Types of learning
Improve your computer skills
Studying for a CLAiT qualification
CLAiT stands for Computer Literacy and Information Technology and is an internationally recognised course. If you pass a CLAiT course it shows employers you can use the main applications on a computer.
CLAiT is available at levels 1 (New CLAiT International), 2 (CLAiT Plus International) and 3 (CLAiT Advanced International). If you're a beginner, Level 1 may be suitable for you; if you're an advanced computer user Level 3 may be more suitable. Level 3 is equivalent to NVQ 3 (National Vocational Qualification) and A level standard. You can move through the levels to increase your skills.
What does CLAiT involve?
At each level, there are different units. One of these is compulsory (you have to do it) but you can choose some of the other units. You can work towards an Award, Certificate or a Diploma depending on how many units you choose to do.
Where can I do CLAiT?
You can study CLAiT at a college or other learning centre. You can also study on your own, by going online, or by using a CD-ROM and learning materials.
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How much does it cost?
It depends on how you study it and which course provider you study it with. If you’re on a low income or on benefits you may get help.
Studying for an ECDL
The European Computer Driving Licence (ECDL) is a Europe-wide qualification in basic computer skills. If you have passed ECDL, employers know you have the skills to carry out the main tasks on a computer. The ECDL is the first qualification in personal computing skills to be recognised throughout the European Union. And it looks great on your CV!
Who can do an ECDL?
You might do an ECDL if you want a basic qualification in computing to enhance your career prospects, to improve your skills or just for general interest. ECDL is open to anyone - regardless of age, education, information technology (IT) experience or background.
What does it involve?
You get a logbook listing all the modules. As you pass each module, the accredited testing body will sign your logbook. You can take the modules in any order or even all at once. Normally all tests should be completed within three years of starting.
ECDL consists of seven units, each of which has a 45 minute test.
You can also take an ECDL Advanced.
Where and how can I do it?
Only centres accredited by the Chartered Institute for IT offer ECDL training and testing. You can take the test in many colleges and learning centres all over Europe. You can search for a centre on the ECDL website.
Centres may offer ECDL as a taught course, a flexible course or a distance learning course.
If you’re confident you already have the skills needed for the ECDL, you don’t need to undertake any training. You can just sit the test at an approved centre.
How much does it cost?
There may be a charge for the log book – contact your chosen test centre for more details. There may also be an additional charge for the ECDL Advanced.
Charges for module tests may vary according to how you are studying for ECDL. If you are also receiving training there may be a charge for this. Centres will tell you if they offer concessions for those on benefits or low income.
Where can I find out more?
You can find details of courses, the syllabus, sample test papers, test centres and frequently asked questions on the ECDL website.