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Issue #004
Friday 17th February 2017

Welcome to Badge News from We Are Open Co-op! This is a new bi-weekly newsletter to keep the Open Badges community informed of what's going on, in-and-around the ecosystem.

This issue's featured article comes from Credly. Click through to discover how Colorado Community College System created a 'competency marketplace'.

A Competency Marketplace Springs to Life in the Rocky Mountains

A Competency Marketplace Springs to Life in the Rocky Mountains

An extract from the article:

The work has resulted in significant efficiencies for employers seeking qualified employees. By searching for the credential online or by contacting the school directly, employers are expressing a clear preference for candidates with the verified skills sets that match their needs. The transparency, specificity and searchability of the digital badges have helped enhance the level of trust between local industry and CCCS. Today, job descriptions themselves have realigned to better reflect the metadata included on the badges!

Latest news

Developer’s Guide to Issuing Open Badges 2.0

Nate Otto has written a guide for developers looking to use the upcoming version 2.0 of the Open Badges specification. It covers the status of 2.0 as well as changes (and improvements!) to badge issuing.

Free digital education for all: IBM invests almost R1 bil in African skill development

IBM has announced that they are investing $70 million in African skills development. These skills will be accredited using Open Badges, building on the success they've had issuing badges through existing programmes.

Promising Practices of Open Credentials: Five Years of Progress
Supported by the Mozilla Foundation, Sheryl Grant has written Promising Practices of Open Credentials: Five Years of Progress. The paper outlines, as the title suggests, 'promising practices' around Open Badges. An alternative download link can be found here.

This week, We Are Open Co-op launched BADGE BOOTCAMP, a self-paced email course for those new to Open Badges. It's available free of charge, thanks to some foundational sponsorship. 

Going forward, BADGE BOOTCAMP will be linked to in every issue of this newsletter. 

Assuring Graduate Capabilities - 21st Century Credentials: Case Studies

Beverley Oliver, with the support of the Australian Government Office for Learning and Teaching has produced a report on Assuring Graduate Capabilities using 21st Century Credentials. It features 19 case studies from initiatives around the world.

Let’s stop calling them ‘soft skills’

A growing use of badges is to use them to credential so-called 'soft skills'. Seth Godin thinks we need another name for them — and has produced a long list of those skills, qualities, and attributes he sees as desirable.

Image CC BY Luigi Mengato

Have you read a great article about badges you'd like us to include in an upcoming issue? Get in touch with a link!

Innovative uses of badges

The power of Open Badges comes from their ability to be issued by anyone for anything. While there are plenty of badges for knowledge and skills, one under-utilised way of using badges is to encourage and scaffold the kind of behaviours you want to see in the world. 

We Are Open Co-op (the organisation behind this newsletter) believes that co-operatives can help change the world for the better. We therefore wanted to recognise people's interest in the co-op movement. We've a number of other badges in development, but this first one ('Co-op Curious'), got the ball rolling and was issued to those who attended our first-ever meetup.

Seen an innovative use of badges? Let us know!

Recent academic articles

  • Grann, J. (2017). Competency‐Based Education: Capella University's Excellence in Assessment ProfileAssessment Update29(1), 8-13.
  • Chou, C. C., & He, S. J. (2017). The Effectiveness of Digital Badges on Student Online ContributionsJournal of Educational Computing Research54(8), 1092-1116.
  • Iwata, J., Clayton, J., & Saravani, S. J. (2017). Learner autonomy, microcredentials and self-reflection: a review of a Moodle-based medical English review courseInternational Journal of Information and Communication Technology10(1), 42-50.

Did we miss one? Incorrectly cite something? Send in a correction! Note that if an article listed above does not feature a link, this is because it is not available on the open web. You may be able to get access to it via your local library.

Upcoming events, webinars, and community calls

Know about an upcoming event — either online or offline? Get in touch with details!

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