Becta: Embracing technology to support adult skills

In the recent publication of ‘Update’ by the Learning and Skills Improvement Service (LSIS), there is an interesting article on how Becta is helping to address the issues raised in the Digital Britain report and the Independent Review of ICT User Skills.

Digital Britain identifies four barriers to embracing digital technologies:

  • availability
  • affordability
  • capability
  • relevance

In addition to their role as the government agency that helps schools, colleges and training providers use technology more effectively, they are also rolling out the national Home Access Programme. This programme will bring computers and connectivity to low-income households around the UK.

We see an opportunity here not just to support young people to use technology to benefit their learning, but to provide access for their parents who can use technology to improve their skills, whether it’s basic IT, a specific work skill, or leisure learning. Following the publication of The Learning Revolution White Paper earlier this year, we are also working with government and key national partners on plans to improve access to informal learning opportunities through technology and digital media.

Read the full article: Embracing technology to support adult skills


One Response

  1. This issue is so relevant for every nation hoping to be an information society leader, and not widen a digital divide within its own citizens that could dangerously create a two-tier system of employment (the digital haves and have-nots). The Becta article really hit it on the head, citing the need for capability: “Providing the technology is not enough. Technology can only benefit learners when it is used creatively and effectively.” As a US college student, classes are truly being driven by this need to effectively utilize technology. In my International Communications class, we’ve looked at the changes taking place in the UK too, and it seems like groups around the world are taking charge in getting technology into the homes of the marginalized to prevent the threat of digital second-class citizenry. It is a phenomenal thought to realize that innovation is moving at a pace so fierce that we are must train for jobs that do not yet exist.
    Again, interesting read. Though, in the list above, I would add peer/social network adoption as a fifth barrier (perhaps part of relevance?); after all, we often do not change our ways of working and communicating unless it will better facilitate our relations with those closest to us.

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