So what are digital badges? Johanna mentioned in the previous post about Mozilla Open Badges and this helpful video outlines the vision they have for how badges could be used for learning.
The TEL steering group and others at the University are currently reviewing the potential use of badges at UoD. They want to ensure there is governance over badges and how they are awarded in order to retain the value which can be placed on them from students, employers and others who may come across them in the future.
ALT recently published an interesting post on a recent survey they sent out to a range of education institutions and it seems that most are still in the exploration phase of looking at badges, they tend to lean towards their use for CPD and the VLE being the way they would issue them. However, some felt that these features were not always fit for purpose as concerns were raised over whether the badges would remain in place if the module is deleted or the VLE is changed and how to ensure the metadata contained within the badge will still remain valid if these types of changes happen.
Another interesting post is from David Hopkins at University of Warwick who talks about the criteria for which badges should be rewarded and suggests it should not just be for student performance but also for the skills they have learnt such as debating, presenting, group work etc. These maybe considered more meaningful than if the student has passed an assignment or a section of the course.
Another popular use for badges is in MOOCs, with the recent UoD MOOCs called Digital.Me and Bridging the Dementia Divide both using these to award participants for completing units within the course. These are then exported to the Mozilla backpack and can be taken with the learner to then demonstrate what they have learnt to others.