In today’s technology driven world, how we learn and how we get recognized for what we learn is changing. BadgeOS is at the forefront of this movement. Used by organisations such as the New York City Department of Education and the American Association for State and Local History, BadgeOS is set up to deliver digital badges to students once they master a skill.
Digital badges are a great way to engage learners in the 21st century. They can be earned by people of all ages from kindergarten onwards. They can make notable accomplishments visible to anyone the learner would like to show it to including, potential employers, teachers, peers, etc. These badges are designed by educators, trainers and gamers, and are used by some of the world’s best – known organizations. BadgeOS is not just a platform is a new way of thinking about learning.
BadgeOS is an open source system. BadgeOS is a project led by Learning Times , a leader in producing learning programs, communities and events that engage audiences online and offline. The project is also sponsored by Credly who verifies the digital badges learners earn. It's plug in and its add ons are developed by WebDevStudios, leading WordPress experts, developers and authors, and contributors to the core WordPress platform.
Why use badges in education?
BadgeOS allows universities, business, etc. to create curriculum or material that replicates a video game where the learner progresses to different levels based on his/her performance and, receives a badge to recognise the knowledge and skills acquired.
Badges can be customized based on the learning objectives of a course or program, motivation and target population. The organisation sets specific guidelines and rubrics for badges to award learners.
A badge – based program using BadgeOS can be built by school teachers, corporate trainers, content experts, etc. They can also share these badges with others across any BadgeOS system. Digital badges earned by the learner can be shared on Linkedin, Twitter, Facebook. They can also be integrated with existing Learning Management Systems (LMS) like Moodle, Blackboard, etc.
Work in Progress
Although digital credentials badges are still a work in progress. They are increasingly being used by several organisations and universities like Yale University, New York City Department of Education, the American Association for State and Local History, etc.
BadgeOS is an open source platform that an organisation can use to incorporate badges into their programs online and offline to increase engagement among the audience. In fact, Credly is used by Universities like NYC, Yale, etc. to reward student success from MOOCs to job readiness and also, recognise the professional achievements of teachers and staff.
Digital badges can be easily incorporated into Learning Management Systems (LMS) like Moodle, Backboard,etc. The learner can also share their digital badges on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. with prospective employers and their peers.
I believe that digital badges are the future of education credentials for two reasons:
With rapidly changing economies, members of the workforce are constantly seeking training opportunities. Earning a certificate or degree from a post secondary institution only marks the beginning of a lifelong learning journey of recertificaion and, professional development. Digital badges represent incremental learning and progress.
They provide individuals with opportunities to gain 21st century skills online at lower costs and at their convenience. It also provides employers with a better understanding of the skill and knowledge level of an individual It shows an employer that an individual has demonstrated mastery of specific granular skills and competencies (Opperman, 2016).
Employers worldwide lament a massive skill gap that traditional degrees and certificates are not able to fill. This is especially the case in the IT industry. That's why websites like Codecademy offers instruction in computer programming and other skills online. Millions of learners have used Codecademy outside the classroom to learn digital skills essential in the 21st century. They award digital badges to learners as they acquire new skills and knowledge (Sims, 2014).
Check out the links below to learn more!
Sims, Z. (2014, May 23). Education Needs to Change as Fast as Technology. Retrieved from Forbes:http://www.forbes.com/sites/techonomy/2014/05/23/education-needs-to-change-as-fast-as-technology/#49381712749a
Opperman, A. (2016, June 13). Are Digital Badges The New Measure Of Mastery? Retrieved from Forbes: http://www.forbes.com/sites/gradsoflife/2016/06/13/are-digital-badges-the-new-measure-of-mastery/#1e38f58b23ae