Earlier this month, Don Presant published a post entitled The Case for Full Spectrum “Inclusive” Credentials in which he mentioned that “people want to work with people, not just collection of skills”.
We are humans, not machines.
Yesterday, on the KBW community call, Amy Daniels-Moehle expressed her appreciation for the story that Anne shared in our Open Education Talks presentation about her experiences. Amy mentioned that the Gen-Z kids she works with had been excited when watching it. They used the metaphor of showing the full electromagnetic spectrum of themselves — more than just the visible light that we usually see.
It’s a useful metaphor. Just as the electromagnetic spectrum extends far beyond the range of visible light, encompassing ultraviolet, infrared, and many other frequencies, the concept of Open Recognition encourages us to broaden our perspective. As I’ve said before, it allows us to recognising not only knowledge, skills, and understanding, but also behaviours, relationships, and experiences
I remember learning in my Physics lessons that, with the electromagnetic spectrum, each frequency band has its unique properties, applications, and value. Visible light allows us to perceive the world around us. Ultraviolet and infrared frequencies have their uses in areas such as medicine, communication, and security. Other creatures, such as bees, can actually see these parts of the spectrum, which means they see the world very differently to us.
Similarly, it’s time for us to see the world in a new light. Open Recognition acknowledges that individuals possess diverse skills, competencies, and experiences that might not be immediately apparent or visible. Like the ultraviolet and infrared frequencies, these hidden talents may hold immense value and potential. Instead of doubling-down on what went before, we should be encouraging environment that embraces and celebrates this diversity. We can unlock untapped potential, create new opportunities, and enable more human flourishing.
In the same way that harnessing the full spectrum of electromagnetic radiation has led to groundbreaking discoveries and advancements, I believe that embracing Open Recognition can lead to a more inclusive, equitable, and thriving society. By acknowledging and valuing the myriad skills and talents each person brings, we can better collaborate and learn from one another. What’s not to like about that?
Note: if you’re interested in this, there’s a community of like-minded people you can join!