To help students demonstrate their competency in the instructional design field, Purdue’s online MSEd in Learning Design and Technology program offers a unique feature: competency-based digital badges. Rather than waiting until the end of the program to complete a portfolio, the badges provide the opportunity to revisit, reflect, prepare, and highlight work throughout the entire program.
Based on a list of professional competencies around standards determined by the International Board of Standards for Training, Performance, and Instruction (IBSTPI), the competency badges complement coursework in the program. Learners who are already in the instructional design field can pursue badges that highlight previous work and competencies gained, while those new to the field can engage in the competencies they are gaining through their regular coursework.
As with the technology badges, you will explore and earn badges in Passport, a learning and e-portfolio system. During the program and after graduation, you can display the badges you have earned through your public Passport profile in Mozilla Backpack, LinkedIn and Facebook. When a viewer clicks on a badge, they will be taken to Purdue’s site where they can see the specific competencies you have mastered.
How Competency Badges Work
The badge-earning process involves several steps.
- You will pick a challenge from the list of competencies in Passport.
- Once selected, you will choose a piece of evidence, such as a completed assignment from your coursework or a piece of work you did at a job in the instructional design field, that you think meets the criteria of the competency.
- You will then write a reflection piece explaining your reasoning for why this evidence fulfills the requirements for the competency.
- Your fellow students will review and analyze your work.
- After peer review, you can make changes to your document based on the critique.
- Submit the document to Passport for final approval from the instructor.
- The instructor will approve or deny the submission.
- If the submission is denied, you can apply the instructor’s feedback to revise your document and resubmit for approval.
Students work on badges while they are enrolled in a series of courses that are offered in tandem with the regular MSEd in LDT classes.
- Demonstrating Professional Competencies in LDT Intro Course (1 credit): In this orientation, you will learn and apply the processes of earning digital badges within the program and evaluating your peers’ work as part of the badge earning process.
- Demonstrating Professional Competencies in LDT (1 credit; taken three times): This course will primarily focus on the further earning of badges as part of meeting required program competencies and the purpose and process behind this. Other topics include additional resources and activities regarding a better understanding of the profession and your potential career trajectory.
- LDT Professional Competencies Portfolio (1 credit): This course focuses on completion of the competency portfolio to demonstrate that you have mastered the graduate competencies. The portfolio will contain student evidence aligned with LDT competencies and will be reviewed by your committee. The completed portfolio is a requirement for graduation.
Badges by Category
Students earn badges in four categories that align to required competencies in the field.
Professional Foundations in LDT
This category focuses on professional obligations, expectations and responsibilities in the field. These range from clear and coherent communication skills, applying research and theory, advancing the profession and advancing personally within the profession. Badges in this category are:
Applying ID Research and Theory
Ethical, Legal, and Political
ID Knowledge, Skills, and Attitudes
ID Professional Communicator
Planning and Analysis
This category requires students to interact with subject matter experts (SMEs) in the instructional design field. As a result, they start to develop the skills to conduct effective needs assessments and determine target populations and environments. The competencies in this category require students to demonstrate their ability to systematically analyze techniques used for instruction as well as integrate emerging technologies. The specific badges are:
Analysis Techniques for Instruction
Target Population and Environment
Design and Development
This category focuses on the systematic design and development of instructional materials in a variety of formats. Students apply the principles of instructional interventions, select and develop instructional materials, and examine the design of learning assessments. Badges in this category are:
Design Instructional Interventions
Design Learning Assessment
Develop Instructional Materials
Instructional Design and Development Process
Select or Modify Instructional Materials
Evaluation and Implementation
This category focuses on the importance of evaluation in instructional design. Evaluation is vital to determining whether a proposed intervention meets its objectives and is successful. Such information can then be used to determine appropriate revisions. Finally, through evaluation, students become aware of any issues that needs to be addressed with the implementation, dissemination and diffusions of interventions. The badges in this category are:
Evaluate Instructional and Non-Instructional Interventions
Implement, Disseminate, and Diffuse Instructional and Non-Instructional Interventions
Build Your Competencies, Showcase Your Abilities
As you complete the challenges in order to earn competency badges, you and your instructors can identify any potential gaps in your knowledge that still exist even after completing coursework. Once identified, the badge process ensures that those gaps will be addressed so that you and employers can be confident that you have successfully developed all of the program’s targeted professional competencies.
Your earned badges will also contribute to your personal portfolio, where you provide your best work as evidence of your capabilities, allowing you to instantly market yourself in the field of instructional design.
Learn more about earning badges and highlighting your competencies in the online Master of Science in Education in Learning Design and Technology from Purdue University. Complete the form or call us at 877-497-5851 to speak to an admissions adviser.