7 Reasons for Educators to Issue Open Badges

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here is an paradigm shift happening in the talent market. Organizations are faced with a huge burden to retrain talented employees, while professionals are seeking continuous development to remain relevant in an ever more competitive workforce. In this dynamic market, recognition of talents, skills and competencies needs to be more agile and granular. The shift towards student-centered learning is becoming more apparent. One important instructional method showing positive engagement and success is competency-based education for this prupose. According to The U.S. Department of Education, “Competency-based strategies provide flexibility in the way that credit can be earned or awarded, and provide students with personalized learning opportunities.” Competency-based education also promotes mastery of skills by allowing students to work at their own pace to gain that mastery, it increases their accountability and ownership of their learning.

In this dynamic market, recognition of talents, skills and competencies needs to be more agile and granular.

As we can derive from the above argument, it is evident that one possible solution is the use of open source digital badges, also known as Open Badges.Open Badges are digital badges that follow open standards, which allow for greater acceptance and interoperability. Specifically, we can characterizeOpen Badgesthrough these major distinctions:

Open Badges Are Open

Open Badges are not controlled by any one organization. Instead they are free, open-source and accessible to the world-wide community.

Open Badges Are Discoverable

Open Badges are meant to be public. Badges and badge assertions or awards are meant to be shareable on the social media and other means that enable badge earners to demonstrate their skills and to connect with personal and professional growth opportunities.

Open Badges Are Evidence-Based

The information about who, why, and for what the badge was issued is hard-coded into it as metadata.

Open Badges Are Stackable

Digital badges from different organizations can be built on top of each other, building a rich ecosystem.

Open Badges Are Portable

Badges earned in one environment can be shared in another or synchronized with personalized Open Badges repository or Badge Backpack.

Open Badges Are User-Controlled

Open Badges are designed to be owned and controlled by the individual recipient. The recipient hold those badges in a profile and controls whether those badges are private or public.

Open Badges Are Machine-Readable

Open Badges metadata are organized in a way that makes those digital micro-credentials machine-reable. Thus allowing advancement of education in ways we couldn’t imagine few years ago. Machine-readibility allows artificial intelligence algorithm to help with career orientation, personal development, employability and professional growth.