Thursday, April 16 | 1:00AM–3:30PM
Session Type: Professional Development

ELI Course | Digging in to Badges: Designing and Developing Digital Credentials

Digital badges are receiving a growing amount of attention and are beginning to disrupt the norms of what it means to earn credit or be credentialed. Badges allow the sharing of evidence of skills and knowledge acquired through a much wider range of life activity, at a more granular level, and at a pace that keeps up with individuals who are always learning—even outside the classroom. As such, those not traditionally in the degree-granting realm—such as museums, associations, online communities, and even individual experts—are now issuing "credit" for achievement they can uniquely recognize. At the same time, higher education institutions are rethinking the type and size of activities worthy of official recognition. From MOOCs, service learning, faculty development, and campus events to new ways of structuring academic programs and courses or acknowledging granular or discrete skills these programs explore, there's much for colleges and universities to consider in the wide-open frontier called badging. NOTE: Participants will be asked to complete assignments in between the course segments that support the learning objectives stated above and will receive feedback and constructive critique from course facilitators on how to improve and shape their work.

Learning Objectives

During this course, participants:

  • Explored core concepts that define digital badges, as well as the benefits and use in learning-related contexts
  • Understood the underlying technical aspects of digital badges and how they relate to each and the broader landscape for each learner and issuing organization
  • Critically reviewed and analyzed examples of the adoption of digital credentials both inside and outside higher education
  • Identified and isolated specific programs, courses, or other campus or online activities that would be meaningfully supported and acknowledged with digital badges or credentials
  • Considered the benefit of each minted badge or system to the earner, issuer, and observer
  • Developed a badge constellation or taxonomy for your own projectConsidered forms of assessment suitable for evaluating badge earningLearned about design considerations around the visual aspects of badges
  • Created a badge issuing plan
  • Issued badges


  • Jonathan Finkelstein

    CEO, Credly, LLC