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Online Learning Gateway

getting online and ICT English Pensions Maths  Languages General interest  Redundancy support

For more information about Lifelong Learning, becoming a ULR or other learning opportunities available in your area please contact your local Lifelong Learning Project Worker.

Getting online and ICT

We are campaigning to make sure everyone has the digital skills they need to get by at work, at home, in their Union and their local community. Many members lose out because of their lack of digital skills. Don’t be one of them! The following links will help improve your digital skills and knowledge:

is the best site for complete beginners. It offers a series of short, straightforward online courses covering a range of topics from basic IT, staying safe online, being healthy, shopping and accessing services.

helps to develop the essential online skills you need to make the most of your mobile, tablet, computer or laptop. There is a vast array of free web resources to help you get the most out of being online.

offers a wide range of free online technology guides and a network of computer tutors. There are also many free courses which are “badged” -  a new way of recording your progress and recognising your achievements.

Get Online With Usdaw is a free course for Usdaw members who want to feel confident about using the internet safely at work or at home.


Many members are keen to improve their English skills, understanding that a good level of English and relevant qualifications can help you to take up any opportunities you are presented with:

is a national project aimed at helping adults brush up their English skills and work towards gaining a qualification. You can test your skills and find out the best level to start learning.

offers a wealth of great videos, exercises and quizzes from the BBC’s vast array of resources to help adults improve their English skills. This site is free to use and is continually updated and improved.

provides support, videos, exercises and quizzes for members who are learning English as a foreign language (ESOL).

‘A play on words’ is a short Usdaw course using famous quotes, to help you learn some basic English rules and to avoid some of the common mistakes made with grammar.

Mobile apps:
Acceleread - for iPhone


The best way to improve your knowledge and increase your confidence when dealing with pensions is to sign up for our Online Pensions Home Study Course.


Since 2012 we have been specifically encouraging members to improve their maths skills. Join a growing number of our members and use these resources to test and assess your skills and levels and take free "brush up" courses online:

provides free resources to help you assess and improve your maths skills.

is a national project aimed at helping adults improve their skills and work towards gaining a qualification. Test your skills and levels with a short assessment and sample questions.

offers a wealth of great videos, exercises and quizzes from the BBC’s vast array of resources to help adults improve their maths skills. This site is free to use and is continually updated and improved.

provides free open resources and courses for people who already have a good basic understanding of maths at around GCSE grade.

provides you with problem solving skills for your everyday life and the wider world.

Want to brush up on your maths skills? Our Shop 'til you drop - bitesize maths course has 10 questions designed to help you spot a bargain and get the best value for your money.

Mobile apps:
Maths Everywhere - for iPhone - for android


Our members are often keen to learn languages, even if it’s just a few phrases to take on holiday or help them engage with a colleague at work. These sites can help you improve your language skills:

offers a wide range of videos, exercises and quizzes from the BBC’s language resources. This site is free to use and is regularly updated and improved.

is an online guide to British sign language by individual words, phrases and word groups.

Mobile apps:
Duolingo - for iPhone - for android

General interest

Many Usdaw members enjoy learning just for fun. This  section contains links to providers that offer a wide range and variety of courses, subjects and levels:

the Open University (OU) and access to its courses offering a range of learning options and course levels, from Access courses to postgraduate qualifications.

Owned by the OU, Futurelearn offers a wide range of free courses from the world’s best universities and business schools. Courses are delivered at scale, typically 15,000 learners at a time, meaning you will learn just as much from fellow learners as from the course content itself.

a provider of free online courses with certificates. It has a wide range of courses from maths and English to ICT, humanities and management.

is a non-profit educational organisation created in 2006 to provide “a free, world class education for anyone, anywhere”. The site hosts a large number of mainly video-led tutorials on a wide range of subjects.
Mobile app: for iPhone

Many people on YouTube post how-to guides on just about any subject you can imagine. Whether it's knitting, cookery or playing guitar, you'll find help and advice on YouTube.

The BBC's platform that links learning to many of its programmes or current affairs covering a wide varity of topics.

This site contains many old Open University courses. Many of the courses are now “badged” with online certificates of completion of learning. These courses include all OU faculty areas including languages, maths, humanities and science.
Mobile apps: OU News - for iPhone - for android OU Anywhere - for iPhone - for android

Redundancy support

Usdaw members who face the uncertainty of redundancy or who just want to keep their CV up to date can use the following links to access useful tools, information and resources:

Need help writing your CV? Try Usdaw’s bitesize course. It will teach you the basic IT skills such as formatting and styling documents and is designed to help you build an effective CV at the same time.

Tools, resources and advice on skills, interviews, CVs and careers.
Mobile app: for iPhone - for android

Information on vacancies, benefits, training and job search facility.

Graduate careers website.

Help and advice on careers and learning.

Tips and hints on writing a CV from scratch.

Loads of tools to build and improve CVs.

Advice and templates for CVs and covering letters.

Free prize draw

Enter our free prize draw to win a £100 Love2Shop Gift Voucher courtesy of Usdaw Insurance.

The official website of the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers