In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are all more reliant on digital resources than ever. Whether you are learning yourself or helping someone close to you, there are a variety of options available to improve your digital skills, no matter your skill level.
What is “digital literacy?”
The American Library Association defines digital literacy as “the ability to use information and communication technologies to find, evaluate, create, and communicate information, requiring both cognitive and technical skills.” Basically, digital literacy boils down to the skills you have navigating technology. First, let's focus on building computer skills.
Computer Resources for Absolute Beginners
Digital Learn is a great resource for first time computer users! It is available in both English and Spanish. To change to Spanish, left-click the Español button in the top left corner. It has courses on how to use a mouse and keyboard, as well as how to navigate around the internet, including using and setting up email, searching, applying for jobs, being safe online, and plenty more.
The Longmont Senior Computer Tech Center, opens a new window also has a variety of tutorials available for beginning technology users to improve skills. These tutorials will help users develop skills such as how to set up and use Gmail and other Google products, understand iCloud and use it to backup information, and use Zoom to attend webinars and host meetings.
Learning to Navigate Social Media and Other Digital Spaces
You may be familiar already with Niche Academy for learning to use the library’s digital resources such as OverDrive, Kanopy and Hoopla. In addition to these, Niche Academy can also help you get comfortable with using social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter!
Developing Advanced Computer Skills
Let’s say you are very comfortable with computer basics, but you want to learn more advanced skills. For instance, maybe you are considering a career as a computer programmer and would like access to courses to learn coding languages. Arapahoe Libraries has a resource for this! Treehouse Web Development is an online technology school that provides courses on a variety of coding languages, user interface and advanced digital literacy. To sign up for Treehouse with your Arapahoe Library Card, please fill out this form., opens a new window
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