Learn to keep in touch online/ improve digital skills

Learn how to get online, keep in touch using social media apps with free internet texting, phoning and video call services. Whether you're new to the internet or wish to improve your basic digital skills these step by step training guides can help make it easier for you.

How to get online

The following training guide has information to help you get online:

  • it explains what the different computer devices (also known as digital devices) are used for
  • shows how to explore the internet
  • explains the various ways of keeping in touch with friends and family
  • has tips on how to shop on the internet safely
  • explains what online banking is and how to set up your banking on the internet
  • helps you find a job or a new career
  • includes where to go for free computer and internet courses 

To read the training guide, go to:


Whether you are new to computers or need more digital skills, you can find information, hints and tips on the Go On NI Discover the Internet section. It covers topics on how the internet actually works and internet access, how to choose a device, keyboard and mouse basics, online security and fraud, and background information on email and social media.

If you are new to digital, step by step advice of connecting to and using the internet is available from Citizens Online. 

e-reading and Talking Books

Get free eBooks, audiobooks and eMagazines with Libraries NI. You can download all onto your devices and read to your hearts content. Includes over 17,000 books, more than 160 magazines and more than 3,000 eNewspapers.

It is quick and easy. Sign up for a virtual library membership, download the free apps and get reading.

RNIB Talking Books service is free with access to over 26,000 titles. The RNIB library also has over 60,000 titles and over 200 newspapers and magazines.

Digi Skills

Get the digital skills and confidence you need for work, life and play. Digi Skills provides digital training and expert learning - giving learners the confidence and skills to succeed.

Online safety

Online Safety helps you to understand the potential risks and dangers associated with keeping you and your family safe online.

Writing for social media

Discover a framework for writing for social media by focusing on purpose, content and audiences to deliver your key messages. 

Manage your team remotely

Discover how to effectively lead and grow as a team while working remotely. Explore effective software packages and leadership tips. For more information and details of other courses available visit the Digi Skills website.

Easy ways to stay in touch

Want to keep in touch with friends and family at home, abroad or when you're on the go?  There are a number of messaging apps that are very popular as they have social networking features that allow you to make free mobile calls and send free text messages.

Apps and messaging platforms like Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Apple's FaceTime and messages, and internet calling services like Skype offer an easy and simple way of staying in touch.

Facebook is a free social networking website that allows registered users to create profiles, upload photos and video, and send messages.

WhatsApp Messenger is a free messaging app that uses your phone's internet connection or Wi-Fi to let you message and call friends and family.

Zoom is a video conferencing application used to host meetings and can be downloaded from the relevant App Store on Android and iOS devices - the basic version is free of charge. Zoom allows for one or more participants to join a meeting, you will see a video thumbnail in the bottom-right corner when using it and you can view up to four participants' video at the same time.

Twitter social networking service allows you to post and interact with short messages known as 'tweets'.

Skype is an internet-based communication service that allows you to make voice calls over the internet -  calls to other users with Skype service are free and if your computer has a web cam you'll be able to see the person at the other end (video call) providing they have a webcam.

Learn how to stay in touch online with Facebook, Zoom, Twitter, WhatsApp and Skype:

Help to improve your digital skills 

This training guide is for those who already have basic computer skills as they can use a keyboard, operate a mouse and know how to search the internet. The guide helps you to learn at your own pace and explore various areas that you might want to be taught more about, like:

  • shopping online 
  • ways to keep in touch with friends and family using social media, telephone or video calls over the internet and email
  • how to set up all of the above safely

The training guide, can be found at the link below:

Make the most of your iPad or iPhone

Have you got an iPad or iPhone, but not making the best use of it?  The guide below has a top tips section and explains some of the terminology and device settings that you can change on your own tablet or phone to suit you, such as connecting to Wi-Fi, apps and enabling speak:

More training guides

There are lots of digital skills guides. You can download guides and images from other websites to support others or to improve your digital skills. For example:

Top Tips on Tech includes a series of videos and guides to learn about different technologies and how to get the most out of them.  They include how to avoid online phishing, tips for home schooling, family time online and download podcasts and video calling. There are also free webinars.

Skills for Tomorrow has training to learn new skills for all areas of your life. These include:

  • learning to code a cake
  • free webinars
  • mastering basics
  • keeping yourself safe online
  • managing your money
  • accessing public services
  • enhancing your wellbeing

If you want more of a challenge you can try free learning from The Open University

There are nearly 1,000 free courses across eight different subject areas including:

  • computing and ICT
  • design and innovation
  • engineering and technology

There are also educational interactives, games, quizzes, videos and podcasts - plus 1,000s of articles written by academic experts and guest contributors.

Staying safer online

The following guidance documents can help you stay safer online.

More useful links


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