Session 3 – Employers

The session on September 23th focussed on employers and badges. It started with the „Digital Badges“ YouTube video of CGI America 2013 (Clinton Global Initiative). After an intro from Anne Derryberry we heard Pamela Tate from CAEL and Jennifer McNelly from „The Manufacturing Institute“.

There was much discussion in the text chat and the session was very interesting for me, as I hadn’t heard about either organization before. The video was about a commitment announcement for digital badges and Bill Clinton supporting digital badges saying that „we must embrace a more modern and comprehensive credentialling system“.
Anne Derryberry suggested that employers are in the very early phase of early adopters regarding badges. Employers were said to have difficulty filling jobs and to identify qualified new hires – could badges be an answer for this?
CAEL’s (Council for Adult and Experiential Learning) vision was cited as „Meaningful learning, credentials and work for every adult“ and Pamela Tate spoke about badges as microcredentials, „LearningCounts“ portfolios as a platform of choice for badges, the employer lens (recruitment, retention, mobility, engagement of employees) and Prior Learning Assessment for filling the skills gap: We should ask ourselves what employers would find useful and how we can bring together the options which are already there. „If employers don’t accept them and they don’t help people get better jobs, then will people use these on a widespread basis?“ „Someone has to certify that you know it and it has to matter to somebody“. I can agree to that.