Adult Computer Literacy

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For adults who lack familiarity with computers, life in the modern age can be a challenge. That’s because technology is involved in almost every aspect of our lives: we need it for work, school, keeping in touch, day-to-day task management, remote education and even online shopping.

Being able to use a word processor is required for students and working professionals because formal assignment and written reports must be typed. Referencing and research that used to be done in a library is now largely undertaken via online searches of the worldwide web and academic databases.

You need an email address to sign up for new services, make online purchases, apply for jobs and education programs, and communicate with friends and family. Even something as simple as locating a suitable local tradesman is more efficient when done through an online search vs. looking in the yellow pages.

And while tablets and smartphones account for a large portion of our daily technology use, computers are still an important tool.
Thankfully adult basic skills courses exist to help learners achieve the tech-fluency they need to feel more comfortable using computers and many local libraries and community centers offer free introductory programs too.

There are two areas educators typically focus on: one is developing familiarity with the hardware of a computer – monitor, mouse, keyboard, USB memory stick etc. – and the other is building an understanding of how different types of software work – including using Microsoft Windows or a Mac Operating System to navigate Word, Excel and PowerPoint.

Accessing email, using search engines, joining social media platforms (e.g. LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter), and data management will also likely be covered, along with any specific programs that the person requires for work or school.

Once an adult learner feels comfortable with the basics, they may also want to understand more about sharing files, avoiding viruses, dealing with crashes, using shortcuts, backing up their data and regular maintenance to keep computers running efficiently.
Some users may even decide to take a typing course to improve their keyboarding skills and make it easier and faster to write on the computer.

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