The Mix supports young people to articulate their skills with digital badges

Françoise Facella
Communications & Events Officer
Digital badges

On Tuesday, The Mix pledged to improve young people’s employability during a conference concluding the final stage of a two-year project funded by the European Union and conducted in partnership with Centre for Digital Youth Care (CDPK).
Together, we addressed the need to support young people in being able to communicate their skills to employers through informal and accessible forms of training and learning: an alternative to formal education that could be recognised with the award of a digital badge.

What we discovered

The project has helped identify four key practices required in order to develop a successful digital badge ecosystem. These are:

  • Effective design of the product

The design of the product involves identifying and understanding its intended audience. This forms the intended outcomes and achievements of the digital badge. The technological ability to create a digital badge is also required to ensure a quality end product.

  • Developing a badge with value

The value of a digital badge lies in the experts that have been involved in its design and the organisations who are on board to sponsor its use.

  • Developing confidence in online learning

The confidence in online learning has to be developed by raising awareness of its value by promotion and the development of partnerships with organisations that will encourage its use. The participation of young people is essential to increase confidence in its value.

  • Establishing badge sponsorship

The digital badging ecosystem relies on the contribution of relevant sponsors to endorse the use of digital badges.

The key challenge facing young people and digital badges

To secure a future for digital badging to enhance the employability of young people, we need to increasing its credibility. Although online learning is on the rise, it is still competing with the long tradition of formal qualifications needed to gain employment.

In order to do this, we require support and sponsorship to increase recognition of this new and accessible model of training that has been established as a result of the project. Such support will allow us to continue to develop new digital badging courses that addresses other important soft skills required in the workplace.

Chris Martin, CEO at The Mix, said: “The vast majority of young people we work with are hardworking, persistent and determined to find work and build a career. However, a startling number of young people have misplaced confidence in their ability to communicate and a lack of soft-skills that employers need. Add to this, an uncertain careers market and a lack of jobs, makes it a tough time to be a young worker.

That’s why at The Mix we pledge to work collaboratively with young people, employers and organisations to develop practical solutions, such as digital badges, to help young people identify the skills they already have and better articulate their achievements. Working with CDPK was an amazing opportunity to offer an solution to challenges faced by young people in UK and Europe.”

To read the full report, click here.

Our Youth employability pledge

We will…

  • Support young people to identify the skills they have and opportunities to build new ones.
  • Develop innovative solutions, such as digital badges, that help young people to better articulate their achievements to employers.
  • Find new ways of rewarding young people for learning and volunteering that add value to their CVs and that help them stand out from the crowd.
  • Work together with relevant organisations to develop the credibility of digital badges and informal learning.

Let’s join forces to improve young people’s employability

To support our work to develop digital badges and improve young people’s employability, get in touch with our Development team: development@themix.org.uk or call 020 7009 2500.

For media inquiries, please contact Francoise Facella at media@themix.org.uk or call 07766 660 755.

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Published on 23-Feb-2017