Digital Skills

If you have recently lost your job or found yourself in a much-changed environment, and even if you are not working in what might be considered a technology-based sector, having a basic level of digital fluency is a must.

The shifting of everyday life online during the COVID-19 pandemic has brought into focus the implications of being digitally excluded, particularly from social media. Research has shown in the UK that one in five people lack the essential digital skills for life and struggle to communicate using digital technology.

Our Learning Shops will soon be delivering a new Information Technology course called Essential Digital Skills Qualification. These skills are essential in many job roles as more digital technology is used to carry out tasks.

The course will be offered at two levels, in two streams: Life and Work.

The Entry Level 3 courses are for newer computer users and Level 1 for those that would like to develop their skills. The Life stream covers things such as using Microsoft Teams and Zoom for video conferencing, as well social media.

The Work stream will prepare you for working in an increasingly digital world, providing the support you need to build your confidence when working with computers and applications for word processing, spreadsheets and presentations.

These new courses are part of a government initiative to ensure no one is left behind from the rapid changes to technology. If you would like to learn new skills or sharpen those you already have, please register your interest today!

Entry Level

Struggling to get on because you lack digital skills?

Designed for adults with no or little prior experience of using digital devices or the internet, this qualification is what you need to learn how to use your smartphone or tablet more effectively.

The government will provide entitlement funding for learners in England aged 16 -19 and for adults, aged 19+ (employed or unemployed) with no or low digital skills who take the Ofqual approved Essential Digital Skills qualifications.

Suitable for anyone with no or very low digital skills, this is an online course that covers all five skills areas set out in the national standards:

  • Using devices and handling information.
  • Creating and editing.
  • Communicating.
  • Transactions.
  • Being safe and responsible online.

Learning and assessment will take place online, and our Learning Shop staff are able to provide additional support where necessary.


Level 1

52% of people in the workforce do not have the digital skills required to carry out their jobs.

Designed for adults with some experience of using digital devices and the internet but lacking secure basic digital skills, this qualification can help you ensure you are not left behind as the role of technology increases.

Suitable for anyone, working or unemployed, who needs to increase their confidence when using digital technology, this qualification covers all five skills areas set out in the national standards:

  • Using devices and handling information
  • Creating and editing
  • Communicating
  • Transactions
  • Being safe and responsible online

Learning and assessment are both online and the course can be undertaken remotely.


Digital Skills
Course Outline: This course is designed for learners who wish to better their employment opportunities.
DurationFlexible programme available to learners aged 18 or over
Start DateLearners can enrol on these courses throughout the year
AttendanceFlexible attendance throughout the year
Year Zero


All Fees and prices shown on this page are for courses starting in the 2020-21 academic year unless stated otherwise, and are correct at the time of entering/printing information, however these may be subject to change. The College cannot accept legal or financial liability as a result of any such changes.

The course information describes programmes offered by Colchester Institute. The College takes all reasonable steps to provide courses as described, but cannot guarantee provision. The information is for guidance and does not form any part of a contract.

The College reserves the right to update and amend information as and when necessary. Colchester Institute will do its best to provide the courses shown, but may have to modify or withdraw a course depending on customer demand and other factors.