Online learning has become a revolution, but one that has left many learners behind. Amazing learning experiences, provided through MOOC’s, allow Internet users to have transformative educational experiences.
We asked ourselves: “Why is the same type of experience not available for someone new to the Web?” Democratizing education also means democratizing access to information for the first time. Our goal was to build a platform that was well-designed and easy-to-use.
Our lesson content is currently mapped to the State of California Basic Digital Literacy Skills Framework. TRAIL started as a project with the California State Library, so we find our roots in the community’s need for Internet skills learning opportunities.
The lessons themselves use an interactive model, reinforcing lesson content with quizzes and simple games, so that our users retain the Internet skills they have learned. We further help our learners apply these skills by providing easy-to-use features on our platforms so they get some experience navigating an online platform.
Lessons on TRAIL’s platforms are designed to be engaging and give the first time Internet user a supportive learning environment. Too often, those who seek help to learn how to use the Internet are directed to platforms with bad user interface design and outdated skills. Many of these people are also afraid to ask people to give them a hand or have no one that can sit down and teach them how to navigate the web.
Our lessons cover everything from Internet basics, like using a browser to setting up an email account, to more advanced life skill specific content. Our JobScout platform teaches basic Internet skills in the context of finding a job. Our HealthScout Beta platform teaches these same skills in the context of managing health and wellness online.