badges: a tool for embedded library instruction

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Digital Badges

Digital BadgesA Tool for Embedded Library InstructionEmily FordUrban & Public Affairs LibrarianPortland State Universityforder@pdx.eduBetty IzumiAssistant Professor of Community HealthPortland State Universityizumibet@pdx.eduJost LottesResearch Associate, Institute on AgingPortland State Universityjost@pdx.eduDawn RichardsonAssistant Professor of Community HealthPortland State Universitydrichar2@pdx.eduTodays AgendaBackground & TheoryLearning Outcomes & Creating the CurriculumImplementing & Launching BadgesCommunity NutritionSocial GerontologyLessons Learned & Looking ForwardQuestionsA badge is a visual representation of a skill, achievement, or knowledge gained.Background & Theory

Background & Theory

Badge NameDescriptionCriteriaIssuerEvidenceDate IssuedStandardsTags

Open Badge Anatomy - CC BY - Kyle BowenBackground & Theory: Games & Motivation & Theory: Competency-based Education & Theory: NeoliberalismAre badges a product of neoliberalism in higher ed?

Learning Outcomes


Learning Outcomes

Core Curriculum

1011Implementing Badges:Community NutritionCourse provides students with an overview of community nutrition programs and policiesEnrollment: 45Badges Assignments in Community NutritionNot requiredSupport successful completion of courseWatch videos, read assigned articles, participate in poster peer-review, complete online assignments, complete quizzes

14Implementing Badges: Social GerontologyClass presents an overview of current issues in gerontologyTheories Social aspects of aging Health and healthcareLong-term careHousingEconomicsEtc45 students, meets twice a weekTaught since 2003Social Gerontology: Assignment RedesignOver the past decade: challenging assignments dumbed downNursing home selection assignmentArticle review assignmentReplaced by quizzes and interviewsBadges project as an opportunity to redesign assignments and collaborate with librarian to improve information literacy skillsSocial Gerontology: Example 1Website review assignment (Web Ninja Badge)Students learn how to critically evaluate information they find on the webAssignment: find a nursing home for a relativeDiscussion about C.R.A.A.P. test and video; handout on nursing home choiceStudents analyze government website ( and two websites of their own choice; compare three different nursing homes; give recommendations for placementSocial Gerontology: Example 2Policy paper assignment (Source Sleuth Badge)Students learn about information for different audiences (scholarly, in-between, popular), as well as search techniquesAssignment: develop a policy for older driversWatch several videos, find & upload citation; Librarian presentationStudents develop a policy to address the (perceived) dangers of older drivers, supporting their recommendation with articles from the scholarly/in-between/popular literatureLessons Learned & Looking Forward badges, although a good idea for recognition were not user-friendly enough to use efficiently in class. The credibly app and online services were very flawed and hard to use.Technology

19Lessons Learned & Looking Forward Design

I think that the idea of utilizing badges to communicate the transferable skills learned in a course (beyond the actual content of the curriculum) should be explored further. I can see their value, especially for people perusing Liberal Arts or Humanities degrees, as sometimes even graduates of these programs do not know how to communicate the skills they possess as the result of earning the degree. However, for them to be meaningful on a larger scale, I don't think that simply passing an assignment or two is evidence enough that a skill was actually gained. This does not effectively communicate proficiency. Instead of potentially earning seven badges in one class, having one or two badges offered per class, or even having to take multiple classes to earn one badge (a badge for completing 3 research focused classes, or one for taking multiple classes with individual or group presentation requirements), could be more useful on a resume to illustrate experience. Also, I thought that the assignments attached to the badges were informative and well thought out, however, I was surprised to be learning how to cite and find the appropriate sources for a paper in an upper division level class. Isnt that what the University Studies requirement is supposed to teach in the first year? 20Lessons Learned & Looking Forward still don't quite understand the point of badges. We do the assignment and we get badges. It's the same thing as we do the assignment and we get graded for it. The badges doesn't make me want to go extra and beyond. Regardless whether or not the badges are there or not, someone is going to do the assignment if they don't want to fail.Communication21Lessons Learned & Looking Forward

I said this in an e-mail to Emily but I will happily say it again. The content of the badges are a great tool and I feel that those who disregarded the badge assignments missed out as the learning content was very helpful. In my experience working with my group none of them knew how to properly site [sic] the data or the peer reviewed sources we used in both the bibliography and in text. They also were not competent when it came to using search engines as they would often e-mail me telling me they could not find the information they were looking for and I was able to find the information using the search advice provided in the badge content. All in all I thing [sic] this is a great program and I hope that the suggestions I gave Emily can be made in order to entice more students to take part in it.

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