Adult Skills and Community Learning

Course content

This course will help you build and extend your digital skills. It will help you prepare for jobs in different roles in the digital space. It will also help you in creative industries and other industries where digital skills are needed. This could be jobs such as finance, marketing and machining.

It includes skills, knowledge, and behaviours expected by employers. It also covers a wide range of different digital technologies, systems, and software. This includes Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint to create professional standard documents ensuring accuracy and presentation. You'll gain a good understanding of cybersecurity, how this affects individuals and organisations, and learn what you can do to keep yourself and others safe.

The course is aimed at learners who either want to gain employment or move into a role where they can apply their digital and IT knowledge and skills. This course is accredited and following a successful assessment you'll achieve:

  • Level 2: Certificate in Digital and IT Skills (Gateway)

This course will help you to:

Build skills to create, edit and format complex documents in Word and Excel. Software specific skills are then introduced which focus on work-related documents and build independent study skills.

Key areas:

  • Word: you'll learn word-processing skills and be able to maximise the tools available in word-processing software to prepare, process and produce a wide range of sophisticated and professional documents accurately and efficiently.
  • Excel: you'll learn about spreadsheet software tools and techniques to be able to produce complex spreadsheets. You'll learn how to apply advanced formulae and functions (IF, MIN, MAX, AVERAGE, COUNT) to process data and use automated tools to aid productivity. You'll develop skills in presenting spreadsheet data in different ways, using numbers, text, and graphs.
  • PowerPoint: You'll learn how to use the software as well as the communication skills to support building and using PowerPoint for the purpose of presenting information to a wider audience, or a job interview etc.

The assessment is portfolio based with evidence to support skills and knowledge. There are four modules in total. The two extra modules are:

  • Cybersecurity: learn about cybercrime and the risks and effects it has on individuals and organisations. You'll understand routine protective methods used to maintain cybersecurity. This includes the principles of vulnerability, penetration testing and user access control.
  • Digital skills career progression: understand the importance of digital skills in the workplace. You'll learn how changes in employment have led to an increase in demand across a number of sectors. You'll learn about the different types of job roles where digital skills are needed. You'll also learn the characteristics valued by employers to establish a successful career in today’s digital economy. You'll identify your own career/progression goals and plan how you'll build your digital skills to meet your intended goals.

You'll also develop the following skills for work:

  • Work as part of a team, sharing ideas and motivating peers to complete a task.
  • Have a positive attitude to plan your own work and complete it effectively within a timeframe.
  • Be a good listener and follow instructions accurately.
  • Be able to adapt the way you work when circumstances change, or you need to switch to a different task quickly.
  • Be resilient and be able to stick with a task, even if things don’t go to plan, and learn from setbacks.
  • Literacy and numeracy skills will be supported throughout the course.

Course delivery

  • Classroom based delivery with blended learning opportunities.
  • 11 week, five-hour face to face in classroom setting over two days (two hours Wednesday afternoon and three hours Friday afternoon).

Expectation and support

  • To complete a minimum of 30 minutes of individual tasks after each session.
  • Peer support to/from other learners in the class using Teams - an online tool where you'll access resources, participate in discussions, and submit work when applicable.
  • Tutor support via Teams messaging.

What do you need?

  • A mobile phone (to verify the Office 365 account).
  • Access to a laptop, desktop, or similar to complete your work. You don't need Microsoft Office before the start of the course as you'll be given full access to an Office 365 account at the first session. A Chromebook will not support you on this course as it doesn't allow offline access to Office 365.
  • Folder, paper or notebook, and pen.
  • Time - at least one hour a week to complete tasks set during each session.
  • To attend all sessions.

Entry requirements

Its essential that you:

  • Have a commitment to learning and be able to commit to independent work outside of the session.
  • Are getting ready for, looking for or moving on in work.
  • Have time management and communication skills.

Learners will have already completed at least one of the following with Adult Skills and Community Learning:

  • Information Advice and Guidance and initial assessment on the BKSB or Microsoft software
  • Getting Started with Digital Skills course
  • Setting Up Microsoft 365 course

The level you study at will be determined by your initial assessment results.

You'll be given an Office 365 account, but its essential you have your own mobile phone that can receive text messages to activate this.

Course fees

Level 1 - £237.50.

Fees include all course resources and administration costs.

Fee remission is available for learners in receipt of means-tested benefits, or low-income - please ask for more details.

How to apply


Recommend BCS ECDLA - Level 3 (not currently offered by ASCL)

What our learners say

  • I have gained what i needed to do to help me get a job but not in IT and I now feel confident with a computer.
    Adult learner