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 Julian Smith, Digital Hub Coordinator at the City of Tea Tree Gully, about what they’re doing for Adult Learners Week.

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

We have classes on Facebook and smartphones and an art exhibition on during the week, as well as quite a few Digital Springboard courses running throughout September.

EXPLORE COURSES

What role do libraries play in lifelong learning?

I have borrowed and modified the Socrates quote about lifelong learning:

“Lifelong learning is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel.”

What do you need to learn new digital skills as an adult?

Don’t be overly hard on yourself, learning anything can take time and if you pick up one or two new skills you’re doing well.

Have a try at doing something new that you have learned. Don’t worry, you won’t break your device!

It’s important to continue to use the skills you learn when you go home – it will help you to remember them.

Tell us about your favourite adult learning experience

I had one lady who couldn’t use her email on her iPad and she came in to get some help. It turns out that her grandson had been playing with it the day before and he had somehow turned on flight mode. This was easily fixed and while she was a little embarrassed, she was quickly on her way!

I also had an elderly couple in their 80’s who came to learn about their iPad as the husband had poor vision. Now they use the iPad all the time so that the husband can listen to audiobooks and ask Siri about the weather, and the wife can look up directions and bus timetables online.

Learn more: www.teatreegully.sa.gov.au

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 Debra Cooper, Library Programming Coordinator at Logan City Council, about what they’re doing for Adult Learners Week.


 

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

We’re running two sessions of the Digital Springboard course Spreadsheet for beginners and have a range of other wonderful Adult Learners Week events scheduled in libraries across the City of Logan, all of them about lifelong learning and joyful discovery.

REGISTER FOR SPREADSHEETS FOR BEGINNERS

What role do libraries play in lifelong learning?

Logan City Council Libraries have a vision of our libraries as the city’s centre for life-long and self-directed learning and discovery. Our libraries are committed to being a contributor to the liveability and social wellbeing of the City of Logan. We aim to provide access to free learning and discovery programs that deliver active skill building, creative exploration and inspiration, critical thinking and enjoyment for people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds.

What do you need to learn new digital skills as an adult?

  • Be willing to give things a go
  • Take a deep breath and overcome your initial fear and discomfort of new things
  • Try to see the positives in embracing change and learning a new skill

Tell us about your favourite adult learning experience

We had a lovely Home Library Service client named Val, who was eighty-seven years old. She recently passed away. Our Home Library Service is a free monthly home delivery service available to all our residents of any age unable to visit a library independently.

Val had been a client for many years and she’d been increasingly struggling with reading print books due to impaired vision. Val was keen to use our new, free iPad service, having heard that the font size can be significantly magnified on an iPad. Over the last two years, she had an iPad delivered each month, pre-loaded with eBooks of her choice.

Val certainly had reservations about moving from print books to eBooks, as she thought she had “no skills in modern technology”. She didn’t have the internet at home, or a mobile phone.

“The idea of reading books from this modern gadget made me pretty anxious. But, I’m adventurous; I like to give new things a go”, Val said last year.

Val was trained in how to use her iPad by one of our Digital Home Library Service volunteers who was very patient and understanding.

Val became our eBook champion, and no longer had any trouble with eye strain. Truly, Val was a digital legend for our Home Library Service, who certainly didn’t do things by the “book”…

Learn more: loganlibraries.org

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 Ben Teoh, Library Lifelong Learning Coordinator at City of Marion, South Australia, about what they’re doing for Adult Learners Week.

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

At the libraries, we’re running a session getting started with listening to podcasts, and the Digital Springboard course Social media strategy. We’re also participating in a week-long pop-up at the Castle Plaza Shopping centre run by our Community and Neighbourhood Centres. The Pop-Up Hub will have a range of workshops and information sessions on topics such as the nbn, podcasts, ebooks and much more!

What role do libraries play in lifelong learning?

Lifelong learning and public libraries go hand in hand. Libraries have always been a place where people can freely access information they need and also find opportunities to learn through educational programs. At a local level, we look at the needs and interests of our community and aim to offer learning programs and materials to meet them.

What do you need to learn new digital skills as an adult?

When it comes to learning new digital skills, these are the three things people need: curiosity, courage and a library card.

Let’s face it, learning new digital skills can be daunting for everyone. But if you’re willing to give things a try, be ready to make mistakes and then figure out why it happened, you’re in a good place. Public libraries offer a lot of resources to help – whether its books, courses, programs or online education, your library card can help open a lot of quality opportunities for learning for free!

Tell us about your favourite adult learning experience

When it comes to learning, it’s happening constantly. On a personal note, I’m a dad with of three young girls. Right now I’m trying to learn how to extend my hair styling beyond pony tails! I’ve been reading a book I picked up from the library, watching YouTube videos and asking some of the women and parents at work how they do theirs. My girls are really patient with me while I’ve been practicing.

 

Learn more: www.marion.sa.gov.au

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

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 Guy Casey at Mandurah Libraries about what they’re doing for Adult Learners Week.


What Digital Springboard courses are Mandurah Libraries running?

We’re running Write a cover letter, Build a CV and Presentation skills this September.

REGISTER HERE

What role do libraries play in lifelong learning?

I feel that libraries are a cornerstone of lifelong learning. In function and spirit, the public library embodies the pursuit of knowledge as a collective ideal.

Being a central place where information can be stored, accessed, taught and distributed, libraries are the common ground where our personal journeys in learning collide, merge and mingle. From the earliest exposure to literacy to the last new skill you acquire, libraries are to learning a safe place, mentor and companion.

What do adult learners need to learn new digital skills?

Like any other skill, for adult learners approaching digital skills, a little courage, a lot of patience and any amount of curiosity are perhaps the three most valuable things to meet with their challenge.

Learn more: www.mandurah.wa.gov.au