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Older internet users suffer less depression

New evidence supports technology training approach

Author: Amy VanDeVelde/Monday, April 28, 2014/Categories: Health, Technology, Technology2

 
I was thrilled to read the results of a new study conducted by Shelia Cotten of Michigan State University.  Cotten and her colleagues wanted to determine if learning internet skills would help adults 50-plus who were retired reduce depression.
 
The study revealed a 30 percent decrease in depression in retired adults who used the internet. Those are some pretty compelling results and one of the many reasons I love the work that I do.
 
USA Today reported the findings on Friday, and as I read the article I was proud that OASIS Connections supplies the key ingredients for creating capable computer users in adults of any age who are interested in learning a new technology skill:
  • Start with the most basic skills
  • Allow plenty of time for practice and repetition
  • Supply a patient instructor who knows what it is like to learn something new
  • Teach in a classroom setting with peers
  • Provide printed step-by-step instructions with a larger typeface
OASIS Connections has been using this approach since 2001 and has enrolled over 80,000 people in introductory classes for computers, the Internet, Microsoft Office, social media and most recently, tablets and smart phones. A research study by the University of Miami found the beginning courses were effective in increasing the knowledge, skills, comfort and use of computers by older adults.

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Amy VanDeVelde
Amy VanDeVelde

Amy VanDeVelde

Amy VanDeVelde is the National Connections Program Manager for the OASIS Institute. She joined the OASIS Institute in 2012 to oversee the technology training program. She has a personal stake in Media Literacy and Digital Citizenship. Follow Amy on Twitter @AmyVanDeVelde. Other posts by Amy VanDeVelde
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