Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Badge System Design: Introductory

I'm building a rubric to assist people understand badge system design. There are many things to consider when building badge systems and having guidance, ways to assess the system design progress, or prompt your thinking toward badge system design is good. This rubric is also a foundational resource in the P2Pu course on Badge System Design. This post sets out to describe the thinking behind the introductory performance level within the rubric.

Well designed badge
The Introductory badge system design is meant as just the basics of a badge system. The badge system implements just what is needed to provide a basic / introductory badge or small system of badges. The level of knowledge to create an introductory badge system is a minimum.

The rubric has a number of criteria provided in the left column of the following table. The right column of the table provides the attributes what could be considered an introductory badge system. I have also added an italicized comment describing what i believe is success when designing an introductory level badge system. Keep in mind there are also Exemplary, Notable and Working performance levels within the rubric.

Purpose: What is the purpose of the badge being awarded. is it for a simple task, does it come with recognition (peer or otherwise), or does it represent an equivalent certification. badge is awarded for accomplishing a simple task or set of tasks each awarded for a badge within the simple badge system.

Success: keep it simple, awarding badge(s) for a task or small set of tasks. Could also be awarded for participation in a conference or maker faire.
Graphical Design: How the individual badges look and are related to one another. Is brand well represented. Badge has simple design, with little brand or curriculum affiliation. Monocolor badge with simple graphical themes. No integration with other internal or external badge systems. Services the basic graphical needs of a png or svg file.

Success: Not too much design effort exerted. Has a simple visual appeal with basic brand and curriculum affiliation.
Organization: How the badge system looks as a whole and is understood as a system. Are levels (if applicable) clearly defined. Is the learning journey and awarding of badges easily understood. Does the badge system hold value within the community it serves?A single badge system, where the badges are well designed from a graphical perspective and how they can be earned on their own and within another learning journey.

Success: Badges are easily understood and the learning journey is clearly articulated in both text and as an image. The badge holds value within the community it is awarded. Value is built through the quality of evidence associated with each awarded badge, the reputation of the community in which the badge is awarded, and the frequency of badges being awarded.
Criteria: Does each badge stand on its own, or is it a part of a larger learning journey, is this well represented in the badges criteria. Does criteria provide flexibility so a badge can be reused in different learning contexts. Does the badge criteria accommodate for its potential expiration.Criteria to earn the badge is well articulated and easily understood. Criteria attribute within badge meta-data resolves to URL.

Success: Each badge has a simple to understand criteria with a well described set of tasks or accomplishments to earn the badge.
Technical Integration: How badge system integrates with the hosted learning system.Badges are issued from one of the 3rd party public and open badge issuing platforms. Little, to no, integration with the course, community of practice, earner or issuer site(s) are present. Associated URL's resolve back to working and open URL's (no login required).

Success: A working badge system has been implemented within one of the 3rd party issuing systems. All criteria and evidence attributes resolve back to working URL's.
System Integration: How the badge system integrates with related and similar curriculum and badges systems. Are applicable standards being applied.Badge fits well within its own badge system and related curriculum. Standards applied are local to the organization, community of practice, group or an individuals badge system.

Success: Badges are well integrated within its badge system and related curriculum, tasks or accomplishments. If standards exist within the issuing organization, community of practice, group or individuals practices; these standards are honoured.
Assertion: Does the badge system resolve back to an existing and reputable organization and hosting environment.Learner assertions resolve back to valid URL's.

Success: assertions resolve back to working URL's, no 404 errors. Hosting environment will remain until all issued badges have expired.
Endorsement: Is the badge system recognized by other organizations, communities, individuals and/or systems. Does it fit with previous badging and credentialing systems.NA

Success: An introductory badge system design does not implement any form of endorsement. Not that endorsement isn't important, its just  that endorsement would move a badge system into a higher performance level.
Validity: how is the badge determined to be valid. What is considered valid.The evidence of an earned badge represents the learning criteria of the badge.

Success: All issued badges have evidence attributes that fulfills the badge criteria.
Development Team: broadness of experience held within the badge system development team.All skills and knowledge for building the badge system reside within one to three people. Some team members will possess multiple skills and knowledge. Non-team members are available as subject matter experts.

Success: There is one or more people who collectively have all the skills and knowledge to create an introductory badge system.