Open Badges in Scottish Education Group Member badge

In Scotland, interest has been growing in the opportunities afforded by Open Badges to augment traditional accreditation routes. A Jisc RSC Scotland event held in April 2013, the Open Badges Design Day, provided an opportunity for staff from further and higher education institutions to work with the Mozilla Badges and Skills Lead, Doug Belshaw and the CEO of DigitalMe (DML Competition ‘Badges for Lifelong Learning’ winners and Badge the UK leads) Tim Riches, to consider the Open Badges Infrastructure (OBI) and possible badge-based pathways to learning. At this event, there was consensus that it would be useful to bring together interested parties to identify areas where Open Badges could add value to education in Scotland and to co-develop such badges.

In response to this, the Jisc RSC Scotland has convened the Open Badges in Scottish Education Group (OBSEG) with members from schools, further and higher education institutions, educational agencies including the Scottish Qualifications Authority and Education Scotland, professional bodies, employer bodies, national and local government, Open Badge projects such as DigitalMe’s Badge the UK and Mozilla. The group will perform an overview and mapping function of Open Badges developments in Scottish education, set up a number of sub-groups to jointly take forward specific areas of Open Badges work and consider and develop badge pathways. The group hopes that through the input of representatives from a variety of educational institutions and agencies in Scotland, it will be able to consider synergies between different stages on a learner’s formal and informal learning journey and contribute to the development of a badge eco-system within Scotland.

Who’s in the Open Badges in Scottish Education Group and what are their Open Badges interests?

To gain a sense of the kind of organisations, institutions and bodies represented on the Open Badges in Scottish Education Group, view the Open Badges in Scottish Education and Sub-Groups constellations designed by OBSEG members and developers of the BadgeMaker tool, We are Snook. Each point on the OBSEG members consellation represents a member of the group as of October 2013.

OBSEG constellations of members and sub-groups

Overarching remit:

The Open Badges in Scottish Education Group will gain an overview of Open Badges work in education in Scotland and map this work. Sub-groups will take forward joint developments and consider and create badge pathways.

Specifically, the group will:

  1. Map and gain an overview of Open Badges work in education in Scotland
  2. Build on strengths
    1. Be cross-sectoral – achievable due to size of Scotland
    2. Group is forming at an early enough stage to bring something together at a national level
  3. Increase awareness of Open Badges
  4. Be ambassadors for Open Badges
  5. Empower others to use Open Badges
  6. Agree clear outcomes for sub-groups to jointly take forward specific areas of work
  7. Build an Open Badges community in Scotland
  8. Disseminate and promote work of the group via channels such as:
    1. Jisc communication channels
    2. Social media
    3. Blog
    4. Conferences and events
  9. Avoid duplication and foster a coherent, consistent approach to Open Badges developments
  10. Agree a few key areas to take forward

Specific areas the Open Badges in Scottish Education Group will be considering include:

  1. Learner Progress
    1. Achievement
    2. Attainment
    3. Employability / soft skills / employer engagement
    4. Recognition / accreditation of prior learning (R/APL)
    5. Modes of assessment
    6. Higher Education Achievement Report (HEAR)
    7. Linking to standards
    8. Access and inclusion
    9. Library / learning resources
    10. MOOCs
  2. Staff Development
    1. CPD
    2. HR
    3. Recognition / accreditation of prior learning (R/APL)
    4. Modes of assessment
    5. Linking to standards and professional associations, (eg General Teaching Council, Higher Education Academy UK Professional
    6. Standards Framework (UKPSF), Professional Standards for Lecturers in Scotland’s Colleges etc)
    7. Access and inclusion
    8. Employer engagement
    9. MOOCs
  3. Technology and Design
    1. Systems for issuing and displaying badges (Moodle, GLOW, Blackboard, WordPress, Google sites etc)
    2. Open Badge system design
    3. Open Badge design
    4. Leveling (eg Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF))
    5. Discoverability
    6. Consistent methods for writing criteria / describing learning outcomes and competencies (eg inLOC)
    7. Badge pathways, constellations and processes
    8. Employer engagement