The University of Notre Dame won the Campus Technology 2015 Innovators Awards. Campus Technology published the details in the article Pairing E-Portfolios with Badges to Document information Learning. E-portfolios are an electronic method for displaying learning achievements and examples of work. Badges are electronic methods for displaying proficiency. Some universities provide e-portfolios and badges as part of the learning management system (LMS) tools.
Notre Dame realized that the full potential of e-portfolios was not being leveraged so they decided to integrate badges. G. Alex Ambrose, Associate Director of E-portfolio Assessment at the University of Notre Dame said:
“If we are going to harness the full power and promise of e-portfolios beyond a single course assignment and show employers what students know and can do, then we need the digital badge to communicate specific competencies with evidence and motivate students to make their learning and skills visible”
The Notre Dame project was divided into three phases. Phase one utilized existing tools Digication and other campus-based systems to encourage students to provide evidence to support the achievement for the badges. As the project progressed Notre Dame explored alternatives that were free and easier to use. Eventually, Notre Dame used an API third-party integration to streamline the e-portfolio and badge progress. Now that the project is completed Notre Dame is exploring displaying hyperlinks to e-portfolios and digital badges on official transcripts. In the future, Notre Dame wants to explore the effects on the completion rates of MOOCs when awarding digital badges to users.
Edvance360LMS-SN has a MOOC platform called MOOC360 that is already awarding digital badges for completion of MOOCs. HarvardX published an article on the impact on learner intention on the completion rate of MOOCs. The article stated that: “HarvardX courses the average completion rate is around 6 percent, on par with the overall “low” MOOC completion number often cited by the media.”
Cathy Garland, VP of Sales & Marketing had the following comment on digital badges and MOOC completion rates:
“Edvance360 LMS-SN has been awarding digital badges for the completion of MOOCs for a while now and we already know that it yields higher completion rates. One of the Summer 2015 MOOCs on Natural Theology had an 18.9% completion rate.” Since the inception, Edvance360 LMS-SN has promoted SMOOCs (smaller massive open online courses) that divide classes into smaller sections so that instructors can interact more one on one with students. The SMOOC and awarding of digital badges seems to have contributed greatly to the above average completion rates of our MOOCs.
Many LMS’ provide e-portfolios and badges, but not necessarily as a fully integrated tool for displaying individual accomplishments. Universities typically have a multitude of stand alone systems. Edvance360 LMS-SN is an innovator and actually integrated the LMS into the social network. If you are searching for one platform to deliver on-site, online and hybrid courses/training with the ability for users to build and display e-portfolios including digital badges checkout Edvance360 LMS-SN.