As more and more learners migrate online and associations expand their LMS offerings, it’s time to consider creating a robust professional development experience by rewarding learners for accomplishing courses or personalized learning paths. Digital badges and certifications are confirmations of accomplishments that learners can carry with them throughout their careers.
While we continue looking deeper into CommPartners’ CEO Rich Feinstein’s The Evolution of the Association LMS: 10 Considerations for 2020, we consider why certification opportunities and digital credentialing are worthy investments for your LMS. Sometimes these tools can be an additional investment to your LMS, but it’s really an investment in your learners. Not only do they measure achievements, badges and certificates are tangible assets with defined outcomes your members can use professionally.
When considering including a badging or certification program with your LMS, it’s important to understand how they work:
Integrating badges into your LMS A digital badge is a portable digital icon embedded with data that verifies a learner’s skills, credentials, and continuing education experiences. Badges function in 3 parts:
- Motivation: Badges act as motivation for learners to continue on their learning journey. When rewarded for completing courses, it encourages more participation. When learners can share their badges on their favorite social media channels or within the LMS, it motivates them to earn more to share more.
- Assessment: A badge is obtained when knowledge is obtained, thereby assessing skills and tracking progress. As they continue to build on their skills, they will gain more badges and target areas that require more attention.
- Credential: Badges act as credentials. Learners can share badges on their favorite social media channels to show their achievements and verify their particular expertise in a subject.
Issuing certifications from your LMS
Another way to measure success and provide value through your LMS is through certifications. Many association members are looking for professional development opportunities and providing your members with a virtual option to obtain and maintain their professional certifications is a must. Issuing certifications through your LMS creates an organized and simple solution for your members to continue growing and learning.
Issuing certifications is simple when your LMS and AMS integrate seamlessly. Your LMS will track progress, results, and credits automatically without you or learners having to stop and thinking about it. Your certification module will track pre-requisites, credits earned, hours spent, etc. and record it to a transcript.
Obtain and Maintain Certification
Many associations and professions require specific certifications or licenses’ to practice within a field. When members can obtain and maintain their certifications through your LMS, it becomes a one-stop-shop experience.
Measurement of Success
Similar to a digital badge, your organization has the option to provide your learners with a certificate confirming they’ve completed a course or learning pathway and achieved a level of expertise in a subject. A certificate can point out skill gaps and areas where extra attention is necessary. It can also prove attendance for certain professional events and conferences to receive credits from issuing organizations.
Investing in certification and digital badging means providing opportunities for your learners to grow their skillsets and encourages them to explore your LMS content. They will begin mastering content and broader levels of expertise, attracting an increased number of participants. This is incredibly important during this time of amplified virtual learning.
If you are interested in incorporating badging into your LMS or want to learn more about Elevate LMS, contact Meghan Gowen at email@example.com.
When running a marathon or 5K, there is usually something that pulls you towards the finish line. Something that keeps you going to the next mile when you feel like giving up. Something that makes you want to do it all over again.
For some, it may be the health benefits; for others, it may be the thrill of the sport; maybe it’s the satisfaction of completing something. No matter what it is, you receive a symbol of your accomplishment when you finish the race. A medal. That symbol tells you that you worked hard, completed a task, and now you have a tangible token to share with your community of your success and skill.
Learners need the same thing. As they work their way through content, you may consider using digital badges as encouragement and rewards for a job well done. Incorporating badging into your LMS is a great way to motivate membership while validating their accomplishments.
Before you offer badges to your learners, check out our “do’s and don’ts” of badging:
- DO implement a badging strategy: Handing out random badges is not a good idea. Make sure there are criteria for each learner to meet to earn a badge. That criteria should include course structure, pre-requisites, who approves the badges, who is eligible, etc.
- DON’T forget to pair with a trusted badging expert: CommPartners integrates with BadgeCert to provide our Elevate clients with badging credentials. Badges are only as good as the organization providing them. BadgeCert issues 100% verifiable badges giving your achievements standardization and validity.
- DO use it a motivator: At the heart of badging is motivation. By rewarding your learners’ achievements, they will want to continue learning and achieving.
- DON’T make it too easy: Create skills-based (soft or hard) badges for learners in specific fields or job-tracks. Create badges to strive for!
- DO make badges shareable: Badges are evergreen, meaning they stay with a leaner from position to position. Posting badges on social media is an excellent way to share expertise with their network while receiving colleagues’ endorsements.
- DON’T over-badge: According to Ginger Malin, Founder and EVP of BadgeCert, “you want to be careful not to ‘over-badge.’ We suggest as a rule of thumb that badges should be assigned for either course completion or for modules that can stand on their own. This way, even if an individual does not want or need to initially share the badge, they would have a verifiable digital credential to share when desired.”
- DO encourage LMS exploration: Award learners with a badge for exploring your LMS site. They will benefit from gaining an intimate knowledge of the site when they begin their learning journey.
Whether badges are shared on networking sites or within the LMS, digital badging provides your learners with the motivation to continue their professional development path while expanding their expertise from LMS content. To learn more about Elevate LMS or how to incorporate digital badging into your LMS, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
The days of cramming into large convention halls are out of sight, and integrating eLearning into education strategies is the future. Backed by a team of specialists ready to go the extra mile, CommPartners has been helping organizations do just that while creating dynamic virtual events for over 20 years.
Part of our mission at CommPartners, especially now, is to provide our community with useful information and learning tools. To meet that goal, we decided to offer a scaled-back version of our in-person User Conference planned for this summer. We created PEAK 2020 Virtual Bootcamp to help associations and organizations adapt and prepare for the transition to virtual events. During Bootcamp, you will build a Virtual Conference toolkit and contribute to our learning community.
Looking for more reasons to attend?
- Hear from CommPartners experts on creating a successful virtual event.
- Learn how to transition your in-person conference into a Virtual Conference.
- Understand the benefits of including Virtual Conferences in your education curriculum going forward.
- Hear success stories about organizations that have successfully implemented Virtual Conferences and other virtual events.
- Attend 2020 Virtual PEAK Bootcamp from the comfort of your home.
- Gain ongoing access to Bootcamp resources and past sessions from PEAK conferences.
- Walk away with a Virtual Conference toolkit to use as you create your online learning strategy.
Join CommPartners experts for an afternoon of sessions on July 31, 2020, that will expand your knowledge of virtual events and prepare your organization for the future! Register now!
Visit the PEAK website to learn more.
Were you gearing up for our 2020 PEAK User-Group Conference scheduled for July 30 & 31, 2020, at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C.? We aren’t out of the game yet; we will back at the ballpark for the PEAK User Group Conference in the summer of 2021!