Microcredentials and Digital Badges in Higher Education

Microcredentials and Digital Badges in Higher Education

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Explore how to assess the needs of your students, institution, and industry to determine the most valuable badges to pursue.


Digital badges are rapidly gaining momentum in higher education as displaced workers are seeking short-term alternative credentials during COVID-19. As badges evolve to meet the emerging needs of students and industry, institutions new to badging want to know how to best develop, operationalize, market, and monetize sustainable initiatives. Conversely, institutions with badging in place are seeking to refine their strategy, improve quality, expand their reach, and manage pivots.

Join us to learn strategies and processes that other institutions have successfully used to develop and advance digital badging initiatives and programs. Throughout this interactive virtual conference, you will explore what it takes to create a quality badging program that offers value for all stakeholders involved. You will learn:

  • Cost and business model considerations
  • Different types of badging platforms and technology
  • How to partner with industry to deliver in-demand competencies
  • Considerations for monetizing microcredentials
  • Current issues impacting badges during COVID-19


Who Should Attend

This conference will appeal to higher education professionals who are planning for, or are in the process of, implementing a badging initiative at their institutions. If you're interested in making sure your badging initiative is valuable and meeting the needs for all stakeholders, this program is for you.


Limited Attendance

In order to ensure a high-quality learning experience, we have intentionally designed this Virtual Training to have a limited number of total attendees. To ensure access from both paying participants and also from those who have an All-Inclusive membership, when the membership cap is reached, only paying participants can register after that point (while spaces are still available). If you have questions about whether this program is right for you, please contact us.

The Academic Impressions Online Learning Experience

Intentionally Designed
Online Learning

Our virtual trainings go far beyond just replicating PowerPoint presentations online: these experiences are intentionally designed to give you the kind of robust and dynamic learning experience you’ve come to expect from Academic Impressions. These trainings provide you with an active learning environment and an online space where you can explore ideas, get inspired by what your peers are doing, and understand the range of possibilities around a certain topic. You will leave these sessions with practical solutions that you can take back to your team or task force.

What you will get:

  • A dynamic, interactive, and high-touch virtual learning experience designed to engage and set you up for growth
  • Seamless online face-time, networking, group work, and Q&A opportunities from the comfort of your own workspace
  • Practical takeaways and hands-on knowledge
  • Guidance from vetted subject matter experts
  • Unlimited access to all recorded online sessions

See What Our Attendees are Saying

"At first, I was skeptical that a virtual conference was capable of being both engaging and informational - but Academic Impressions has mastered it! The 3-day online event was structured in a creative way that all participants had multiple opportunities to interact with each other and the presenters. No one's questions went unheard or unanswered. Thank you for this great experience, it has changed my view of virtual conferences and I look forward to attending more in the future."

- Desiree Ford, Digital Communications Manager, Binghamton University

“The virtual conference has been amazing. The presenters have all been great and the information they’ve provided is going to help us better use our social media. Even though this conference had to be virtualized due to COVID-19, the online format has been set up in a way that we can all collaborate and share ideas. I’m very eager to take what I’ve learned back to campus and start implementing new ideas.”

- Chris Forde, Coordinator of Marketing & Public Information, Lincoln Trail College


Day 1 | All in Eastern Time


Introductions and Opening
11:00 – 11:30 a.m.
As we open our conference, you will introduce yourself and identify which stage of development your badging initiative is in, so we can foster meaningful small group dialogue throughout the conference.



Identifying Badges that Add Value to Your Institution
11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Our faculty will establish a shared terminology, discuss the benefits and challenges of various badges, and explain how each type can advance the goals of your institution and best serve students. You will share your purposes for pursuing a badging initiative, identify the types of badges that could add the most value to your institution, and set goals for the conference.



12:30 – 12:45 p.m.



Badging Tour
12:45 – 1:30 p.m.
You will learn more about how other institutions have successfully implemented badging initiatives. Our faculty will share specifics about their processes, pitfalls, and successes, and you’ll hear real stories from students who have benefited from badge offerings.



1:30 – 2:00 p.m.



Badging Tour Continued
2:00 – 2:30 p.m.



Designing Quality Alternative Credentials
2:30 – 3:15 p.m.
What goes into developing, designing, assessing, and maintaining quality microcredentials? In this session, you will learn about:

  • Standardization and rigor in development
  • Curriculum design and assessment
  • Developing a governance process
  • Continuous maintenance and improvement



3:15 – 3:30 p.m.



Key Technology Considerations
3:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Our faculty will provide an overview of the digital-credentials ecosystem. You will learn the key features of a digital badge system and identify the campus partners needed to successfully implement it.



Networking Reception and Informal Consulting
4:30 – 5:00 p.m.
This informal reception is your chance to decompress and expand your network of connections. You will also have the opportunity to ask our speakers any remaining questions and get personalized advice.


Day 2 | All in Eastern Time


Funding and Monetizing Badges
11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Many institutions are looking into badging as a potential revenue stream during lean times. During this hour, you will learn strategies for monetization. We will also look at various fee-based and tuition-based funding models to financially operationalize microcredentialing.



12:00 – 12:15 p.m.



Partnering with Industry and Expanding Your Reach
12:15 – 1:00 p.m.
You will explore strategies for how to use data to collaborate with industry, align badges with employer expectations, and use badging as a catalyst for partnerships with industry.



1:00 – 1:30 p.m.



Marketing and Branding
1:30 – 2:15 p.m.
How do you articulate the value proposition of badges to internal and external stakeholders? During this session you will learn how to brand and market your microcredentials. You will study badge images and stacking considerations that will help you create the best design for your circumstances.



2:15 – 2:30 p.m.



Current Issues Impacting Badges
2:30 – 3:30 p.m.
In our closing session, we’ll address the challenges and opportunities arising in the badging landscape, such as:

  • COVID-19
  • Advancements in technology
  • Market changes and trends



Final Q&A and Closing
3:30 – 4:00 p.m.


Portrait of Jeff Bohrer

Jeff Bohrer

Technical PM, IMS Global Learning

Jeff currently serves as a program manager for digital credentials initiatives at IMS Global Learning Consortium. Jeff leads projects and programs related to digital badges, comprehensive learner records, and the interoperability of learning technologies. Jeff is also co-chair of the EDUCAUSE Microcredentials and Badges Constituent Group.

Read Speaker's Full Bio.

Professional portrait of Michael Macklin

Michael P. Macklin

Associate Provost for Workforce Partnerships/Development, Colorado Community College System

Mike understands that digital badges are key in sustaining and expanding workforce skillsets with community and business partners as this allows for unprecedented access to affordable reskilling and upskilling opportunities.

Read Speaker's Full Bio.

Portrait of Anne Reed

Anne Reed

Director of Micro-Credentials and Digital Badges, University of Buffalo

Anne has developed a process to propose, review, develop, and implement new micro-credential programs at the university and her research interests include gamification in higher ed and the use of digital badges as alternative credentials.

Read Speaker's Full Bio.


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Questions About the Event?

Portrait of Whitney Egstad

Whitney Egstad
Program Manager, Academic Impressions

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*There are limited spots available for All-Inclusive Members to register for Virtual Conferences for free in 2020. Each virtual conference has a registration cap in order to ensure a high-quality learning experience, personalized attention, networking and interactivity. If the cap has been met, All-Inclusive Members can register with a $250 discount if space is available.

Please note the member discount is not applicable on conference binders or success coaching.