I think this sums up well a range of the opportunities and threats open badges present, providing key areas for consideration as a more robust and individualised approach to assessment and credentialising knowledge, skills and achievement moves ahead.
Fascinating article flipping concepts of assessment and what we assess. Downes explores the reasons for plagiarism and cheating in exams and considers the over-arching societal changes that may be required to create the kind of environment that would reduce these behaviours.
The validity of open badges is perhaps one of the key concerns raised when I discuss them. I think this article proposes some useful ways for considering this, focusing on how notions of credibility and reliability inform our perception of what is, or is not valid...
'The question of validity is posed fairly commonly.* It goes something like this, “How can we ensure that the badges have a sense of validity?” or “Who will vet them?” or “How will we know that they’re worthwhile badges issued from reputable sources?”
There is a good deal of subtext embedded in these seemingly simple questions. And bound into that subtext is an unwitting/unacknowledged acceptance of the sociocultural status quo. That tacit acceptance should be unpacked and considered. How does any organization achieve validity? How do standards become standards? When the landscape is unknown, how do you learn to trust anything?'
I'm no gamer and am certainly no programmer but I am intrigued by what I've been reading about a new game, Code Hero... The game teaches people how to code. It is based on the first-person shooter (FPS) style of game but instead of shooting with bullets, gamers use a console and code to interact with the environment. People move onto new levels as they achieve certain things but the game also includes stealth assessment...
I've been thinking about the implications for teaching, learning and assessment if the live element of teaching is no longer there. There do not appear to be any synchronous activities in the xMOOC I will be taking next year with Coursera and if this trend towards teaching via MOOCs and asynchronous activities continues, I wonder what, if anything, will be lost?
'I am currently doing some re-designing of the JISC RSC Scotland's online courses, and with all the discussion around MOOCs at the moment, this has prompted some questions for me about the synchronous, live aspect of teaching and how / if it needs to feature in online courses.'...
A few months back, we rolled out the Badges Competition Project Roadmap during our first grantee townhall webinar, a virtual opportunity for all 30 projects to share knowledge about designing and building their badge systems.
Why a project roadmap for grantee badge system design? No one-size-fits-all approach exists for building badge systems, but a roadmap offers useful guideposts to help thread knowledge and provide jumping-off points to spark ideas. Collaboration by difference -- especially the innovative type -- needs a blueprint that can then be adapted, tweaked, revisited, transformed, and yes -- even ignored.
DigitalMe, UK based winners of funding from the DML 'Badges for Lifelong Learning' competition, are looking for schools to engage with them on their award winning project, Supporter to Reporter...
'We will be developing an exciting new way to recognise and reward the skills young people develop by taking part in the award winning Supporter to Reporter programme. We know that through becoming a sports reporter, young people develop confidence, improved speaking and listening skills, teamwork and resilience, as well as the maturity to become mentors and pass on their skills to others. The DML open badges project will enable us to build a series of online ‘Medals’ which recognise and reward these achievements, which young people can use to demonstrate their skills to future employers.
We are looking for 5 Schools or Education Centres to work with us on this pilot project.'
Tim Riches, the CEO of DigitalMe, will be talking at the JISC RSC Scotland conference on the 8th June so if you are joining us there, you can find out more about the Supporter to Reporter programme http://bit.ly/KDgBTR
With developments in open assessment, open educational resources, open badges etc gathering pace, how to support consistent marking of evidence submitted for open assessment requires consideration. Rubrics can help to set out the learning outcomes and measurements for assessing work, and allow multiple assessors and / or assessors who do not know the person submitting evidence, to judge the work against. This article pulls together links to some example assessment rubrics and resources for creating your own rubrics.
This post covers work I have been doing recently on developing a badging system for the online courses we run at the JISC RSC Scotland, using the Mozilla Open Badges Infrastructure (OBI). The courses are not formally assessed or accredited so we only issue a Certificate of Completion for successful completion. Much of the course content is created by the learners and it also incorporates peer review so we do also issue a peer award.
We wanted to investigate ways to give the certificate and peer award more impact than just a piece of paper stuck in a drawer...
This post highlights the challenges associated with assessment in the new xMOOCs. It investigates some of the experiences around peer grading in courses currently underway in Coursera and questions the effectiveness of some of the peer feedback models being employed.
An overview of some key areas to consider in relation to the law and vulnerable learners in further education including data protection, accessibility, e-safety etc. The article provides scenarios and suggested solutions, as well as links to more in-depth guidance on various topics which are pertinent to teaching, learning and assessment and the kinds of tools and materials which might be used for them.
'Michael frames badges as a disruptive force within higher education, provoking his readers (initially directed towards sociologists) to evaluate the assumptions and norms of traditional institutions to legitimize and certify knowledge and skills. As Michael writes, his paper "establishes the need to develop sociological explanations for recent developments of certification of skill and knowledge mastery as possible substitutes for, or supplements to, conventional college and university degrees."'
The Scottish Mobile Learning Day was a chance for staff from further and higher education in Scotland to get together and discuss mobile learning and assessment. This post pulls together tweets from the day.
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