Diplomas and certificates need no longer be based on paper. At least, this is not enough. The various platforms for learning have been growing, and going web based. A new form of credentials is increasingly needed in order to suit these recent changes. A universal replacement is indeed needed in order to match the new standards and this is not going to be so easy.
However, we can place our hopes in Mozilla. The company had in September 2011 decided to set out on its mission of getting an easier way for the sharing and issuing of digital learning badges on the web created. This was an outgrowth of the company’s earlier development of badges designed for its School of Webcraft. It was known as “the Open Badges Infrastructure Project”.
The company now has a long term goal where it aims to let everyone “gather badges from any site on the Internet, combining them into a story about what you know and what you’ve achieved … There’s a real chance to create learning that works more like the Web,”, as announced by Mozilla and reported by Techcrunch.com.
In beta till recently, the company has now got the news of its v1.0 of its software announced. Open source and free, it allows any organization to get its digital badges created, issued and verified. What it plans to create is an educational currency where students will be allowed to get their badges displayed, thus being able to get their skills and achievements narrated in a better way.
Badges can be collected from anyone and are available from a multitude of sources whether virtual or offline.
Mozilla is now also offering “issuer insignia,” as another part of its release. Organizations will now be allowed to get their open badges displayed.
On signing on to the platform here, a user receives the option of earning a web maker badge from Mozilla. This standard has in fact been opted by over a six hundred organizations till date. This also includes organizations like the NYC department of education, EDUCAUSE etc.
The company plans to keep this service open ended and broad. Users can even get these displayed and managed on their backpack.
“The Open Badges framework is designed to allow any learner to collect badges from multiple sites, tied to a single identity, and then share them out across various sites, including personal blogs to social networking channels. It is critical for this infrastructure to be open to give learners control over their own learning and credentials, allow anyone to issue badges, and for each learner to carry their badges with them across the Web and other contexts.”, the documentation states, as reported by Techcrunch.com.