New South Wales adult and community education (ACE) providers have excelled at delivering digital skills to older learners through Tech Savvy Seniors program, run by the NSW Department of Communities and Justice in association with Telstra.
Participant results from the second half of 2022 – released by the NSW Department of Communities and Justice – indicate the program continues to go from strength to strength. Almost two-thirds (65%) were repeat customers, and had participated in a Tech Savvy Seniors training course before, indicating the high level of popularity of the program, which is almost always over-subscribed when NSW ACE providers offer it. Participant age breakdown was broad: 33% were aged 60-69, 47% aged 70-79 and 18% were 80 years-plus.
Evaluation results were outstanding, with participants reporting:
- 96% said they would participate in another Tech Savvy Seniors training course
- 98% found the trainer and training resources helpful and informative
- 84% felt confident using some digital technologies
- 72% felt more connected to family and friends
- 91% gained new skills to use in their everyday life in areas of interest to them
CCA CEO, Dr Don Perlgut, comments: “The great learner outcomes from Tech Savvy Seniors are not accidental. As not-for-profit community-focused learning organisations, Australian ACE providers keep the whole of community needs in mind. An important element is not just skilling for employment, but skilling for life and for all ages.
“The COVID period – with great rush to move many services online only – has made digital skills for seniors more important than ever before. The Tech Savvy Seniors program in NSW is delivered by 25 ACE providers around the state. This is a fabulous result.”