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Badges?!? We ain't got no stinkin badges!

Badges pave the way for a potentially radical change in education: the introduction of micro-credentials. At present, students who follow accredited higher education programmes obtain only a single formal confirmation of the knowledge and skills that they have acquired during the course of their studies. With micro-credentials, however, educational institutions break their programmes down into smaller units to which they link an assessment or recognition. What is the potential role of NRENs? During 2016 SURFnet investigated the subject of open badges and micro-credentialing and spoke with different stakeholders such as institutions, teachers, students, employers and government. The resulting whitepaper was published at the end of 2016. During 2017 we will continue the project by building a Proof of Concept badge infrastructure which institutions can use for issuing badges. Together we will explore and evaluate different possibilities and use cases in anticipation for potential service delivery of a national open badge delivery infrastructure. An interesting scenario would be if this development could lead to a pan-European open badge infrastructure used by GÉANT and its NREN partners, aimed at further accelerating the adoption of micro-credentialing by education institutions.


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