DIY K12 PD with Badge List DIY K12 PD with Badge List

DIY K12 PD with Badge List

Erin Werra Erin Werra Edtech Thought Leader
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Professional development isn’t just another task to add to educators’ plates. With the right planning, PD can create a stronger, more cohesive culture. 

The rise of virtual options has changed the expectations employees have for getting work done, particularly training and self-improvement. Gone are the days that PD needed to be limited to a special, in-person event. Instead, consider leveraging digital options that can be completed from anywhere.


Digital badging for professional development

Digital badging refers to the process of checking and awarding credentials online. It works for several reasons:

Evidence of mastery is required. Badges are earned when the objectives are met, reviewed, and approved by administrators.

Recognition of achievements provides further motivation. When educators are recognized for their accomplishments, this provides momentum for further engagement.

Social learning inspires deeper connection. When educators are able to see and recognize the successes of colleagues, they are able to go deeper with their learning.

A living portfolio emerges. Educators build their own skill portfolio as they earn badges in fields specific to each district’s needs. 

Mentorship forms based on shared skills. As educators progress, they can help others with the earlier tiers of their specialties.

Tiered progression leads to growth. Build on basic knowledge to achieve higher levels of mastery measured from a shared baseline.

Skills gained are proportionate to time spent. Educators no longer feel like their time has been wasted—instead they demonstrate their mastery and receive instant feedback on a schedule that works for them. (A huge benefit to time-strapped teachers.)


Setting up a digital badging space

The average cost of teacher professional development has skyrocketed, so it’s no wonder districts are looking for a more cost-effective system without sacrificing quality. One of the best ways is to design your own program based on your unique priorities.

Think of it this way: K12 schools have undergone a massive upheaval in the past years. Some of your newest teachers and students have never known a “normal” school year. Instead of mourning the old normal, ring in the fresh future with professional development tailored to your culture, priorities, and teachers’ needs.

Enter Badge List.


What is Badge List?

Badge List is a platform that provides the tools and functionality organizations need to create their own digital badging program. This is particularly important for schools—a one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t help students or teachers.

Instead, Badge List lets K12 administrators steer the creation of their professional development programs in the direction their teachers need. Because PD is tailored to your district, engagement improves. Teachers see themselves and their students directly represented by their professional development programs.

In addition to designing the content of the program, Badge List supports your school’s branding, so teachers feel connected to the badges they earn. Badges are fun and full of school spirit. 


How does it all work?

Once your professional development goals are identified, Badge List helps you organize them into different attainable skill levels. Each level corresponds with a different badge.

Teachers and staff work toward the criteria for awarding each badge. Once they can demonstrate the level of mastery needed, they submit their portfolio items as outlined in the requirements for awarding the badge. 

Then a PD administrator (assigned by your leadership team) receives the application for the badge to be awarded. They can review the documents submitted and decide whether to award the badge, or ask for additional proof of mastery. Once the requirements are met, the badge is awarded, and the learner can move on to the next level of that series. Or they might try something completely new!

Learners don’t have to tackle every badge in order—that’s another beauty of Badge List. The PD program allows teachers the freedom to choose their own priorities and complete each badge on their own timeline. Freedom and flexibility are huge perks for busy teachers but cost the district nothing: a rare win/win in the current world of K12 employment. 

Teachers now, students later?

Badge List offers a powerful and flexible platform to recognize teachers. That functionality can extend to students, too.

Consider the power of graduates with credentials to back up the skills they’ve mastered in school that translate to college and career. Digital badging portfolios offer the proof students need to carry their skills with them post-graduation.


How to get started

As with all culture shifts, it helps to gather guidance from all levels. See what teachers need from PD—since your badge program is entirely customizable, you can tailor each objective to exactly what your team needs to master. 

Your mentor teachers can provide insight into what their mentees may need, too. And of course, leadership teams will have goals for staff development. 

Badge List provides the structure, but all the content is tailored to your district’s professional development goals. 

See what your customized digital badging PD can do for your team. Get started with Badge List.


Erin Werra Erin Werra Edtech Thought Leader
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