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Successful badging in Tunisia

Last summer, we conducted a badging project in Tunisia in collaboration with CNTE (Centre National des Technologies en Education), a government body in charge of all ICT related matters in education in Tunisia. The purpose of the project was to see if badging brings added value to the services offered by the CNTE and how teachers respond to this new approach.

The project revolved naturally in the domain of teachers ICT skills. It was based on a set of badges created by SkillSafari. The badges were crafted using the UNESCO Teacher ICT competency framework as a foundation on top of which the badges were created.

The UNESCO ICT Competency Framework bases skills required from teachers into 6 categories and 3 levels. The Tunisia project was limited to 17 badges covering all of the six categories. In addition to the 17 substance badges, 7 metabadges were created to award advancement in achieving all badges of a certain category and all level 1 badges. In total the teacher were aiming for 24 badges.

During the project we conducten an online training for a group of experts at the CNTE to review incoming badge applications and issue badges for those who met the criteria.

In the beginning, there was a bit of confusion in the air. In badging, each badge is attached with a description of the skill it measure and a way to demonstrate that skill. The assessment criteria on how to award the badge is visible to both applicants and reviewers all the time. Apparently this was new to some of the participants, who were requesting  us to provide them with an assessment gridline to they would know what to aim for. At the same time it took some time for the reviewers to accept that their expertise is sufficient to review badges. To support the work, the reviewers were suggested to work as a team and review some applications together before setting off to do the work individually. This way there were able to create a joint understanding of what they look for in the responses. The team was also able to come together in later stages of the project to discuss applications they were unsure of.

However, once the initial uncertainties were settled and the teachers received their first badges, the entire project reached new hights fast. The opportunity to share badges online between participants gave a way to spread the joy of achievement, but maybe also spark a positive rivalry in others. Throughout the duration of the application period (12 days), the number of badge applications kept increasing.

At the end of the project, 506 badges were issued to 22 participants. An astonishing number! What was even more surprising was the flow of positive comments coming in from participants. The badging approach was new, motivating, engaging and ignited the teachers to reflect on their professional daily practices.
I thought I knew everything but realized that there was still a lot to learn and develop.
The collaboration allowed me to learn more but also to form new friendships. The atmosphere of work was nice, with good coaching: I am ready to continue!

I learned a lot during this experience, there will be a redefinition in my class. I thought I knew everything but realized that there was still a lot to learn and develop.
The collaboration allowed me to learn more but also to form new friendships. The atmosphere of work was nice, with good coaching: I am ready to continue!

Badging Tunisia Participant


The next step now is to continue in developing new badges. In addition to working on more badges related to teacher ICT competences, we are looking also at badges on entrepreneurship and 21st century skills. EXCITING!

 

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