Katherine and I reflected on our experience with badging in the inspire presentation format at the Advancing Learning conference at Fanshawe College. We shared our game design, successes, failures, and lessons learned. For some participants, gamification was a new concept. The idea of rewarding students for a job well-done changes the mindset of students and educators. Typically we expect students to do a lot of work in preparation for a class that is not acknowledged. Acknowledging the effort that goes into coursework that is not marked feels good for students.

For others, it was helpful to hear different experiences with badging. Sharing the numbers of students who claimed specific rewards was helpful for framing a discussion. It generated a conversation about the potential of badging for reaching students who may be hard to engage.

Interesting questions were raised. Although we do not have all the answers, discussion with a group of diverse educators enables problem-solving and generation of new ideas. Katherine and I plan to investigate several unanswered questions for next year. Our next step is to look into open badging.

We discussed open badging with Don Presant, who also presented at the conference. The idea of allowing students the option to display accomplishments publicly (or not) has huge potential. We hope to further explore this idea.

Please reach out if you want to discuss badging further. Watch for further dissemination of our experiences. Hopefully, we can get some further research done on this topic. We have some exciting things planned for the future and would love to share them with you.

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NurseKillam

Laura Killam is an experienced nursing educator from Northern Ontario with a keen interest in improving student learning through innovation. For more information please visit http://nursekillam.com/.

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