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This project was submitted by an applicant to the Digital Media and Learning Competition.

S2R Badges


1. The learning content, programs, or activities that will be supported by badges.

DigitalMe is UK-based non-profit organisation passionate about using social media and new technology to create life-changing learning experiences.

We run a number of national and international programmes benefiting thousands of young people, who gain confidence and 21st Century skills through our experiential learning approach.

Supporter To Reporter (S2R) is a flagship activity that we wish to badge. The programme trains young people aged 13-19 to report for real at sports events, with journalist accreditation, working on briefs to quality standards and deadlines.

Their training takes place online or face-to-face and can last from hours to weeks. Reporting missions range from a pair of students covering a school sports match to a team of 10 young people forming a team at a multi-day event like the Paralympic World Cup.

Learning is by practical assignments in the field. Participants learn in different ways and at different paces. We therefore need (to respond to clear demand from young people and educators) a flexible, portable way to recognise and celebrate learner progress that is and in keeping with our digital, open identity. Open badging fits our need perfectly.

S2R operates in nine UK Hubs, out-of-school learning venues (often sports clubs) where trained facilitators take cohorts of young people from local schools through the programme.

Alongside the Hubs, any school or young person’s learning organisation can join S2R, benefiting from free online resources and publishing space at

To date,  1739 young people have become S2R reporters. Between them they have created over 11,000 stories and blogs - and many have had life-changing experiences.

As well as S2R we run other key programmes Safe (social networking safety) and MyWorld (global citizenship through social media) where we will apply our badging knowledge

2. The skills, competencies and achievements badges will validate.


With S2R, young participants learn a set of skills and competences that we divide into three categories:

Technical Skills: audio and video recording and editing; social media publishing; research and journalistic skills; interviewing and storytelling; writing for target audiences.

Workplace Competences: teamwork, collaboration, time management, planning, communication.

Life Skills: Resilience, confidence, interpersonal skills, intercultural understanding, leadership, taking responsibility.


Through S2R, participants achieve noteworthy experiences such as:

  • Reporting to a professional brief from a media centre at a sports event

  • Creating media for a professional broadcaster (e.g. BBC)

  • Interviewing high-profile athletes


Reporters progress through the programme, gain new skills and experiences, take on new responsibilities and push themselves. The journey has four levels:

Level 1: Gaining and demonstrating competency (content production)

Level 2: Using skills (interviewing, reporting and publishing)

Level 3: Understanding the workplace (reporting for real)

Level 4: Mentoring others

3. Identity and roles.

S2R learners assume roles that mirror the professional media and social media environment. Examples are:

Reporter, Producer, Technician, Researcher, Editor, Director, Blogger.

To operate effectively in any of these roles, participants will at times need to demonstrate the characteristics of Leader, Creator, Collaborator or Mentor.

4. Opportunities or Privileges.

S2R offers opportunities and privileges that we would like to structure more carefully and ally more closely with badge:

Reporting experiences - participants who have shown motivation and ability gain access to high-profile events

Mentoring - by professional volunteers from the media industry

Masterclasses - reporters gain specialist training in advanced skills

Courses - we have organised entry to accredited media courses for some reporters.

5. Existing assessments.

Every S2R participant has their personal Reporter Page on This serves as an e-portfolio and permits their educators, supporters, friends, family and peers to see and evaluate their work.

The page records:

Numerical data - numbers of stories, blogs and comments

Qualitative data - content impact, style, appropriateness, creativity.

We therefore envisage different badges to represent different these different measures of achievement.

We will borrow assessment tools from Safe, our social media safety programme, which uses step-by-step pupil assessment based on detailed criteria, resulting in the issue of Safe certificates and badges (physical at present - we know they work!).

Assessment in general is currently delegated to the professional educators we work with and in some cases the reporters’ peers. We use this distributed model to allow each participant to be judged according to criteria set by people who know them and give ongoing support.

We would like to explore how to make this distributed model work with badging. Can we collaborate with local experts in issuing or assessing for badges?

6. Partners and Organizations.

S2R operates through Hubs, schools and other learning centres and organisations - professional educators who we have trained and resourced.

A key S2R partner and funder is the Youth Sports Trust, a body that brings together over 400 English ‘Sports Colleges’. They are keen to assess and reward S2R participants.

Advising S2R is Tony Archdeacon, an education expert at Liverpool Hope University who has offered to analyse and map S2R skills.

DigitalMe’s team includes:

  • an Education Director who also works as a teacher so regularly assesses

  • a Development Director who has assessed vocational media courses for the national awarding body OCR

  • two team members trained in Arts Award, a competency-based assessment for non-formal education.

7. Administration of the badges.

DigitalMe would administer the badges, potentially in concert with partners who would co-develop our assessment criteria.

Our badges would be designed for deployment anywhere, but we have a close working partnership with, where content from S2R is published.

However, we encourage the use of other  social networks and expect our badges to be displayed wherever recipients decide, whether that be LinkedIn, Facebook, any other social network or a school website.


8. Branding.

S2R and DigitalMe’s programmes have strong visual identities with distinctive and recognized logos, colours and styling. Our badges will retain these identities while being adapted to the badge format.


S2R Badging Presentation


S2R Content Example
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