Digital Badges: A Primer

Yay! I have a shiny new digital badge! Now what?! 

For those who participated in the latest #EdTechLN TweetUp this month, we handed out a digital badge specifically designed for TweetUp participants. Digital badges are a new method of rewarding accomplishments, skills, or interests that can be earned in various learning environments. You can read more about the background and use of digital badges in this Educause pub.

Digital Badge Programs

The Educational Technology Learning Network is in the process of creating a Digital Badges Program (here’s a good example of such a program from the Smithsonian). The badge given to TweetUp participants represented their participation in that event. Future badges will represent participation in conference Meet-Up events, writing for this blog, and offering expert advice in featured stories.

As the Learning Network progresses, so too will our Digital Badge Program. Badges could be awarded to those who participate in the most TweetUps, or are voted as the most helpful or knowledgeable Learning Network member. If you have an idea for a digital badge, let us know in the comments!

How to Use Digital Badges

So what do you DO with a digital badge once you earn it? The answer is: it’s up to you. The Learning Network is utilizing Credly.com to award badges to Learning Network members. Once you claim your badges on Credly, it’s up to you how you want to display them.

Just as you may include degrees earned, or skills and expertise on your blog, webpage, LinkedIn account, or e-mail signature, you can also save onto your computer and include then use digital badges that you’ve earned in these same spaces. Another option is to create an online badge portfolio (such as Mozzilla Backpack) that serves the purpose of an online resume. Once you sign up for a Credly account to claim any earned Learning Network badges, you can also simply keep them in your Credly profile for digital hoarding later use.

Still unsure? Here are some more resources:

Digital Badges Collaborative

The Potential and Value for Using Digital Badges for Adult Learners

Digital Badges Show Students’ Skills Along with Degree

Questions? Leave a comment and we’ll be happy to help.

~Jamie

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