Wednesday, February 8, 2017

5 Ways to Show Off Your Digital Badges

More and more entities are helping people show what they know with micro-credentials and digital badging.  Micro-credentials and certifications teach specific job skills and provide evidence indicating if these skills have been attained via a certificate or badge. The International Society for Technology Education (ISTE) recommends using a badging system built on Mozilla’s Open Badge Infrastructure. In their paper on the topic, the Nellie Mae Education Foundation explains that the badge image itself becomes the visual symbol or icon a learner can display to represent mastery or knowledge. Anyone clicking the image can link to verifiable information about who issued the badge, the evidence behind it, and its potential value.

In New York City thousands of teachers have participated in a technology certification program that produces expert New York City educators by providing them with best practices in using technology tools and resources for teaching and learning. Industry-leading companies like Common Sense Education, Promethean, Google, Newsela, and PBS have joined in this effort to develop experts in effective teaching methods, digital citizenship, family engagement, and using technology across subject areas. These teachers are prepared to share this knowledge with other educators in their schools, districts, and boroughs. 

Those who complete the program receive digital badges, but what is one to do with this recognition? Here are some ideas:

Show off your badges
Add your badges to your Twitter profile.
Link to badges from your email signature.
Badges in Signature JP.png
Share your badge on your class or school website

Share badges on your blog.
Make a badge to be used across platforms such as email signatures and profile pics on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

Pat Wong (@TechieGirl) created this using CollageIt and Pixlr.
Pat wong.jpg

High school English teacher and tech coordinator Christina Basias (@xtina_bas) shared the result of sharing her badges in her email signature was a cultural shift in the school. When people include this in their signature, there becomes a new level of awareness of the expertise among the school community. It also prompted staff to begin conversations about how various resources are being used to support effective teaching and learning. It wasn’t long before conversations about innovative practices became common place.  

Middle school teacher Clemencia Acevado (@Acevedo493) said she noticed something similar. When she began using her signature, others noticed and wanted to do the same. It brought an intentional level of professionalism to staff who realized their colleagues were recognizing their areas of expertise.

Jackie Patanio (@JPatanio ) an ed tech leader for New York City schools shares her badges in her signature. This way others will have an awareness of her accomplishments and areas of expertise where she may be able to offer support.

When educators saw Eileen Lennon (@eileen_lennon) sporting badges on her social media profile pictures they wanted to know how she did it. Rather than answer everyone individually, she wrote this article explaining her technique.

Middle school tech teacher Darlynn Alfalla shares her badges on her school tech website because she feels it is important for parents to see that their child's teachers are learning alongside their children. It is a true mark of teaching excellence when an educator is modeling the love of learning for students and parents to see.

So what do you think? Do any of these ideas resonate with you? Do you have other ideas. Please share in the comments.

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