UC Davis’s digital badge system

Posted on January 2nd, 2014

The University of California at Davis has created a digital badge system for the university’s sustainable agriculture program. The system, which went live with a small pilot this past fall, is focused on competency-based education rather than alternative credentials. Employers contributed to the identification of seven core program competencies, such as systems thinking, experimentation and inquiry, and strategic management. Each competency was mapped to digital badges students could earn for their experiences, skills, and knowledge, and then display on their portfolios. Sheryl Grant, director of social networking for the Humanities, Arts, Science and Technology Advanced Collaboratory, predicts that UC Davis’s approach will be copied by other universities as they used “a rigorous process to create a badging system grounded in the values of the institution, faculty, students and employers”.