Adult Skills and Community Learning

Course content

This course will help you to develop your Microsoft Word and Excel skills. It will also give you a good understanding of cybersecurity. In particular, how this affects individuals and organisations and what you can do to keep yourself and others safe.

The course is mostly aimed at learners who want to get a job. This could be in admin or another role that uses Microsoft applications. This course is accredited and following a successful assessment you will achieve:

  • Level 1: Certificate in Vocational Studies (Gateway)

In additional to Word and Excel, there will be an initial focus on gaining a working knowledge of file management. We will also cover how to work safely in a work environment.

This course will enable you to:

Build skills to create and edit basic documents in Word and Excel. Software specific skills are then introduced which focus on work related documents and build independent study skills.  Key areas include:

  • Word. You will develop word processing skills so you can produce a range of standard documents with a professional presentation. You'll produce different types of documents. This will include letters, memos and reports. You'll also learn that an integral part of document production is the ability to review and adjust content and presentation. Will include settings, tables, images, formatting, mail merge, styles, tabs and alignment. 
  • Excel. formula, functions (MIN, MAX, AVERAGE, COUNT), charts, links, and document settings. You will develop skills in presenting spreadsheet data in different ways, using numbers, text and graphs.

Assessment is portfolio based with evidence to support skills and knowledge. There are 4 modules in total.  The additional 2 modules are:

  • Cybersecurity. Learn about cybercrime and the risks and effects it has on individuals and organisations. You'll discover routine protective methods used to maintain cybersecurity. This includes the principles of vulnerability and penetration testing and user access control.
  • Working Safely. Develop an understanding of different types of risk and hazard. Learn the importance of workplace guidelines, policies and procedures in promoting safety. Discover the characteristics of safe working and how these reduce the risk of harm to self and others.

You will 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 you should learn from setbacks.
  • Literacy and numeracy skills will be supported throughout the course.

Course delivery 

  • Classroom based delivery with blended learning opportunities.
  • 9-week x 2 half days a week, face to face in classroom setting plus 3 online 1-hour workshops.
  • At least 30 minutes of tasks to be completed after each session.
  • Peer support to/from other learners in the class using Teams. This is an online tool where you will access resources, participate in discussions, and submit work when applicable.
  • Tutor support via Teams messaging.
  • Tutor remote support via VNC URL.

What do you need?

  • A mobile phone – does not need credit, but must accept text messages. Will be used to verify your free 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 will be given full access to an Office 365 account at the first session. A Chromebook will not support you on this course as it does not 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

You'll have already completed the following with Adult Skills and Community Learning:

  • Information advice and guidance and initial assessment on the BKSB Software
  • Digital skills in the workplace - entry 3 course

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

Course fees

Level 1 – £229.80

Fees include all course resources and administration costs.

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

How to apply


  • Essential Digital Skills for Work and Life – Entry 3 / Level 1
  • Digital and IT Skills Level 2

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