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OnCourse Learning Launches Digital Badging Initiative

November 10, 2016 - Brookfield, WI - Traditional continuing education and certification efforts often have culminated with a printed certificate of completion, but online learners can now showcase their successes with a digital badge.


Thanks to a partnership with Northbrook, Ill.-based BadgeCert and the American Academy for Preceptor Advancement, OnCourse Learning is launching an initiative to make educational accomplishments clearly understandable and quickly verifiable via digital badges.


The effort is beginning with badges for OnCourse Learning's Nursing Preceptor Specialty Practice Focused CE Series. The next session runs from Nov. 28, 2016 to Jan. 16, 2017.


Completing the Nursing Preceptor Specialty Practice Focused CE Series qualifies nurses for a digital badge from OnCourse Learning. It also counts as 28 hours toward any one of three AAPA certification levels.


"There is an emerging ecosystem of badging in a number of professions," said David Shoemaker, chief learning officer for OnCourse Learning, a leading provider of workforce solutions and education for the healthcare, financial services and real estate industries. "This effort helps us support lifelong learners by leading them through their career advancement efforts and rewarding them with a digital credential that verifies and validates their accomplishment."


Once earned, digital badges can be shared on social networking sites, email signatures, digital resumes and internal corporate profiles or websites.


"For individuals, it gives them the opportunity to show that they're committed to moving their careers forward," said Ginger Malin, founder and executive vice president of business development at BadgeCert. "It may thrust them into an opportunity to make more money and get higher-level types of positions."


The metadata underlying the digital credential provides much more robust, secure and credible evidence of what has been achieved and when it was achieved, Malin said.


Digital badges, according to Shoemaker, also can position recipients to be seen as leaders, encourage others to seek advanced learning opportunities, and spark curiosity among colleagues about badges.


"Now via a digital badge, you can show what you have completed, and with a click, see the description of the activity," said Maria Morales, MSN, RN, CPAN, OnCourse Learning's director of CNE programs, healthcare. "Badging provides a way for a supervisor, colleague, prospective employer or anyone with whom you want to share a badge, to discover what you have earned and what it took to earn it."


Healthcare organizations, associations and certifying agencies, such as AAPA, can use badges as recognition of a higher level of educational achievement and certification by their employees and members.


"Certification is a mark of excellence that benefits the nurses, healthcare providers, patients and employers," said Solimar Figueroa, who oversees clinical collaborations for AAPA. "It is very important to healthcare professionals because it shows their credibility as an expert in that particular field or specialty."


The badges enable patients and their family members to quickly inform themselves about the credentials of their caregivers.


"This also allows certifying agencies, employers, supervisors, managers and educators to immediately see what a credential means," Figueroa said. "We provide a real-time validation of our credentials to anyone who would like to see."


Once a certification expires, according to BadgeCert's Malin, the metadata attesting to its authenticity disappears and the badge is no longer valid.


"As an innovative company, OnCourse Learning is looking for the most innovative solution," Malin said. "It was an obvious partnership because we both find rich meaning in the badging system."


To sign up for the Nursing Preceptor Specialty Practice series, visit the registration page.


About OnCourse Learning   

OnCourse Learning delivers licensure, regulatory and compliance education solutions throughout the nation's leading industries including financial services, healthcare and real estate. Through trusted industry expertise, compliance management and technology solutions, OnCourse Learning focuses on advancing the e-learning environment for individuals and businesses to help to build new careers, empower employees through knowledge and identify efficiencies in corporate training management. OnCourse Learning offers a full suite of educational products including state and federally approved prelicensing and continuing education programs, accredited course content, exam prep tools, publications, e-books, events and a sophisticated and customizable learning management system and course-authoring tool. To learn more, visit