In today’s world of quickly developing technologies and technologically oriented economy, adequate computing skills are commonly regarded as one of the crucial hiring factors. This trend influences hiring for practically all jobs, even the most basic, to say nothing about technology-centered positions. How to become computer savvy and keep up with all the latest tech developments? Here are 7 approaches that will help you update your IT knowledge on a regular basis and feel more confident in dealing with technology.
1. Use Google
Everyone can easily learn any skill today thanks to the huge amount of information available online. You don’t have to go to the library anymore to find some information because the best and the easiest way is to search for it online. When browsing the internet and doing your research, you will find thousands of websites where you can get necessary information at just a click of a link. You can find lots of YouTube videos on any computer topic, Wiki how-to-guides, online tutorials, IT or technology related blogs and articles that explain particular IT issues.
2. Take an online course
If you want to advance your computer skills, there are plenty of specialized online courses such as Coursera or edX. Free online courses can be useful for people with the very limited understanding of digital technology and for those who want to boost an already advanced skill set. You can gain new knowledge without going to a classroom and learn anything you need from the comfort of your home. It’s easy to find a course that suits your personal goals and the level of your computing skills.
3. Ask for help
Even if you don’t know much about computers, you are likely to have tech-savvy friends or family members. So you may just ask them to share their knowledge about computing to improve your own skills. And maybe you are lucky to have a friend who is a brilliant computer geek? Your life can become easier if you make friends with people who know everything about computers and technology.
4. Experiment with different software
Don’t be afraid to try new software and explore it opportunities if you want to extend your computer skills. But before you install something on your computer and play with it, make sure to back up everything important to you. Have no idea how to start? For example, if you use only Microsoft Word as a text processor, you may try OpenOffice for a change. In this way, you will better understand document conversion and formatting.
5. Help other people
The most efficient way to understand a concept and to master a skill that you have learned is to teach another person. When you know something, why not teach others, your colleagues or friends? Of course, teaching someone is not easy but it’s a rewarding experience. People may ask you additional questions about things that you teach them, and in order to answer them, you will have to learn more and to get a deeper insight into the problems.
6. Read technical documentation
Generally, no one reads instruction manuals for devices and software except those people who wrote them, but reading technical documentation can be sometimes helpful, especially, when something goes wrong. You are sure to learn something new that will help you understand how computers work.
7. Practice a lot
Everybody knows the proverb: “Practice makes perfect”. It is really true when you learn something, especially on the introductory or beginner’s level. The process can be overwhelming at first, but when you repeat something multiple times, you get used to it and it doesn’t require so much time and effort later. It comes easy to you and you start feeling as if you have been doing it all your life. When it comes to computer technology, the most effective way to learn it is by simply using a computer for everyday tasks and working on it on a regular basis. Experiment with different software and explore everything about computer until you feel confident with it. If you are willing to further your computer skills to a more advanced level, you might need to take a course.
You shouldn’t focus on a single activity but engage yourself in doing lots of different things: watching videos, reading articles and books, and practicing what you have learned from them until you finally master the skill. Invest in yourself by learning a new skill, and you are sure to benefit from it in your academic and professional career.
Using these approaches, you will become a person who knows a lot about computing and technology in general and keeps your skills up to scratch. Having strong computing skills along with other soft skills such as communication and interpersonal skills will help you succeed in the job market and have more chances to get hired than your tech challenged counterparts.