Have you ever really wanted to learn a new skill, but been unsure where to start and how to fit it around your busy schedule? The pace of life in the UK seems to be getting faster every year, so how are we supposed to find time to develop new abilities?
With the world of opportunities opened up by the 24/7 internet access most of us enjoy, learning can come to us rather than us going to it. Whether you’re at home, or the bus or train, or in a park, as long as you have some way to get online, you could be experience the joyous and richly fruitful experience of learning.
Today is Digital Learning Day, and although the day was largely set up to support the U.S. school system, the beauty of digital learning is that it’s not confined to any age group or geographical location. You’re never too old or young to learn online, and as long as you have internet access, you can do it wherever and whenever is most convenient to you.
Learning online can be part of a formal course, or you can simply explore the web to find out about whatever you’d like to know. If you’re not sure how to go about this, here are three ways of learning that might not have occurred to you:
1. Download an app
In today’s smartphone-savvy world, a shrewd way to learn is to browse through the millions of apps (many of which are free) available to download to our phones. Since we all tend to have our phones on us at all times, it means that learning is always at our fingertips during those periods where we’re alone and have nothing else to do, with using public transport being an excellent example.
Language-learning apps are a popular educational tool, and with good reason. In the UK, 61% of us can only speak one language, yet learning a second always tends to be high on Brits’ list of personal goals. Other useful educational apps are available on subjects like first aid and spelling/grammar.
A downside to apps (especially free ones) is that they often come with intrusive ads, but they offer a great, pressure-free way to learn.
2. Watch YouTube videos
It has been reported that 300 hours of YouTube video content is uploaded every minute, which means that within half an hour, more content will be added to the video streaming site than we could watch in a year, even if we did nothing else. Frighteningly, this means just two days’ worth of uploads would take longer to watch than most of us will live.
Amid this ocean of viewable content, it’s easy to get lost in funny animal clips and videos of people falling over, but it’s also not difficult to find ways to educate yourself. If you want to learn how to do something in 2017, probably the easiest and quickest way to do it is to head to YouTube. If you want to find out how to chop fennel, lubricate a stiff door lock or count to 10 in Zulu, why struggle with text and pictorial advice in a printed book when you can watch an expert showing and narrating how they do it?
It’s not formalised learning and there’s unlikely to be an assessment at the end, but watching educational videos is a great way to absorb knowledge, not least because you can easily go back at replay anything you might have missed.
3. Start an online course
If you’d like to develop your learning into something more tangible, an online course may be just the ticket for you.
Here at the Online Learning Academy, we have a range of courses, including many currently at discount prices, that you can complete in your own time, with the help and support of our team of tutors. On successful completion, you’ll be in proud possession of one of our Certificates of Excellence.
Inquisitive and determined minds have no reason not to use digital learning to boost their CVs and acquire new skills, so what better day than today to make the first step?