Educational Leaders’ Perceptions of Digital Badges as Markers of Teacher Professional Learning and Knowledge
Digital badges promise greater transparency and granularity in documenting the professional learning and knowledge base of teachers compared to traditional credentials like certificates of attendance, resumés, and transcripts. Yet before they gain widespread acceptance, educational leaders must understand what they are, how to use them, and how to assess their value accurately. Using a qualitative methodology that included interviews and observation of 11 educational leaders as they interacted with badges and traditional credentials, this study described how leaders form mental models of badges through the lens of a sensemaking framework. Findings demonstrated a greater baseline level of knowledge among district-level administrators compared to their building-level peers. All participants encountered varying degrees of technical challenges as they worked with badges, and this was compounded by the constraints of time and organizational norms and assumptions. Ultimately, three broad themes characterized how leaders valued teachers’ badges: they indicated a general orientation towards professional learning; they invited further exploration at subsequent stages in the interview process, and/or they highlighted the teacher’s unique interests, passions, and values.
Educational evaluation|Educational leadership
Curtin, Michael Joseph, "Educational Leaders’ Perceptions of Digital Badges as Markers of Teacher Professional Learning and Knowledge" (2021). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI28321883.