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Pathways to Global Competence: A Badge System for Educators



A primary gap in current approaches to badge systems is the lack of evidence when awarding badges.  ShowEvidence is proposing the development of a web-based badge system to define badge requirements and manage the awarding and sharing of badges.  The badges will be based on using the ShowEvidence platform for submitting work products and scoring work to award badges based on evidence.  While the use of the ShowEvidence platform is not within the scope of this proposal, it enables the delivery of badges to be rigorous and scalable.

A. Content Alignment

This proposal is being submitted in alignment with the content being developed by Asia Society as described in their Pathways to Global Competence proposal.  While the ShowEvidence platform is content independent, we have provided an example of how the Badges work using the content developed by our collaborator, Asia Society.  We have also provided visuals for the design and delivery of badges in Appendix A.

B. Design of Badge Requirements

The first process is to author badge modules with performance assessments that blur the distinction between learning and assessment by developing professional development activities and resources with an embedded performance task.  The performance task requires learners to adopt a role or identity to complete the work as defined by the content provider.  We support two types of badge designs:  1) competency badges that focus on discrete skills or concepts, and 2) certification badges that synthesize work from across multiple badges into a portfolio.

Competency Badges

The design of competency badges revolves around a set of discrete skills or concepts (described in Appendix 3 - Stage 1 proposal).  Competency badges provide opportunities for teachers to demonstrate what they learned in professional development by applying the skills within their classroom.  The badges involve the development of professional modules that include facilitator guides (to support a blended model approach to delivery), activities for the teacher participants, and materials to support the learning of specific outcomes per identity. The Asia Society badges will follow a pathway approach that enables teachers to choose what badges to earn.  The competency badges for teachers will focus on four identities: 

  1. Globally Competent Peer Educator.  As peer educators, teachers invest time in continuous improvement of their own development as professionals in the field.
  2. Globally Competent Curriculum Developer.  As curriculum developers, teachers know how to develop curriculum for global competence that is focused planning and preparation.
  3. Globally Competent Instructional Leader.  As instructional leaders, teachers are responsible for creating globally focused learning environments.
  4. Globally Competent Assessor.  As assessors, teachers support students for global competence through the use of performance-based assessments.

Each competency badge is organized around four sets of activities:

  1. Participation in PD.  Teachers are required to participate in a specified number of professional development sessions.
  2. Demonstration.  Teachers must submit a video demonstration of their competency including meetings, lessons, and interactions with students.
  3. Analysis of Student Work. Teachers have to submit student work samples to analyze the impact on student learning.
  4. Reflection.  Teachers are asked to write and reflect on their work as they assume each of the identities

To earn the competency badges, teachers upload work products in response to an embedded performance task.  Asia Society has already developed a set of scoring rubrics for Global Leadership (described in Appendix 2 - Stage 1 proposal).  For this proposal, Asia Society will create performance tasks per competency badge.

Certification Badges

The design of a certification badge is based on the idea of a culminating demonstration of skills and concepts that were acquired through multiple competency badges.  The certification badge for the Globally Competent Educator would require the teacher to provide evidence of their mastery of each of the four domains for global competence.  The certification badge may involve additional skills that are domain independent and require teachers to demonstrate their overall fluency across all four domains.

To earn the certification badges, teachers submit a portfolio that could include existing work products from the competency badges as well as upload additional artifacts.  As with competency badges, Asia Society will develop activities and materials to support the certification badge for the whole pathway.  The Asia Society certification module has one culminating performance task that enables the learner to select from different work products submitted for competency badges to assemble into a portfolio.  The learner may be required to include additional artifacts to complete the portfolio.

Review of Badge Requirements for Validity

One of the issues with existing badge systems is the inability to determine whether one badge is equivalent to another badge that is assessing the same skill or concept.  This issue raises questions about the validity of the badge requirements and the extent to which the badge is “universally” interchangeable with other badges of the same type.

For this proposal, we will design the ability for content providers to submit badge requirements to a review panel that can either be identified within an organization or as an external community of experts to determine the validity of submitted modules. The Review rubric will specify the criteria for research-based design principles including the content validity of the badge requirements, alignment to the Common Core standards (if applicable), and accessibility for all learners.  Once evaluated, the badge will have an additional Reviewed designation indicating that the badge has passed quality review.

Evidence-based Scoring for Badges

One core design principle for this system is to support the awarding of badges based on evidence.  Specifically, we have developed the means to tag evidence within artifacts that meet the rubric criteria that then automates the scoring.  The rating process is broken down into two steps:  identifying evidence and scoring against the scoring rubric.  When viewing the work, raters can annotate the work directly and tag the work wherever they find evidence against the scoring rubric.  Once the work products are tagged, the system recommends a score that the rater can accept or revise based on their judgment.  By automating the scoring from the tagged evidence, the product increases the efficiency and accuracy of the scoring. 

The scoring process is flexible to accommodate either an “expert-driven” model or a “community” or peer review approach.  Issuing organizations can certify raters to score work against their rubrics as “experts,” or a community of individuals can be designated as raters.  This community can also include a peer review model whereby peers can be assigned as raters to provide initial feedback before submitting for final scoring of work.  For this proposal, Asia Society will employ a peer review approach with teachers reviewing and providing feedback to each other, which can also serve as evidence towards the Globally Competent Peer Educator badge.

C. Technology – Awarding badges and distribution

After work has been rated, a badge will be automatically awarded based on the rubric proficiency threshold.  Since the badges are pathway driven, the teacher will have the opportunity to select from other competency badges.  For certification badges, the teacher may be restricted from submitting until all the requisite competency badges are complete.  Badges can be set to expire after a specified period of years with opportunities to renew their badges.  Over time, Asia Society may also opt for a sequenced model of tiered badge levels that enable teachers to access and complete modules at advanced levels of instruction for additional badges.

Once earned, the teacher will be able to view their badges within the ShowEvidence platform in their profile.  They will also be able to share their badges on social networking sites (Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn) as well as embed the link for the badge.  The URL will enable viewers to see the actual scores and work products as well as the badge properties (see Appendix A – Figure 4 for Badge design options).

Interoperability with Other Systems

We are developing open APIs to integrate our performance assessment system with targeted LMS systems.  The APIs include authentication of users through the LMS (single sign on) and the export of data back to the LMS.  The APIs would enable other systems to embed the URL to display the badge, scores, work products, and metadata. We are technically positioned to extend these APIs to support the Open Badge infrastructure.  (See Appendix A – Figure 5 for Integration options).

D. Team

ShowEvidence is a company dedicated to providing an evidence-based performance assessment solution for gathering evidence and providing feedback around student and teacher performance.  ShowEvidence’s core competencies focus on the development of Cloud-based systems and assessment design and delivery.  The founders have significant expertise in designing assessment systems beyond traditional testing and developing scalable web-based applications and technology.

The solution has been designed in conjunction with experts in performance assessment to ensure that the product supports both a rigorous process and intuitive tools for creating and evaluating performance tasks.  Asia Society provides the content expertise to develop the modules and assessments.  ShowEvidence is currently releasing the performance assessment platform with partners that the badge components would extend and integrate into an evidence-based solution for issuing badges.


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