Our sharks contest (https://pirl.io/blog/pirl-sharks-projects-incubator-program) is taking some big steps forward, and we want to make sure everyone knows all about it.
The “Micro Credentials” Team has made very good progress, and is currently working on Milestone 4 (“completing dAppfrontend to match functionality description”).
During our code and project review, we saw fully functional code, which is already operating at 100% on the Pirl chain.
We would like to provide some extra information for everyone about this very interesting project. Keep reading for a deeper look into the Micro Credentials project.
This is a B2C Pirl Smart Contract that allows an authorizing agent to receive micro-credential validation requests from end users. For example, in certain industries, employees are encouraged to obtain „Micro-Credentials“. A micro-credential is a small certification that indicates you have mastered a small skill.
This project is primarily being used to start a discussion within the developer community at a large software company that works in the education space in the US. While the scope of this project will be kept to a proof-of-concept, it’s hoped that future iterations will garner the necessary support to create a enterprise class solution.
In short, a Micro Credential is a small „certificate“ (or badge) that is awarded to an employee, class participant, project participant after they have demonstrated mastery of a specific skill.
To understand the concept, consider the following example:
If we examine how teachers are rated/rewarded in the typical student education system (primary and secondary education), we might create tool that facilitate the following use case:
Various agencies might register themselves with the smart contract and make a list of the Micro Credentials that they offer. Each Micro Credential will have an application form detailing the tasks/artifacts/evidence that a teacher might need to provide in order to obtain a Micro Credential.
The teacher would complete the items and submit their portfolio of files for approval. If approved, the teacher would have a link to a publicly accessible badge or a certificate that will acknowledge the completion of their micro credential.
If we take K12 education, as an example:
A school district might create a micro-credentail specification for „Classroom Management“ that would require the teacher to:
– Attend 2 particular professional development classes.
– Submit a picture of their room before and aftre the class.
– Write a summary of how the changes impacted behavior in the classroom.
The teacher would complete these items and submit them for approval, within the district.
The glaring problem in all of this is that every district creates their own standards for what it means to obtain the „Classroom Management“ micro-credential.
Fortunately, there are certain agencies within the K12 market that have are competing to establish themselves as the bestpractice authority on certain microcredentials. For example, the NEA Teacher‘s Union might release their own bestpractice standards for „Classroom Management“.
A teacher may wish to submit their district-approved Micro Credential to one of these agencies for a more pertinent review/endorsement. If approved, the teacher will have a link to a badge or a certificate that will acknowledge the completion of their micro-credential.
The bigger advantage is that the Pirl blockchain is public.
Software vendors could easily make a bridge that allows a teacher to take their existing completion certificates, student test scores and other evidence, and seamlessly apply for the Micro Credential from an esteemed best-practice authority
UI USE CASES
An Agency creates an account
– Authorized agent representative obtains some Pirl and sets up MetaMask
– Authorized agent representative visits the Pirl MicroCredentials home page
– Authorized Agent Representative pays via MetaMask
– Authorized Agency Users sees a confirmation screen.
– Authorized User Agent is redirected to the Agency dashboard.
– This screen will be enhanced to include all of the things that an agency needs to do to manage their MIcro Credentials (upload files, add Micro Credentials, approve/review Micro Credential requests, etc.)
An End User Creates an Account
– End User obtains some Pirl and sets up MetaMask
– End User visits the Pirl MicroCredentials home page.
– End User clicks “Register as an End User” and completes the form:
– End user sees confrmation screen
– End user clicks the User Dashboard button and is redirected to the dashboard home. This is where the end users will browse agencies/credentials and upload their fles and other artifacts so that they can submit a Micro Credential application.