit the State Library's Learn, Practice, Certify page.

Program Goals

  • Help Washingtonians attain industry-recognized IT skills and Microsoft Office and other software certifications that make them competitive in the rapidly evolving 21st century workplace.

  • Support attainment of statewide economic development objectives, capitalize on job and workforce demands, and prepare the next generation Washington workforce for IT/STEM and IT-infused jobs across industry sectors.

  • Support Washington leadership in innovative IT and digital skills education reform by creating a sustainable long-term lifelong learning framework with measurable learning outcomes mapped to skills standards and certifications aligned with business and workplace requirements.

  • Promote a foundation for lifelong learning—the ability to adapt and upgrade individual skills in a rapidly changing world—by providing the essential digital skills all Washingtonians require to thrive in today's technology intensive environment, and to compete and place Washington at the forefront of the 21st-century global economic system.

  • Ensure equity of access for all Washingtonians regardless of race, color, national origin, location, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, gender identification, socioeconomic status, or physical ability.

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Funded in part by the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS) through the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA).