No Image Available

Seb Anthony

Read more from Seb Anthony

googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display(‘div-gpt-ad-1705321608055-0’); });

Any experiences of basic skills training?


The government has made training for the low skilled a priority. Can you share any experiences of either implementing training in numeracy and literacy, or of recommending it to employees?

What are the main issues in offering basic skills training to employees? And what are the advantages for your organisation?

Do you think access to, and information about, public providers of basic skills training is clear and user-friendly?

And do you think the government is right to concentrate so much on this area?

Let us all know what you think!

Ben Hawes

One Response

  1. Basic Skills Training
    I am currently tutoring Basic Life Skills to employees based in Health and Social Services. I think it is a brilliant initiative, however, the gap in needs from learner to learner is much broader than in the usual classroom based learning. Much of the Life Skills Training is offered to employees within a given organisation, comprising a cross-section of staff.

    The Government would like the UK population’s literacy and numeracy skills raised, putting that into practice is quite a momentous task, not least because many of the people who could most benefit from it, tend to shy away for whatever reason. The incentive offers a doorway to many skills, and quite often the ‘carrot’ is one of free training in basic computing and internet skills, with the agreement to take Word and/or Number skills checks. It is important that the learner understands that this is not a test, it is an assessment, to provide a ‘map’ for the learner and training provider to ensure future placement in learning is at an appropriate level.

    There are the obvious problems involved in getting the learners to complete courses, even though the initial tests involve face to face support from the tutor. One seemingly common problem is the enrolment of learners who do not have easy access to internet or pc, or a pc lacking required specifications for software. CD-ROMS are provided to support and guide learners through software problems, with instructions on how to download internet tools. Many of these learners have little experience with computers, hence enrolment, tutors are allocated to provide them with support, but the problem is they rarely ask for help. This requires extreme sensitivity and awareness on the part of the tutor, needing to know when and how to offer appropriate level of help.

    Another significant problem is their lack of time to complete course. Like most of us their life is crammed full from dawn to dusk. Again it is the tutor’s role to ensure they make this time.

    I feel that Basic Skills training has the ability to open a whole new world to many people, providing a chance for them to improve their quality of life, should they so desire.

    I am not fully convinced that the campaign is promoted in a clear and concise manner. Many adults who might benefit from Basic Life Skills lack confidence and often feel that ‘learning is not for me’. Reaching this sector, which can often be quite insular, needs very clear and definitive planning.


Get the latest from TrainingZone.

Elevate your L&D expertise by subscribing to TrainingZone’s newsletter! Get curated insights, premium reports, and event updates from industry leaders.


Thank you!