Issue Open Badges with Google Forms & Sheets

Use Google Forms & Sheets to Issue Open Badges

One of the easiest and simplest ways to collect data is through using the Google Forms and Sheets applications. With Google Forms and Sheets, you can collect information and manage event registrations, surveys, quizzes, and more. Whichever form of data collection you choose, you can make it as simple or as complex as you like.

Google Forms and Sheets are part of the online Google apps suite – all of which are designed so you can access your work straight from your browser. A wide range of organisations use them - from schools to corporate workplaces, and now we’ve made it easy to integrate your Google Forms and Sheets with Openbadges.me so you can automatically issue digital badges based on the data collected.

The simple integration needs no software coding or development time.

The result is a non-invasive process that lets you issue badges based on the data submitted with a form or sheet. We understand not everyone wants to directly alter their software or coding to use Open Badges – which is why the Openbadges.me add-on is designed to be totally discrete and easy to use.

Why would I use Google Forms and Sheets to Issue Badges?

Let's say you're a library running a summer reading program to increase engagement among young people. You can award digital badges to readers for reaching different milestones. This could be signing up to the reading program, reading or listening to books, reading to others, being read to, or taking part in library workshops.

In this scenario, we will use Google Sheets. First you would make an entire list of people who have signed up to the summer reading program within your sheet. You can then add the number of books they have read, or total hours spent reading and award them badges based on this data. You can set up rule-based issuing so participants are awarded badges in chronological order. For example, we can have badges for reading 2 books, 4 books, and 8 books. Using the Openbadges.me rule-based issuing feature, we can issue badges automatically once a participant reaches the criteria.

With Google Forms and Sheets in place, you can involve users who don’t really need to know much about the technical side of Open Badges. Let's look at how a school could use Open Badges with Google Forms. Firstly, you would have an administrator who would be the first point of contact for Openbadges.me This could be the IT manager, the LMS administrator, or whoever is best suited for the role. This person will know every aspect of the schools digital badging process. Let's say the administrator in this scenario is the IT manager.

When deciding how the school wants to issue badges, a teacher might want a digital badge to be issued to a student for exemplary work or behaviour within class. Teachers are busy as it is and the last thing they would want is additional work – so to make the whole process easier, they would complete a simple Google Form on behalf of the student to say they would like to issue a badge to that student. Behind the scenes, the IT manager has already setup an API that collects data from those forms to share with the Openbadges.me platform. They can then use the "rules-based issuing" function to automatically issue badges based on that data.

The process requires very little input from the teacher and a simple set up from the IT manager, so they can continue with their main responsibilities with no disruptions whilst creating an efficient badging workflow.

Recipients can then show this badge on social media or on a job application to prove they are part of an accredited institution.

To find out what your recipients can do with Open Badges, see our blog post on "How you can use Open Badges".

How to use Google Forms and Sheets with Openbadges.me?

First, you’ll want to download the add-ons for both Google forms and sheets from the store using our links below.

Openbadges.me Forms | Openbadges.me Sheets (Coming Soon)

Once that has been installed, you’ll want to go into settings where you will find inputs for the API URL, API Key, API Token, and Badge/Activity ID.

Openbadges.me Form Settings

Openbadges.me Forms

API URL

The Openbadges.me API URL is here: https://events.openbadges.me/api/activityevents. Simply copy and paste this into the API URL field.

API Key

Your API key is incredibly easy to find. In your Openbadges.me profile, there will be a menu on the left with a section called “Issuing badges”. Once you’ve clicked on this, you will then want to click on “API”. From here, you will see a screen with your API key on there. Simply copy this key and paste it into the settings on your Google Form or Sheet.

API Token

To get your API Token, simply follow the same steps to get your API key. However, when you see your API key, you’ll want to click the key icon that is found under the actions heading on the right. You will then see a popup asking if you want to refresh this authentication token – press confirm. Now you will receive an authorisation token. Copy that token as you will be unable to view it again once you close the popup. The short video below shows how you can find your API token.

Quick note - both the API Key and Token are designed to keep your data safe and secure!

API Guide

Badge & Activity ID

So that you can link a particular badge with a Google Form or Sheet, you will need to use the badge ID associated with a badge you have already created within Openbadges.me. To find the badge ID for your chosen badge then follow these steps:

  1. Click “Preparing badges”
  2. Managing badges
  3. Summary on the badge you want to use
  4. The Badge ID will be on the left-hand side

To use the Google Forms and Sheets add-on with Openbadges.me, along with a host of other features like branding and enhanced reporting, you will need a Team or Embrace plan - Learn more about our price plans.