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Credentialing and Badging in NDNC

Types of Badges

Badging of attained competencies is issued by the university using the HelioCampus Assessment system. The University recognizes two levels of credentialing and badging in the non-academic credit environment: Badge of Completion and a Competency Badge.  If issuing certificates, micro-credentials, or digital badges to demonstrate acquisition of learning, abilities, or skills, otherwise labeled as a Competency Badge, assessment of learning follows the stated policies, guidelines, and best practices outlined in this document. In cases where the participants are issued a certificate or a badge of attendance or completion, otherwise labeled as a Badge of Completion, the assessment process described in this document will not be required.

The University Council on Learning Assessment (UCLA) @ JHU recommends that all assessments are tracked in the JHU- Assessment Management System (JHU-AMS) and its associated JHU-CLR. Micro-credentials and badges are issued by the same system and can be shared on social media or directly with employers using the JHU-AMS.

Definition of Terms


  • Are digital artifacts
  • Are flexible and portable
  • Are competency-based certification through stackable credentials
  • Display student skills, abilities, and knowledge as stated by established competencies
  • Are offered in short and flexible timespans
  • Are narrowly focused
  • Can be offered online, in the classroom, or via a hybrid of both.

Types of Micro-Credentials or Digital Credentials

  • Digital Badge
  • Stackable Credentials
  • MOOCs
  • Licensure and Certificates
  • Industry Recognized Credentials

Digital Badge

  • Indicator of accomplishment
  • Image-Based
  • Badge for Completion
  • Competency Badge

Badging and Credential Levels and Definitions

We propose two levels of badging and credentialing:

Badge of Completion

At this level, no assessments are necessary, the badge or credential is simply indicating that the participant completed the course or program.

Competency Badge*

In this instance, assessments must be conducted to determine that the participant gained mastery or any level of knowledge in the stated competencies or learning outcomes as evidence of learning.

* Employers will be looking for this level of credentialing when hiring. This is the level required when employers support and finance employees’ learning.

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