We’ve had practice activities embedded in courses in the past but these weren’t suitable for touchscreen devices such as smartphones and tablets, and they often appeared very small on the screen.
The new practice activities appear across the full screen on any appropriate device, meaning they’re easy to follow and carry out and are more like the real-life action they’re letting you practice.
At the moment, only the Using a computer or device and Online basics subject areas have been updated with the new practice activities but we will be rolling them out across all subjects and courses in the next few weeks.
Another change we’ve made to the site is improved accessibility functions. As well as the new practice activities being easier to see, we’ve also made closed captions and transcripts available for all in-course videos and have created alternative content for when activities aren’t suitable for particular adaptive technologies.
Learn My Way will never be ‘finished’ and we’ll continue to make changes and improvements that we think help it be the best site for anyone trying to improve their basic digital skills.
Please do let us know what you think of these new changes and if there’s anything else you would like to see in the future.
You can get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 0114 349 1666.
We know you might more questions about these changes and how they affect your learners, so please do take a look at the FAQs below.
- What’s changed?
We've created new ways for people to practice activities within Learn My Way courses, a big improvement on the old practice activities. At the same time, we've been working on accessibility, particularly for videos but also general accessibility for assistive technologies.
Videos now have closed captions and transcripts available. Practice activities show in the full width of the window rather than the very small space currently shown. We also have alternative content where activities aren't suitable for specific technologies.
- Have these changes been made to every course?
At the moment, the improvements have been made to the below subjects and courses:
Using a computer or device
- Using a keyboard
- Using a mouse
- Using a touchscreen
- Using a computer
- Creating documents
- Using the internet
- Using online forms
- Using email
- Using search engines
- Introduction to internet safety
Universal Credit: a how to guide
- Why has it changed?
We know that practice is important for learning but that the old practice activities weren't suitable for touchscreen devices or anyone with less than amazing eyesight! It caused so many problems we added a 'skip this step' which wasn't really a solution.
At the same improving accessibility has been a challenge that we've been grappling with. We're just sorry it's taken as long as it has to make these improvements.
- Will the rest of Learn My Way change?
Yes! Although we can’t provide a specific timeline, all the remaining subjects and courses should be updated by the summer.
- People were part way through, can they finish what they started?
Yes! The content hasn't changed even though in places it looks different. Learners should be able to carry on with no break in their progress.
- There's a problem with the new activities, learners are getting stuck in the course!
First double check - things will look different so maybe check all the instructions have been completed. Get the learner to read what is on the screen out loud, it can make any missing steps obvious.
If that doesn't help then please take a screenshot and send it across to us along with details of the device the learner is using. You'll need to move the learner onto a different course but we'll look into what went wrong to sort things out long term.
- Has this been tested with different devices?
Yes! From Windows 7 and Windows 10 to iPads, Android tablets and every mobile we could find. We can't say we've tested on absolutely everything, but we think we've managed a good range of popular devices.
And that does mean courses work even on the smallest screen. We still wouldn't recommend doing courses on a mobile but it is possible.
- Does this work with screen readers?
We have tested courses with screen readers and they do work. However, testing in this area is limited as we only have built-in screen readers for the devices that we physically have, and we don't have any screen reader users in our office.
If you do find difficulties please do contact us - we'd love to work more closely with screen reader users to iron out any problems.