Adult Learners Week is an international festival of adult learning. It runs from 1–8 September 2019 and is celebrated with hundreds of events and activities across Australia promoting the benefits of learning.

You’re never too old to learn digital skills. Through Digital Springboard, we’re proud to offer adult learners across the country the opportunity to build their digital skills and confidence, and open up new employment and career opportunities. And we couldn’t do that without our trusted delivery partners.

We spoke to Ken Lyons at Light Regional Public Libraries about what they’re doing for Adult Learners Week.


 

What digital skills events are you running during Adult Learners Week?

We’re holding a free Learning at the Library session at the Kapunda Library on Sunday 8 September. Prospective learners can come along to a presentation about the classes being offered in our libraries. We’ll be covering the Digital Springboard program, the Tech Savvy Seniors Program for older learners, as well as our online resources such as LinkedIn Learning. Afternoon tea will be provided.

We’re also running several Digital Springboard courses during September.

EXPLORE COURSES

What role do libraries play in lifelong learning?

Libraries play an important role in lifelong learning, providing a safe and accessible environment for everyone. Libraries are more than just book repositories, they’re critical centres of learning and professional development. A place they can build upon their own knowledge and skills to make them better equipped and able to make their best decisions. They’re safe and non-judgemental places people can gather to explore, interact and imagine.

The digital divide

It’s an unfortunate fact of life that the digital divide is growing – the gap between rich and poor continues to expand, not only in a monetary sense but also in a technology and information sense. Many people simply don’t have the skills to find relevant information or to interact with government and other service providers. Libraries allow them to bridge that gap and survive in what to them, is a completely foreign world.

Ken Lyons with Lyndsey Jackson (Digital Service Foundation) at a Digital Springboard trainer session
Ken Lyons with Lyndsey Jackson (Digital Service Foundation) at a Digital Springboard trainer session

What do you need to succeed as an adult learner?

In order for people to take the greatest advantage of the learning opportunities provided at the library, they need to:

  • Be open to new ideas
  • Have a willingness to try new things
  • Have a “can do” attitude

While the first two points above are very similar, they have nuanced differences. Being open to new ideas means that people are willing to accept and learn about new ideas, technology and concepts; but being willing to try new things means they’re also willing to put those new ideas into practice…By having the willingness to both learn and implement those new ideas, they’re going to be ahead of the curve and open up new horizons for themselves. It may only be something small, but those small ideas and skills lead to much bigger and significant outcomes.

Tell us about your favourite adult learning experience

One of my favourite adult learning experiences relates to me, rather than my students. While running the three-part Skills to start your own business Digital Springboard course, I was delighted to see not only the smiles of happiness on the faces of participants, but also recognising the moments “the penny dropped” and the concepts we were discussing suddenly focussed in their minds. Seeing those moments of revelation is what makes delivering courses so worthwhile. It’s always a pleasure to see people grow and learn, particularly when you know it can make such a big difference to their lives.

Learn more: lrclibraries.wordpress.com