I earned a badge! I know how to keep track of my badges, save and organize them. But, where should I display my badges and micro-credentials?
Professional development comes in many shapes and forms now. No longer are educators receiving all of their professional learning in the sit-and-get style. Educators today are learning online through webinars, self-paced study groups, and bites of professional training to receive badges and micro-credentials.
Professional development that provides badges or micro-credentials adds an element of fun to your learning. There are many reasons to earn badges and micro-credentials. Saving and organizing your badges is a snap with Google Drive, online profiles, or through the badging system itself. Displaying your earned badges can be fun and allows you to show off what you’re learning, what tech tools you’ve mastered, and even how you can help other educators.
1. Social Media
The first place I usually show off my badge is on social media. I want to share my accomplishment with my personal learning network (PLN)! Sharing your badges and mirco-credentials through social media not only shows others your hard work, but it can also lead to a conversation about how you earned the badge. It may even encourage others to participate in the learning and earn it for themselves. Social media sharing can also help you to build your PLN. Graphics are more eye-catching than plain text. When searching social media for other educators to follow, badges on a profile definitely catch my eye.
2. E-mail Signature Line
Adding your badges and micro-credentials to your e-mail signature line is an easy way to show your contacts some of your credentials. There are three simple rules that I follow when adding badges and micro-credentials to my email signature line.
- Use your most recent and favorite badges. You don’t need to include a badge from a conference four years ago. If you are Google Certified Educator Level 2, you don’t need to display both Level 1 and Level 2 badges. In this case, you can’t receive Level 2 certification without Level 1. Add badges and micro-credentials that mean the most to you. I display the Future Ready Librarians badge on my e-mail signature line just because I love the ongoing learning and growing that it represents.
- Don’t overwhelm or distract! Adding too many badges can distract from your actual e-mail message. It may show a wealth of learning, but if your badge and micro-credential images take up the majority of your e-mail body, you’ve included too many.
- Link the badge! You don’t have to link all of the badges, but if you can share knowledge with anyone and everyone who receives an e-mail from you, imagine the impact! Linking my Future Ready Librarians badge to the framework website can lead others to not only the frameworks but also to webinars, resources, and a huge PLN.
3. Digital (or paper) Business Cards
I love the idea of a digital business card. I created one using Evaunt. It links a QR code to all of my information. I can include the QR code in presentations and share it at conferences and networking events; I also keep the image on my phone. New contacts simply scan the QR code to instantly have all of my contact information, including some of my earned badges and micro-credentials.
Many educators build digital business cards as image files. I see so many posted on social media as a quick advertisement for who that person is and what expertise they have. Buncee and Canva are both quick, easy tools you can use to create a digital business card. Add your badges and micro-credentials in a creative display!
4. Blog or Website
Personally, I have most of my badges displayed on my website. This is a place that doesn’t require me to limit my badges. Schools can also add your badges to their website, along with your contact information. Most schools have an educator contact page, and this would be prime real-estate to show off badges and micro-credentials. The downfall here is that district websites are often managed by a social media team or district leader. Personal websites are easier to manage and control content.
What other ways are you displaying your digital badges and micro-credentials?
You can earn and display badges for the upcoming 2019 AASL National Conference in November. Badges can be earned now for Attendees and Promoters. Additional badges will be released through Badgelist. Not attending conference? Don’t worry! #NotAtAASL attendees can earn badges for completing tasks even if you are not at the conference.
Author: Ashley Cooksey
Library Media Specialist in Arkansas. Self-proclaimed geek. Lover of nature and music. Always learning.