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Badges for Lifelong Learning
Supported by the MacArthur Foundation Digital Media and Learning Initiative
Curated by HASTAC
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Website recognizes military skills with digital badges | Inside Higher Ed | Paul Fain

Website recognizes military skills with digital badges | Inside Higher Ed | Paul Fain | Badges for Lifelong Learning | Scoop.it

It can be difficult for veterans to explain the skills and training they received in the military to potential employers. A new website attempts to bridge that gap by giving veterans digital “badges” that recognize their skills.

 

When it goes live next month, BadgesforVets.org will be a résumé translation and job search service. The extensive project, which includes badges representing training in more than 1,000 military jobs, is also a particularly promising foray into digital badging -- a much-hyped, although still nascent, form of alternative credentialing that could conceivably undermine higher education's role as a primary way of signaling skills to employers.



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The School of Open Badges (aka the Evolution of Open Badges 101) |Leah McVie

The School of Open Badges (aka the Evolution of Open Badges 101) |Leah McVie | Badges for Lifelong Learning | Scoop.it

Back in April of 2012, I developed a course on P2PU called Open Badges 101. People from all over the world signed up for it to learn more about open badges. Although I developed it as a very basic personal challenge to learn more about open badges, I was amazed at the wide variety of disciplines (programmers, educators, technologists, etc.) represented in the roster. It launched me into an unexpected community of people who, like me, love to learn. I was encouraged to create more courses on this topic by the wonderful open badges folks at Mozilla and in the open badges community.

 

Fast-forward 8 months and a few conversations later with Peter Rawsthorne (partner-in-crime) and everything is finally in place to begin working on more courses. A collection of courses, in fact, that will become part of the new School of Open Badges on P2PU. The ‘courses’ will really be set up as ‘challenges’ on P2PU, meaning people can enter at any point and complete the work on their own time. (P2PU ‘courses’ rely on the structure of a time period, where ‘challenges’ rely on each individual to rely on their completion rate and motivation to progress.)

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Telling the Story: Don't Need No Badges...

The important part of Mozilla Badges is that it's not just a pretty picture. There's data actually embedded in the badge graphic (the PNG format allows this). That data tells you where to get the public assertion that you earned the right to display your badge proudly.

 

For mine, the assertion looks like this. OK, it doesn't look that pretty. What it is is a well-formed JSON structure in Mozilla's approved format.

 

How would you display your pretty badges on your page? All you need now is the BadgeWidgethack. (This may get folded into Mozilla).

 

Of course there's lots of technicalities to building and baking badges. (A 'baked' badge has the data added to the graphic.) Explore yourself! There's even a badge to be earned: Open Badges 101 at P2PU.

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Asking Questions About Badges in Higher Ed | HASTAC

Asking Questions About Badges in Higher Ed | HASTAC | Badges for Lifelong Learning | Scoop.it

Amy McQuigge’s prompt How can colleges and universities use badges? is a lot more slope of enlightenment and a little less peak of inflated expectations when it comes to badges in higher ed (Looking at you, major media sources.)

The disruptive potential of badges in higher ed makes for compelling headlines, but the real nuts-and-bolts innovation is happening on the ground. I thought I would contribute something to Amy’s question by taking a look at the variety of badge systems being designed for colleges and universities.

By higher ed, I mean universities and colleges as institutions, not only a place where students take classes. In the major news articles, badges are often tossed in the ring with grades, degrees, and credentials, but there are multiple layers of learning going on in higher ed, and that makes universities an interesting sandbox for innovative badge systems. (Cathy Davidson’s Fast Company series on Changing Higher Education to Change the World is a good primer to learn more about innovative ways to think about learning in higher ed.)

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Update from Digital Media and Learning @Duke | Peer to Peer University

Update from Digital Media and Learning @Duke | Peer to Peer University | Badges for Lifelong Learning | Scoop.it
Greetings peers–I just returned from a whirlwind trip to Durham for the DML Grantee workshop. All of us grantees gathered together to share how we approach assessment and badging systems.  As P2PU has been doing this stuff for awhile, we were asked by DML to talk about what we’re up to.

 

DML Demo The prompt was to give a brief overview of our system, and to answer the question “How do we test our system or prototype?”
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What If People Make Bad Badges? P2PU’s Plan of Action. | Peer to Peer University

What If People Make Bad Badges? P2PU’s Plan of Action. | Peer to Peer University | Badges for Lifelong Learning | Scoop.it

P2PU has something to learn from the discipline of Content Strategy, which is an approach to planning and maintaining web content. Earlier this summer, I consulted rockstar Content Strategist Erin Kissane on how to think about this issue. We discussed the following 2 paths:

 

1. Recognize folks who do it well. For instance, we love recent badges from Mick Fuzz and Leah Macvie. We need to elevate good badges to a status that people want, encouraging them to be thoughtful. Perhaps a badges Hall of Fame is in our future?

 

2. Give users the tools to make good badges. We’ll prompt folks with templates and suggestions. Verifyapp, an online user-testing service, provides sample questions that they have found to be very reliable, which helps their users get solid results from their tests.

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eduToolkit: Teachers Open Online Learning | Badge Ecosystem

eduToolkit: Teachers Open Online Learning | Badge Ecosystem | Badges for Lifelong Learning | Scoop.it

Earning badges for learning new things is a way to display knowledge and skills. At the moment we have released three light blue ‘CommunityBadges’. For more on the proposed Skill Badge for ‘Certified Networked Teacher’ at P2PU, check this out: http://edutoolkit.wordpress.com/2012/05/04/skill-badge-certified-networked-teacher-cnt12/, as well as the URL for the challenge associated with this badge
http://p2pu.org/en/groups/certified-networked-teacher/

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eduToolkit's comment, May 5, 2012 2:37 PM
Thank you for sharing our mission, the skill badge is getting 'baked' as we speak/text/connect...
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What did we learn during a ‘semester of learning’ on #openbadges over at P2PU.org? | dougbelshaw.com/blog

What did we learn during a ‘semester of learning’ on #openbadges over at P2PU.org? | dougbelshaw.com/blog | Badges for Lifelong Learning | Scoop.it

Every time a new educational fad erupts it seems to be polarizing, which seems to hold true in the conversations surrounding the dml announcement. Instead of talking about whether we agree or disagree with the movement a better topic would be, what can these badges do for education, specifically assessment.

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Badges and Assessment (part 1) | Coordinating Curation

I’ve come on board to work on two projects, the first to help develop a badge backpack, and the second is to work with Philipp Schmidt and the Peer-2-Peer University (P2PU) to experiment with peer-based educational assessment and recognition. The relationship between the two projects is simple: some peer-based assessments on P2PU will result in students being given digital badges; these badges will then get stored in a digital backpack.

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Critical Technology: School of Open Badges

Critical Technology: School of Open Badges | Badges for Lifelong Learning | Scoop.it

Over the last couple of weeks a lot has happened with Open Badges and the Peer 2 Peer University. First off I was collaborating with Leah MacVie around what is the follow-on to the P2PU Open badges 101 course. And I was wanting to move my work of putting together a step-by-step into the P2PU as the platform for peer learning around badges. Leah had also done a bunch of great work in developing the first 101 course and had an outline for another... we were wondering how all this would fit together.

I was inspired by Leah's work so I drew on the outlines she had created, added my step-by-step guide outline into the mix and thought a lot about what would be a comprehensive Open Badges curriculum. I created a nine course curriculum and created really brief course descriptions and cane up with a course leveling (beginner, intermediate, expert, and master) approach and gave the courses numbers like 102, 103, 201, 202, etc... I took this work to the Open Badges Community Call to gather feedback.

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A blunder through OpenBadges

A blunder through OpenBadges | Badges for Lifelong Learning | Scoop.it

I had been thinking that a WordPress blog might be a good way to display badges. Whilst I have not yet got the WordPress Badge Display plug-in working, Dave Lester who created it has assured me he will give me all the assistance I need to get it up and running properly. In the meantime, I had found a site called BadgeWidgetHack which creates some HTML allowing you to display badges. I cut and pasted this into a text editor in my sidebar, and it worked. Or at least I thought it worked! The esteemedJohn Johnston, far wiser about such things than I am, quickly spotted that the BadgeWidgetHack code was limited to the most recent 3 badges you had earned. Quicker than I could say “Whit?”, John had the code hacked and a new improved version displaying more (all?) of my badges available.

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Behind The Scenes Technology: P2PU & A Badge or P2P & A Degree?

Behind The Scenes Technology: P2PU & A Badge or P2P & A Degree? | Badges for Lifelong Learning | Scoop.it

Instead of the traditional degree or certificate that are earned in traditional higher education institutions, P2PU offers learners digital badges. The Chronicle of Higher Education author Kevin Carey quotes the MacArthur foundation as saying that a badge was "a validated indicator of accomplishment, skill, quality or interest" Carey provides a very simple image of a digital badge by relating it to the items that Scouts were on their uniforms and earn for completing selected task. P2PU states that they have"pioneered the use of badges to recognize skills and projects. We’vepublished papers on the subject. Scaled the badge model for a pilot of 500 learners. Won grants for our implementation." Bb helped hundreds earn a FREE digital badge through their first MOOC with Dr. Bonk on Coursesites, so even a traditional higher education company is employing badges and other companies are using them for staff professional development. The three questions that I have is: (1) What is stopping people from making their own badges, who is the governing body for digital badges?, (2)Are we just going from degree/diploma mills to badge mills?, and (3) what does P2PU have to offer course/group leaders that Bb Coursesites does not?

With Blackboard or another LMS, a good instructor can create the same peer 2 peer communication, support, and learning through journals, blogs, team assignments, groups, webinars, and peer review tools. While as the world and technology are always changing, education must change also. But currently, I believe employers are still looking for degrees/diplomas and work experience on resumes. I think P2PU is a great resource or help to struggling students, but not a replacement for traditional education. As Julie Kelleher posted today on Blackboard's blog, how does someone put a value on college. 

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Critical Technology: Open Badges Step 0.4: P2Pu Open badges 101

In this screencast I look at Peer 2 Peer Universities Open badges 101 course. The screencast is a part of the Introduction to Open Badges Step by Step guide. The main theme of this screencast is to encourage people to familiarize themselves with and complete the course.

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participating in open course on open badges

participating in open course on open badges | Badges for Lifelong Learning | Scoop.it

I signed up for an open course at P2PU where an Open Badges course is offered. This course is about open badges and I will get my first 2 open badges, I think, if I complete this successfully. Somehow it already sounds better than just completing a course. Do these badges remind us of stickers, or in my case stamps we got in school for work completed well?


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In our courses we focus on the journey, the process of learning. Will badges create more assessment driven learners? The text that stood out for me was the 7 things you need to know about badges.  This provides a comprehensive overview of open badges for students and teachers and I plan to use this for our PGCAP course when introducing badges.

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All About Badges: How They Work & Their Future at P2PU | Peer to Peer University

All About Badges: How They Work & Their Future at P2PU | Peer to Peer University | Badges for Lifelong Learning | Scoop.it

P2PU has pioneered the use of badges to recognize skills and projects. We’ve published papers on the subject. Scaled the badge model for a pilot of 500 learners. Won grants for our implementation. But how do badges actually work? And what’s the future of badges at P2PU?

Anyone can create a badge, and we especially encourage course organizers to create badges as part of their course design. If you’re interested in making a badge and would like feedback, check out the rad How Do I Make a Badge? Challenge.

 

Three Types of Badges.
If you’re participating in a Challenge, badges are integrated within that learning experience. We currently offer 3 different types of badges–they differ in the way they are awarded.

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Opening the Door for More: Digital Merit Badges in Education

If you feel a bit unfamiliar with this idea, no worries, you probably know a good amount already. First, take what you know about the Boy Scouts and their merit badge system. Add in what you know about earning badges from video/computer games. And then take your knowledge of learning standards and assessments into account. Mash-up those elements with a couple of other ingredients and the outcome becomes digital learning badges. I like to think of this "informal" learning as a kind of backchannel in education, the education that is going on in the student's life which isn't recorded in the gradebook. Since the inception of assessments in education, this important stuff has been missing when we grade our students about what they "know."

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'Certification' Revisited | Erin Knight

There are so many important skills and competencies, some age-old and some new(ish) in today’s world, that are not currently captured or acknowledged. Things like the often referenced 21st Century Skills, or New Media Literacies, which cover everything from information organization and evaluation, to negotiation and trial-and-error prototyping. Or the “soft” skills like critical thinking and teamwork.

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Mozilla’s Open Badges Project: A New Way to Recognize Learning | MindShift

Mozilla’s Open Badges Project: A New Way to Recognize Learning | MindShift | Badges for Lifelong Learning | Scoop.it

The Mozilla Foundation and Peer-to-Peer University (P2PU), among others, are working to take the idea of merit-earned badges and build a framework around which they can be used as alternative but accepted forms of certification.

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