Studio by Purdue University recently announced Passport, a badge-based learning system. With Passport, an instructor can create and define badges and track student progress. Students earn badges by completing challenges that include various tasks. Passport works with Mozilla’s Open Badge Backpack so students are able to easily store and display their badges.
I am very happy to announce that I was selected as a beta instructor. As of posting, Purdue is still accepting applications for beta instructors. As a beta instructor, you also have the opportunity to earn badges. Check out my Passport badges at http://bit.ly/U8cUY2. In fact, the only documentation on how to use Passport as a learner or instructor exists within the “Getting Started with Passport” and “Getting Started with Passport as an Instructor” challenges.
However, I didn’t feel like an actual ‘Passport Agent’ until I created a badge myself. Passport Explorer is a very simple badge, but it did give me a chance to further explore Passport. The system is pretty straight forward and easy to use.
A new challenge starts with the details.
Next, you design the badge. This is the fun part. Or you can upload your own badge.
Passport’s Badge Creator provides a large variety of styles to select from. You also have the option to select the style (border) color. The following selections illustrate the diversity of styles.
There are only 4 fills, but you can change the color or upload your own image. I am thinking that if you want to use your own icon, this might be the place to do it.
Select an icon and a color for the icon. I don’t see a way to add your own icon at this point.
The final task of badge design is to add text. In one of the rare instances in which this beta version acts buggy, I was unable to add text to this badge.
After clicking Create Badge, you will add tasks to your challenge. At this point, you will not be able to edit the badge design.
Enter the task details.
Add as many tasks as you like.
The final step is to publish the challenge. Note that “after publishing a challenge, you will no longer be able to modify the badge, or add new tasks.” You will be able to edit tasks and badge details.
So far, I’ve very pleased with Passport. I have encountered a couple of bugs, but these resolved themselves. I actually created the Passport Explorer challenge entirely from my generation 1 iPad.
Passport is working well in beta, but there are some features that I hope will appear in future updates.
- Allow students to see what other students have submitted and to comment on.
- Allow students to award certain badges to other participants.
- Specify a particular color during badge creation (hex value, RGB, and/or HSL).
- Allow instructors to create student accounts.
I’m developing some challenges to pilot with students in the Spring. Please let me know if you are willing to beta test my pilot. The process of publishing went smoothly, but I still don’t know how it will work with actual students.
You also might be interested in my post on Open Badges in Information Literacy.