Senior Computer Classes: What You Need To Know


If you are a senior and would like to learn how to use a computer, but thought it was too difficult, you should know that learning to use today’s computers takes very little time. The use of a computer in today’s society offers seniors additional independence as well as entertainment and socialization opportunities.


Many computer classes now offered for beginners are free. Senior oriented computer classes are those designed specifically with seniors in mind and often they are free or low cost. Most computer classes cover topics such as which computers are best, how to use the internet, a printer, popular social media, and various tasks online, including shopping. Use the following information to start your journey to computer literacy the fast way.

Why Learning to Use A Computer is Important

Consider that nearly two-thirds of the adult population in the U.S. have smartphones and computers. The benefits to having such technology is well documented. For seniors who have learned to use cell phones and computers a PEW survey stated that nearly 84% of seniors said that the ability to remain independent is due in large part to the assistance of their technology. Many reported that they gained a new perspective on life, were able to remain connected to friends and family more, and they were able to feel more connected to their local area and events. Remote health monitoring systems, the ability to shop at home for home delivery, and the ability to access entertainment at any time of the day are some of the top reasons seniors rank learning and owning cell phones and computers as key to their sense of happiness and fulfillment.

Useful Tasks Made Easier with a Computer

Some of the more popular programs and tasks seniors enjoy include subscriptions to Netflix or Amazon Prime for TV and Movies, Skype or Zoom for family and friend calls, or Facebook and Twitter for sharing photos and keeping up with large groups of friends. Many seniors enjoy being able to shop online, make a purchase securely, and having it delivered to their door. This is especially freeing for those seniors whose mobility has been impacted.

  • Sending and Receiving Mail (email).
  • Managing finances.
  • Browsing the internet.
  • Playing games with others.
  • Watching movies and television shows.
  • Listening to music.
  • Communicating with friends and loved ones using video chat.
  • Sharing photo albums.
  • Writing letters using the word processing program.

Best Free Computer Classes for Seniors

The best senior computer classes all have the same characteristics in common. They progress logically through the basic functions of a computer, show you how to remain safe when operating online, and how to navigate through the internet. There is no standardized class and everyone has their own features, but all of them are aimed at making it easy and simple for seniors coming to the technology for the first time.

The Senior’s Guide to Computers

The Senior’s Guide to Computers is a DIY course that you can take yourself. This allows you to move at your own pace. It is free and is perfect for all computer beginners. The site covers the basics such as what types of computers are good for beginners, offers step by step instructions (with pictures) for how to set up the computer, and how to use the internet. It has a large section on how to remain safe while online.

Skillful Senior

Skillful Senior is a program that offers just the bare essentials to get you started. It is in plain English without a lot of technical jargon to confuse. It will teach you to use a computer to use the internet, stay safe online, learn how to complete forms online and how to type, if you have never had a typing lesson. If you already know these basic skills, or would like to know additional skills, this is a good place to start, but you will have to go to another site to learn such skills as social media, using the internet to search and how to set up a computer.

Techboomers

One of the reasons Techboomers was created was specifically to address the fact that seniors from the Boomer generation often felt that technology had passed them by. This website is dedicated solely to helping seniors learn to be savvy on the computer. It is a free, comprehensive website that teaches you how to use all sorts of programs online, how to remain safe while enjoying the internet, and all of the various options available for seniors.

CTDLC Basic Online Skills

CTDLC stands for Connecticut Distance Learning Consortium. It is sponsored by the state of Connecticut but is available to anyone. This is a very comprehensive study course that states they can have anyone up and using a computer in a few hours. Each module you work through has a quiz and homework for you to test your new skills. Highly rated program for seniors.

Meganga

Meganga is a step by step video tutorial that starts at the very beginning with computers and advances through sections that show you how to use basic computer functions, surf the web, use email and social media, and how to troubleshoot issues you may have with the computer. Also included are the way to use storage, how to use popular apps and how to edit and store photos.