Badge Development and Instruction FAQs
What is a Badge?
Badges are short credit courses that appear on a transcript indicating that academic
work was successfully completed in a short course. Badges are designed for working,
non-degree seeking professionals. Badges may also be granted for successful completion
of workforce related noncredit academic programs.
Can badges be offered for academic credit?
Yes. Badges can be awarded for approved undergraduate or graduate level academic work
completed in workshops and short courses, in which there may be a need or it may be
useful to award credit for less than a full credit hour. Badges for academic credit
must meet the University’s definition and assignment of credit hours and have measurable
Do badges count toward a degree or certificate?
Badge credit hours may apply to a university degree, if the student has been or is
admitted as a degree-seeking student into a degree program (pursuant to all policies
governing such admission, including qualified admissions requirements) and the academic
unit accepts the credit hours as part of the degree program. Badges may be “stacked”
to allow professionals to gain a certificate to document their learning. This would
allow both the University and the employer to document the quality of the student
learning in a manner that is much more rigorous than traditional noncredit continuing
education offered by most universities. Because these courses would all meet HLC standards,
faculty and departments may choose to allow these courses to count toward a university
degree should the student later be admitted to a degree program.
Who is qualified to teach a badge course?
Instructors must meet Higher Learning Commission credentialing polices, which includes
possessing an academic degree relevant to what they are teaching and at least one
level above the level at which they teach, except in programs for terminal degrees
or when equivalent experience is established.
How many credit hours can I offer for a badge?
Badges, for which academic credit is awarded, must meet the University’s definition
and assignment of credit hours and be offered for one credit hour or less. A 0.5 hour
badge offered in a traditional classroom setting requires 7.5 hours of direct instruction
and 15 hours of outside course work. Online coursework may require students to watch
videos, interact with discussion forums, and submit assignments and take quizzes electronically.
Can a badge be offered to students with the option of taking it for credit or non-credit?
No. Badges must be offered for either credit or noncredit.
Do badges have to be taught online or can they be taught in a traditional classroom
Badges can be offered either online or in a traditional classroom setting. On-line
badges are preferred as they are more convenient for students and widely accessible.
The WSU Office of Instructional Design is available to assist faculty members develop
online badges or take existing course work and transition it to an online format.
Can badges have pre-requisites?
Faculty may require certain pre-requisites prior to enrollment, however it is preferred,
once enrolled in a series of badges, that students not be required to take them in
Can a student enroll in a badge at any time during the term?
The Registrar’s Office has created a new part of term for badges. Students can add,
drop, or withdraw from a badge course through the 60th day of the fall or spring terms.
Are badges the same as market based tuition (MBT)?
No. Market Based Tuition is tuition based on cost recovery and constitutes the total
amount for the course exclusive of any administrative cost, books, software, or other
materials required to complete the course and is independent of the tuition rate approved
by the Board of Regents. MBT has been approved by the Kansas Board of Regents for
credit-based education (including for credit badges) that meet the needs of non-degree
seeking working professionals.
How are badges graded?
Students who successfully complete the badge requirements will be awarded a badge.
“Badged” or “BG” credit will be reflected on their transcript. If a student does not
complete all of the requirements for the badge, their transcript will reflect a notation
“no badge” or “NBG.” Whether or not a badge is earned a student’s GPA will not be
Can a licensed professional earn college credit as well as contact hours for relicensure?
Licensed professionals may earn both college credit and contact hours for successful
badge completion subject to meeting the relicensure requirements of individuals’ professions.
For example, a nurse who takes the 0.5 hour Care of Populations badge would earn 0.5
credit hours and receive 7.5 contact hours for relicensure.
I have an idea for a badge, who do I contact/where do I start?
If you have an idea for a badge, please follow the steps below:
- Download and complete the Badge Planning Form.
- Submit the completed form to the Office for Workforce, Professional and Community
- Once you have submitted the form, it will be reviewed to determine if the badge format
is a good fit for the proposal and whether it will be supported by the Office for
Workforce, Professional and Community Education.
If you have questions about badges or the planning process, please call 316-978-7579
or email firstname.lastname@example.org.