Competence – based open and online learning

Competence – based open and online learning – organized and may or may not be guided by a formal curriculum. This type of education may be led by a qualified teacher or by a leader with more experience. Though it doesn’t result in a formal degree or diploma, non-formal education is highly enriching and builds an individual’s knowledge, skills and competences. Learner’s interest and motivation is a driving force behind their participation. Because of this reason, it is often considered more engaging in comparison to the formal learning.

Open non-formal learning programs provide a lot more flexibility in the way content is both created and consumed. By removing the formality educational institutions and companies are usually able to create more content quickly and deliver it to their audiences in the way that makes the most sense for professional and competence development.

Recognizing intermediate achievements through digital badging

The learning progress  and achievement of the individual learner can be indicated using the (open) digital badging option of Moodle. These badges are bound to certain, well defined  stages of the learning process or to the completion of the course as a whole. Digital badges can be awarded in different ways: either automatically, when the learner proved that he reached the requirements of the non-formal course, or manually, awarded by the mentor/supervisor/administrator of the course.

The automatic awarding process can be triggered either by the learner herself/himself, just by clicking to the completion box of certain building blocks of the course, or by the Moodle system once the learner has reached the pre-defined minimum score in the assignments. These options are communicated in advance in each course material.

Digital badges help to maintain the motivation of the learner to complete the course and to continue her/his learning in the relevant field of study.

Matching learning offer with formal curricular

The ReOPEN platform features respond to relevant preconditions for the recognition of non-formal open learning. Learner verfication is guaranteed through the registration process before being able to access the material, and the platfrom analytics allow for close learner-teacher interaction and guidance.

Another feature related to recognition of non-formal open learning is the option to receive a digital credential upon completion of the course, i.e. a digital badge. A quality framework for non-formal open curriculum is the basis for the development of the course. The material thus includes clear descriptions of the proposed learning pathway, is clearly structured into units and topics and states learning outcomes for each section.

Respectively tailored assignments that allow for robust assessment are included. The material for non-formal and open learning using the platform therefore fullfulls relevant preconditions to become recognised through formal education institutions, especially when links and references to formal curricular matching non-formal one are provided in course description area.