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Stadio Launches New Digital Badging Initiative for African Students

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JSE-listed higher education provider, STADIO, has launched a new digital badging initiative for African students.

STADIO Stripes helps students prepare for the world of work by recognising their skills-based achievements in addition to the traditional qualification transcript.

Employers are warning that a traditional qualification transcript is becoming insufficient to help graduates navigate the fast-changing world. To be able to survive and thrive in this new world of work, graduates are being asked to showcase additional skills and attributes that go beyond the traditional qualification. Digital badging is a fantastic way of formally acknowledging these non-accredited learning achievements.

Aside from the official tertiary transcript, digital badging involves an additional structured programme that allows students to craft an individualised secondary transcript to, for example, demonstrate their computer skills, the ability to work well in a group, negotiate, and resolve conflict, or creative problem-solving skills, to future employers.

“At STADIO, we have always offered our students higher education programmes that are specially designed to meet industry requirements. Finally, graduates will be able to enter the world of work with both their tertiary qualification on the one hand and a secondary transcript that attest to concrete skills, on the other,” says Esther Venter, Dean of Teaching, Learning & Student Success at STADIO.

Under the STADIO Stripes programme, all STADIO’s contact learning students will be able to earn a ‘stripe’ after meeting stringent criteria associated with their specific programmes. The stripes will fall into three categories – those that promote the ‘self’ (green), those that prepare students for the ‘world of work’ (yellow), and those that benefit ‘society’ (blue). In time, the programme will be expanded to include distance learning students as well.

Every stripe earned by a student will be stored digitally, in one place, using a world-class digital credentialling system. Students will have easy access to the eye-catching stripe designs anywhere and at any time via a link that they can share with potential employers, in addition to their qualifications. The digital stripes can also be used across any digital platform including a LinkedIn profile, be embedded on a website or blog, shared on social media, or added to a CV to further strengthen a graduate’s chance of securing a job.

Although STADIO Stripes is one of the first of its kind in South Africa and the African continent, digital badging in higher education is popular internationally. It is the hope that this new programme will equip STADIO students with the very best to compete on the global stage, the company says.

“The future of tertiary education is evolving everywhere in the world. A growing number of South African graduates are now looking for work opportunities outside of our borders, and in so doing, they compete with graduates from around the world. It is, therefore, important that we are aligned with international trends such as digital badging as this gives our graduates the best chance of participating on a level playing field when it comes to the quality and value of their education,” says Dr. Divya Singh, Chief Academic Officer at STADIO.

Edited by Zintle Nkohla 

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