So you need to learn how to use a computer and fast? Take a crash course in computers. It’s quick, it’s easy and it can give you the basic lessons you’ll need in order to use a computer for the results you want. Here’s how:
Determine the kind of computer you’ll be using.
Is it a notebook computer or a desktop? Will you be using a Mac or a PC? The basic use of a computer is the same for different types, although certain functions and commands differ. You’ll need to learn these things first before you start using the programs.
Decide what you want to do.
The most common usage for computers usually involves word processing, spreadsheets and internet browsing. If you want to type a manuscript or write a letter or memo, take a crash course on word processing. If you want to make computations or use a program to produce simple statistical data and graphs, use a spreadsheet. If your main purpose in using a computer is to browse the internet, simply open its browser.
Most computer courses offered at colleges and adult education classes are formal classes and they are by no means considered crash courses. However, some of these classes, especially those offered by smaller schools, may allow crash courses in computer use. These classes can last from 3 days to a week or even three weeks to cover one or two computer programs, enough to allow you to use a computer confidently.
If you prefer, you can hire someone who knows about computer use to give you a crash course. You don’t have to look too far, though. Do you have a neighbor, a niece or a child who knows computers better than you do? Someone who’s looking for some extra income and willing to teach you about computer use can be a great help. They’re cheaper, too.
If you prefer a professional tutor and are willing to spend more, you can also hire one. Simply inform them that what you need is a crash course in computer use and what you hope to achieve. You can skip certain parts in the lessons that you don’t immediately need.
Use the on-board tutorial and other references.
Want to get your computer crash course on your own? Most programs contain a tutorial or at least a Help function. This should help you get started independently. Supplement your learning with lots of reading. There are short cuts and tricks you can find in books and magazines that will help you learn faster.