You don’t have to speak the same language to adopt badges
…you just have to adopt the same metadata standard.
Here are someÂ assertions from the article:
- “Early on, digital badges often used Boy and Girl Scout badges as an analogy, but the more direct precursor of the current generation of badge solutions is video games.” (Nope.)
- “Badge adherents aim to address the âvalueâ and portability of badges by attaching proof of skills to the badges themselves. This is the same idea behind e-portfolios…” (No, e-portfoliosÂ are fundamentally different to badges)
- “Credentials, in and of themselves, are a solved problem.” (Ha! If only.)
- “Whatâs clear is this: itâs far, far more important to simply document existing credentials than to invent new ones, or a new language to describe them.” (No, that just makes itÂ easier to preserve the status quo.)
- “Connecting studentsâ skills and ambitions to the pathways to a career is a big deal, but it doesnât require a new language thatâs based on techno-solutionist fantasies.” (Yes it does: words have power to describe new realities.)
It’s unclear what point the author is trying to make. He assumes that Open Badges is, somehow, solely focused onÂ Higher Education. This is far from the case. He also beginsÂ the article by saying that to “better communicate the value and variety of peopleâs skills to employers” is “very valuable”. This isÂ exactly what Open Badges offers! Oh, and I’m calling B.S. on his claim that he was part of the “biggest, most comprehensive badge experiment that no one has heard of”.Â
Ultimately, I don’t think that Mathews, who looks like he’s got skin in the game with a siloed competitor to badges, would know a metadata standard if one turned into a wet fish and slapped him the face. Perpetuating what we’ve got in Higher Education isn’t working in terms of employability of graduates. And for everyone else outside of the ivory tower, what’s the problem with creating a new learning currency?
Ordinarily, I would merely roll my eyes at this kind of article, as it’s the type of thing you find on a startup’s blog that no-one ever reads. But seeing as Inside Higher Ed saw fit to publish it on their site, here’s what I can be bothered to provide by means of pointing out flaws in an article that, unlike the rest of us, is by an author tearing down rather than building up.
Image viaÂ Nomad Pictures