Cell-Ed Programs Improve Digital Literacy for Workers With Fragmented Digital Knowledge

Cell-Ed digital classrooms

Cell-Ed Programs Improve Digital Literacy for Workers With Fragmented Digital Knowledge

It’s a situation those of us who have undergone COVID testing might relate to: you look online to find the nearest testing site and drive to the given location. Upon arrival, you learn that you can’t get tested, and you need to go online, schedule a time, and get approval from your doctor. You try to connect to your provider via your smartphone, but you realize that you’ve stored your password to login on your computer at home…  and before you know it, you’ve been through a dizzying maze of websites and instructions – and you STILL haven’t gotten the approval to be tested. 

Navigating healthcare registrations and other life tasks can present a unique challenge for even the most highly digitally literate among us – but for those of us who have digital literacy gaps, don’t have consistent digital access, or who have additional language or physical barriers – this challenge can be a near impossibility to overcome. 

A recent report by the National Skills Coalition found that 1 in 3 workers lacks foundational digital skills. Specifically, 13 percent have no digital skills and 18 percent have very limited skills. Many workers have fragmented digital knowledge, ie., they may be comfortable using a phone to text a photo, but unfamiliar with how to operate a mouse or upload a job application. Those who do not have a desktop or laptop computer at home or smartphone-only internet access are more likely to have fragmented digital skills – which disproportionately affects Blacks and Latinos, according to a 2019 PEW Research study.  

As the world becomes more digitized, it’s becoming even more imperative to close these skill gaps – for a multitude of reasons. Digital skills are necessary to understand and process information from digital sources, use digital systems, technical tools, and applications. They can be categorized by general use skills and job-specific skills – both essential to life and job success. 

Using a competency-based learning strategy (an approach that focuses on the student’s desired learning outcomes as central to the learning process) since 2012 Cell-Ed has been able to make significant gains upskilling workers who struggle with digital literacy and who have fragmented digital skills. According to the US Department of Education, a competency-based approach saves time and money and also leads to better student engagement because the content is relevant to each student and tailored to their unique needs. It also leads to better student outcomes because the pace of learning is customized to each student. Particularly for those with fragmented digital knowledge, it’s important not to underestimate their individual ingenuity and expertise, and to engage workers in identifying which interventions can help them make bridges between the skills they have and the skills they need. A competency-based approach best meets these needs. And it starts with a simple text and short audio lesson over any device – with our without internet.

In less than 3 minutes to start, Cell-Ed provides engaging micro-learning to unlimited learners – with unmatched coaching support. Cell-Ed’s mobile support – and programs tailored to each learner- makes studying fun. As one worker put it:  

“I work 13 hours a day so it is exhausting. Cell-Ed is great because it doesn’t feel like I’m studying.

It’s fun to text back and forth and I’m so proud when I get the right answer.” 

Another learner commented: 

“I would definitely recommend this. It is really helpful and you can do it whenever you have time. I just connect my headphones and listen even when I’m cooking or when I’m with my daughter. It’s much easier to follow than courses where you need to be on the laptop. I tried to do other courses via Zoom but I couldn’t focus because of my daughter. I couldn’t sit down for 30 minutes because my daughter wanted to play or take the computer. With this program, I just put my phone in my pocket and listen, so it is very convenient.”

Using this approach, Cell-Ed upskills learners of all ages from those with the most extreme language, job, and digital skills gaps such as immigrant populations using our basic literacy and WorkReady programs as well as highly customized, co-created applications for complex learning around the world. The programs are evidence-based, aligned with national and international standards, and promote integrated ‘essential skills’ learning.

Cell-Ed courses – co-created with in-house and subject matter experts –  integrate essential skills for adults into every mobile learning micro-lesson to provide a pathway from low literacy to education and job success. Each lesson provides contextualized life, literacy, and job skills to help adults navigate daily life, while digital, health and financial literacy skills are also embedded throughout all programs. Cell-Ed automated and live coaching encourages and supports learners throughout the programs.

Cell-Ed programs focus on the following categories:

  • Communication & Interpersonal Skills
  • Skills Employers Want
  • Everyday Life
  • Getting a Job

Cell-Ed’s curriculum and coaching development team includes expert educators with 20+ years of working in informal, non-formal, and formal education for youth and adults worldwide. Cell-Ed Micro-learning Courses and Program maps to global standards when applicable. Learners are assessed throughout each course including listening comprehension, reading, writing, and speaking. Pre- and Post-assessments are embedded within each unit of every course. Lastly, most courses end with a final assessment, ensuring demonstrated learning gains. Because data tracking and insights are key to continuously improving programs partners and learners, 

Call-Ed’s unique platform delivers training-on-demand and monitors processes with a customized training platform. 

The number of Americans who still struggle with digital literacy in a tech-savvy world might seem shocking, but it’s a very prescient issue that impacts everyone to some degree. Cell-Ed’s competency-based learning approach, integrating micro-learning that builds on increasingly complex essential skills, radical accessibility on any device, personal coaching to boost confidence and encourage learners, and engaging and relevant content, has been shown to effectively upskill workers who struggle with fragmented digital literacy four times faster and more effectively. 

The world may never become an easy place to navigate, but increased digital literacy for those with fragmented knowledge provides a highly effective road map. 

To learn more about Cell-Ed and how we can bridge skills gaps for your learners, let us show you how Cell-Ed works