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Open Badges



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1EdTech's Open Badges specification describes a method for packaging information about a single recognition or achievement, such as an earned microcredential, skill, competency, or degree. An Open Badge displays a visual token and has a rich, defined metadata structure. 


Open Badges icon

 Other features include:

  • Are information-rich visual tokens of verifiable achievements earned by recipients that can be shared electronically
  • Represent a single accomplishment that can be listed along with other achievements on a resume or transcript.
  • Describe who earned it, who issued it, and the criteria required. Open Badges can even contain evidence and demonstrations of the relevant skills.
  • Open Badges be linked to frameworks to give further alignment and context to the credential.




Technical Overview

The core of both Open Badges and the Comprehensive Learner Record Standard (CLR Standard) specifications are to assert achievements in a verifiable achievement. Open Badges 3.0 and CLR Standard 2.0 assertions are specific to one earner and are a claim that the earner has made a particular achievement with metadata about the achievement, the issuer, and the earner, including possible evidence that provides support for the claim.

At their simplest, Open Badges and Comprehensive Learner Records are electronic files that contain metadata about the credential. Both Open Badges and CLRs are presented as JSON or JSON-LD files. Open Badges have a visual image (PNG or SVG) that contains the data, whereas CLRs do not have an image. These images and files can then be posted to a website, shared on social media, or imported into a digital wallet.

An Open Badge (OpenBadgeCredential) is an individual achievement recognized about an individual earner. An Issuer makes a claim that an earner has met the criteria of a particular defined Achievement.

Each Open Badges OpenBadgeCredential is digitally signed by its issuing organization as Verifiable Credentials compatible with the Verifiable Credentials Data Model 2.0

Issuers may bundle together multiple related achievement credentials into transcripts and other longitudinal records for an individual learner in a CLR as a ClrCredential, which is also signed using the same technique as the individual credentials. 

Additionally, credentials can be augmented with an EndorsementCredential from a third party to lend the support of another individual or organization to the quality or relevance of an issuer or credential data.


Exchanging Credentials with Badge Connect® API

1EdTech’s Badge Connect API is a powerful and versatile tool for securing and efficiently transferring Open Badges. Badge Connect API is a RESTful API with dynamic client registration using industry-standard protocols (OAuth 2.0 Authorization Code Grant). Badge Connect API is designed for easy integration and scalability, handling large volumes of badges. Badge Connect API also offers granular permission of API endpoints for issuing, managing, and verifying badges. Compatible with JSON and JSON-LD, Badge Connect API utilizes OAuth 2.0 for better integration with identity management systems. Badge Connect API supports the learner-initiated transfer of credentials, promoting personal self-sovereignty over a learner’s data and flexibility in wallet choices.

Digital badges issued using Open Badges 2.0 can use the Badge Connect API specification in Open Badges 2.1. Open Badges 3.0 has the API defined in the main specification document.

1EdTech offers Badge Connect certification for both Open Badges 2.1 and Open Badges 3.0



An Endorsement is a specialized credential type of Open Badges 3.0 that signals positive support for an issuing organization, a credential program, or a specific achievement credential awarded to an individual.

Organizations with recognized authority over a subject domain, such as an accrediting agency or a licensing body, can endorse an issuer's credential program as meeting their required quality standards. Issuers can be endorsed as meeting or exceeding specific performance expectations the endorser may define. The recipient of an achievement credential can also be endorsed to signal agreement with the claims of knowledge, skills, and abilities expressed within.

Endorsements can also be used when an individual makes a self-assertion of knowledge or skill, and a validating organization concurs with the claims in the self-assertion through their endorsement.

Endorsement credentials include much of the same meta-data as achievement credentials, such as issuance and expiration dates. The endorser can also provide text comments that describe the endorsement. Endorsements may have their own graphic image representing the endorsing organization.

Endorsements are authenticated using the same cryptographic proofing methods as the achievement credentials, further expanding the ring of confidence and trust in the verifiable achievements.




Get Started

Start implementing Open Badges using the materials below.



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Composed of 1EdTech Contributing members who have demonstrated leadership in advancing the adoption of assessment content and applications using the 1EdTech Open Badges / Comprehensive Learner Record standard, promote certifications, and provide market-based information.


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