Life on the edge of the moodleverse

Use of Block Badger


Imagine in a school site defining three courses: English, Drama and ICT

Each is delivering its own curriculum content and assessing students understanding through digital artifacts. These departments in particular are delivering and developing a variety of skills around movie making.

They want to document progress, motivate and reward students through a series of badges for a range of different skills

  • Scriptwriter
  • Filmmaker
  • Director

Each badge will be available at three different levels of mastery, say, apprentice, assistant and master.

Each badge, at each mastery level, could be earned from an assessment task in any of three courses – students will often work in groups and adopt different skills in different assessment tasks.

The following diagram shows

  • the configuration of the level 2 filmmaker badge
  • nicknamed ‘Assistant Filmmaker’ – the students will see the badge referred to by this nickname – internally badger knows this is a level 2 badge – and supersedes the level 1 Filmmaker badge
  • it’s part of a collection called Media – this is useful for pulling together badges defined in different courses for display in a block [example later]
  • the badge can be claimed from three highlighted courses – it can always be claimed in the course it is defined – here we make it available in two more courses [1]


Saving the badge – and then returning via the manage badges link, I get a review of my badge


The important thing to note (and maybe ctrl-c) is the claim URL that needs to be inserted into a course.

Here’s my course with some activities that need to be completed before I issue the badge.


I can add a URL to my badge – and mark it only available pending completion of one or more activities


Finally, on the front page I can:

  • add a badger block to display a students’ badges in the Media collection [I can show multiple collections also] and
  • in this example I’ve asked for some bar graphs of number of badges already claimed


This is my [test] site front page – notice the block displays the highest level badges the student has been awarded and place holders for the next available level [if one exists].



[1] Why is it important to list courses where the badge can be claimed?

In many sites, students are often editors of moodle courses themselves – if we made the badge link work from any course – students could backward engineer and insert unprotected links to the badges they desire.

There is also a built in restriction that stops editors of courses outside those indicated from adding new badges to an existing collection – again to stop students forging their own badges into a collection.


3 responses to “Use of Block Badger

  1. gideonwilliams 22/02/2013 at 05:05

    Iain, this is awesome. Have waited ages for badges on moodle and mahara and this is a huge step forward. Have you any plans on linking them to an eportfolio for public display. Many thanks for sharing. Gideon.

    • drcheckers 22/02/2013 at 07:02

      Thanks Gideon.
      We use Google Sites(*) as [we think] a more flexible student driven portfolio tool than Mahara [though I’ve not re-looked at Mahara for a while].
      I think Badges, once pushed to the external backpack, can then be exposed and presumably linked into any portfolio system.
      We have a custom built system that is not ‘vanilla’ moodle (and so not really sharable) that we use to track all student data and that will be augmented to include an overview of badges awarded to a student.

      (*) I’ve got an extension for helping create and view Google Site eportfolios that I just need to tidy up for release in the next few months.

      • gideonwilliams 22/02/2013 at 17:43

        Now that sounds clever – not looked at sites for a while although I know Ivan Langton is a big fan of their use in a similar model I think to you. Keep me informed :o) Cheers Gid

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