Perspective Education

Digital proofs of accomplishment

Freepik   | Photo Credit: Freepik

The question is as old as business itself: what is the best way to recognise an achievement? Is it through public appreciation or acknowledgement, offering rewards, trophies, or certificates? With the whole world moving online, the answer might lie in ‘Digital badges’, which have proven to be sought after during the ongoing pandemic-led lockdown. As they can be shared across email, and social media platforms, more people are proudly displaying them, boasting of a recent accomplishment like completing a course or assessment. A digital badge not only serves as recognition of learning, but also proof of that accomplishment.

What makes digital badges special? A credential in today’s digital world is just one piece but it carries the full story and includes information on the individual who earned it, what it represents, how and when it was earned, who issued it, the criteria for issuing it, and the expiry date. Most importantly, it also provides evidence of the work that went into earning it that can be verified any time.

Boosts motivation to learn

Long before the current crisis hit, digital badges were a proven method to motivate and engage learners. But with ample time on hand and the need to upgrade themselves, individuals began to acquire new skills through training programmes, courses, and assessments. When learners reach milestones, they acquire a badge. Think of it like a video game. When you complete one level, you acquire new powers and move ahead. It also offers a progressive new way to accelerate your professional brand, as learners proudly showcase their expertise with the rest of the world. Likewise, when one learner shares news of their hard-earned badge, the social nature of the experience encourages others to undertake their own learning.

The future of skills development

With the shift in learning landscape, the need to adopt a lifelong learning mindset is a necessity. Digital badges continue to have a positive effect on learners’ motivation to continue learning new skills and build their capabilities. In fact, it has a huge potential to be the next big thing in learning space. Since learning is now verifiable, visible, and recognised, learners have begun embracing badges due to the value they deliver.

The writer is Managing Director India, Skillsoft.

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Printable version | Jan 23, 2021 5:52:06 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/education/how-digital-badges-encourage-individuals-to-learn/article33125408.ece

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