I think that with the ever growing amount of educational resources available free on the internet, this is the next logical step. We've already seen many well known schools begin offering certificates after completing a program, being able to receive an actual degree (assuming that standards are maintained) should do a lot to alleviate our dependence on accumulating crippling student loan debt.
Industry certification has been a thing for years, but the onus is on the employer to recognize. Take for example the certifications from cisco, red hat, etc and so on. I'm guessing that's what you mean anyway.