Published April 15, 2019
by Ashley Regling, MA
The CTSI Workforce Development Core will be awarding digital badges for the Responsible Conduct of Research and Scientific Communication core competency workshop series this spring. A digital badge is a new way of learning that allows individuals to showcase their achievements to employers, colleagues and peers. All members of the Buffalo Translational Consortium are eligible to take advantage of these free digital badging opportunities, including students, staff and faculty members.
Anne Reed, Director of Micro-Credentials and Digital Badges in the UB Office of Micro-Credentials, views digital credentials as the future of education. “Digital badges are really dynamic credentials in that they are embedded with rich information such as the date earned, issuing institution, criteria for earning and evidence, which is an actual artifact of the student’s learning. In this way, they are transparent about what the learner needed to do to earn the credential.”
Digital badges are becoming increasingly popular nationally. “They are new ways to recognize achievements in programs that provide skills that are relevant in the workforce,” stated Reed. These badges allow learners to communicate enhanced skills on social media sites such as digital resumes, e-Portfolios and LinkedIn accounts. With this credentialing, learners become more competitive candidates for future employment opportunities.
The CTSI is currently offering digital badges for two of its 10 core competency workshop series. The Responsible Conduct of Research and Scientific Communication digital badges will allow learners to showcase their enhanced understanding and skills related to clinical and translational research. Those interested in earning these badges are required to attend all workshops in their series of choice and complete weekly assignments designed to showcase their new knowledge or skills gained through attendance of the workshops.
Elie R. Chemaly, MD, PhD, clinical assistant professor of medicine and nephrology, is completing the Responsible Conduct of Research digital badge. When asked why he decided to earn this badge, he said, “Although the core principles of the responsible conduct of research find their roots in common morals, it is very enriching to learn how the ethical standards of science have recently been raised.”
Another learner earning the Responsible Conduct of Research badge is Meghana V. Bapardekar, PhD, a research faculty member in the Department of Flow and Image Cytometry at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center. She stated, “The assignments are creative measures of evaluation to address any concerns and discuss ideas to improve current practices. I feel it’s a very good learning initiative to motivate and achieve goals.”
With a goal to offer digital badges for all 10 core competency workshop series, the CTSI Workforce Development Core is focused on the spring 2020 semester to offer these opportunities with the Good Clinical Practice and Effective Teaching series.