#OLC15 – Opening Up Opportunities for Students and Faculty: A University Transitions to Open and Digital Resources

October 14, 2015 – 12:45pm
IMG_5189 Lead Presenter: Jill Buban (Online Learning Consortium, USA)

This presentation will provide an overview of one institution’s journey to transition nearly 500 courses to digital resources including open, library, and eBook resources.


  • Background: Post University is a traditional institution (800 students) with 15,000 students taking online courses.
  • Students were not purchasing textbooks because of cost.
  • Goals:
    • To provide affordable alternative to textbooks
    • To provide instant access to course materials as the course begins
    • To provide course materials that best meet course and program outcomes (for accreditation and student success)
  • Project Scope:
    • Target 450+ undergrad and grad courses across 2 modalities and varying course lengths
    • Timeframe: Goal fo 60% completion rate in 1 year
    • As of July 324 courses were using OER.
  • Getting Started
    • Faculty perspectives around the “scholarly” resources of “open course” quality. Some faculty don’t believe in open.  Does this make more work for me? What about academic freedom?
    • University wide systems to support: instructional design, IT, admissions, student services, student accounts, advising, library are key areas.
    • 3rd party vendors include: bookstore, publishers, software vendors.
  • OpenStax
    • These resources were used for open textbooks. Based in Rice University.
    • They are entering the K12 market also.
  • Open = socially just, inexpensive resources for students
  • Libraries are key in gaining access to digital resources that are free or “already paid for”.
  • Merlot is another good resource to find materials using the ISBN search.
  • Key: Find champions and celebrate the work of early adopters.
  • For promotion, using the LMS portal to provide awareness.
  • When selecting resources it is important to find creative commons resources to ensure copyright clearance.
  • It’s important to involve faculty at the beginning and also faculty governance.

oerprocessWhat do you think about open education resources? Are you using them in your course? If so, how?


#OLC15 – Badging Models in Faculty Development: Building Faculty Connections and Empowering Growth

October 14, 2015 – 11:45am
Lead Presenter: Errin Heyman (University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences, USA)
Jordan Utley (University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences, USA)


Badging serves a purpose in higher education faculty development by allowing faculty to earn peer and university leadership awareness of professional development activity


Why Badging?

  • To connect peers
    • Mentoring
  • To track accomplishments
    • Tenure promotion and merit
    • Contributing/adjunct faculty
  • To recognize skills leaders
    • Leaderboard can function as a “GoTo” resource
  • To organize faculty development plan
    • Roadpmap and vision

Badging Applications

  • Badges for students – primary focus (Built-in achievements in Blackboard)
  • Badges for faculty development focus

Plans/Pilot Targets

  • Rank and promotion
  • University and community service
  • Mentoring and peer review
  • External profession development
  • Internal faculty development sessions

Starting the Initiative

“We’re adults, we don’t need badges”

  • Climate can be a challenge, or are faculty on board?
  • Purpose is to make it meaningful
  • Attach it to high priority themes at the institution (online initiative or hybrid courses skills)
  • The network value of the badge is also important
  • Tied to tenure and promotion, merit, advancement is helpful but it may not be for all faculty

Badging Map: Timeline Approach and Building Blocks Approach and Theme Organization

  • Creating a map for new faculty, associate professor, or full professor is helpful along with using a baseline process to provide a “foundation”.

Using Badging Models

  • Tracking development
    • Key to connect to university and personal learning goals
  • Recognize expertise among us
    • Provide options for display such as email, linkedin, profiles, newsletters
  • Keys
    • Make purposeful, timely
    • Provide equal opportunity to earn badges
    • Badge across topics and specialties
    • Avoid bean counting, leaderboards for the sake of leaderboards
    • Building community through badges is important
    • Connect the badge initiative to a theme such as “Online Learning” or “Outcome-based Education”
    • Connect microcredentials with specific outcomes/badges or to a certification
  • Recognize different outcomes, levels
    • Start small with beginning badges all the way to expert


  • Connect badges toward rank and promotion
  • Centralized system can help with tracking and monitoring and serve as evidence for accreditation and compliance
  • More onus on directors to demonstrate that development efforts are moving the company forward
  • Zero in on improved student learning outcomes, higher faculty satisfaction, increased mentor opportunities, and increased opportunities for rand and promotion.

Badging Platforms

  • These provide the underlying technology infrastructure and there are many options:
  • Jive – This system has a “gaming” feel. Ashford University, The Quad is an example.
  • Credly – This system is rising in popularity in academics. Free badge design and adding metadata, and you can share to Mozilla Backpack.
  • Openbadges – Pioneer in the space, substantial following
  • Fidelis Education – Full badging and coaching system
  • Can you import badges from external constituencies and can you export to the Mozilla Backpack?