Planet Webmaker

January 23, 2015

Open Badges blog

Open Badges Community Call, January 21, 2015

Open Badges Community Call, January 21, 2015:

Agenda: http://bit.ly/CC_Jan21

This year it’s all about making these calls more about you, our wonderful community. With our revived “open mic” approach, everyone who wants to give updates on their badging projects can have time to share and gather feedback from their fellow badgers.

This week we were introduced to newcomer Keesa Johnson, an instructional designer who is working on creating a framework for open badges at Michigan State University based on the badge system developed at Seton Hall University. Welcome, Keesa! We hope to see you sharing more on a future call.

A question from another newcomer, IBM’s Laurie Miller, sparked an interesting discussion about badge value. This is a conversation that’s been ongoing since badges first started gaining traction, but has gotten more attention recently, with more people writing, writing (and writing!) about the potential and challenges of creating value around digital and open badges. We’ll be using one of the upcoming calls to dive deeper, so get your thinking (and writing) caps on!

Sunny Lee brought up a recent discussion thread from the community mailing list on badges and image / content licensing, raising the question of whether folks would be interested in digging into the points raised on a community call. Catch up with the thread here and stay tuned for more movement on that conversation.

Andrew Downes is working on a prototype for issuing open badges through the Tin Can API; follow the Gitter chat here: https://gitter.im/ht2/BadgesCoP. Nate Otto posted “minor updates” to the Badgr mobile apps for iOS and Android - if you find any bugs, report them to Nate directly via email. These updates should make them compatible with more issuers of open badges (how exciting!)

Speaking of exciting projects, Don Present is working on building a badge-enabled personal learning environment (PLE) for international humanitarian workers, starting with Doctors Without Borders. We definitely look forward to hearing more about this as it progresses - and if you’re going to the 2015 ePIC Conference in Barcelona in June, look out for Don’s presentation on this project.

We were also joined by more of our European friends, Nerijus Kriauciunas and Robertas Visinkis, who have developed BadgeCraft, which offers tools for organizations to design, manage and issue open badges. Their project made it through to the finals of hte DML Competition, and although voting has now ended, you can read more about their proposal here: http://bit.ly/DML_BadgeCraft

Thank you to everyone who participated this week - join us next Wednesday at 12pm ET to share and give feedback on more community badging projects!

January 23, 2015 06:08 PM

Jess Klein

Dino Dribbble

The newly created Mozilla Foundation design team started out with a bang (or maybe I should say rawr) with our very first collaboration: a team debut on dribbble. Dribbble describes itself as a show and tell community for designers. I have not participated in this community yet but this seemed like a good moment to join in. For our debut shot, we decided to have some fun and plan out our design presence. We ultimately decided to go in a direction designed by Cassie McDaniel.

The concept was for us to break apart the famed Shepard Fairey Mozilla dinosaur into quilt-like
tiles.

 
Each member of the design team was assigned a tile or two and given a shape. This is the one I was assigned:
I turned that file into this:

We all met together in a video chat to upload our images on to the site.

Anticipation was building as we uploaded each shot one by one:
But the final reveal made it worth all the effort! 

Check out our new team page on dribbble. rawr!

Cassie also wrote about the exercise on her blog and discussed the opinion position for a designer to join the team.



January 23, 2015 01:12 AM

January 22, 2015

Matt Thompson

Mozilla Learning in 2015: our vision and plan

This post is a shortened, web page version of the 2015 Mozilla Learning plan we shared back in December. Over the next few weeks, we’ll be blogging and encouraging team and community members to post their reflections and detail on specific pieces of work in 2015 and Q1. Please post your comments and questions here — or get more involved.

Surman Keynote for Day One - Edit.002

Within ten years, there will be five billion citizens of the web.

Mozilla wants all of these people to know what the web can do. What’s possible. We want them to have the agency, skills and know-how they need to unlock the full power of the web. We want them to use the web to make their lives better. We want them to know they are citizens of the web.

Mozilla Learning is a portfolio of products and programs that helps people learn how to read, write and participate in the digital world.

Building on Webmaker, Hive and our fellowship programs, Mozilla Learning is a portfolio of products and programs that help these citizens of the web learn the most important skills of our age: the ability to read, write and participate in the digital world. These programs also help people become mentors and leaders: people committed to teaching others and to shaping the future of the web.

Mark Surman presents the Mozilla Learning vision and plan in Portland, Dec 2015

Three-year vision

By 2017, Mozilla will have established itself as the best place to learn the skills and know-how people need to use the web in their lives, careers and organizations. We will have:

At the end of these three years, we may have established something like a “Mozilla University” — a learning side of Mozilla that can sustain us for many decades. Or, we may simply have a number of successful learning programs. Either way, we’ll be having impact.

We may establish something like a “Mozilla University” — a learning side of Mozilla that can sustain us for many decades.

Surman Keynote for Day One - Edit.008
2015 Focus

1) Learning Networks 2) Learning Products 3) Leadership Development

Our focus in 2015 will be to consolidate, improve and focus what we’ve been building for the last few years. In particular we will:

The short term goal is to make each of our products and programs succeed in their own right in 2015. However, we also plan to craft a bigger Mozilla Learning vision that these products and programs can feed into over time.

Surman Keynote for Day One - Edit.003
A note on brand

Mozilla Learning is notional at this point. It’s a stake in the ground that says:

Mozilla is in the learning and empowerment business for the long haul.

In the short term, the plan is to use “Mozilla Learning” as an umbrella term for our community-driven learning and leadership development initiatives — especially those run by the Mozilla Foundation, like Webmaker and Hive. It may also grow over time to encompass other initiatives, like the Mozilla Developer Network and leadership development programs within the Mozilla Reps program. In the long term: we may want to a) build out a lasting Mozilla learning brand (“Mozilla University?”), or b) build making and learning into the Firefox brand (e.g., “Firefox for Making”). Developing a long-term Mozilla Learning plan is an explicit goal for 2015.

What we’re building

Practically, the first iteration of Mozilla Learning will be a portfolio of products and programs we’ve been working on for a number of years: Webmaker, Hive, Maker Party, Fellowship programs, community labs. Pulled together, these things make up a three-layered strategy we can build more learning offerings around over time.

  1. The Learning Networks layer is the most developed piece of this picture, with Hives and Maker Party hosts already in 100s of cities around the world.
  2. The Learning Products layer involves many elements of the Webmaker.org work, but will be relaunched in 2015 to focus on a mass audience.
  3. The Leadership Development piece has strong foundations, but a formal training element still needs to be developed.
Scope and scale

One of our goals with Mozilla Learning is to grow the scope and scale of Mozilla’s education and empowerment efforts. The working theory is that we will create an interconnected set of offerings that range from basic learning for large numbers of people, to deep learning for key leaders who will help shape the future of the web (and the future of Mozilla).

We want to increasing the scope and diversity of how people learn with Mozilla.

We’ll do that by building opportunities for people to get together to learn, hack and invent in cities on every corner of the planet. And also: creating communities that help people working in fields like science, news and government figure out how to tap into the technology and culture of the web in their own lives, organizations and careers. The plan is to elaborate and test out this theory in 2015 as a part of the Mozilla Learning strategy process. (Additional context on this here: http://mzl.la/depth_and_scale.) Surman Keynote for Day One - Edit.016

Contributing to Mozilla’s overall 2015 KPIs

How will we contribute to Mozilla’s top-line goals? In 2015, We’ll measure success through two key performance indicators: relationships and reach.

Surman Keynote for Day One - Edit.006

Learning Networks

In 2015, we will continue to grow and improve the impact of our local Learning Networks.

Surman Keynote for Day One - Edit.011

Learning Products

Grow a base of engaged desktop and mobile users for Webmaker.

Surman Keynote for Day One - Edit.014

Leadership Development

Develop a leadership development program, building off our existing Fellows programs.

Get involved

January 22, 2015 06:47 PM

January 21, 2015

Open Badges blog

BadgeLAB Leeds: badges for arts-based learning in the...



BadgeLAB Leeds: badges for arts-based learning in the UK

BadgeLAB Leeds is a partnership amongst ArtForms Leeds, Sheffield Hallam University and DigitalMe. The project works with local arts organisations and arts practitioners to help them create badges that recognise arts-based learning. BadgeLAB Leeds offers learning events for schools, learning programmes and informal audiences.

Buzz, one of the participating arts programmes, is for young people aged 14 to 25 who have a learning disability. It’s offered by West Yorkshire Playhouse at First Floor, their designated creative space for young people.Bee, featured in the above video, is an artist and support worker for Buzz who attended a Badge Design Day back in September.

Head over to the blog (link below) to read an interview with Maria, Co-ordinator at Buzz, about BadgeLAB Leeds.

Read more over on the Digital Me blog

January 21, 2015 03:50 PM

January 20, 2015

Matt Thompson

What we’re working on this Heartbeat

Transparency. Agililty. Radical participation. That’s how we want to work on Webmaker this year. We’ve got a long way to go,  but we’re building concrete improvements and momentum — every two weeks.

We work mostly in two-week sprints or “Heartbeats.” Here’s the priorities we’ve set together for the current Heartbeat ending January 30.

Questions? Want to get involved? Ask questions in any of the tickets linked below, say hello in #webmaker IRC, or get in touch with @OpenMatt.

What we’re working on now

See it all (always up to date): http://build.webmaker.org/now 

Or see the work broken down by:

Learning Networks

Learning Products

Desktop / Tablet:

 Mobile

 Engagement

 Planning & Process

January 20, 2015 04:11 PM

January 17, 2015

Open Badges blog

Badger Beats: The Week In Review [72]

Hey there, folks! Here’s your rundown of what went on in the world of badges this week:

That’s it for this week - if you’ve got something to share, tweet it out using the hashtag #openbadges so we can pass it on to the community.
And don’t forget, public voting for the DML Competition closes next week, so get your votes in by January 20!

January 17, 2015 08:05 AM

January 16, 2015

Jess Klein

EYE Witness News: Promotional Content on Webmaker

On January 28th Mozilla will be celebrating Data Privacy Day. This is an international effort centered on "Respecting Privacy, Safeguarding Data and Enabling Trust." There will be content on Mozilla, Webmaker and Mozilla Advocacy. The Webmaker team had previously developed privacy content with the Private Eye activity (featuring the Lightbeam add-on), so the primary challenge here was how to promote that content via the Webmaker splash page. This is actually a two - fold design opportunity:

1. micro: how might we promote the unique Privacy Day content on the splash page for the 28th?

2. macro: how might we incorporate promotional interest-based content into the real estate on the Webmaker splash page on an ongoing basis?

Constraints: needs to be conceived, designed and implemented within 2 weeks.

Start from the beginning 



I took a look at the current splash page. The content that we are promoting is directly connected to the Mozilla mission, so I identified a sliver of space directly above the section where we state the project's values. My thinking here is that we are creating a three tier hierarchy of values on the page: 1) we are webmaker - we are all about making - and this is what you can do right this second to get started, 2) we are deeply concerned about [privacy] - and this what you can do right now to dive into that topic and 3)we are more than just making + [privacy] - here are all the things that we value.

I SEE what you did there

That sliver was great, but it was below the non-existent but deeply considered fold of the page. If this was a painting I would create a repoussoir element to bring the users attention to the core content  by framing the edge. In the painting below you can see that tree branch that directs your attention directly into the heart of the composition.


Jacob Isaaksz. van Ruisdael, The Jewish Cemetery (1655-60)

Building off of my thinking from designing the Mozilla snippet and the onboarding ux,  I wanted to make this repoussoir element something that a user might find quirky, whimsical or relateable. All of the other elements on the page were expected and kind of standard elements for a webpage. I needed to create something that would be subtle yet attention grabbing.  Looking at subject of privacy, I immediately had associations with corporations and individuals big- brothering me as I visited web pages. I realized that the activity we were directing users to was called private eye - and this led me to create a small asset that features an eyeball that follows your cursor around as you explore the splash page. On hover it will flip and direct you to the activity.This worked for desktop, but for mobile we would have to simulate the action by having a simple CSS eyeball animation center aligned on the sliver. Major props here go out to Aki who had to invoke the pythagorean theorem to get the eye to follow the cursor without leaving the sclera.



  I did a study of eyeballs on redpen and immediately got a ton of community and staff feedback - which told me two things: 1. it was a conversation topic and 2. people liked the very first eyeball that I drew. 



Let me give you a walk through




    From Mozilla's perspective, we are testing:

    • whimsy vs. traditional promotional placement 
    • mission driven content 
    • how many people are we getting to engage with Webmaker and sign up for new accounts

    What's Next Up:

    • This will be deployed on staging on Monday and then our goal is to go live on January 28th, which is Privacy Day!
    • Now that we have a promotional framework, figuring out how to incorporate a richer learning experience around mission - based content.
    • Users can opt into enrolling in a sustained challenge - based Webmaker activity. Almost as if it's a virtual Webmaker club.


      Shout outs to the team that made this possible: Aki, Andrew, Erika, Paul, Dave


    January 16, 2015 02:01 PM

    January 15, 2015

    Open Badges blog

    Open Badges Community Call, Jan. 14, 2015

    Audio: http://bit.ly/CCJan14-audio

    Agenda: http://bit.ly/CC_Jan14

    This year, we’re encouraging the community to have much more of a voice on the community calls, with “open mic” style updates and presentations.

    This week, Sunny Lee shared her hopes for badges in 2015, including continuing work on endorsement, the Directory and display tools. A number of community members, including Serge Ravet, are working on projects such as the Open Badge Passport to make badge sharing and display easier for earners. Tim Cook from the Sprout Fund also hopes 2015 will bring more display options such as backpacks and passports, as well as progress on backpack federation. Many community members are also working on increased documentation for badging projects in 2015 - James Willis is putting the Design Principles Documentation Project’s final report together, with “research and hard data” to contribute to our research base. Exciting stuff!

    We also heard from Nate Otto and Beth Unverzagt, who are founding members of the Oregon Badge Alliance. This sparked a discussion of how a selection of organizations came together to form “a network of partners in Oregon who want to advance education with technology.” They are kicking off 12 pilot projects in 2015, including workforce readiness programs, after school groups, higher education and informal learning organizations. Wayne Skipper, another of the Oregon Badge Alliance’s founding members, said the key to forming this regional alliances finding a “core group serving different roles with complementary skills” across different sectors. We hope to follow up with the folks in Oregon and get some advice for others who might want to start their own local or regional collaborations.

    Finally, we heard from Mercè Muntada, Jordi Moretón and Eduardo Millán, who together developed BadgeCulture, a project to engage people in cultural tourism activities in Spain. They recently launched an open beta at www.badgeculture.com and are looking for further tools and user testing before progressing further. Badges are still a new concept in Spain, so they’re also doing a lot of evangelism and education on the concept of badges before taking BadgeCulture to the next level and developing badges.

    If you’ve got a badging project you’re thinking about or working on, please join us next Wednesday at 12pm ET and share it with the community!

    January 15, 2015 05:27 PM

    January 14, 2015

    Michelle Thorne

    Diving into PADI’s learning model

    padi 1

    For the last few years, Joi Ito has been blogging about learning to dive with PADI. It wasn’t until I became certified as a diver myself that I really understood how much we can learn from PADI’s educational model.

    Here’s a summary of how PADI works, including ideas that we could apply to Webmaker.

    With Webmaker at the moment, we’re testing how to empower and train local learning centers to teach the web on an ongoing basis. This is why I’m quite interested in how other certification and learning & engagement models work.

    padi 2

    PADI’s purpose

    The Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) has been around since the late 1960’s. It  trained over 130,000 diving instructors to issue millions of learning certifications to divers around the world. Many instructors run their own local businesses, who’s main service is to rent out gear and run tours for certified divers, or to certify people learning how to dive.

    Through its certification service, PADI became the diving community’s de facto standard-bearer and educational hub. Nearly all diving equipment, training and best practices align with PADI.

    No doubt, PADI is a moneymaking machine. Every rung of their engagement ladder comes with a hefty price tag. Diving is not an access-for-all sport. For example, part of the PADI training is about learning how to make informed consumer choices about the dive equipment, which they will later sell to you.

    Nevertheless, I do think there is lots of learn from their economic and engagement model.

    Blended learning with PADI

    PADI uses blended learning to certify its divers.

    They mix a multi-hour online theoretical part (regrettably, it’s just memorization) with several in-person skills trainings in the pool and open water. Divers pay a fee ($200-500) to access the learning materials and to work with an instructor. They also send you a physical kit with stickers, pamphlets and a logbook you can use on future dives.

    Dive instructors teach new divers in very small groups (mine was 1:1 to maximum of 1:3). It’s very hands-on and tailored to the learner’s pace. Nevertheless, it has a pretty tight script. The instructor has a checklist of things to teach in order to certify the learner, and you work through those quite methodically. The online theory complements the lessons in the water, although for my course they could’ve cut about 3 hours of video nerding out on dive equipment.

    There is room for instructor discretion and lots of local adaptation. For example, you are taught to understand local dive practices and conditions, like currents and visibility, which inform how you adapt the PADI international diving standard to your local dives. This gives the instructor some agency and adaptability.

    Having a point of view

    PADI makes its point of view very clear. Their best practices are so explicit, and oft-repeated, that as a learner you really internalize their perspective. In the water, you immediately flag any detraction from The PADI Way.

    Mainly, these mantras are for your own safety: breathe deeply and regularly, always dive with a buddy, etc. But by distilling their best practices so simply and embedding them deeply and regularly in the training, as a learner you become an advocate for these practices as well.

    Learning with a buddy

    The buddy system is particularly interesting. It automatically builds in peer learning and also responsibility for yourself and your buddy. You’re taught to rely on each other, not the dive instructor. You solve each others problems, and this helps you become empowered in the water.

    Pathways!

    Furthermore, PADI makes its learning pathways very explicit and achievable. After doing one of the entry level certification, Open Water Diving, I feel intrigued to take on the next level and trying out some of the specializations, like cave diving and night diving.

    Throughout the course, you see glimpses of what is possible with further training. You can see more advanced skills and environments becoming unlocked as you gather more experience. The PADI system revolves around tiers of certifications unlocking gear and new kinds of dives, which they do a good job of making visible and appealing.

    You can teach, too.

    What’s even more impressive is that the combination of the buddy/peer learning model and the clear pathways makes becoming an instructor seem achievable and aspirational—even when you just started learning.

    As a beginner diver, I already felt excited by the possibility of teaching others to dive. Becoming a PADI instructor seems cool and rewarding. And it feels very accessible within the educational offering: you share skills with your buddy; with time and experience, you can teach more skills and people.

    Training the trainers

    padi engagement ladder

    Speaking of instructors, PADI trains them in an interesting way as well. Like new divers, instructors are on a gamification path: you earn points for every diver you certify and for doing various activities in the community. With enough points, you qualify for select in-person instructor trainings or various gear promotions.

    Instructors are trained in the same model that they teach: it’s blended, with emphasis on in-person training with a small group of people. You observe a skill, then do it yourself, and then teach it. PADI flies about 100 instructors-to-be to a good dive destination and teaches them in-person for a week or so. Instructors pay for the flights and the training.

    At some point, you can earn enough points and training as an instructor that you can certify other instructors. This is the pinnacle of the PADI engagement ladder. We’re doing something similar with Webmaker: the top of the engagement ladder is a Webmaker Super Mentor. That’s someone who trains other mentors. It’s meta, and only appeals to a small subset of people, but it’s a very impactful group.

    What’s the role of PADI staff? This is a question we often ask ourselves in the Webmaker context. Mainly, PADI staff are administrators. Some will visit local dive centers to conduct quality control or write up new training modules. They are generally responsible for coordinating instructors and modeling PADI practices.

    Local learning, global community

    The local diver centers and certified instructors are PADI’s distribution model.

    Divers go to a local shop to buy gear, take tours and trainings. The local shop is a source of economic revenue for the instructors and for PADI. As divers level up within the PADI system, they can access more gear and dive tours from these shops.

    Stewardship

    Lastly, PADI imparts its learners with a sense of stewardship of the ocean. It empowers you in a new ecosystem and then teaches you to be an ambassador for it. You feel responsibility and care for the ocean, once you’ve experienced it in this new way.

    Importantly, this empowerment relies on experiential learning. You don’t feel it just by reading about the ocean. It’s qualitatively different to have seen the coral and sea turtles and schools of fish yourself.

    The theory and practice dives in the pool ready you for the stewardship. But you have to do a full dive, in the full glory of the open water, to really get it.

    I think this is hugely relevant for Webmaker as well: it’s all good to read about the value of the open web. But it’s not until you’re in the midst of exploring and making in the open web do you realize how important that ecosystem is. Real experience begets responsibility.

    Giving back

    PADI encourages several ways for you to give back and put your stewardship to use: pick up litter, do aquatic life surveys, teach others about the waters, etc.

    They show you that there is a community of divers that you are now a part of. It strikes a good balance between unlocking experiences for you personally and then showing you how you can act upon them to benefit a larger effort.

    Going clubbing

    As mentioned, there are many shortcomings to the PADI system. It’s always pay-to-play, it’s educational materials are closed and ridiculously not remixable, it’s not accessible in many parts of the world due to (understandable) environmental limitations. Advocacy for the ocean is a by-product of their offering, not its mission.

    Still, aspects of their economic and learning model are worth considering for other social enterprises. How can instructors make revenue so they can teach full-time and as a career? How can gear be taught and sold so that divers get quality equipment they know how to use? How can experiential learning be packaged so that you know the value of what you’re getting and skills along the way?

    I’m pretty inspired by having experienced the PADI Open Water Diving certification process. In the coming months, I’d like to test and apply some of these practices to our local learning center model, the Webmaker Clubs.

    If you have more insights on how to do this, or other models worth looking at, share them here!

    January 14, 2015 12:23 AM

    Forrest Oliphant

    Turtle power to the people

    The Grid meet up

    MozFest 2014 #ArtOfWeb

    After working for about three years with Forrest we finally meet him on a meet up of The Grid team.

    During the first days we were preparing a workshop for MozFest's #ArtOfWeb track. The idea was to present a quick introduction to Flowhub/NoFlo and how to use it to draw with Mirobot. Then we would let people create their own drawings.

    We created a NoFlo component to talk with Mirobot:

    Having the robot represented as a component made it easier to even explain to people how it was drawing: "the SendCommand component waits for commands --- like go forward or turn left --- so when it receives a new command, it sends it to the robot. When the robot finishes drawing, it signalizes banging the completed port, so we are good for the next command".

    For the workshop Gabi created a NoFlo graph that draws contours of a given image:

    Given an image as input (the heart), the graph extracts its edges and chooses random points from it. If we give those points to Mirobot draw randomly, it will end up with a random path that wouldn't remember the original shape of a heart. We have to order the points in a way the robot will travel along the shortest path. We have a Travelling Salesman Person solver that finds the shortest path. After converting cartesian coordinates to polar ones --- because Mirobot just understands translations and rotations, remember? forward X and turn left/right Y --- we send the commands to Mirobot and using noflo-canvas we draw a preview. Here's the result:

    MozFest 2014 #ArtOfWeb

    The other graph collects points someone draw on a canvas and after sending that, Mirobot draws them on paper:

    MozFest 2014 #ArtOfWeb

    The meetup with The Grid was incredible. We met Forrest, Jon Nordby and Henri Bergius. Lionel Landwerlin joined us some days later. Those guys never stopped coding and inspiring us.

    More robots on the way

    While preparing the workshop we built a hack to Mirobot, making it possible to draw on walls. That's a work-in-progress and we are planning to keep improving and documenting the process.

    MozFest 2014 #ArtOfWeb

    MozFest's ArtOfWeb

    MozFest was fantastic. We met Kat, Eric, Paula, Michelle, Allison, Ginger, Ricardo and all the other incredible "art phreaks" of the #ArtOfWeb track. Ben Pirt, the Mirobot's creator, joined us in the art gallery and brought us his bots and kindness.

    ArtOfWeb was a refuge during the chaotic creative tornado of MozFest. A place to chat, create and relax listening to good music and enjoying art installations.

    Our session did its job. We had people curious about the drawing robot, nice discussions about procedural vs flow-based programming and really nice collaborative drawings.

    MozFest_26Oct_239

    MozFest_26Oct_237

    Henri recorded the following time-lapse video. A really nice way to capture this kind of session.

    The festival ended up with a demo party where the most revealing feeling of collaboration and aesthetics experimentation took its place. Surrounded by curtains, music and projections, people and robots joined again to draw together.

    MozFest_26Oct_416

    Mozfest 2014 | #ARTOFWEB

    MozFest 2014 #ArtOfWeb

    We hope the next workshops are like this last experience and we'll try to make it happen more in the future. As well pointed by Kat, "let's (re)make networked art".

    We really want to thank and give a huge hug on all people we met. To our dear colleagues of The Grid, that made it possible to happen, thank you for all. To Mozilla, thank you to bring this amazing people together for a better Web of openness and opportunity.

    Mozfest 2014 | #ARTOFWEB

    Looking forward to keep phreaking art and meet you all again this year!

    Photos by Kat Braybrooke, Mozilla in Europe and Vilson Vieira.

    January 14, 2015 12:00 AM

    January 13, 2015

    Open Badges blog

    Vote for open badges proposals in the #DMLtrust competition finals

    image

    Over the past five years, the Digital Media and Learning Competition has awarded $10 million to more than 100 projects — including the Badges for Lifelong Learning Competition, which kicked off 30 badging projects, many of which are still going strong today. 

    This year’s competition is The Trust Challenge: an open, international invitation to museums, libraries, school districts, schools, community organizations, app developers, researchers, colleges and universities, and other institutional/organizational partners willing to create collaborations or alliances that address existing real-world challenges to trust in connected learning environments.

    Many of you, our innovative and motivated community, submitted badging proposals to the Trust Challenge. Among the finalists are the following projects that we encourage you to vote for before January 20, 2015:

    Reputation building tools for Open Badge issuers

    BadgeCraft offers tools for organisations to design, manage and issue Open Badges in their educational practices. Our proposal will focus on developing reputation building tools for badge issuers and Open Badges within the wider community of potential endorsers: schools, parents, employers. We will partner with Trustribe to develop reputation building solutions. Trustribe has developed technology which enables users building and transferring their reputation across different collaborative platforms. We want to adapt their technology and know-how to enhance badge issuing process with reputation tools.

    Vote for bit.ly/DML_BadgeCraft

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    Oregon Center for Digital Learning Trust Ecosystem Project

    image

    The Trust Ecosystem Project will work with 12 pilot badge programs, employers, and Oregon Badge Alliance partners in workforce development, government, K12 and higher education to build software and a framework for connecting learning experiences with Open Badges. The project aims to close the loop between badge issuers, earners and consumers by building software that represents the interests of each stakeholder group. Each application will be released open source as well as hosted for public use. Beyond software, the Trust Ecosystem Project will organize a youth advisory council and will bootstrap a trust network around badges with pilot programs and badge-consumer partners in Oregon, yielding a variety of case studies and potentially exportable implementation models.

    Vote for the Trust Ecosystem Project here: bit.ly/DML_TrustEcosystem

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    Open Badge Passport

    image

    The project aims at establishing a native, distributed, open trust infrastructure based on a network of Open Badge Passports (OBPassport) that seamlessly issue, receive, share and display badges. Fully OBI compliant and open source, the OBPassport will provide users and organizations with their own backpacks and create the conditions for the emergence of new services through the provision of an open API. The OBPassport will provide social features, such as the creation of badge aggregations at group, network, organization or business levels, the display of badges earned by friends in one’s activity stream, or the search for people with a specific badge, sharing evidence across passports.

    Vote for the Open Badge Passport here: bit.ly/DML_OBPassport

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    Global Gateway: Building Trust Through Peer Review

    image

    VIF’s Global Gateway system provides online professional development (PD), digital badging and a social community to over 8,000 educators from around the world. To further our trusted environment, educators need opportunities to engage in focused peer and expert review of learning products. The proposed Global Gateway enhancement will allow teachers to choose between completing PD modules or progressing toward competency badges while fostering a trusted peer review community.

    Vote for the Global Gateway project here: bit.ly/DML_VIFGlobal

    ————————————————————————————————————-

    Badging as Lifelong Learning

    image

    ForAllRubrics is hoping to develop ForAllLearners, a tool to help learners navigate all their learning experiences throughout their lifetime. Badging as credentialing supports learning from the point of view of employers, schools and others that control opportunities. During this project we will focus on badging in the context of work readiness with the goal of creating practical working exemplars of how these three approaches to badging complement each other and make for a more effective learning ecosystem.

    Vote for Badging as Lifelong Learning here: bit.ly/DML_LifelongLearning

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    About the DML Competition

    The Digital Media and Learning Competition is a program designed to find and to inspire the most novel uses of new media in support of connected learning. The Competition aims to explore how technologies are changing the way people learn and participate in daily life. It is supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation through a grant to the University of California, Irvine, and is administered by HASTAC.

    January 13, 2015 07:07 PM

    Laura Hilliger

    “Prove that people want to remix curriculum.”

    A map of all the resources and their connections to an initial Teaching Kit

    Easier said than done. Back in the day, my amazing colleague Jess Klein made an epic PDF laying out a lesson plan for what was then known as Hackasaurus. People who teach started using it left and right, and when I saw it for the first time I thought “Holy moly that looks like a fun bit of curriculum.” But I didn’t need all of it. I only needed pieces and parts (many of which, BTW, are baked in, remixed and modified within Webmaker Teaching Kits), and so I started to think about the models we use when we make curriculum. The old smelly models that didn’t evolve as technology evolved. [caption id="attachment_2523" align="aligncenter" width="500"]A map of all the resources and their connections to an initial Teaching Kit A map of all the resources and their connections to an initial Teaching Kit[/caption] I’ve always thought the models and systems could be better, so several years ago I started working on an educational model that centered on the idea that educators ALWAYS remix. I thought that if the model was clear, we could tackle the problems of OERs while making new curriculum to #TeachTheWeb. Fast forward about five years and the OER (open educational resources) movement has become something that is well known within the open and the educational communities. But people are still publishing their resources in ways that make remix hard, and as a result we edunerds tend to remix on the fly. We implemented the model in HTML, creating overview pages that were separate from activities. The idea was to separate all the pieces and parts of curriculum – the learning objectives, the assessment criteria, the activities, the overviews – so that any one individual part could be remixed into a new bit of curriculum. We tried to lay this model out using the mechanics of the web to make the modularity and remixability clear, but we began to realize that
    “No one remixes the HTML. It’s too high bar.”
    So now, I’m trying to figure out how we can collect those on the fly remixes and get educators to understand how important their ideas and feedback is when it comes to learning materials. What works? What doesn’t work? How did someone remix context? I think that Webmaker could become the clearinghouse for Web Literacy OERs, and to do so, I think remixability is key. I still think the model is solid, but we haven’t gotten to a place where remixing curriculum is common place. This post begins to explore WHY.

    The Problems of OERs

    1. Open Licenses are Confusing and Attribution is Hard

    "confusion over copyright, fair use, and Creative Commons is one of things that makes many educators hesitant about adopting any new resources, licensing be damned.” - Audrey Watters
    "Often resources using more open licenses incorporate or refer to media that are made available using a more restrictive license.” (Tel Amiel 2013)
    In education there is “…still a limited understanding of how to move beyond some of the encumbrances— specifically with regard to reusing others’ content as well as more complex reuse behaviors that lead to new configurations of existing content” (Petrides et al., 2008, p. 352). (Tel Amiel 2013)
    Users need to be able to contextualize credit depending on how they’ve used a resource.

    2. Users don’t have time to make the required effort

    “Faculty consistently listed the time and effort to find and evaluate open educational resources as the most important barriers to adoption.” (Open the Curriculum 2014)
    “Existing educational sites and repositories contribute to this concern. Most are focused on the distribution and dissemination of resources and provided little guidance or tools for those who wish to make revisions or remix existing resources.” (Tel Amiel 2013)
    Staff (anywhere) rarely have the time to review all the resources submitted. We build software and communities though, so how can automation or, much more importantly, social evaluation make it easy for users to find quality curriculum?

    3. There are technical barriers to remix

    “When presenting OER development and use, many of the restrictions derived from our working scenario came to the forefront. In many cases, the source guides assumed a reader with substantial access to computer-based resources. “ (Tel Amiel 2013)
    "The process of remix is usually associated with four steps: finding, relating, creating, and sharing resources...Many of the online portals, which contain more openly licensed resources either do not have alternative language interfaces or metadata, which impacts both finding and sharing resources in these sites." (Tel Amiel 2013)
    We have to design mobile-first and keep our need for localization at the forefront. We know this, but we also need to find more ways for lo-fi, no-fi communities to share their offline remixes (e.g. a couple of community managers does not a stable system make).

    Towards Solutions

    [caption id="attachment_2524" align="aligncenter" width="500"]Creative Commons licensing table and an early Mozilla Drumbeat project that aimed to make attribution easy. Creative Commons licensing table and an early Mozilla Drumbeat project that aimed to make attribution easy.[/caption] Make licensing and attribution easy, embedded. I’ll leave it to the amazing devs and designers to figure out what exactly that means, but building this into our tools from the onset is a way to encourage remix at all levels (both in learner focused and mentor focused content).
    “Reuse is perhaps reminiscent of the rhetoric around learning objects as they were presented as blocks of media that could be reused and assembled for different contexts, a metaphor that did not hold in practice (Fulantelli et al., 2008; Gunn et al., 2005).”
    Make remixability & modularity obvious and lean into social evaluation. This is as much about presentation as it is about functionality. We are missing context around our educational model. We’re starting to do that with the Club curriculum, where we are building resources on how to remix as well as giving examples of why and when and how we’ve remixed. Build the thing that makes it easy for others to build their thing (no matter what device they have). As we build features for our communities, continuing to encourage open interaction is essential to changing the landscape of OERs (and open in general). What are the ways in which we can utilize existing systems to encourage remixable curriculum? We’ve thought on this before… Leave me comments and check out the Bibliography:

    January 13, 2015 02:50 PM

    January 12, 2015

    Doug Belshaw

    Join me this Thursday for a Connected Learning webinar: An Introduction to ‘Teaching the Web’ and ‘Web Literacy’

    This Thursday (15th January 2014) at 5pm UTC* I’m leading a webinar on behalf of Mozilla’s #TeachTheWeb team. The title is An Introduction to ‘Teaching the Web’ and ‘Web Literacy’.  Click through to sign up for event reminders.

    The webinar is the first in a series of three our team is running under the banner of Empowering Lifelong Learners by ‘Teaching the Web’.

    An Introduction to ‘Teaching the Web’ and ‘Web Literacy’

    What is “web literacy” and why should we teach it? How does creating/remixing the web help strengthen learning?

    How the Webmaker Community Is Helping Youth Be Creative and Curious

    What are “web literacy clubs,” and how are they helping youth develop lifelong learning mindsets?

     Ongoing Learning Opportunities with Mozilla Webmaker

    What are some of the easiest ways to get involved in the Webmaker community? Where do you start?


    During my webinar I’ll be going through introductory stuff around Webmaker, the Web Literacy Map, and the Webmaker whitepaper. I’m also interested in any questions you’ve got, so please do ask them as comments below! I’ll try and answer as many as possible during the webinar.


    * That’s 9am PT / 12pm ET / 5pm GMT / 6pm CET / 10.30 IST / 4am AET

    January 12, 2015 08:16 PM

    Daniel Sinker

    OpenNews: 2015 Fellowship Onboarding is GO

    I love Los Angeles. Peel back the Hollywood veneer and, at its core, it’s a city that belives in putting in the work.

    Which is why I’m excited to be in LA this week with our 2015 cohort of Knight-Mozilla Fellows to start the work of the fellowship year. With a distributed fellowship like ours, where fellows will spend far more time apart than together, it’s important to start the experience building the pathways of collaboration, community, and sharing that we want our fellows to continue to utilize throughout their fellowship year. It’s also an opportunity to meet somewhere warm and to celebrate the start of an amazing year.

    We’re not just celebrating the start of the fellowship year at this onboarding, we’re also welcoming our final fellow for 2015: Kavya Sukumar, who will be spending her fellowship year at Vox Media.

    Kavya is a developer-journalist who appreciates both elegant code and well-written prose. Everything about journalism fascinates her and she wants in on it all. She has reported and written stories, analyzed data and built a CMS. She has more than eight years of experience working at technology companies as well as in newsrooms. Kavya was a software engineer at Microsoft when the journalism bug bit her. She has a graduate degree from Medill School of Journalism where she was a Knight Scholar. She is currently a Data & Interactives Editor with the The Palm Beach Post’s investigative team.

    We’re thrilled to have Kavya join the already-amazing cohort of 2015 Knight-Mozilla Fellows, and excited to have all of them together with us in LA this week. There’s so much more to come in 2015 from OpenNews, and it feels great to kick off an incredible year with these incredible people.

    January 12, 2015 05:00 PM

    January 10, 2015

    Open Badges blog

    Badger Beats: The Week In Review [71]

    Welcome back, badgers! We hope you all had a wonderful holiday season, wherever you are.

    This week we invited you to help shape the future of the weekly community calls - see the discussion notes here and listen to the audio here: bit.ly/CCJan7-audio

    If you want to check out the Open Badges in 2014 Timeline, head over to bit.ly/Badgesin2014 to see all the amazing things you accomplished in the last year.

    image

    Here’s a quick rundown of what else has happened since the year began:

    • In the UK, Barclay’s Bank kicked off an exciting new initiative issuing badges for digital skills - check it out here;

    If you’ve got more to share from the past few weeks, make sure to tweet it using the hashtag #openbadges…….it’s been awesome to see how much has come out over the holidays, and we can’t wait to see what 2015 has in store!

    image

    January 10, 2015 10:45 PM

    Photo



    January 10, 2015 01:50 PM

    January 05, 2015

    Jess Klein

    Shall we dance? On-boarding Webmakers

    The first time that someone comes to your website is like a high school dance at the gym. You want that hottie who you have been thinking about all year to be attracted to you and join you on the dance floor . You want to show them what you are all about: how you aren't just about the MC Hammer pants and bikini top you are wearing (dating myself much?) - and you have the moves to prove it. This dance is just the beginning - you really want to go steady, but you have to start somewhere, right?

    About 40-60% of users who sign up for a free trial of your software will use it once and then never come back.

    When designing the on-boarding experience, we have a few goals: 
    • We should make a positive user experience where the visitor learns something within minutes of interacting
    • We should have the user take some action which results in signing up for a Webmaker account
    • We should give the user a clear and compelling reason to return.

    Deeply inspired by the theory of Hanging Out, Messing Around and Geeking Out: Kids Living and Learning with New Media, I started to think about what a low bar way might be to get people to dance with me.  The idea is that there is a progression and/or just different ways that a site visitor might interact with the site. I wanted to create an experience for the user, that will allow them to walk away having seen a little bit of code, had the a ha! moment, the realization that there is so much to learn about the way that the web is crafted - and most importantly: that remixing the web is an approachable challenge.  According to this chart below, we could argue that most of our site visitors are at the beginning of the customer awareness journey.



    Start from the beginning --- err where is that exactly?

    I started by doing an exploratory sketch - asking where might users first see/ interact with the Goggles on Webmaker? I see 5 main areas of contact:
    1. Webmaker Landing Page with a very specific call to action
    2. Via the not-yet-existing "Join Webmaker" button user flow
    3. On the Tools page within Webmaker
    4. On the Goggles page within Webmaker
    5. Within the Goggles interface upon activating the bookmarklet
    For this heartbeat (and the build sprint after) we decided to focus on number 1 via 2 (Join Webmaker user flow via the landing page) as the goal for the first quarter is to improve our conversion of visitors to Webmaker.org into makers.

    Think through the user flow

    With a clear scope, I took a stab at thinking through potential user flows (ahem,dance moves). What interactions might I be able to design that could help the user gain an understanding of the awesome potential of Webmaker and come away with learning a little bit about making things on the web within the first few minutes of their site visit? On a traditional site, this is where I would do a product tour - to tell the visitor about all the bells and whistles. But, let's remember, we are at a high school dance. We don't want to just tell that hottie about how great we are, we want them to hold our hand and dance with us. So what exactly is our dance? It's an introduction to the site through an interactive tinkering activity.

    I had some experience tackling this user experience challenge a few months back when I designed the Maker Party snippet for the Firefox about page. Here, we were trying to coax visitors to the About Page to sign up for Webmaker AND ... (the cooler part) expose them to a little bit of code through modeling a playful interaction that they in turn would emulate. We found this approach to be successful. I personally user tested the page with a variety of site visitors in the Hive Learning Network and found that the animated modeling of the CSS value being typed acted as I would as a teacher in a classroom, or a friend showing someone how to approach the problem, asking the friend to try it out themselves. This approach could easily translate to an activity on the landing page where we show a visitor how to edit some playfully placed text using the X-Ray Goggles.

    Approach 1: Modeling
    Modeling tries to emulate the way you might teach this in a classroom environment - you show the actions that you want the learner to emulate.  See complete mockup here.



    I also tackled this challenge of getting a user to dabble with new information and content in the weather activity experiment for the Hour of Code. Here, I thought about how I like to follow recipes and get feedback as I do each each step in a staged progression. (This would be like... someone teaching you how to do the macarena step by step at the dance)

    Approach 2: Stage Progression
    The staged progression allows the user to read, and then asks them to try it out, providing little tips along the way. See complete mockup here.




    After getting some feedback from my colleagues and a few user testers I am leaning towards a hybrid approach - where you might model for them at each "step."

    Next up: enticing your friend to get on the dance floor

    All of the user flows and interaction designs are a good exercise, but if the icebreaker prompt isn't enticing, then it's no good.  So - I did a few iterations:


    Name tag fill in the blank --- this could somehow tie in to the sign up flow.



    Venn Diagrams - probably too designerdy but I couldn't help myself.


    Fill in the blank - I <3 webmaking.="">




    Fill in the blank - attempt 2. I like this one the most at the moment because it has a focal point, and it feels a bit disruptive, like Webmaker itself.

    Next up: Finding those dancing shoes.
    To get to an interactive prototype, we need to:
    • Design the hybrid interaction design (modeling + staged progression)
    • Choose a direction and then work on the UI elements
    • Wordsmith the copy.
    • User test with real humans!

    Designing an on-boarding is like asking someone to the dance floor ----testing if your pits stink and all, so I would love to hear any thoughts if I've got any moves. 

    January 05, 2015 03:30 PM

    December 30, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Erin Knight | Happy Holidays and Forward Thinking

    Erin Knight | Happy Holidays and Forward Thinking:

    Badge Alliance Executive Director Erin Knight reflects on the year coming to a close and looks ahead to the exciting things 2015 holds in store for the badges community.

    Click the link above to read more.

    December 30, 2014 01:20 PM

    December 29, 2014

    Sunny Lee

    What I want to work on in 2015

    2014 has seen a lot of development in the open badges world. You can see all the cool things we did and worked on here

     

    image

     

    Reflecting back on the past year allows us an opportunity to take pause and inventory the tremendous amount of work and activity around open badges that occurred and the advances we made to further our goal of reimagining credentialing for the 21st century so that it is interoperable, democratic, open and designed with the learner in mind. 
    But it also gets me excited about 2015 and thinking about what I want to work on in the next year; i.e. whats personally interesting to me, what I get most energized about and where I think well get the most bang for our buck in terms of broader adoption. 

     

    Here’s my list:

     

    * Adoption and ongoing experimentation of the open badges standard extension
    The standard the standard the STANDARD! Are you sick of hearing about the standard yet? I know I know but that’s how important it is! It’s the underpinning of all our work enabling credentials to be all the things we want it to be; interoperable, stackable, portable and easily shareable. We’ve made a lot of advances on the foundational standards framework during Cycle 1 of the Badge Alliance Standard Working Group adapting JSON-LD technology to enable extending open badge metadata such that it is machine readable and indexable. We have shared the 1.1 proposal of the extension framework with the broader community and have put it through the feedback and iteration cycle. Having done that, in 2015 I’m eager for the community to start plugging in. The extension specification is super exciting because it allows badge issuing organizations to append additional metadata fields to any of the badge objects (i.e. badge assertion, badge class, issuer). 

     

    image
    * Image courtesy of Nate Otto

     

    Oft-talked about extension field possibilities include location data, endorsement, additional identities, etc. 
    What’s really neat about the extension field is that we can experiment in a coordinated way. Say, my organization thinks location data is really important within my community so I decide to define a location extension context and add it to the Badge Class object. After introducing the field, I notice that other organizations are starting to use the context file in which I define my location field with increasing frequency. As more and more organizations start utilizing the location field, I can potentially bring this up with the Standards community and build a case to add the location field to the standard proper. 

     

    * Making endorsement a reality by using the open badges standard extension field
    Once we get organizations playing with the extension field for endorsement, I think things will get interesting. There are still a lot of things around endorsement that needs discussion and unpacking such as the following:
    • What’s the user experience around an issuer organization endorsing another organization’s badge class?
    • What’s the user experience around an issuer organization endorsing an earner’s badge instance?
    • What’s the user experience of a badge consumer who wants to review the endorsements a badge class has received?
    • What’s the user experience of a badge earner who wants to review the endorsements her particular badge instance has received?
    • What’s the user experience around an issuer organization or badge earner rejecting an unwanted endorsement?
    • How are the various endorsements a badge class or badge instance has received displayed so that it is both human and machine readable?
    As folks start to pick up and run with the extension field, we can start to pin point with more accuracy the pain points people are experiencing in utilizing the endorsement field for their needs. We can use that data to triage and prioritize how to make the experience smoother for all participating parties to help support endorsement adoption. 

     

    * Continuing progress on the Directory
    Under the leadership of Kerri Lemoie from Achievery, the Directory Working Group has accomplished a lot during Cycle 1. But there’s so much more we can do to. 
    I concluded my last blog with some next step suggestions such as listing badge instances in addition to badge classes, additional API end points and exploring ways in which we can lower the barrier of entry for badge issuers and being more articulate about the value proposition of the directory offering. 
    Pending usage and uptick of the extension field in 2015, we could also list badges according to location data, or endorsement information, standards alignment, and more. 
    In 2015 I want the directory to be at a place where twitter was circa 2008; minimal UI with production ready back end and APIs developers could easily plug into. With badge instance, badge class, endorsement data and the like available with easy access points, I can see an employer-facing application develop on top of the directory that enables hiring managers to extract badge earner listings based on certain badges, endorsements, tags and location, deriving practical value for organizational needs. This paves the way for employer tool development making it easier for employers to plug in and start accepting badges, completing the badge narrative from issuance to consumption for hiring. 

     

    * Making a kick ass open badges display tool
    It’s hard to “get” or wrap your head around what you don’t see and I think herein lies the problem with bridging the gap between early to mainstream adoption of open badges. The pitch is there and more and more people are coming on board, acknowledging the value proposition of an interoperable digital credential but we still don’t have a simple example of a visualized open badge that we can point to that has been verified, earned and displayed with all the meaningful data easily extractable on somewhere as simple as a Facebook timeline or blog. We need a simple display tool that helps folks easily share and display their open badges wherever they want. I think this tool should satisfy several needs currently not met with satisfaction in the ecosystem:
    • Earner can easily share earned badge on various websites, via email or attachment
    • Badge reviewer can easily extract and view the badge metadata
    • Metadata is both human and machine readable
    • Badge reviewer can verify whether badge earner matches the person claiming the badge
    Current display capabilities do exist but they don’t do a good job at fully telling the potential and value of an open badge. A display tool that makes it simplistic and easy to share and review an open badge will go a long way in helping guide a broader audience to adoption. 
    ==================================================

     

    This is already a pretty extensive list with each major bullet warranting multiple blog posts on their own. I know it’s highly ambitious aiming to tackle all of these but I think we have the right community, resources, thought leadership and organizational partners at the table to work on these collaboratively and in parallel with one another. I can’t help but think 2015 is the pivotal year that takes open badges several steps closer to mainstream adoption. I’m so excited for what’s in store and can’t wait to dive in. 

    December 29, 2014 04:28 PM

    December 21, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Badger Beats: The Week in Review [70]

    Welcome to the year’s final edition of the Badger Beats - and what a year it’s been!

    From February’s launch of the Badge Alliance and the collaborative efforts of the various Working Groups, resulting in an impressive set of deliverables from Cycle 1, to the summer’s exciting CGI Commitment for 10 Million Better Futures, this year we’ve seen just how much can be done when our community works together. The Cities of Learning and the emergence of new international badging communities pushed badges into new areas, while ongoing efforts in higher education, workforce, research and professional development strengthened the work the community had already done.

    For now, let’s look back at what happened this week:

    The Badge Alliance team is looking forward to seeing what exciting new projects await in 2015 - you guys really crushed it this year!

    Happy holidays, everyone! We’ll see you in January.

    December 21, 2014 01:23 PM

    Jarin Schmidt | Badging: The End of a Trend

    Jarin Schmidt has spent more than 14 years in the credentialing industry at Pearson, and was product lead for Pearson’s badging platform, Acclaim. Schmidt now supports the platform as a business development executive and recently wrote a piece for the Institute of Credentialing Excellence titled "Badging: The End of a Trend," in which he examines the momentum of the badging movement over recent years and offers his insights into the Acclaim team’s findings since launching their platform at the beginning of the year:

    Now Is the Time to Go Digital

    Dynamic digital badges can evolve in response to changing needs within the global economy. They are a viable resource for credential issuers and earners that:

    • Inform and enable credentialing organizations to evolve their programs based on direct feedback from the market in order to meet skill gaps;
    • Increase brand value through more transparent recognition of what it takes to earn a credential;
    • Engage credential earners with the issuers over the span of a career, instead of a moment in time;
    • Provide credential earners with the kind of verified recognition that is relevant in the digital world.

    Badges aren’t just a trend to watch; they are happening now. And now is the perfect time to start badging your credential.

    Read the piece in full here.

    December 21, 2014 01:10 PM

    December 19, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Open Badges Community Project Call, December 17, 2014

    Open Badges Community Project Call, December 17, 2014:

    Speakers:

    Agenda: http://bit.ly/CC-Dec17

    We led the year’s final community call by providing an overview of the year’s major milestones, including:

    Check out the audio by clicking the link above, and follow along using these slides:

    The Year In Review [2014] from Open Badges

    December 19, 2014 07:24 PM

    Laura Hilliger

    Web Literacy Lensing: Identity

    webliteracy-lens-identity

    Ever since version 1 of the Web Literacy Map came out, I’ve been waiting to see people take it and adjust it or interpret it for specific educational endeavors that are outside the wheelhouse of “teach the web”. As I’ve said before, I think the web can be embedded into anything, and I want to see the anything embedded into the web. I’ve been wanting to see how people put a lens on top of the web literacy map and combine teaching the web with educating a person around Cognitive Skill X. I’ve had ideas, but never put them out into the world. I was kind of waiting for someone to do it for me (ahem Web Literacy community :P Lately I’ve been realizing that I work to develop socio-emotional skills while I teach the web, and I wanted to see if I could look at the Web Literacy Map from a personal, but social (e.g. psychosocial) angle. What, exactly, does web literacy mean in the context of Identity?

    Theory

    First things first - there’s a media education theory (in this book) suggesting that technology has complicated our “identity”. It’s worth mentioning because it’s interesting, and I think it’s worth noting that I didn’t consider all the nuances of these various identities in thinking about how the Web Literacy Map becomes the Web Literacy Map for Identity. We as human beings have multiple, distinct identities we have to deal with in life. We have to deal with who we are with family vs with friends vs alone vs professionally regardless of whether or not we are online, but with the development of the virtual space, the theory suggests that identity has become even more complicated. Additionally, we now have to deal with: So, back to the Web Literacy Map: Identity - As you can gather from a single theory about the human understanding of “self”, Identity is a complicated topic anyway. But I like thinking about complicated problems. So here’s my first thinking about how Identity can be seen as a lens on top of the Web Literacy Map. webliteracy-lens-identity

    Exploring Identity (and the web)

    Navigation – Identity is personal, so maybe part of web literacy is about personalizing your experience. Perhaps skills become more granular when we talk about putting a lens on the Map? Example granularity: common features of the browser skill might break down into “setting your own homepage” and “pinning apps and bookmarks”. Web Mechanics - I didn’t find a way to lens this competency. It’s the only one I couldn’t. Very frustrating to have ONE that doesn’t fit. What does that say about Web Mechanics or the Web Literacy Map writ large? Search – Identity is manifested, so your tone and mood might dictate what you search for and how you share it. Are you a satirist? Are you funny? Are you serious or terse? Search is a connective competency under this lens because it connects your mood/tone to your manifestation of identity. Example skill modification/addition: Locating or finding desired information within search results ——> using specialized search machines to find desired emotional expression. (e.g. GIPHY!) Credibility – Identity is formed through beliefs and faith, and I wouldn’t have a hard time arguing that those things influence your understanding of credible information. If you believe something and someone confirms your belief, you’ll likely find that person more credible than someone who rejects your belief. Example skill modification/addition: Comparing information from a number of sources to judge the trustworthiness of content ——> Comparing information from a number of sources to judge the trustworthiness of people Security - Identity is influenced heavily by relationships. Keeping other people’s data secure seems like part of the puzzle, and there’s something about the innate need to keep people who have influenced your identity positively secure. I don’t have an example for this one off the top of my head, but it’s percolating. [caption id="attachment_2514" align="aligncenter" width="500"]braindump braindump[/caption]

    Building Identity (and the web)

    Composing for the Web, Remixing, and Coding/Scripting allow us to be expressive about our identities. The expression is the WHY of any of this, so directly connected to your own identity. It connects into your personality, motivations, and a mess of thinking skills we need to function in our world. Skills underneath these competencies could be modified to incorporate those emotional and psychological traits of that expression. Design and AccessibilityValues are inseparable from our identities. I think design and accessibility is a competency that radiates a persons values. It’s ok to back burner this if you’re being expressive for the sake of being expressive, but if you have a message, if you are being expressive in an effort to connect with other people (which, let’s face it, is part of the human condition), design and accessibility is a value. Not sure how I would modify the skills… Infrastructure - I was thinking that this one pulled in remembrance as a part of identity. Exporting data, moving data, understanding the internet stack and how to adequately use it so that you can keep a record of your or someone else’s online identity has lots of implications for remembrance, which I think influences who we are as much as anything else. Example skill modification/addition: “Exporting and backing up your data from web services” might lead to “Analyzing historical data to determine identity shifts” That's all for now. I've thought a little about the final strand, but I'm going to save it for next year. I would like to hear what you all think. Is this a useful experiment for the Web Literacy Map? Does this kind of thinking help hone in on ways to structure learning activities that use the web? Can you help me figure out what my brain is doing? Happy holidays everyone ;)

    December 19, 2014 04:46 PM

    December 13, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Badger Beats: The Week In Review [69]

    Welcome to the Badger Beats! We’re excited to share this week’s round of news and updates with you:

    A couple of community reminders:

    1. We’re putting together a Tiki Toki timeline of Open Badges for 2014 (check out last year’s timeline!) If you or your organization have badging milestones you’d like us to include in this year’s timeline, let our Marketing + Community Manager know at jade@badgealliance.org

    2. If you participated in Hour of Code, Badge List is offering open badges (awesome!)

    See you next week, badgers!

    December 13, 2014 12:46 PM

    Open Badges Community Project Call, December 10, 2014

    Open Badges Community Project Call, December 10, 2014:

    Speakers:

    Agenda:

    This week, superbadgers Nate and Serge shared their recent collaboration on a presentation for the Open Education Conference held in Washington, D.C. in November. The session, titled “An API of one’s own: Individual Identities as First-Class Citizens in the Open Badges Infrastructure,” looked at issues of trust, identity and symmetry in the badging ecosystem. They reviewed their presentation and gave the community the opportunity to dive deeper into some questions raised during the presentation.

    Badges as currency

    Open Badges are “a common portable language about data,” providing information on a skill or knowledge as well as those earning and issuing it. Serge argues that Open Badges are “declarations of trust,” and that this shift in thinking affects both badge system design and how badges are used in particular environments.

    Currently, badges are part of what Serge describes as “trust silos,” where an issuer is at the center and trusts numerous earners (see above). This conflicts with the narrative of Open Badges, which states that the earner is at the center of the ecosystem. In that narrative, we have often talked about badges as a “new currency” for skills and knowledge in the 21st century. Serge made the point that it could be said that badges are a visible representation of the oldest currency: trust. By thinking of badges as tokens of trust, we can address those who have concerns about dilution if there are ‘too many badges’ in the ecosystem or in a particular earner’s backpack / portfolio.

    To dig deeper into the issues of trust within badging interactions, Nate and Serge examined the three roles performed and the necessary assets to perform those roles:

    Issuer:

    Earner:

    Consumer:

    These three roles are built on very different different technologies, making it difficult to move between roles. Earlier this year, Mark Surman compared the current state of badges with the early days of email: a small number of issuers with huge potential to grow into a global network. The key difference is that all email users use the same tool to send and receive emails, whereas badging still relies on piecing together many different tools with varying functionality.

    Nate and Serge posed the question of how to align badges with our philosophy of an earner-centered system, by building these values into the Open Badges Standard and software. Doing this would break down the silos of trust Serge described above and instead create visible chains of trust. There are two proposed models to help build this network: Nate and a team from Concentric Sky, Oregon Center for Digital Learning and the Oregon Badge Alliance are working on a trust ecosystem project, which includes a 3-faceted application for issuers, earners and consumers of open badges.

    The initial pilot will focus on 12 programs, including workforce development, conferences, K-12 and out-of-school learning environments. The project will see further development, testing and refining in 2015, but is aimed at enabling connectivity among enterprise issuing platforms and independent services, connecting to other badge-aware services on the web, with software and support for all 3 badging roles, making it easier for users to move between them.

    Serge, in a partnership between Discendum Oy, Badge Europe and Europortfolio, is working on an open badges passport that acts as a basic portfolio where anyone can earn and issue badges. This passport can then be built up with endorsements and other trust-building add-ons, as well as a ‘dashboard’ of stats on badges earned, issued, pledged, etc., contributing to the growth of a social network around badges. If everyone used a passport for receiving and issuing badges, Serge argues, it would build a trust network in which the barriers between roles of issuer, earner and consumer are significantly lower.

    To learn more about the projects described here, check out Nate and Serge’s slides from their Open Ed presentation here.

    You can also see the full discussion notes on the agenda, linked at the top of this post.

    December 13, 2014 12:17 PM

    December 12, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Open Badges MOOC: The Year In Review

    Badges: New Currency for Professional Credentials
    Session 13: The Year In Review
    #openbadgesMOOC

    Recording: http://bit.ly/OBmoocEOY

    This week the Badge Alliance team led the live MOOC session, going over highlights from the year. Check out the slide deck above, as well as this overview of Cycle 1 to see a neat infographic of the working groups’ deliverables and other major milestones the badges community hit this year.

    The MOOC recording will be available from badges.coursesites.com soon.

    Cycle 1 Deliverables

    Here’s a quick overview of each Working Group’s successful deliverables from this cycle:

    Open Badges Standard:

    • Researched and experimented with technology options for implementing extensions to BadgeClass and BadgeAssertion
    • Proposed an extension solution that is open to the community to experiment with,  comment and iterate on.
    • Joined W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) Credentialing Community Group

    Open Badges Infrastructure (OBI):

    • Formed a Tech Advisory Council to act in an advisory role to the Badge Alliance and guide the ongoing development of the open badges technical infrastructure
    • Drafted an Open Badges Infrastructure strategy

    Endorsement:

    • Drafted a working paper on conceptual approaches to badge endorsement
    • Released initial technical implementation proposal in collaboration with the Open Badge Standard Working Group

    Directory:

    • Launched a working beta of an Open Badges Directory that makes it possible for learners and other organizations to find and connect to various badge issuers, their badges and their programs
    • Released accompanying tutorials and documentation

    Research:

    Messaging:

    Digital & Web Literacies:

    • Launched Learning Pathways for Privacy
    • Began building badges for privacy pathway
    • Initiated Web Literacy Map 2.0

    Globalization:

    Higher Education:

    Workforce:

    Badges for Educators & Professional Development:

    Cities & Network-wide Badge Systems:

    • Launched Cities of Learning site
    • Implemented in four cities: Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas and Pittsburgh

    Policy (launched in September 2014):

    December 12, 2014 02:12 PM

    December 06, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Badger Beats: The Week In Review [68]

    Hey there, badgers! We’ve got a few things to catch you up on this weekend:

    Don’t forget to let us know if you think you’re eligible for any of the Badge Alliance badges.

    We hope everyone has a lovely weekend - get ready for the holidays, wrap up warm, and beware those pre-Christmas sales (or at least the revolving department store doors!)

    December 06, 2014 04:42 PM

    In case you missed the Policy 101 webinar hosted by the Penn...



    In case you missed the Policy 101 webinar hosted by the Penn Hill Group team on Thurs, Dec. 4, here’s the recording on our YouTube channel.

    Slides can be found here: http://bit.ly/PolicySlides

    More information on the Badge Alliance Policy Working Group: http://badgealliance.org/policy

    December 06, 2014 12:57 PM

    December 05, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Open Badges Community Call, December 3, 2014

    Open Badges Community Call, December 3, 2014:

    Speaker:

    Agenda:

    Before we kicked off this week’s presentation from Jeff Colombe, we heard from our Directory whizz, Kerri Lemoie, who gave the community some updates from the Directory project. The call attendees raised some great questions about next steps for the Open Badges Directory, including taxonomy, a take-down or ‘opt-out’ mechanism for the registry, and who can add badges. See the full discussion on lines 69-156 in the call notes: http://bit.ly/CC-Dec3

    Badges for Talent Management

    Jeff Colombe works in the Emerging Technologies Department at the MITRE Corporation, a not-for-profit technology company operating several federally funded research and development centers. MITRE frequently works with various organizations to try to connect technology with whose who can use it best, including other not-for-profits as well as for-profit companies.

    Jeff, like many others, saw how badges were being used in education and was interested to see how badges could be used to aid the hiring process in the workplace. Jeff’s project is Skillset, a talent management project undertaken during the last two years at MITRE to match people to project work based on skills, expertise and interests.

    There is a “marketplace” for work at MITRE: project managers need to find people to do work, and employees need to find enough work so that they don’t have to bill their vacation hours. Skillset is essentially a MITRE-specific job skills inventory. Employees can fill out a profile of practical and soft skills, working styles, etc., all of which are graded by levels of both expertise and interest. These skills profiles can then be voluntarily verified (endorsed) by a manager, task leader or co-worker. When job roles are listed, they include a list of skills categorized by level and necessity, then employees’ profiles are cross-referenced to show their expertise in those particular skills, allowing for fast connections between those who have the skills and the roles they can fill.

    Several factors will affect the long-term success of Skillset, according to Jeff:

    • Adoption: currently there are only 2 user groups at MITRE that have completed their job profiles; more widespread adoption across the organization is needed to support the project;
    • Content quality: as the user community continues using the inventory and adding skills to the database, the most desirable and valuable skills will be revealed;
    • Incorporating Skillset into business practices: there are legal issues related to data privacy and the sharing of information that might present a hurdle to the widespread adoption of the Skillset program;
    • Merging with other services / platforms: Jeff is exploring the potential uses of Skillset as a plug-in for HR software and a web service to be used globally

    Learn more about Skillset in Jeff’s white paper: http://bit.ly/SkillsetWhitePaper

    Jeff’s presentation slides can be found here.

    December 05, 2014 02:20 PM

    December 02, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    The Badge Alliance at MozFest

    By Jade Forester

    At this year’s MozFest, the Badge Alliance was represented by three team members—Carla Casilli led a research-focused session and held office hours throughout the festival weekend, and Sunny Lee and I sat down with a group of attendees to dig into this year’s accomplishments and start to look at areas in need of attention in the coming year.

    WGs.jpg

    We used the Cycle 1 Working Groups as a starting point, focusing on each to identify gaps still to be filled in key areas of both the infrastructure that supports Open Badges and the growing ecosystem that expands adoption of badges. Upon our return from MozFest, we brought our notes from this group exercise to the Community Call, inviting attendees to add their thoughts. These conversations helped clarify the most critical issues facing the open badges community as we continue to push this work forward.

    Here’s what we found

    Employers will be the key to widespread adoption

    Workers need jobs. Employers need talent. Badges can help workers showcase their full skill sets and allow employers to identify candidates with the right qualifications and competencies. This has been part of the Open Badges narrative since day one, and as we see increased adoption of badges within education, the next step is to help more employers see the value proposition in using badges to differentiate between job applicants and identify those with the right skill set. Without employer buy-in, badges earned for academic or professional skills cannot have meaning outside of the issuing environment.

    During Cycle 1 the Workforce Working Group developed an Employer FAQ, identified a list of existing workforce badge use cases, and created an employer pipeline graphic for Open Badges. Expanded badging piloting and documentation particularly as part of the hiring and training processes, will lead to increased employer acceptance. It will also enhance the value of existing badges, especially the badges that align with industry standards in particular fields.

    Some members of the community indicated that veterans separating from the military will play an increasingly important role in workforce, therefore focusing badge activity and adoption in this area could potentially yield great success—not only for the veterans but also for employers. Continued efforts will be needed to support open badges initiatives aimed at connecting veterans with civilian employment opportunities.

    We need to keep pushing for badges in higher education

    Badges are steadily gaining a foothold in higher education as a way for instructors to recognize a wider range of skills and achievements than traditional credentials allows - institutions such as UC Davis are using badges as a supplement to traditionally graded programs. Others are pushing the envelope even further, such as Dr. Bernard Bull at Concordia University Wisconsin, who has developed a master’s program in education technology based entirely on competency-based digital badges. Many are still reluctant to integrate badges into their courses; the Campus Policy Framework Document developed by the Policy Working Group will help more institutions find a way to make badges work for them.

    Continued collaboration by the community will be increasingly important as more educational bodies and institutions start to explore and adopt badges. The Higher Education Working Group started curating a list of examples of badges in higher education - if you know of more, add them to the list!

    Continued research is vital

    Building on a quickly developing base of ongoing open badges investigation, the Open Badges Research strives to establish a research base that reports on a variety of open badges aspects. A nice progression from the Research & Badge System Design Calls, now with a stronger emphasis on traditional academic research, this group covers the entire realm of the open badges ecosystem, and actively works to provide the public with meaningful information about open badges.The group’s foundational landscape survey—developed with IRB review and exemption granted from the University of Michigan (thanks Steve Lonn!)—will help badge researchers find future areas of focus. By coalescing, investigating, and funneling research activity into accessible locations, the research community will continue to expand on this meaningful research base that benefits the entire ecosystem.

    Global Cities of Learning will bring badges to communities around the world

    2014 has truly been a year of global growth for Open Badges. Initiatives such as Badge The UK have continued to raise awareness of badges in the UK; European badging projects have seen increased activity in France, Finland, Serbia, Spain, and Germany; and Down Under, the OBANZ community has formed to support the research, development and adoption of Open Badges in Australia and New Zealand.

    The Cities of Learning initiative grew from one summer program in 2013 to six summer and year-round initiatives in 2014. Now that there is increased global badging activity, international cities are starting to investigate the value of using badges to recognize youth activity. Partnerships with local governments and community leaders will be the key to developing an international Cities of Learning movement—the driving force will come from the communities, not from outside influences.

    The Open Badges Standard is really important

    The Open Badges Standard and technical infrastructure (OBI) are the lynchpins that hold the ecosystem together: their importance can’t be understated, and the community recognizes this. There are several issues that the badges team and community have been working on that are in need of continuing efforts, including:

    Get involved: be the change you wish to see

    We’ve identified a number of important areas for community contribution over the coming months. None of them were particularly surprising; these are issues we’ve been talking about for a while now. We’ve already achieved so much—if you haven’t already checked out the overview of our successes from Cycle 1, do it now—but there is still much more work to be done.

    The exciting part is, the work has already begun. No-one has to start from scratch, and there is a thriving community ready to support and collaborate with you. We started this work the same way we’ll accomplish the things we outlined above: as a community.



    December 02, 2014 05:59 PM

    November 29, 2014

    David Rajchenbach-Teller

    Vous souhaitez apprendre à développer des Logiciels Libres ?

    Cette année, la Communauté Mozilla propose à Paris un cycle de Cours/TDs autour du Développement de Logiciels Libres.

    Au programme :

    Pour plus de détails, et pour vous inscrire, tout est ici.

    Attention, les cours commencent le 8 décembre !


    November 29, 2014 08:58 PM

    November 24, 2014

    Hive NYC

    Vision, Leadership and Hive NYC

    The seeds for this post were planted back in 2011, when I first traveled to London as a Hive NYC member-participant in MozFest, Mozilla’s annual gathering where creatives, techies and geeks develop solutions to the web’s most pressing problems. That year marked my introduction to Mozilla—not as the producer of the Firefox browser—but as a company that combines traditional management structures with open, collaborative participation. As the Program Manager for Informal Learning at the Institute of Play at the time, where I was immersed in the worlds of systems-thinking and game-based learning—I was amazed by MozFest’s rules of play, and its ability to inspire people to battle jet lag and other realities to work together toward shared goals.

    Come with an Idea, Leave with a Community

    With one out of every three participants facilitating sessions around nine different topical themes, MozFest 2014 continued to flip the sage-on-stage conference dynamic to encourage a focus on interaction, making and doing. MozFest 2014 also welcomed participants with the new tagline—Come with an idea, Leave with a Community—to accompany its focus on the potential of the mobile web and the importance of advocating for and teaching about the web. This year in particular, I was struck by the varied and distributed displays of leadership that I saw percolating among the creative chaos. Whether it was teaching mobile app development, advising on starting a Hive or facilitating an activity at the MozFest Maker Party, all across MozFest Hive educators stepped up to shepherd ideas and help others. Whether they hailed from Pittsburgh or Pune, I saw practitioners exploring, participating and collaborating in a demonstration of an organic and community-minded leadership. See what was created at MozFest 2014. Read first-time MozFest observations from Kevin Miklasz and Armando Somoza.

    Welcome Back, Mr. Kotter

    Hive educators participate in the Hive Labs Action Incubator

    Hive educators at MozFest 2014

    It wasn’t until I was back in New York reflecting on Hive NYC’s role during MozFest, that I began to think more specifically about the ways that community and participation can fuel innovation and nurture non-traditional notions of leadership. In his seminal 1990 Harvard Business Review article, What Leaders Really Do,” John P. Kotter discusses management and leadership as two “complementary systems of action,” building a strong case for his idea that, within large organizational contexts, the simple act of envisioning something different and/or pressing for change can be seen as a leadership characteristic. Using organizational case studies to demonstrate his findings, Kotter notes that successful organizations don’t “wait for leaders to come along but instead build structures to nurture them.” In this way, Kotter’s definition of leadership is exceptional in that it makes room for a multiple, shared vision. Leadership isn’t the function of one individual but something to be co-constructed and shared.

    Kotter notes that what’s “crucial about a vision is not its originality but how well it serves the interests of important constituencies”; he adds that “dozens of people can play important leadership roles within the context of one organization.” For me, acknowledging this varied, multi-player notion of leadership is key to understanding the value proposition of MozFest and other open, collaborative structures. Not only does this definition encourage people to try out the exploratory and iterative practices that innovation demands but it also makes these practices visible and accessible so more people can experience and learn from them. MozFest and it’s many hubs and nodes of interest-based and values-driven production operates as a laboratory and practice space for others to try on the roles and responsibilities of a non-traditional notion of leadership. MozFest operates like more sustained initiatives like Hive Learning Networks or Maker Party, in that it provides opportunities for participants to try new things and envision larger societal change with like-minded peers. See the Maker Party 2014 Recap and 2014 Infographic for more about this distributed community-driven initiative. See Hive Community Member badge for more details about what Hive members do.

    Identifying Hive NYC Leaders

    From my vantage point as Hive NYC Director, I know that leadership and effectiveness look and feel different in the context of Hive. Increasingly, Hive’s practitioners and educators are not simply applying for grants and implementing projects but enacting varied forms of collective learning and collective action—exchanging expertise, brokering relationships, and putting in long hours on top of the basic responsibilities of their job in order to build something with other community members. Hive’s community of contributors are the ideators who stand at the forefront of Hive’s goals to mobilize more individuals and organizations, create and distribute new tools and resources, and inspire cities to commit to deeper action. The individuals and organizations that who assume the mantle of responsibility to address these larger, collective visions distinguish themselves as Hive NYC’s co-conspirators, partners and leaders.  And to continue to nurture and grow them, we’ll have to do a better job of identifying and celebrating their roles and responsibilities, so more people can join them. See Rafi Santo’s working model of social ties in Hive NYC, which highlights the importance of brokering, advice, and spread-oriented ties across the network.

    A great illustration of how some individuals and organizations are transitioning from members to partners and leaders is Hive NYC’s ongoing work with the NYC Department of Education’s Office of Postsecondary Readiness. Through the Digital Ready program, Hive NYC organizations provide expanded learning opportunities to a group of 20 NYC public schools. While the partnership was brokered by Hive NYC HQ and NYC Department of Education leadership, the hard work of co-designing with schools and building trusted environments for youth to make, learn and play is being implemented and led by Hive individuals and organizations themselves. For a specific example, see the Expanded Learning Case Study featuring Beam Center and Brooklyn International High School. For more local examples of Hive’s distributed and member-led initiatives in action, read about Hive Movable Game Jam, Emoti-Con, the Youth Trajectories Affinity Group or Hive Youth Meet-up.

    Hive Contributor Pathways

    Detail from Hive NYC’s new Community Page

     

    Drivers Wanted

    This week, Hive NYC HQ launches a new Community page on its website. This is a conscious effort to address the changing nature of Hive membership and specifically identify the role of individual leadership and contribution within Hive NYC’s organizational structure. As I wrote in my earlier post, Rethinking Contribution and Membership, the updated Community page extends a wider invitation to NYC educators and organizations to get involved with Hive NYC—to explore, participate, and partner in Hive’s work. This new approach best reflects what we have seen over the years, that experiencing Hive and getting involved in the community first, is the most successful way to engage with Hive NYC’s infrastructure of programs and supports.

    In moving from a focus on Hive membership to community participation and leadership, Hive NYC HQ chose to call attention to three specific people: Jocelyn Leavitt, Gina Tesorio and Juan Rubio. While these are only a few of many active contributors, their portraits represent a larger effort to better identify and illustrate how Hive NYC works and what Hive NYC members do. As we move from a start-up to a more growth-oriented model, it’s important to call attention to one of Hive’s most unique and striking innovations, its ability to develop and grow diverse leaders within a networked community of practice. While the human energy that powers an annual event like MozFest is striking, so too is the day-to-day commitment that motivates Hive’s members and leaders—whatever their contribution may be. While the work of Hive members and leaders can be hard to see, their dedication is of utmost importance. Going forward, Hive NYC HQ will make a concerted effort to identify and celebrate these voices and their accompanying visions. I encourage you to check out the new Community page, revisit Hive NYC’s growing online project portfolio or peruse our new community directory, to get to know some of the co-conspirators and partners who are helping to drive Hive NYC’s goals, vision and work.

    The post Vision, Leadership and Hive NYC appeared first on Hive NYC.

    November 24, 2014 01:31 PM

    November 21, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Badger Beats: The Week In Review [67]

    Hey there folks,

    We were thrilled to issue Badge Alliance badges this week - if you think you’re eligible but haven’t gotten yours yet, let us know.

    Lots of community members have been out and about this week at various conferences, including Open Ed, Global Education Conference, and the Pittsburgh Learning Pathways Summit - the #openbadges hashtag on Twitter is a good way to find conversations from other events.

    What else happened this week?

    That’s it from us, folks! Enjoy your weekend, and we’ll catch up with everyone for a couple of days next week before we break for Thanksgiving.

    image

    November 21, 2014 08:32 PM

    Badge Alliance Badges are here!

    The Badge Alliance is pleased to announce the first set of open badges designed to recognize the diligent work and meaningful contributions that Working Group members have made to the global open badges movement throughout Cycle 1. We’re excited to say that all of the email notifications for these badges have been sent and that these badges are beginning to be claimed by their earners.

    If, after reading the badge descriptions and criteria below, you believe that you are eligible for one or more of these badges and you haven’t heard from us, email badges@badgealliance.org to let us know which badge(s) you have earned. Please include the criteria you’ve met, as well as any evidence supporting your application. Thank you!

    ******************************************************************************

    Badge Alliance Community Member

    image

    This badge acknowledges general membership in the Open Badges community and participation ranging from activity in the Google group to joining weekly community calls.

    Criteria:

    The Community Member illustrates conceptual fortitude by signing up for at least one of the mailing lists to interact with the Open Badges community.

    Potential Evidence:

    ******************************************************************************

    Badge Alliance Working Group Contributor

    image

    This badge acknowledges Open Badges community members who have actively attended conferences, or participated in mailing lists, working groups, or community calls.

    Criteria:

    The Contributor helps to build the open badges ecosystem through active participation in the Working Group or community calls and mailing lists.

    Potential Evidence:

    ******************************************************************************

    Badge Alliance Working Group Fellow

    image

    This badge acknowledges those who go above and beyond in their contributions to the Open Badges community.

    Criteria:

    The Fellow displays community-building characteristics, reinforces new ideas about assessment, learning and credentialing, and champions open badges in their respective areas of expertise.

    Potential Evidence:

    ******************************************************************************

    Open Badges Advocate

    image

    This badge acknowledges individuals who regularly champion Open Badges through active blogging, writing, research, or speaking at conferences.

    Criteria:

    The Advocate exhibits depth and breadth of knowledge about Open Badges in their writing, research, or presentations.

    Potential Evidence:

    ******************************************************************************

    Badge Alliance Visionary

    image

    This badge acknowledges individuals who have altered the landscape of Open Badges through innovative work in research, coding, or badge system design and implementation.

    Criteria:

    The Visionary makes it possible for others to see the tremendous potential in the open badges movement.

    Potential Evidence:

    ******************************************************************************

    Badge Alliance Founding Member

    image

    This badge acknowledges individuals who played an important role in helping to found the Badge Alliance.

    Criteria:

    The Founding Members helped to establish the Badge Alliance as a nexus of badge innovation and thereby increased the reach of the open badges ecosystem through their support.

    ******************************************************************************

    Claim Your Badges

    We’ve made every effort to appropriately issue these badges.

    If you think you might be eligible for one or more of these badges, and you haven’t heard from us, email badges@badgealliance.org to let us know which badge(s) you have earned. Please include the criteria you’ve met, as well as any evidence supporting your application.

    If you’ve been awarded badges to the wrong email address, please email badges@badgealliance.org to let us know which badge(s) you have earned and your preferred email address (the one your Backpack is associated with).

    Thank you!

    November 21, 2014 03:38 PM

    November 20, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Open Badges Community Project Call, November 19, 2014

    Open Badges Community Project Call, November 19, 2014:

    Speaker:

    Agenda:

    This week Sheryl Grant joined the community call to discuss findings from initial research into the 30 winners of the 2011 Badges for Lifelong Learning Competition administered by HASTAC in partnership with Mozilla (funded by MacArthur Foundation).

    These 30 project teams won funding for one year, to develop their proposed badging projects, many of which were built starting in fall 2012. Sheryl and her team asked each project group a series of questions at various stages in the projects’ development to find common lessons learned and stumbling blocks to badge system development in the early days of the open badging ecosystem. She was particularly interested to see whether the projects that were designed to be more ‘functional’ (meaning they were sustainable in the long term) had particular lessons to share, compared to projects designed to be pilots.

    Here were some core lessons learned:

    For more detail, check out the full report here: http://dmlhub.net/publications/what-counts-learning

    November 20, 2014 06:45 PM

    Michigan State University Extension | Digital Badging Series

    Jacob Dedecker, an academic specialist at MSU, began a series on digital badges in August 2014. Five parts of the series have been published so far - take a look at the topics covered in the excerpts below:

    ==================================

    Part 1: A bright new way for students to showcase their skills and knowledge

    An introduction to digital badges, including an ongoing project with youth participating in a 4-H Renewable Energy Camp:

    Youth participating in 4-H Renewable Energy Camp this past June were given the opportunity to earn digital badges in solar energy, wind energy and bioenergy. Youth researched a problem, designed a solution and presented their findings to the entire camp. Learning hot to problem solve, work as a team and communicate are important life skills. In addition, youth engaged in these activities meet certain core science competencies that schools try to teach in the classroom. If youth learn and demonstrate these key competencies during out-of-school time activities like in summer science camps, could they receive credit for that learning? That is one of the key questions this group is asking and digital badging may be a way to do just that.

    Read the article in full…

    Part 2: What do high school students think of digital badges?

    Part 2 looked at how the youth participating in the 4-H Renewable Energy Camp responded to the badges they were earning:

    Read the article in full…

    Part 3: Could earning digital badges help young people get a job?

    This article explored the potential of badges to help youth find employment opportunities:

    As companies look to find the best talent to help their companies thrive, digital badges offer a different view into the experiences, knowledge and skills of candidates they are looking to hire. While grade point averages and ACT scores offer perspective on formal academic achievements, a digital badge can speak to learning experiences and knowledge gained around standards in specific content areas such as solar energy or water quality.

    Read the article in full…

    Part 4: Could earning digital badges help your child get into college?

    This article explored the potential of badges to help youth access academic opportunities:

    Are digital badges something post-secondary institutions are looking at to help them determine the best students to admit to their colleges? Digital badges certainly provide another means for students to showcase what they know, the skills they have developed and the experiences they have that would help them be successful in college. Ultimately that is what college admissions are trying to do – identify students that can be successful in their college and departments. However this can be challenging when only looking at a few data points such as GPA and ACT scores, which now carry so much weight in those decisions. Offering another way to feature a student’s academic success and abilities would help students better highlight what they are capable of doing, allowing colleges to make more informed decisions.

    Read the article in full…

    Part 5: Could digital badges be designed to represent different levels of learning?

    This latest article looks badge types and levels, as well as standards that can help badge consumers differentiate between different badges and the learning experiences they represent:

    Because digital badges can represent a wide scope of activities, it could be helpful to create a standard that depicts specific types of learning. Even better would be a particular look for badges that connect to a type of learning that can be easily seen by teachers and future employees. The badge style, in essence, would say, “this badge means I learned something significant.”

    Read the article in full…

    ==================================

    These articles were published by Michigan State University Extension. For more information, visit http://www.msue.msu.edu.

    November 20, 2014 03:19 PM

    November 14, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Badger Beats: The Week In Review [66]

    Hello there, badgers,

    Welcome to the Badger Beats! Here’s a quick run-down of what’s been going on this week:

    Have a great weekend, everyone. We’ll catch up with you on Monday!

    November 14, 2014 05:23 PM

    November 13, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Open Badges Community Project Call, November 12, 2014

    Open Badges Community Project Call, November 12, 2014:

    Speaker:

    Agenda:

    Carey works in the office of Distance Learning at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, where they have developed a badge system for their online faculty training program. He is also conducting his doctoral research on digital badges at Louisiana State University, looking at the group of online instructors to see what their perceptions of badges are, and whether they’re at a stage of adoption that would indicate readiness for larger certification programs to make use of badges.

    Carey has been encouraged by his graduate committee to look at badging from the viewpoint of the organizations that recruit and hire the instructors that go through the online training. Their reasoning is: regardless of how enthusiastic instructors are about badging, if there aren’t long-term benefits to their careers and job opportunities, a badging system won’t be utilized as much. Conversely, if hiring agents start using - and expecting - badges to play a role in their decisions, then instructors will be increasingly drawn to badged programs. Carey has found little research or commentary on these hypotheses, though he thinks they are correct. He presented his research to the community with a set of questions he was looking to address:

    1. What organizations are using badges as part of their hiring process? Are there some case studies already?

    The Badge Alliance Workforce Working Group curated a list of examples of open badges and digital badges in the workforce, including early adopters such as Stack Overflow / Careers 2.0, the Manufacturing Institute, and Michigan Mblem badges. If you know of more, add them to the list!

    2. What are inhibitors that prevent the adoption (lack of knowledge, lack of trust, “info overload” - etc.)

    A lack of awareness and/or knowledge of badges is often the first barrier to adoption within the workforce, as well as concerns about verification and security of badge metadata, and reticence towards trusting a credential within an open ecosystem. Employers often ask specifically about what we call ‘badge overload,’ worrying about how to differentiate between different badges for the same skills and competencies and the time and resources needed to verify multiple badges per job candidate.

    Other inhibitors preventing widespread adoption of badges within the workforce include a lack of common skills frameworks across industries, and a lack of technical support (particularly within smaller organizations).

    3. How would hiring agents learn about badges and how to interpret and evaluate them? Is there some training available for this new evaluation tool? If not, should there be?

    The Workforce Working Group also developed an Employer FAQ and an Employer Tutorial for badges during Cycle 1, both of which was designed to familiarize employers with badges and the processes needed to assess and evaluate them.

    The community raised an important question during the call: is an applicant who has earned badges a useful introduction to badges employers? Ideally, employers and hiring managers would have at least a basic understanding of badges before encountering a badge collection from a job applicant. As Carla Casilli pointed out during our discussion, much of our work has been focused on pushing badges from education out into the workforce. Now we need to focus more of our efforts on pushing badges from the workforce back into education, where employers recognize their need for a better way to evaluate applicants, adopt badges, and institutions of higher education start scaffolding programs around badges based on workforce requirements.

    4. How could badges fit in with more traditional credentials and resume applications? As a supplement, or eventually replace other methods?

    This question has been addressed more from an education perspective than from the workforce. For example, UC Davis and other institutions of higher education are using badges as a supplement to traditionally graded programs. Others are pushing the envelope, such as Dr. Bernard Bull at Concordia University Wisconsin, who has developed a master’s program in education technology based entirely on competency-based digital badges. As more educational bodies and institutions start to explore and adopt badges, we will see whether the trend is towards using badges as a supplement to or a substitute for traditional assessment and credentialing methods.

    Contribute to this work!

    If you have research or use cases relevant to the above questions, check out the call notes and email Carey with information you think might be useful to his ongoing work.

    You can also join the conversation in the Open Badges Community Google Group or on Twitter by using the hashtag #openbadges.

    November 13, 2014 09:40 PM

    Sunny Lee | The Open Badges Directory → Laying the foundation for cool open badges applications

    Read the original post here.

    **********************************************************************************

    As open badges continues to gain a foothold in the world of digital credentialing and skills recognition, more and more folks have expressed interest in accessing a list of all the earnable open badges out in the wild. Earners, issuers and employers alike want to see the various badges available to earn based on certain search parameters, find out how to earn them and be directed to the appropriate places to dive deeper and start learning and earning.

    One thing that the ecosystem was clearly in need of was a directory service that cataloged and listed all the open badges in the ecosystem with APIs that would enable other organizations to build cool applications on top, such as a badge-based pathway generator, an employer tool that facilitates connections with earners of certain badges, a badge or pathway discovery engine, etc.

    In response, the Open Badges Directory Working Group was formed to precisely dedicate itself to prototyping this much-needed directory offering.

    *** n.b. The documentation for the Open Badges directory can be found here: http://directory.openbadges.org and examples of it in use can be seen here: http://directory.openbadges.org/examples/browser/#/recent and here: http://achievery.com/discover.

    image

    In Cycle 1 of the Working Group, we had to figure out the scope of the project we wanted to tackle. The following were some of the questions we needed to answer to determine the MVP (Minimum Viable Product) feature set.

    I’ll share the line of reasoning we went through and where we netted out with each of these questions below.

    What are we listing?

    This seems like a simple question but actually is a bit more layered. This has to do with the way in which Open Badges technology is set up. The fundamental building block in the badging ecosystem is the assertion. The assertion describes 3 things;

    The assertion essentially ties all these 3 different pieces together in a unique badge instance that is tied to a specific badge earner.

    *** n.b. More information can be found in this wiki guide written by Sue Smith.

    In that case, what do we list?

    While there’s a case to be made for all three options, we decided that the MVP of the badge directory will simply list the Badge Class to start, with Badge Instance and potentially Issuer Organization as subsequent additions. This was because, while listing Badge Classes, depending on method of implementation, has a dependency on the Issuing organization, listing Badge Instances has a dependency on the Earner to make the badges they earn, public. We thought the latter was a bigger initial barrier that the directory would have to overcome as opposed to working with the issuers.

    What is the barrier to entry for badge issuers? What does the badge issuing organization need to do in order to be a part of the directory?

    This question presented us with a few options as well:

    1. Crawl the open web and look for the open badges assertion file type, automating the listing process for the issuer: While this option eliminates the barrier to entry for issuers, it is a resource intensive and expensive undertaking as the crawler would have to scour millions of IP addresses looking for certain file types. This didn’t seem like the right approach for the initial MVP.

    2. Issuers register their badge classes with the directory and provide the paths to where their badges are stored: This is the least developmentally intensive process but at the same time we are dependent on issuers to come to us and register their badges. The barrier to entry for issuers is put in place and we must provide them with a value proposition to register themselves and their badges.

    3. Issuers only register themselves and a simple crawler would know what domains and IPs to crawl: This is a bit of a hybrid solution of the above 2, utilizing crawling with minimal issuer cooperation. Even so, without a robust value proposition presented to issuers, we still have to reckon with the initial barrier of registration that they must overcome.

    We opted for Option 2 in this initial iteration because it provided us with an opportunity to work collaboratively with the issuers in the ecosystem to highlight their badges and proof of concept the directory to a broader audience. Not only that, it saved us from overexpending our technical and development resources which would have been the case if we opted for Option 1.

    However, we have seen rather slow responses from issuing organizations who want to register. We are in the process of evaluating the barrier(s) to entry, as well as the value proposition for issuers, in order to figure out next steps.

    Where does the directory end and other potential third party services begin?

    It’s easy to get excited about a directory offering because of its potential. Say I’m a learner and I want to find out what badges are out there that I can earn that will make me more competitive in the job market. I hear user experience design is a growing field, so I go to the directory, input a few keywords like ‘UX’, ‘user experience’, and ‘UI’ to see the list of badges in the ecosystem related to my search. What next? Does the directory offer me a cool UI with a list of various badge pathways around user experience design I can tackle? Can I save or favorite the badges presented so I can come back to them later?

    What level of end-user experience will the directory enable? Are the cool, personalized experiences mentioned above, something an application on top of the directory creates while the directory is simply providing the service of listing open badges with some search and filtering?

    Is there an end-user interfacing component to the directory at all or should it simply be a list of APIs for developers?

    We all agree the API component of the directory will be critical for encouraging application development, but at the same time, we felt we needed some level of a UI to help folks understand and grasp the fundamental concept behind the directory. As such, what we ended up creating is a simple user interface that lists all badges with basic search and filter capability but nothing beyond that for now.

    *** n.b. The API Explorer illustrates how the API works.

    ==========================

    Having released this initial MVP that provides the broader ecosystem with a production beta version, we’re eager to continue development of the directory. Focus areas include the listing of badge instances in addition to badge classes, additional API endpoints, and exploring ways in which we can lower the barrier of entry while clearly articulating the value proposition for badge issuers.

    There is still a lot more work left to do to have a full functioning directory product. But the prototype is a strong proof of concept and has taught us a ton. Needless to say, none of this could’ve been possible without the leadership, dedication and hard work of Kerri Lemoie from Achievery.

    While Cycle 1 has ended, we still have an active mailing list, so please join the conversation!

    November 13, 2014 06:44 PM

    Sunny Lee

    The Open Badges Directory → Laying the foundation for cool open badges applications

    As open badges continues to gain a foothold in the world of digital credentialing and skills recognition, more and more folks have expressed interest in accessing a list of all the earnable open badges out in the wild. Earners, issuers and employers alike want to see the various badges available to earn based on certain search parameters, find out how to earn them and be directed to the appropriate places to dive deeper and start learning and earning.

    One thing that the ecosystem was clearly in need of was a directory service that catalogued and listed all the open badges in the ecosystem with APIs that would enable other organizations to build cool applications on top, such as a badge-based pathway generator, an employer tool that facilitates connections with earners of certain badges, a badge or pathway discovery engine, etc.

    In response, the Open Badges Directory Working Group was formed to precisely dedicate itself to prototyping this much-needed directory offering.

    *** n.b. The documentation for the Open Badges directory can be found here: http://directory.openbadges.org and examples of it in use can be seen here: http://directory.openbadges.org/examples/browser/#/recent and here: http://achievery.com/discover.

    In Cycle 1 of the Working Group, we had to figure out the scope of the project we wanted to tackle. The following were some of the questions we needed to answer to determine the MVP (Minimum Viable Product) feature set.

    I’ll share the line of reasoning we went through and where we netted out with each of these questions below.

    What are we listing?

    This seems like a simple question but actually is a bit more layered. This has to do with the way in which Open Badges technology is set up. The fundamental building block in the badging ecosystem is the assertion. The assertion describes 3 things;

    The assertion essentially ties all these 3 different pieces together in a unique badge instance that is tied to a specific badge earner.

    *** n.b. More information can be found in this wiki guide written by Sue Smith: https://github.com/mozilla/openbadges/wiki/Assertion-Information-for-the-Uninitiated

    In that case, what do we list?

    While there’s a case to be made for all three options, we decided that the MVP of the badge directory will simply list the Badge Class to start, with Badge Instance and potentially Issuer Organization as subsequent additions. This was because, while listing Badge Classes, depending on method of implementation, has a dependency on the Issuing organization, listing Badge Instances has a dependency on the Earner to make the badges they earn, public. We thought the latter was a bigger initial barrier that the directory would have to overcome as opposed to working with the issuers.

    What is the barrier to entry for badge issuers? What does the badge issuing organization need to do in order to be a part of the directory?

    This question presented us with a few options as well:

    1. Crawl the open web and look for the open badges assertion file type, automating the listing process for the issuer: While this option eliminates the barrier to entry for issuers, it is a resource intensive and expensive undertaking as the crawler would have to scour millions of IP addresses looking for certain file types. This didn’t seem like the right approach for the initial MVP.

    2. Issuers register their badge classes with the directory and provide the paths to where their badges are stored: This is the least developmentally intensive process but at the same time we are dependent on issuers to come to us and register their badges. The barrier to entry for issuers is put in place and we must provide them with a value proposition to register themselves and their badges.

    3. Issuers only register themselves and a simple crawler would know what domains and IPs to crawl: This is a bit of a hybrid solution of the above 2, utilizing crawling with minimal issuer cooperation. Even so, without a robust value proposition presented to issuers, we still have to reckon with the initial barrier of registration that they must overcome.

    We opted for Option 2 in this initial iteration because it provided us with an opportunity to work collaboratively with the issuers in the ecosystem to highlight their badges and proof of concept the directory to a broader audience. Not only that, it saved us from overexpending our technical and development resources which would have been the case if we opted for Option 1.

    However, we have seen rather slow responses from issuing organizations who want to register. We are in the process of evaluating the barrier(s) to entry, as well as the value proposition for issuers, in order to figure out next steps.

    Where does the directory end and other potential third party services begin?

    It’s easy to get excited about a directory offering because of its potential. Say I’m a learner and I want to find out what badges are out there that I can earn that will make me more competitive in the job market. I hear user experience design is a growing field, so I go to the directory, input a few keywords like ‘UX’, ‘user experience’, and ‘UI’ to see the list of badges in the ecosystem related to my search. What next? Does the directory offer me a cool UI with a list of various badge pathways around user experience design I can tackle? Can I save or favorite the badges presented so I can come back to them later?

    What level of end-user experience will the directory enable? Are the cool, personalized experiences mentioned above, something an application on top of the directory creates while the directory is simply providing the service of listing open badges with some search and filtering?

    Is there an end-user interfacing component to the directory at all or should it simply be a list of APIs for developers?

    We all agree the API component of the directory will be critical for encouraging application development, but at the same time, we felt we needed some level of a UI to help folks understand and grasp the fundamental concept behind the directory. As such, what we ended up creating is a simple user interface that lists all badges with basic search and filter capability but nothing beyond that for now.

    *** n.b. The API Explorer illustrates how the API works.

    ==========================

    Having released this initial MVP that provides the broader ecosystem with a production beta version, we’re eager to continue development of the directory. Focus areas include the listing of badge instances in addition to badge classes, additional API endpoints, and exploring ways in which we can lower the barrier of entry while clearly articulating the value proposition for badge issuers.

    There is still a lot more work left to do to have a full functioning directory product. But the prototype is a strong proof of concept and has taught us a ton. Needless to say, none of this could’ve been possible without the leadership, dedication and hard work of Kerri Lemoie from Achievery.

    While Cycle 1 has ended, we still have an active mailing list, so please join the conversation!

     

    November 13, 2014 06:30 PM

    Open Badges blog

    #openbadgesMOOC Session 13: Policy Matters That Affect Open Badges

    Badges: New Currency for Professional Credentials
    Session 13: Policy Matters

    Session Recording: coming soon!

    This week, Anne Derryberry put forth the community-developed framework for developing institutional open badges policies which she participated in authoring as part of the Badge Alliance’s Policy Working Group. In addition, Mary Alice McCarthy, Senior Policy Analyst in the Education Policy Program at New America, presented a number of policy discussions occurring at the federal level within the U.S.

    Why We Need An Institutional Policy Framework

    Educational institutions around the world are exploring Open Badges for teaching and learning. The purpose of the Campus Policy Framework document is to inform the development of badge policies in higher education and to highlight important issues and areas for consideration, such as assessment, transcripting and publishing, intellectual property, privacy, and ethical / legal issues.

    Policy is a broad area that can significantly impact badge uptake and effectiveness within postsecondary education. It includes institutional legal obligations, rights, ownership, federal and state government requirements, and local government regulations.

    Peruse the document here: http://bit.ly/CampusPolicyBadges

    Federal Policy Issues

    Badges are part of a larger conversation around the need for more competency-based assessment and credentials at the federal level. That conversation is driven by three guiding principles, according to Mary Alice McCarthy: driving quality; ensuring equity; and protecting consumers and taxpayers.

    image

    A number of groups and organizations are conducting research into postsecondary education, assessment and credentials which could play a role in building support for open badges:

    The Higher Education Academy also offers opportunities for investigating the potential benefits of open badges in higher education, as their focus is on securing support for competency-based education approaches and addressing quality assurance issues with non-traditional credentials.

    McCarthy closed her presentation by reminding attendees that federal support of open badges will hinge upon the risks of creating a federal badging policy, and whether can the badging community can help policymakers see the relationship between technology and better credentials. The continuing work of the open badges community in key areas such as policy, higher education and workforce will be increasingly important as major players in the federal and regional policy landscape start to investigate the potential uses for open badges in postsecondary education.

    What do you think? Join the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #openbadgesMOOC

    *********************************************

    We look forward to continuing this course with you! See below for details of the next session.

    Go to http://badges.coursesites.com/ to access more resources, information, and challenge assignments to earn badges.

    *********************************************

    Future sessions:

    Monday, Dec. 8, 2-3pm ET:
    Open Badges Review - Sunny Lee and Jade Forester

    November 13, 2014 04:38 PM

    November 10, 2014

    Mark Surman

    We are all citizens of the web

    Ten years ago today, we declared independence. We declared that we have the independence: to choose the tools we use to browse and build the web; to create, talk, play, trade in the way we want and where we want; and to invent new tools, new ways to create and share, new ways of living online, even in the face of monopolies and governments who insist the internet should work their way, not ours. When we launched Firefox on on November 9, 2004, we declared independence as citizens of the web.

    Firefox NYT Ad

    The launch of Firefox was not just the release of a browser: it was the beginning of a global campaign for choice and independence on the web. Over 10 million people had already joined this campaign by the time of the launch — and 10s of millions more would join in coming months. They would join by installing Firefox on their own computers. And then move on to help their friends, their families and their coworkers do the same. People joined us because Firefox was a better browser, without question. But many also wanted to make a statement with their actions: a single company should not control the web.

    By taking this action, we — the millions of us who spread the software and ideas behind Firefox — helped change the world. Remember back to 2004: Microsoft had become an empire and a monopoly that controlled everything from the operating system to the web browser; the technology behind the web was getting stale; we were assaulted by pop up ads and virus threats constantly. The web was in bad shape. And, people had no choices. No way to make things better. Together, we fixed that. We used independence and choice to bring the web back to life.

    And alive the web is. For all 2.8 billion of us on the web today, it has become an integral part of the way we live, learn and love. And, for those who think about the technology, we’ve seen the web remain open and distributed — a place where anyone can play — while at the same time becoming a first class platform for almost any kind of application. Millions of businesses and trillions of dollars in new wealth have grown on the web as a result. If we hadn’t stood up for independence and choice back in 2004, one wonders how much of the web we love today we would have?

    And, while the web has made our lives better for the most part, it both faces and offers new threats. We now see the growth of new empires — a handful of companies who control how we search, how we message each other, where we store our data. We see a tiny oligopoly in smartphones and app stores that put a choke hold on who can distribute apps and content — a far cry from the open distribution model of the web. We see increased surveillance of our lives both by advertisers and governments. And, even as billions more people come online, we see a shift back towards products that treat people as consumers of the digital world rather than as makers and as citizens. We are at risk of losing our hard won independence.

    This is why — on the 10th birthday of Firefox — I feel confident in saying that Mozilla is needed more than ever. We need great products that give people choices. We need places for those of us who care about independence to gather. And we need to guard the open nature of the web for the long haul. This is why Mozilla exists.

    Who owns the internet?

    Just as we did 10 years ago, we can start to shift the tide of the web by each and every one of us taking concrete actions — big or small. Download the Firefox 10th Anniversary release — and then tell a friend why Mozilla and Firefox still matter. Grab a colleague or a parent or a kid and teach them something about how the web gives them independence and choice. Or, just watch and share the Firefox 10 video with friends (it’s really good, honest :)). These are a few small but meaningful things you can do today to celebrate Firefox turning 10.

    Putting the web back on course as a force for openness and freedom will require much more than just small actions, of course. But it’s important to remember that the global community of people who installed Firefox for others — and then talked about why — made a huge difference when Mozilla first stood up for the web. We moved mountains over the past 10 years through  millions of people taking small actions that eventually added up to a groundswell. As we look today for new ways to shore up our independence on the web, we will need to do this again.

    Th 10th Anniversary of Firefox is a day to celebrate, no doubt. But today is also a day to deepen our commitment to choice and independence — to stand together and start sharing that commitment with everyone around us.It is a day to show that we are citizens of the web. I hope you will join me.


    Filed under: drumbeat, mozilla, open, openweb, poetry, webmakers

    November 10, 2014 05:43 PM

    Laura Hilliger

    Thinking Big and Learning Big

    Last week, we gathered ThinkBig program heads, educators, partners and technologists in London to run a workshop on Webmaker and open collaboration. We had a lot of goals for this workshop, but my main objective was this one:
    Accept one another as a valuable ally and feel confident in reaching out to ask for or provide feedback.
    I wanted to make sure all the people who came to this workshop knew that they could rely on me, personally, the TeachTheWeb team generally and Mozillians writ large. I also wanted to make sure that they saw each other as allies inside Telefonica. At Mozilla events, we encourage participatory interaction, which underpins communication on the web (because you have to both push and pull in order to be a digital citizen), and we deliver digital skills as a byproduct of the cognitive and social skills that are arguably more important in the digital environment and in life. Hanging out with the 40 or so adults from the UK, Germany, Spain and Costa Rica (plus my fantastic co-facilitators Melissa and Bobby) it solidified for me that I don’t actually teach digital skills all that much. I could, but I rarely do. At the beginning of our two-day workshop, we created mindmaps to define the problems Telefonica is dealing with. What I saw reflected in that thinking was fear. Fear of failure. Fear of looking bad at work. Fear of looking stupid in front of youth. Fear of the unknown. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="600"] Group photo from Helen Parker[/caption] I teach confidence. I teach agency. I teach people about the true nature of fear, I teach participation and I teach openness. I knew this, but the confidence, agency and fear bit has never been so prevalent in my own head. I’m starting to think about how working openly can contribute to your confidence and the idea that openness can negate isolation, not only from the work perspective but from that deep dark place that people have inside. You know the imposture syndrome? Can it be that openness is the antidote? How does ego and entitlement play in here? I believe that webmaking can be a conduit for self development, so how can we design materials that help educators see that more clearly? I’m interested to keep these queries in mind when I plan another event like the Telefonica + Mozilla training. This particular workshop felt really good. We collaborated to create a good arc, I felt confident about it, it seemed like people were happy, like they learned. They made amazing, interesting things. I worry that we could have done more to help people level up their digital skills, but I let myself off the hook on that one because two days is such a short amount of time. I think about creating programming like this that isn’t a one-off (e.g. I want to run multiple workshops for passionate people like these folks.) Perhaps we should think about a reunion which unpacks how the lessons of the first workshop influenced a year of work, and dive down into specific digital skills that the participants still feel are lacking. The folks who showed up to the Telefonica Training in London showed up strong. They dove in, they made things, they took notes, they collaborated and were honest and were present. We only started the work we have to do together, which is why I’ve started a new Discourse Category called “New to Open”. I hope Discourse continues to be a place to find collaborators, share things, and explore what it means to work openly (among other relevant discussions). The open community should continue to be curious and start reaching outside of our comfort zones to work together with people in other industries. If we start utilizing one another’s skills and expertise in a more conscious way, perhaps we can start making more impact in the public sphere.

    November 10, 2014 12:25 PM

    November 07, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Badger Beats: The Week In Review [65]

    Happy Friday!

    There’s been a lot going on this week - our team and community have been presenting at the AECT 2014 Annual Convention, Open Ed Conference and iNACOL Symposium, while others have been wrapping up their MozFest activities and more are preparing to present at Deakin University’s National Forum.

    Here’s a summary of some of the other great stuff that happened this week:

    March of the Robots delivered activities and workshops for thousands of people in Leeds in the UK, as well as hanging out at MozFest with us. Read more on the Digital Me blog!

    Here are some great shots of the CubeBot in action with the kids on the badges floor:

    image

    image

    November 07, 2014 02:47 PM

    November 06, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Open Badges Community Project Call, Nov. 5, 2014

    Open Badges Community Project Call, Nov. 5, 2014:

    Speakers:

    Agenda: http://bit.ly/CC-Nov5

    This week we heard from community members in three different countries - it’s great to see these community calls going truly global. Dr. Devedzic and his colleague Dr. Jelena Jovanovic presented on the October 15th community call on their GRASS (grading soft skills) project based in Estonia. He joined us again this week to share his experiences from the Belgrade Job Fair, where he and another colleague gave an Open Badges presentation to a group of employers and students (primarily from technical fields).

    Introducing European students and employers to badges

    Badges are still relatively new in Serbia, as in much of Europe. Dr. Devedzic reported that students’ reactions were mostly positive, whereas employers were generally more cautious. Employers had to be approached “with more care” and Dr. Devedzic believes that ongoing efforts to raise awareness and introduce employers to examples of badges being used in the workplace will encourage acceptance and adoption.

    Students were interested to learn more about badge validity, trusted issuers, issuing criteria, validity of evidence, and the number of badges earned - questions many of us are familiar with when introducing badges to new audiences. Employers also asked about the potential to forge badges, as well as the sustainability of the concept in the long term, and some expressed reluctance to the idea overall. There were also concerns about candidates coming to them with hundreds of badges, before badge collections and sharing options were explained.

    In a region where personal connections often open more doors than skills sharing, Dr. Devedzic argues “a greater campaign is necessary in order to make employers here aware of the benefits of badges.” Ongoing contact with employers will be important as awareness and adoption of badges spreads throughout Europe. There is another big promotional event in Belgrade scheduled for the spring of 2015, where Dr. Devedzic has been invited to talk about Open Badges - we look forward to hearing more updates after that.

    To learn more about the GRASS Project that Dr. Devedzic and Dr. Jovanovic are leading, go to https://sites.google.com/site/llpgrassproject/

    Badging conversations with Dr. Dan Hickey & Dr. James Willis

    In the hour before Wednesday’s community call, Dan and James led a discussion on how major learning management systems are incorporating digital badges, the entrepreneurial and university-based support system emerging around this new feature, and examples of badge-induced transformation and disruption. Learn more here.

    Dan Hickey’s team developed a modest initial badging integration for Open edX, and are planning to figure out how to build the functionality into downloadable instances for future uses, working towards making it possible for anyone using it to issue badges using the platform.

    Here is a blog post on Dan Hickey’s musings about scaling up badge systems from a non-technologists perspective : http://remediatingassessment.blogspot.com/2014/11/the-design-knowledge-evaporation.html

    Next week, Dan will be presenting in Australia at the Curate, Credential and Carry Forward Digital Learning Evidence National Forum being held at Deakin University and then the Open edX Conference in Boston, Mass.

    Learn more about Indiana University’s COIL (Center for Online Learning and Innovation) here: http://coil.psu.edu

    Badges for Digital Leaders in the UK

    Educators in the UK have been working to recognize youth digital leaders using badges, based on an open framework for skills and knowledge for digital leadership.

    Chris Sharples worked with Digital Me’s Tim Riches and Lucy Neale, as well as the team at Makewaves, to develop levels of Digital Leader Badges. Chris has awarded badges to 25 digital leaders in his North Yorkshire school, and has found that the primary challenge facing schools working to award badges to students is that IT staff are often very busy and don’t have the resources to maintain and monitor the badging process.

    Chris has kept an ongoing record of the work being done on his blog: http://www.gr8ict.com/digitalleaders/

    There is also a weekly #dlchat Twitter conversation held every Thursday at 4pm EST / 9pm GMT. In October, our Marketing + Community Manager Jade Forester led a badges-themed chat, and we’d love to get more members of the badging community involved in a future Twitter chat. Contact Jade if you’d like to join!

    November 06, 2014 04:58 PM

    November 05, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Upcoming Badges Webinars from Pearson

    Pearson have announced some interesting Open Badges webinars for college administrators and faculty, as well as non-profits and corporations.

    See below for details and registration links, and join the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #pearsonlearn

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Exploring Open Badges

    Open badges allow academic institutions, corporations, and associations to recognize the resume–worthy achievements of students and employees in a way that can be easily verified and shared online. This month we take a look at open badges and the impact they can have on the pathway from college to career.

    From Colleges to Careers: Sharing Competencies through Open Badges

    Fast Track to Valuable Badges: Connecting Learning to Jobs

    Exploring Badges: A New Method to Recognize Professional Credentials

    November 05, 2014 07:00 PM

    November 03, 2014

    Hive NYC

    MozFest Reflections: Armando Somoza of Urban Arts Partnership

    This is a guest post by Armando Somoza, Program Director for The Academy & Adobe Youth Voices at Urban Arts Partnership.

    My first experience at #MozFest was a fascinating first encounter with an “Open Conference” model.  Unknowingly, I have been groomed to believe the “conference” experience should be one with sessions with defined beginning and end times, structured discourse around predetermined topics, and clear workshop agendas.  My entire world turned inside out!  #MozFest defined a new paradigm of gathering people to have powerful discourse about important topics that are sourced from those participating in the community.  At first take, I felt excluded and lost.  I had no idea what “Tracks” or “Space Wranglers” were and I felt like I was missing valuable opportunities to learn and contribute to great conversations.  I wondered around to various spaces eavesdropping and glancing over shoulders.  I joked with a few other first time MozFest participants that it felt like I was invited to a house party where other participants were actively dancing to music they all knew and were sharing in festive exchanges, but that I was standing in the kitchen sipping on a beer trying to find my “in.”  I had difficulty finding my entry point and then it all changed.

    10731921_352158634955534_975964007_n

    The catalyst for the shift was ignited on Saturday when we hosted our office hour session called “Hacking the NYC Dept of Ed with the Arts.”  We wrote out our title on a large post-it and waited to welcome conversation.  At first we couldn’t find a place to meet and nobody was stopping by to engage in conversation. Then Rafi Santo stopped by and…. ka’boom!  The two hour conversation that followed, through the span of four floors in Ravenbourne, took us through topics including Hive’s vision on creating a collective impact space to maximize efforts between organizations to bring about real change, celebrating shared experiences and building trust between organizations, Marx, negotiating the real challenges of the “Digital Divide” and strategies on serving students from under-represented communities and much more. I was starting to hear my “music” play at the party!

    10735162_312899542252118_1844667900_n

    Sunday was the most powerful experience, though.  We gathered in groups to discuss Hive’s five-year plan and vision statement: “We imagine a time when connected learning is ubiquitous in Hive cities across the globe, empowering educators and unlocking opportunities for all youth.”  Hive’s four goal realms are: Mobilize, Create, Catalyze, and Grow.  I met with an awesome group at the Catalyze table.  We began with general conversation around partnerships and then we went for a ride.  Through collective visioning, the sharing of core values, and an enthusiastic investment in the community we share, we began to envision an introduction of critical discourse around race, gender, class, sexuality, etc to supplement the amazing work already happening at MozFest.  We titled our concept #codeswitchdigital and the idea of proposing a new track in MozFest took life.  More importantly, I created great friendships with colleagues from various backgrounds and roles in the MozFest community.  It felt like the DJ at the house party finally introduced a playlist full of all my jams and it allowed more people to come out of the woodwork!

    The epiphany hit in the moment of wrapping our conversation that MozFest not only embraces its core values, but intentionally models them for all of those who participate.  I was inspired to see the philosophy of “working open” held with integrity, honored as foundational pedagogy, and valued as an authentic approach to gathering talented and passionate people.  I learned that MozFest creates open space where passionate minds gather to engage in powerful discourse, hack technical solutions, and define the future of the field.  #Awesome.

    Photos from Armando’s Instagram.

    The post MozFest Reflections: Armando Somoza of Urban Arts Partnership appeared first on Hive NYC.

    November 03, 2014 07:27 PM

    November 02, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Badger Beats: The Week In Review [64]

    Welcome to the Badger Beats!

    Here’s what we got up to this week:

    We’ll leave you with this vine that Steve Lonn put together at MozFest:

    See you next week, everyone!

    November 02, 2014 05:15 PM

    November 01, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Open Badges Community Project Call, October 29 2014

    Open Badges Community Project Call, October 29 2014:

    Catch up on last Wednesday’s community project call where a few of us reported out from the Mozilla Festival.

    November 01, 2014 11:27 AM

    October 31, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    EDUZILLA: Covering Education & Badges at MozFest

    EDUZILLA: Covering Education & Badges at MozFest:

    I think Open Badges and other digital qualifications…are a fantastic idea, especially in developing areas where formal education can be hard to access.

    “Badges are a great idea but they need to explode

    Check out Eduzilla for MozFest coverage, including a post on Open Badges and Think Big.

    October 31, 2014 05:23 PM

    Here’s a great little vine that Steve Lonn made of the Open Badges Lab den at MozFest last...

    Here’s a great little vine that Steve Lonn made of the Open Badges Lab den at MozFest last weekend:

    We’ve got some pictures on Twitter too, check them out below:

    To learn more about the amazing den building work Chris Harman does, check out denbuilding.co.uk

    October 31, 2014 05:18 PM

    October 25, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Badger Beats: The Week In Review [63]

    We hope everyone’s having a great weekend - whether you’re at home or enjoying the revelry of MozFest!

    Here’s a quick run-down of the week:

    "Data is confirming what we already know: recruiting is an imprecise activity, and degrees don’t communicate much about a candidate’s potential and fit. Employers need to know what a student knows and can do.

    Enjoy your weekend, everyone! See you all on Monday….

    October 25, 2014 02:09 PM

    Open Badges at the Mozilla Festival

    Open Badges at the Mozilla Festival:

    Sunny, Carla and Jade are hanging out in London this weekend with the wonderful folks from Digital Me, as well as representatives from Think Big, iDEA Award, Makewaves, Badge Europe and more!

    Follow @mozillafestival and #MozFest on Twitter to see what’s been going on. If you aren’t in London and want to participate remotely, check out 2014.mozillafestival.org/remote/

    October 25, 2014 01:47 PM

    October 24, 2014

    Jess Klein

    Hive Labs at the Mozilla Festival: Building an Ecosystem for Innovation



     


    This weekend marks the fifth year anniversary of the Mozilla Festival - and Hive Labs has a ton of fun design - oriented, hands-on activities to get messy with in person or remotely. We are using the event to explore design questions that are relevant to local communities and Hives and to dabble in building out a community-driven ecosystem for innovation. Here's a few highlights:

    Challenges to Enacting and Scaling Connected Learning

    This year, the Hive track at MozFest (http://2014.mozillafestival.org/tracks/) is bringing together Hive and "Hive curious" travelers from around the world to incubate solutions to shared challenges in enacting and scaling connected learning. We're working together over the course of the MozFest weekend to collaboratively answer questions that come up again and again in our networks across the globe. One question that Hive Labs is focusing on is: How do we build a community that supports innovation in the education space? 



    Action Incubator

    We will be hosting a series of activities embedded within the Hive track to think through problems in your Hives and local communities and brainstorming solutions collectively. We will be leveraging three teaching kit's that were made specifically to facilitate this kind of design thinking activity:

    Art of the Web 

    This entire track is dedicated to showcasing and making art using the Web as your medium. Follow the #artoftheweb hashtag on twitter. 


    in response to the #mozfest remotee challenge

    MozFest Remotee Challenge

    Want to join in on all of the Mozilla Festival action even though you aren't physically at the event? This challenge is for you! We have compiled a handful of activities focused on Web Literacy, supporting community - based learning and making so that you can take part in the conversation and brainstorming at the Mozilla Festival. Go here to start the challenge.

    You can follow along all weekend using the #mozfest or #hivebuzz hashtags on Twitter.

    October 24, 2014 01:39 PM

    October 22, 2014

    Daniel Sinker

    OpenNews: Announcing our 2015 Knight-Mozilla Fellows!

    We’ve been looking for Knight-Mozilla Fellows for four years now, and so you begin to notice patterns during the process. There’s that moment when you worry that there won’t be enough applicants, and then that other when you worry there will be too many. There’s that melancholy time when you realize that you won’t have a fellowship cohort quite like the current one and then the exhilaration when you realize that’s exactly right.

    But the most important moment is the one when all the pieces begin to come together and you begin to see not an applicant but instead a fellow. That moment is magic: the sheer volume of applications (417 this year—our largest pool ever) disappears and where there was once a mass of qualifications and ideas, you begin to see truly extraordinary individuals.

    It’s a great pleasure today to introduce those individuals—our 2015 Knight-Mozilla Fellows—to you. These folks will spend 10 months in 2015 experimenting in some of the best newsrooms in the world (they’ll be joined by one more Fellow, at Vox Media, who will be announced later this year), on a mission to try new things, to document them in the open, and to connect with the broader community of people writing code in journalism.

    The work that the Knight-Mozilla Fellows do during their fellowship year doesn’t fit easily into a single sentence. Over the year a fellow will play the role of coder, teacher, mentor (and mentee), adventurer, colleague, and friend. They’ll push themselves, and journalism, in new directions. They’ll do work that has real impact—on themselves and on the web.

    It’s a tall order, but a thrilling one, and the people we have lined up to do the work of a Knight-Mozilla Fellow in 2015 are among our very best yet. I can’t wait for you to meet them:

    Tara Adiseshan | NYT/Washington Post

    Tara Adiseshan is a designer and data visualization engineer who is excited about civic media, learning tools, and community platforms. From designing search futures at Autodesk to conducting user research around rainwater harvesting in rural India, Tara has had the opportunity to apply design methodologies and build solutions in a variety of disciplinary spaces. Tara believes that access to and understanding of information and data can be a key leverage point through which social systems change. Tara will be a Fellow at the Coral Project, a collaboration between the New York Times, the Washington Post, and OpenNews.

    Follow Tara on Twitter at @taraandtheworld

    Juan Elosua | La Nacion

    Juan Elosua is a Spanish telecommunications engineer with broad experience in tech consultancy and financial services IT. In 2011, he discovered data journalism and became a data addict and freelance developer, and can now be found turning data upside down to extract knowledge from it. He strongly believes open data will play a key role in shaping the future of modern societies, and has trained journalists to help them find stories and work efficiently on data-related projects.

    Follow Juan on Twitter at @jjelosua

    Livia Labate | NPR

    Livia Labate is a user experience designer and manager with a passion for in-house practice development. Livia is interested in how open source tools empower news creation and dissemination, and shape access to information and social participation. With over 15 years of industry experience, she has worked with large organizations such as Comcast and the BBC as well as heavily contributing to the development of the Information Architecture community of practice through the IA Institute. More recently, Livia has led Marriott’s Digital Standards and Practices group, focusing on stewardship and governance of digital experiences.

    Follow Livia on Twitter at @livlab

    Linda Sandvik | the Guardian

    Linda Sandvik is a creative technologist and proto-MacGyver who likes to make things that inform, educate, and empower people and communities. She previously worked in local government and at Last.fm, and is a co-founder of Code Club, and her particular interests lie in using play and technology to help people discover their natural affinity for teaching themselves new things. She has a passion for open data, open knowledge, and serious games.

    Follow Linda on Twitter at @hyper_linda

    Julia Smith | CIR

    Julia Smith is a design professional from Omaha, NE. She’s held a variety of roles in journalism and IT, having worked as a designer and developer on news sites, mobile applications, enterprise software, and corporate websites. She is fascinated with civic media and loves exploring the connections between storytelling, design, and technology to create experiences that empower community change.

    Follow Julia on Twitter at @julia67

    Francis Tseng | NYT/Washington Post

    Francis Tseng is a programmer and interaction designer interested in natural language processing, internet socializing, demystifying technology, and systems modeling. After two years at IDEO, he became a Knight Foundation prototype grant recipient in 2014. He is currently teaching the News Automata course at the New School’s Design + Journalism program and designing and building _critical_ software with friends at Public Science. Francis will be a Fellow at the Coral Project, a collaboration between the New York Times, the Washington Post, and OpenNews.

    Follow Francis on Twitter at @frnsys

    October 22, 2014 06:07 PM

    Open Badges blog

    #openbadgesMOOC Session 12 - Design Principles Documentation Project / Open edX and Beyond Project

    Badges: New Currency for Professional Credentials
    Session 12: Design Principles Documentation Project / Open edX and Beyond Project
    Session Recording: http://bit.ly/OBmooc12

    James E. Willis, III, Ph.D. is a research associate in the Center for Research on Learning and Technology at Indiana University’s School of Education working with Dan Hickey and his research team on their digital badges projects, the Design Principles Documentation Project and the recently launched Open edX and Beyond project.

    Open Badges Design Principles Documentation

    In the 2012 Badges for Lifelong Learning DML Competition, 30 organizations were funded to develop ecosystems for open digital badges. Indiana University’s Center for Research on Learning and Technology has studied the development, implementation, and practice of badging within the scope of recognizing, assessing, motivating, and studying learning.

    image

    The research team analyzed project proposals and then conducted interviews as projects got underway and after the development period was over. This resulted in a forthcoming report and open database detailing intended practices (ideas outlined in general proposals), enacted practices (intentions unfolding in the world), and formal practices (what continues after funding ends) for using digital badges, with particular attention on the factors that supported the formalization of some practices while hindering others.

    5 Buckets for Badge System Design

    Sheryl Grant, Director of Social Networking at DML/HASTAC, defined five classes or ‘buckets’ for badge system design based on the same 30 badge projects from the 2012 Badges for Lifelong Learning DML Competition - read more on the HASTAC blog.

    image

    Here are Sheryl’s five badge system classes:

    Sheryl identified a badge system as being comprised of three components: technology, learning content, and the badges themselves. Each of the five badge system classes starts with and requires a combination of these components, as shown in the table above.

    The DPD Project team looked at the 30 badging projects, first identifying which bucket each system fell into, then looking at various levels of progress or status (including implementation, ecosystem and badges) and found the layered and responsive badge systems were more successful than the other three:

    image

    The team also looked more deeply at the various badge system proposals within each of the 30 projects, looking at the various practices that were formalized, proposed but not enacted, and unproposed but introduced. James Willis provided an overview of these for a handful of projects, including YALSA, UC Davis, Who Built America, and Badges for Vets:

    image

    The team’s general findings included:

    Over the years we’ve heard a number of presentations on this work from Dan Hickey and Nate Otto on the Open Badges Community Calls, so it was great to see their findings presented by James on Monday. For anyone looking into building a badge system, this research will prove invaluable!

    For more details on the other projects the team looked at, check out James’ slide deck.

    For more information on the DPD Project, visit http://dpdproject.info/

    *********************

    Open edX and Beyond

    To support widespread innovation around open digital badges in higher education, the Center for Research on Learning and Technology at Indiana University is working with IBL Studios, Inc. and Achievery to offer open badges in Open edX. The project is currently building badges into Lorena Barba’s Open edX MOOC, Practical Numerical Methods with Python.

    When Professor Barba realized that Open edX requires authentication, she proposed the badges link directly to Github, where students will be working. This may be the first time badges have used direct links to Github as evidence, so we’re excited to see how this works as the course progresses. A series of badges should be available by mid-November, with seamless badge integration by spring 2015.image

    Building badges into Open edX has presented a number of technical and pedagogical challenges and opportunities for the team:

    Ongoing goals for the team at Indiana University’s Center for Research on Learning and Technology include facilitating further widespread use of digital badges in higher education - to more hybrid and standalone courses, across multiple platforms, and for faculty and staff learning. They also plan to publish their findings from this and ongoing projects, sharing their notes, challenges and results for future opportunities.

    Learn more about the Open edX and Beyond project on Dan Hickey’s blog.

    *********************************************

    We look forward to continuing this course with you! See below for details of the next session.

    Go to http://badges.coursesites.com/ to access more resources, information, and challenge assignments to earn badges.

    *********************************************

    Future sessions:

    Monday, Nov. 10, 2-3pm ET:
    Open Badges Policy - Anne Derryberry
    Monday, Dec. 8, 2-3pm ET:
    Open Badges Review - Sunny Lee and Jade Forester

    October 22, 2014 02:53 PM

    Doug Belshaw

    What I’m doing at #MozFest 2014

    It’s the Mozilla Festival this weekend. If you’re going and it’s your first time, then you might find my 10 survival tips for MozFest useful.

    I’m co-leading three sessions this year. I’ll update this post when I know when and where they all are! (Done!) Here’s an overview of what to expect in each session.

    Prototypes and Pathways for Web Literacy

    Saturday, 2-3pm, Track: Build and Teach the Web

    Learning pathways are either prescriptive or descriptive sequences of learning experiences. These often have a particular goal in mind.

    This session will involve the creation of a privacy badge pathway. We will draw on the Web Literacy Map, Open Badges, Webmaker personas, and a document created by a Badge Alliance working group. By the end of the session we should have completed pathways to share, built to work in a particular context.

    Co-facilitator:

    What we’ll be doing:

    I’m looking forward to seeing what people come up with in this session. Preparing for it has involved much cutting out of colourful hexagons… ;-)


    Learning Analytics for good in the age of Big Data

    Saturday, 3-4pm, Track: Science and the Web

    According to the current Wikipedia definition, “Learning analytics is the measurement, collection and reporting of data about learners and their contexts, for purposes of understanding and optimising learning and the environments in which it occurs.” In other words, using data to improve learning outcomes. At the moment, this is often done without the consent of users, so we want to build a better, more open, way to do it.

    Co-facilitators:

    What we’ll be doing:

    It’s early days for this, but there’s potential to form a working group as an output of this session.


    Toward v2 of Mozilla’s Web Literacy Map

    Sunday, 12.30-1.30pm, Track: Build and Teach the Web

    At the end of August we started the ball rolling for v2.0 of the Web Literacy Map. It’s not that there’s lots wrong with v1.1, it’s just that there’s ways we could improve it. Plus, we’ve committed to update it as the web evolves.

    We began by interviewing stakeholders. This informed a community survey (still active – and now available in more languages). We’ve also just begun a series of community calls that will end in December. This session will give us extra data to help inform development the Web Literacy Map.

    Co-facilitators:

    What we’ll be doing:

    This will be an interesting session to lead, so I’m glad I’ve got such experienced co-facilitators. There’s likely to be both people well-versed in the Web Literacy Map as well as those coming to it for the first time.


    Are you coming to MozFest? Please do come and say hello – or even better, come to one of the above sessions!

    October 22, 2014 12:47 PM

    October 17, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Badger Beats: The Week In Review [62]

    This week we’ve been celebrating our successes from Cycle 1 of the Badge Alliance Working Groups, taking a look at all the great things we’ve accomplished together over the past six months.

    Check out this blog post on the BA blog for an in-depth look at the community’s achievements. You can also see an infographic overview of Cycle 1.

    Here’s what else happened this week:

    Thank you to everyone in our community who has helped us move the badging work forward this year with the Badge Alliance Working Groups - we are so proud to be working within such a dedicated network.

    Give yourselves a big high-five for everything you’ve accomplished!

    October 17, 2014 07:39 PM

    Celebrating our Successes: Cycle 1 Infographic

    As you may have seen yesterday, we shared an in-depth look at the many accomplishments from Cycle 1 of the Badge Alliance Working Groups over on the BA blog (here).

    We wanted to take a moment to share this fun infographic with you as well, which provides a great visual overview of the contributions you made to the global badging ecosystem over the past six months (click for larger version):

    image

    If you’re as psyched about this as we are, why not share the excitement by spreading the word through your social and professional networks? We’ll certainly be doing so! To get you started, we’ve put together some sample posts for Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and other sites:

    If you’d like your Tweets to link to the full blog post, replace the link to the infographic with the following: bit.ly/BA-Cycle1

    October 17, 2014 04:38 PM

    Laura Hilliger

    Order the Chaos

    Yesterday I wrote this post, but I forgot to post it… Yesterday, Doug said that I tend to bombard people with ideas, which overwhelms them. He told me that I need to start resurfacing my ideas, and making connections for people, so they can see the big picture. He told me to stop moving onto the next thing before people have grokked the work I’ve already done and how their work links to it. [caption id="" align="alignright" width="216"] Control the Kaos! (Ahem, I'm not old, just retro.)[/caption] That’s not how Doug’s feedback hit me at the time, I processed it. It was good feedback. When I got quiet, Doug said “I wasn’t trying to piss you off,” but I was just processing, reflecting, trying to stand in his shoes. Yesterday, I was presenting a sort of napkin sketch I had put together. In my mind the sketch was pretty worked out. I had documented the way that I would do a particular thing, the plan that I would put in place, and to me it was clear enough that someone else could take it and build it. As the meeting continued, I realized that my colleagues couldn’t see the picture I saw in my brain. My napkin sketch didn't demystify the system. I didn’t order the chaos in my head well enough for them to connect the dots. When I got quiet, someone said “Laura, you look very concerned,” but I was just processing, reflecting, trying to stand in their shoes. Apparently I make faces when I’m trying to understand other people’s minds. Yesterday, I posted something in the connected courses forum for Unit 3: The World Wide Web - From Concept to Platform to Cultures, and Jeffrey Keefer said
    That is one of the things I am struggling with in #ccourses anyway; what central hub to go to when I get behind and somewhat disoriented. Good thing for me to consider, now that I am considering it, as I hope this exercise helps to sensitize me more to my students who may also feel disoriented at times.
    When I got quiet, I processed that statement and equated the disorientation with fear of the chaos, the need for order, and I started to reflect on how my understanding of order may be different from other people’s understanding. I think this fear rears it's ugly head when you're learning about technology, and we tend to look at people who "can computer" as being gifted in some way. We think "I could never do that." I’m failing because I am not ordering much of my work in a way that other people can understand. I can’t see where the disconnect is so I’m not sure how to fix it. I think not being able to see is something we struggle with when we're learning about technology, and just like in any other situation it cripples us with frustration. We think "I'm never going to learn this!" I'm failing because I’m not doing well at helping people order their things so that we can link our work together. I think we don't help each other enough. In anything. But that might be another story altogether. I'm failing and it hurts, but at least I’m learning. Now I can push myself to figure out how I have to present things so that people can see the connection, so that they can understand the system. I am not a finisher, but I have to learn how to pull my ideas further. When we're learning, we have to be brave. Learning is chaos, and chaos can be scary, yes, but I think any system can be tamed, ordered, reigned in. I have to learn to order the chaos in my brain better, and be brave enough to keep failing.

    October 17, 2014 08:14 AM

    October 15, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    October 20: The Open Badges MOOC live sessions continue

    Join us for the next live session of the Open Badges MOOC, Badges - New Currency for Professional Credentials!

    Date: Monday, Oct. 20, 2014
    Time: 11am PT / 2pm ET / 7pm BST
    Topic: Open Digital Badges: Design Principles Documentation and Future Implementations
    Presenter: James E. Willis, III, Ph.D.

    More about this topic:

    In the 2012 Badges for Lifelong Learning DML Competition, 30 organizations were funded to develop ecosystems for open digital badges. Indiana University’s Center for Research on Learning and Technology has studied the development, implementation, and practice of badging within the scope of recognizing, assessing, motivating, and studying learning. The research team analyzed project proposals and then conducted interviews as projects got underway and after the development period was over. This resulted in a forthcoming report and open database detailing intended practices (ideas outlined in general proposals), enacted practices (intentions unfolding in the world), and formal practices (what continues after funding ends) for using digital badges, with particular attention on the factors that supported the formalization of some practices while hindering others. See more at http://dpdproject.info/

    To support widespread innovation around open digital badges in higher education, the Center for Research on Learning and Technology at Indiana University is working with IBL Studios, Inc. and Achievery to offer open badges in Open edX. The project is currently building badges into Lorena Barba’s Open edX MOOC, Practical Numerical Methods with Python.

    More about the presenter:

    James E. Willis, III, Ph.D. is a research associate in the Center for Research on Learning and Technology at Indiana University’s School of Education. Previously an educational assessment specialist of academic technology at Purdue University, James holds a Ph.D. from King’s College London. He actively publishes on learning analytics and ethics, educational technology, and digital badges.

    Join the MOOC:

    To join the live sessions, please use the Blackboard Collaborate Web Conference link: http://tinyurl.com/OpenBadgesCollaborate

    We’re looking forward to your ongoing participation in the Open Badges MOOC! You are welcome to continue to use the MOOC resources (badges.coursesites.com) and submit challenge assignments for review by our experts. You’ll also find an extremely useful set of resources on the Reconnect Learning site.

    Find summaries of the previous MOOC sessions on this blog, with the tag #openbadgesMOOC.

    October 15, 2014 08:56 AM

    October 11, 2014

    Brett Gaylor

    From Mozilla to new making

    Yesterday was my last day as an employee of the Mozilla Foundation. I’m leaving my position as VP, Webmaker to create an interactive web series about privacy and the economy of the web.

    I’ve had the privilege of being a “crazy Mofo” for nearly five years. Starting in early 2010, I worked with David Humphrey and researchers at the Center for Development of Open Technology to create Popcorn.js. Having just completed “Rip!”, I was really interested in mashups - and Popcorn was a mashup of open web technology questions (how can we make video as elemental an element of the web as images or links?) and formal questions about documentary (what would a “web native” documentary look like? what can video do on the web that it can’t do on TV?). That mashup is one of the most exciting creative projects I’ve ever been involved with, and lead to a wonderful amount of unexpected innovation and opportunity. An award winning 3D documentary by a pioneer of web documentaries, the technological basis of a cohort of innovative(and fun) startups, and a kick ass video creation tool that was part of the DNA of Webmaker.org - which this year reached 200,000 users and facilitated the learning experience of over 127,200 learners face to face at our annual Maker Party.

    Thinking about video and the web, and making things that aim to get the best of both mediums, is what brought me to Mozilla - and it’s what’s taking me to my next adventure.

    I’m joining my friends at Upian in Paris (remotely, natch) to direct a multi-part web series around privacy, surveillance and the economy of the web. The project is called Do Not Track and it’s supported by the National Film Board of Canada, Arte, Bayerischer Rundfunk (BR), the Tribeca Film Institute and the Centre National du Cinéma. I’m thrilled by the creative challenge and humbled by the company I’ll be keeping - I’ve wanted to work with Upian since their seminal web documentary Gaza/Sderot and have been thrilled to watch from the sidelines as they’ve made Prison Valley, Alma, MIT’s Moments of Innovation project, and the impressive amount of work they do for clients in France and around the world. These are some crazy mofos, and they know how to ship.

    Fake it Till You Make it

    Mozilla gave me a wonderful gift: to innovate on the web, to dream big, without asking permission to do so. To in fact internalize innovation as a personal responsibility. To hammer into me every day the belief that for the web to remain a public resource, the creativity of everyone needs to be brought to the effort. That those of us in positions of privilege have a responsibility to wake up every day trying to improve the network. It’s a calling that tends to attract really bright people, and it can elicit strong feelings of impostor syndrome for a clueless filmmaker. The gift Mozilla gave me is to witness first hand that even the most brilliant people, or especially the most brilliant people, are making it up every single day. That’s why the web remains as much an inspiration to me today as when I first touched it as a teenager. Even though smart people criticize sillicon valley’s hypercapitalism, or while governments are breeding cynics and mistrust by using the network for surveillance, I still believe the web remains the best place to invent your future.

    I’m very excited, and naturally a bit scared, to be making something new again. Prepare yourself - I’m going to make shit up. I’ll need your help.

    Working With

    source

    “Where some people choose software projects in order to solve problems, I have taken to choosing projects that allow me to work with various people. I have given up the comfort of being an expert , and replaced it with a desire to be alongside my friends, or those with whom I would like to be friends, no matter where I find them. My history among this crowd begins with friendships, many of which continue to this day.

    This way of working, where collegiality subsumes technology or tools, is central to my personal and professional work. Even looking back over the past two years, most of the work I’ve done is influenced by a deep desire to work with rather than on. ” - On Working With Instead of On

    David Humphrey, who wrote that, is who I want to be when I grow up. I will miss daily interactions with him, and many others who know who they are, very much. "In the context of working with, technology once again becomes the craft I both teach and am taught, it is what we share with one another, the occasion for our time together, the introduction, but not the reason, for our friendship.”

    Thank you, Mozilla, for a wonderful introduction. Till the next thing we make!

    October 11, 2014 05:00 PM

    October 10, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Badger Beats: The Week In Review [61]

    Hey there, badgers!

    Here’s a quick overview of what went on in the badgeosphere this week:

    Thank you all for another wonderful week - enjoy your (long) weekend, and we’ll see you all next week, when we’ll be celebrating all the hard work from Cycle 1 of the Badge Alliance Working Groups!

    October 10, 2014 06:08 PM

    Open Badges Community Project Call, October 8, 2014

    Open Badges Community Project Call, October 8, 2014:

    Speakers:

    Agenda: http://bit.ly/CCOct8

    Will Open Badges help to map human knowledge? Flavio and Jordi are part of a Spanish research group trying to design a simple badging ecosystem model value, plot and connect badges as coordinates along learning pathways and as part of more general skills and competencies management.

    Fragmentation is one of the most common problems in credentialing systems, [including] Open Badge usage,” argues Flavio on Gecon.es. “Taking this into account our research group is trying to conceptualize and develop at least a simple model of an ecosystem of Open Badges which could both score weights and plot coordinates for every agent involved in skills & competences management (badges, professionals, organizations, students, etc.). For us it means one step forward to model a dynamical map of human knowledge.”

    Back in February, Flavio and Jordi joined an Open Badges Research & Badge System Design Call to kick off a discussion around Badge Rank and Badge Score as part of the BadgeCulture project.

    In exploring badges’ value, Flavio wrote an article exploring the ways in which badge rank and score will become an increasingly important consideration within badge system design. You can read the (translated) article in the Open Badges Google group: http://bit.ly/OBGrank

    Flavio and Jordi identified two problems facing their communities int he course of their work and research:

    The first of these, Flavio and Jordi saw as related to coordinates + pathways, and the second related to status.

    Their proposed solution aims to address both problems:

    • Badge Rank indicates the intrinsic value of badges;
    • Badge Score indicates the adaptive value of badges related to the user and provides one of many ways to link badges throughout an ecosystem using the metadata contained within them

    image

    Other ways to connect badges, and learners, through badge criteria include users’ interests, learning pathways, career goals and progress, and badge searches or queries.

    Flavio and his colleagues hope that badges could be used as a standard to visualize competencies and categorize knowledge acquisition across different areas, as shown in the graphic below:

    Their vision is a badge universe where earners can progress along clear learning pathways, scaffolded by Badge Rank and Score, earning badges and accessing opportunities as a result.

    Further Reading and Resources:

    If you are interested in learning more about their research, check out their slides here: Mapping Human Knowledge with Open Badges.

    To contribute to efforts to advance Open Badges as a standard for digital credentialing, take a look at (and join!) this W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) Credentialing Community Group.

    October 10, 2014 01:43 PM

    Penn State to build digital education credentials for NASA

    Penn State to build digital education credentials for NASA:

    Penn State will be receiving a $500,000 subcontract from Texas State University, the recipient of a larger grant from NASA to provide professional development for teachers using NASA-related science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) content. Based on its success leading the NASA Aerospace Education Services Project, Penn State will contribute by building and developing a digital badge system.

    “We’re very excited to help Texas State University provide personalized professional development for educators in this country,” said Kyle Peck, professor of education and co-director of the Center for Online Innovation in Learning (COIL). “Penn State has been working with digital badges for about a year and a half now, so we knew we could provide value to this project.”

    Peck will work alongside Teaching and Learning with Technology  (TLT) to develop the digital badging system, which will enable teachers to pick and choose from many topics and themes to customize their professional development — a relevant form of professional development a la carte.

    “By putting modern technology to work for teachers,” said Peck, “the badging system will be an effective and efficient way to reach more teachers in need of quality professional development with more relevant activities at a lower cost.”

    Read the article in full by clicking the link above.

    October 10, 2014 12:14 PM

    Doug Belshaw

    Towards an architecture of participation for episodic volunteering

    Recently I heard a talk by someone looking for more volunteers for a thing. The context isn’t particularly important – I don’t want to get hung up on that. The point is that the talk had the desired effect: I wanted to volunteer. I wanted to help both in terms of giving money and lending time.

    A couple of weeks later, I’ve done neither. Why? I’d suggest it’s because the group involved has a weak ‘architecture of participation’.

    This week there’s been a discussion on the Mozilla Community Building Team list about ‘episodic volunteering’. It quoted this document (PDF) from the National Volunteer and Philanthropy Centre in Singapore:

    Another recent trend has been a shift away from regular, long-term volunteering to more episodic or one-time service. While this has created significant challenges for many organizations that depend on consistently available volunteers (think mentoring, health services, etc.), the reality is that more and more volunteers are looking for ways to get engaged in a short-term capacity. This is especially true given that episodic volunteering may not always be about time availability but rather time of year – for example, lots of people seek to volunteer during the holiday season of November and December.

    This got me thinking about Tim O’Reilly’s post The Architecture of Participation from 10 years ago:

    I’ve come to use the term “the architecture of participation” to describe the nature of systems that are designed for user contribution. Larry Lessig’s book, Code and Other Laws of Cyberspace, which he characterizes as an extended meditation on Mitch Kapor’s maxim, “architecture is politics”, made the case that we need to pay attention to the architecture of systems if we want to understand their effects.

    Any time you’re asking someone else to chip in who doesn’t have an obligation to help you, then you need an architecture of participation. You need easy onboarding, a way from them going from donating zero percent of their time to many hours a week. You also need a way for them to drop their number of hours – potentially back down to zero – if their life circumstances dictate. The closest analogy I can think of are easy in / easy out terms advertised for office space.

    You also need to create a modular system to have an architecture of participation. There needs to be ways for people to work on one part of the whole project and not on others. As Tim puts it in the context of building software, “Anyone can create a participating, first-class component.”

    This requires leadership. I’ve never seen a strong architecture of participation without strong leadership. Sometimes this can look like a benign dictatorship, especially when the number of people involved is small. But to get to any kind of scale, this leadership needs to be distributed.

    Creating distributed leadership requires a clear mission. The mission – which should be written down as early as possible in the form of a manifesto or terms of reference is the reason the group of people is collaborating. This prevents scope-creep and helps realign the group should a subset try and hijack it for a tangential purpose.

    The easiest way to create a strong architecture of participation is to work openly. This may be constrained by considerations around safeguarding, but information should not be hard to come by for those already part of the group. At the very least, calendars and contact details should be shared. There should be a default, canonical place to go/ask to find out an authoritative answer.

    You’ll need to meet regularly in ways that don’t always involving working on the thing you’re all meeting to make better in the world. Sometimes that’s called a social. But it might just mean that one of the weekly meetings you have every month is devoted to ‘lighter’ or other issues. Mix things up a bit so it doesn’t become ‘samey’.

    Finally, it’s entirely reasonable that there should be a shift towards episodic volunteering. If we create architectures of participation that allow ‘newbies’ to slot in quickly to existing projects, then they may stick around long-term. Some would call that a ‘contribution funnel’. It’s unreasonable for us to expect them to make that commitment immediately. In fact, we should thank them regularly for their contribution. We’re often good at being excited about new contributors when we should be equally thankful for the ‘old-timers’.

    What have I missed? Add a comment below!

    October 10, 2014 09:35 AM

    October 08, 2014

    Daniel Sinker

    OpenNews: Elections Code Convening. Open your code with us!

    This year has been a year of trying new things at OpenNews. One of the big things we’ve been doing is experimenting with ways of bringing newsroom developers together to open up projects together. We call them Code Convenings, and we’re opening up applications for our third Convening today.

    The idea behind Code Convenings is pretty simple: we’ve found that often the thing holds code back from being open-sourced is just finding the time to do that last-mile abstraction work and creating first-class documentation. Code Convenings bring devs together for a couple days to do exactly that. We feed you, put you up in a hotel, and give you the time and space to do the work that’s necessary to get some great code out.

    Our first code convening was in Portland Oregon this spring, and resulted in four great projects being opened up—since then, they’ve been used and reused numerous times. Our second code convening brought together folks to collaborate on a single code base, resulting in the creation of the California Civic Data Coalition. We considered both these convenings prototypes: opportunities to try things out with a reduced number of variables. As a result, we invited folks to take part, but kept the lead-up quiet—no need to promote while we were still figuring things out. Well, we think we’ve got this relatively figured now, so we’re going public for the last Code Convening of the year.

    We’re hosting an OpenNews Code Convening in New York City November 13 & 14, and we want your news developers to take part. This will be coming soon after the midterm elections in the United States, and so we’ve chosen “Elections” as the organizing theme of this convening. If your newsroom has been working on some interesting code this election cycle, that you’d like an opportunity to open up to the larger journalism code community, you should apply.

    We’re moving pretty quickly here: The application opens today and closes on October 17. We’ll be selecting a maximum of five projects, and will notify folks if theirs have been chosen by October 21. You’ll need to commit two people or, if you can only send one, work with us to find a good partner) to the two days of the convening, and we’ll cover food and travel. It will be so awesome.

    This is a great opportunity to get code out into the world: take it!

    October 08, 2014 09:10 PM

    October 03, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Badger Beats: The Week In Review [60]

    Happy Friday!

    Welcome to the Badger Beats, the weekly collection of updates and announcements from the badging community.

    Here’s what happened this week:

    A quick reminder - you have until October 7th to add your comments to the Badge Endorsement Framework Working Paper, which will serve as an introduction to purposes and processes for badge endorsement. Read more.

    If you’re in higher education, or know someone who works in higher ed (faculty, staff, administration, admissions, etc.) please share this survey with them: Digital Badges in Higher Education (to be completed before Oct. 24).

    Don’t forget, if you’ve got badging news to share, tweet it out using the hashtag #openbadges.

    See you next week, badgers!

    October 03, 2014 08:36 PM

    Community Project Call, October 1, 2014

    Community Project Call, October 1, 2014:

    Speaker:

    Agenda: http://bit.ly/CC-Oct1

    This week, Kathy Booth, Senior Research Associate at WestEd, joined us for an exciting presentation of research into learning pathways within community college.

    Kathy’s research digs into important questions about how we define “success” and “failure” with regards to course completion, and looks at how badges might help capture success in a way that changes attitudes towards community college programs and non-completion statistics.

    Evolving landscapes

    The national push for completion of degrees, certificates, and transfer to four-year institutions has helped to focus community colleges on measurable goals. However, this emphasis on completion does not fully capture community college outcomes, particularly in job training.

    The traditional degree-to-lifelong-career narrative is no longer an accurate reflection of most people’s pathways, as new technology and jobs are creating opportunities that didn’t exist while these people were still in education.

    We know that education and the workforce are changing: many traditional college degrees provide inadequate preparation for the jobs graduates are pursuing, and workers are finding they have to go through continual training and skills development throughout their careers, either in a workplace setting or by obtaining additional degrees, certifications, or online credentials. Employers are looking for a way to identify workers with the right skills for the job, and workers are trying to showcase their skills in a way that ‘counts.’ Badging comes in, according to Kathy, when employers need to know more about a candidate’s skills and knowledge than can be gleaned from a degree or transcript.

    Despite all the changes to education and the workforce, and a number of individual colleges working to adapt their approach to the new world of work, there is still a deeply ingrained image of “success” when it comes to education - the cap and gown, a neatly rolled diploma with a red ribbon, the fresh-faced graduate walking into interviews and coming out with multiple job offers to choose from, each with opportunities for development and advancement.

    Non-completion can equal success

    Kathy’s research was inspired by the realization that there needs to be a new way to talk about learning pathways and success in community college programs. Three different studies were conducted, looking at workforce training outcomes within community colleges.

    The findings were very interesting:

    These results regarding non-completers are interesting because they call into question that traditional image of success. Those who do not complete a full course of study are, by most institutions, classed as “failures,” a term that is carried with that person beyond the classroom and affects not only their own sense of accomplishment, but also the way they are perceived by others. These findings also question our idea of the necessity of a long-term degree: a more granular, modularized approach to workforce-related fields of study would allow those who only require certain modules to pursue what they need, without the added cost of having to complete related (but not relevant) modules in a more comprehensive or bundled program of study.

    The quality of a community college credential

    The researchers found that non-completers were earning more than completers in certain areas, likely because non-completers were older, and had increased experience and skills in the field as well as the academic credentials, which meant they are entering the workforce at a higher wage.

    The average age of the students in these studies was 37 or 38 and most had previously obtained a four-year degree; many were using community college credentials to supplement or develop workforce skills, returning to school for low-unit retraining programs.

    For many fields, the economic value of the training received came from the content of the courses, not from the credential itself. Years of work experience plus updated training and skills development were more valuable than a long-term degree - with the exception of healthcare, where the credentials and expertise were both very important in determining the value of the degree.

    How badges can help

    There is a distorted image of community colleges, that because they generate a larger number of non-completions, they are “failing” in educating learners, and therefore a waste of tax dollars.

    The implications of this research challenge this image in the following ways:

    • The economic value of community college education is in workforce retraining (especially short-term options);
    • completion is not critical for many workforce training pathways - particularly for older, skills-building students coming back to education from the workforce
    • success metrics need to be nuanced to better reflect the ways that community college education caters to workforce training in ways that four-year degrees cannot
    If badges could be used to identify discrete sub-skills needed for workforce development and retraining, Kathy argues, then it would be easier for community colleges to quantify the value of short-term course-taking.

    We have often touted badges as a way to capture more granular units of learning and skills-building. By using badges in this way, community colleges can push back against misconceptions about who is succeeding or failing in these programs, the data can better reflect the learning and career outcomes of a community college student, and workers will be empowered to continue developing their knowledge and skills.

    To access Kathy’s slides from this presentation, click here.

    To learn more about this research project, click here.

    ************************************************

    Pearson Acclaim offering fast-track implementation options for community colleges

    Are you a community college looking for ways to add open badges to your programs? Contact Peter Janzow from Pearson’s Acclaim team to learn about their fast-track offer for community colleges:

    October 03, 2014 04:52 PM

    October 01, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Call for comments on the Endorsement Framework paper (by Oct 7th)

    The Badge Alliance Endorsement Working Group has been working on a Badge Endorsement Framework Working Paper, to serve as an introduction to purposes and processes for badge endorsement.

    As one of the most frequently discussed questions around open badges, endorsement will be a crucial part of expanding the ecosystem, connecting key stakeholders to badges, and adding to the value of badges. This Working Group has been doing some great work defining ways to build functionality and practice around third party endorsement of badges.

    The working paper is now open to public comment - click here to add your thoughts

    The group looking for feedback on what’s there and what might be missing—as well as the pacing and sequencing of the document. We encourage you to share your thoughts quickly, though, as the group will publicly release the final version of this document within the next two weeks. 

    Please review and comment by Tuesday, Oct 7th at 3pm PDT / 6pm EDT / 11pm BST

    We also encourage you to join the Endorsement Working Group call next Wednesday (Oct 8, 10am PDT / 1pm EDT / 6pm BST), to discuss the proposed comments and suggestions.

    Many thanks for your close review and thoughtful comments on this document - feel free to share this with your networks over the next week!

    October 01, 2014 06:26 PM

    September 28, 2014

    Chris McAvoy

    Me and Open Badges – Different, but the same

    Hi there, if you read this blog it’s probably for one of three things,

    1) my investigation of the life of Isham Randolph, the chief engineer of the Chicago Sanitary and Ship canal.
    2) you know me and you want to see what I’m doing but you haven’t discovered Twitter or Facebook yet.
    3) Open Badges.

    This is a quick update for everyone in that third group, the Open Badges crew. I have some news.

    When I joined the Open Badges project nearly three years ago, I knew this was something that once I joined, I wouldn’t leave. The idea of Open Badges hits me exactly where I live, at the corner of ‘life long learning’ and ‘appreciating people for who they are’. I’ve been fortunate that my love of life long learning and self-teaching led me down a path where I get to do what I love as my career. Not everyone is that fortunate. I see Open Badges as a way to make my very lucky career path the norm instead of the exception. I believe in the project, I believe in the goals and I’m never going to not work toward bringing that kind of opportunity to everyone regardless of the university they attended or the degree hanging on their wall.

    This summer has been very exciting for me. I joined the Badge Alliance, chaired the BA standard working group and helped organize the first BA Technology Council. At the same time, I was a mentor for Chicago’s Tech Stars program and served as an advisor to a few startups in different stages of growth. The Badge Alliance work has been tremendously satisfying, the standard working group is about to release the first cycle report, and it’s been great to see our accomplishments all written in one place. We’ve made a lot of progress in a short amount of time. That said, my role at the Alliance has been focused on standards growth, some evangelism and guiding a small prototyping project. As much as I loved my summer, the projects and work don’t fit the path I was on. I’ve managed engineering teams for a while now, building products and big technology architectures. The process of guiding a standard is something I’m very interested in, but it doesn’t feel like a full-time job now. I like getting my hands dirty (in Emacs), I want to write code and direct some serious engineer workflow.

    Let’s cut to the chase – after a bunch of discussions with Sunny Lee and Erin Knight, two of my favorite people in the whole world, I’ve decided to join Earshot, a Chicago big data / realtime geotargeted social media company, as their CTO. I’m not leaving the Badge Alliance. I’ll continue to serve as the BA director of technology, but as a volunteer. Earshot is a fantastic company with a great team. They understand the Open Badges project and want me to continue to support the Badge Alliance. The Badge Alliance is a great team, they understand that I want to build as much as I want to guide. I’m so grateful to everyone involved for being supportive of me here, I can think of dozens of ways this wouldn’t have worked out. Just a bit of life lesson – as much as you can, work with people who really care about you, it leads to situations like this, where everyone gets what they really need.

    The demands of a company moving as fast as Earshot will mean that I’ll be less available, but no less involved in the growth of the Badge Alliance and the Open Badges project. From a tactical perspective, Sunny Lee will be taking over as chair of the standard working group. I’ll still be an active member. I’ll also continue to represent the BA (along with Sunny) in the W3C credentials community group.

    If you have any questions, please reach out to me! I’ll still have my chris@badgealliance.org email address…use it!

    September 28, 2014 08:06 PM

    September 26, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Badger Beats: The Week In Review [59]

    Hello, badgers!

    We hope you’ve had a badgeriffic week - here’s what we’ve been up to:

    Our community project call was non-verbal this week - if you have any updates to share with your fellow badgers, add them to the etherpad here: http://bit.ly/CCSept24

    Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! Here’s a nifty map from Vala Afshar’s slide deck overview of the Extreme Networks badging survey:

    September 26, 2014 09:41 PM

    LA’s first ‘Summer of Learning’ a success!

    image

    The first Los Angeles Summer of Learning (LASOL) is being hailed as a success by officials involved with the program, which engaged around 50,000 students this summer, as well as 52 community organizations that offered 130+ digital badges for learning and skills.

    Though smaller than last year’s pilot program in Chicago, LASOL was in many ways “more sophisticated and coherent,” according to Charles Kerchener, a research professor in the School Educational Studies at Claremont Graduate University.

    "Los Angeles’ program was much more integrated with the school system than was its counterpart in Chicago," Kerchener wrote for a piece on edweek.org. “LAUSD was the primary organizer of the project. In Chicago, the city and the non-profits drove the program.”

    Organizers from the Los Angeles Unified School District’s Beyond the Bell program also took on the difficult task of connecting students’ summer learning achievements with their school records. Their staff and administrators worked with badge-issuing community organizations to ensure the criteria and evidence for the badge activities were good measures of the skills and knowledge acquired. The staff also offered badging training to these organizations, teaching them how to design and create robust badges, as well as how to assess student output and navigate the LASOL web site.

    image

    As well as the 130+ badges offered by Los Angeles organizations, the site also gave youth access to a number of online badge activities designed by the team at Digital Youth Network, based out of DePaul University.

    Though the badges certainly offer an exciting way for youth to get involved with summer activities and show off their learning at school, most participants signed up because of existing connections with one of the community organizations, according to Craig Clough, who wrote about the LASOL on laschoolreport..com. Jennifer Abssy from Inner City Arts said badges made it possible for “kids [to] be validated for the time they spent with our organization.”

    September 26, 2014 10:55 AM

    September 25, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    Badges: A Solution to the Massively Disengaged Workforce?

    Vala Afshar, of the Huffington Post, put together a slide deck and written overview of a recent survey conducted by Extreme Networks looking at digital badges in education and the workforce. Below the deck is an excerpt from this overview, including statistics pulled from the survey about global attitudes towards the benefits and potential of badges.

    To understand more about the adoption of digital badges both in academia and industry, Extreme Networks conducted a worldwide survey and received over 1900 responses. According to the survey:

    Digital badges give employers easy access to specific and current information pertaining to a candidate’s experience and potential. For now, the most popular use of digital badges is to recognize professional development and internal training (70%).

    What’s holding badges back?

    According to the survey, the biggest drawback to digital badges is the lack of wide-spread awareness. Badges are only beginning to get beyond their association with games and marketing. 46% of respondents believe that digital badges are not yet widely recognized and 38% say badges are not yet taken seriously. A sizable portion of badge users (43%) have invested their own resources to implement their badge programs, rather than use a commercially available platform. The top three ways that the concept of digital badges can be improved are: better industry and market recognition and acceptance of specific badges (67%), standardized requirements of criteria for similar achievements (55%), and lower cost systems to implement badges (37%).

    Read the overview in full on Huffington Post.

    September 25, 2014 01:43 PM

    September 23, 2014

    Open Badges blog

    TODAY: Join the US Dept. of Labor's National Dialogue on Career Pathways [LIVE STREAM]

    National Dialogue Logo

    On Tuesday, September 23, 2014, the U.S. Departments of Labor, Education and Health and Human Services will host a National Dialogue on Career Pathways.

    Federal agency leaders from each Department will provide opening remarks on the impact of building effective career pathways can have on our nation’s workforce system. In addition, the Dialogue will highlight strategies and lessons learned from business leaders, state and local practitioners and national policy leaders.

    National stakeholders representing business, organized labor, education, workforce and health and human services agencies are encouraged to host events in conjunction with the broadcast. Leading career pathways states and local areas, such as Colorado, Kansas, and Charlotte, NC will be highlighted as well as innovative career pathways practices from organizations like Instituto del Progreso Latino in Chicago, IL and Wider Opportunities for Women.

    The National Dialogue will be broadcast via live stream from 9am - 4pm EDT.

    Program Agenda

    • 9:00 am — 9:30 am: OPENING SESSION
    • 9:30 am — 9:45 am: KEYNOTE Presentation: “Business-Driven Career Pathways That Work!”
    • 9:45 am — 10:45 am: Practitioners Panel: “Advancing Career Pathways Systems”
    • 10:45am — 11:10am: BREAK
    • 11:10 am — Noon: Innovators Panel: “Career Pathways: Partnerships, Promising Practices, and People”
    • Noon — 1:00 pm: LUNCH
    • 1:00 pm — 1:15 pm: KEYNOTE Presentation: “Career Pathways — Creating Pathways to the Middle Class”
    • 1:15 pm — 2:00 pm: Thought Leaders Panel — “Career Pathways and WIOA”
    • 2:00 pm — 2:10 pm: BREAK — TRANSITION TO BREAKOUT ROOMS
    • 2:10 pm — 3:20 pm: Afternoon WIOA Listening Session Breakout
    • 3:20 pm — 3:30 pm: BREAK
    • 3:30 pm — 4:00 pm: CLOSING SESSION

    Join the conversation on Twitter

    Before and during the event, you are encouraged to post questions on Twitter using the hashtag #careerpathways. The federal team will monitor your questions on Twitter and respond to them from the Labor Department Twitter account (@USDOL) during the event.

    Go to dol.gov/nationalDialogue to watch the live stream.

    September 23, 2014 01:42 PM