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 further and higher education institutions, educational agencies including the Scottish Qualifications Authority and Education Scotland, and Open Badge projects such as DigitalMe’s Badge the UK. The group will perform an overview and mapping function of Open Badges developments in Scotland, 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.
Specific areas the OBSEG will be considering include:
- Learner Progress: achievement, attainment, employability, soft skills, recognition / accreditation of prior learning (RPL / APL), modes of assessment, linking to standards, access and inclusion, library / learning resources, MOOCs
- Technology Interface: systems in which to issue, display and promote badges, badge design, interfacing with Mozilla and other platforms, frameworks (eg Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF)), linking to standards, recognition (RPL / APL), levelling and consistency, badge pathways and processes, describing competencies (eg InLOC), marketing / brand, MOOCs, access and inclusion, library / learning resources
- Staff Development: CPD, HR, recognition (RPL / APL), modes of assessment, linking to standards (GTC etc.), access and inclusion, library / learning resources, MOOCs