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Adult Learner > Strategies > Direct Instruction: Computer Basics

Direct Instruction: Computer Basics


In an increasingly digital world, adults who struggle with using technology can benefit from direct instruction for an array of digital tools. This type of instruction, which supports Digital Literacy, includes understanding the basic functions of computer hardware (trackpads, monitors, and USB components) and navigating basic digital functions (setting up email accounts, using search engines, starting files). Adults who are explicitly taught how to use digital technology often show improvements in Composition skills and Disciplinary Literacy, specifically when using technology for health purposes. One-on-one direct instruction tailored to the learner is most effective.

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During periods of direct instruction, instructors should explicitly teach the components of basic computer skills. Instructors should have access to technology to walk learners through the individual process as they model and discuss the different skills. Instructors should be cautious of using technical jargon that can exacerbate negative Emotions surrounding computer use with adults, especially with the elder