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Age is just a Number

Last year in the UK, 91% of all adults over the age of 16 responded that they had recently used the internet, and a whopping 99% of 16 to 44-year olds reported being an internet user.

Interestingly, an even more positive statistic is that, each year, an increasing number of adults over the age of 75 are reporting to be active internet users – growing to almost 45% last year.  

Our internet usage, as well as the number of activities we undertake online, will not dissipate any time soon. Whatever our age, we have all noticed a marked shift towards online transactions and interactions in light of COVID-19. Many universities have confirmed to students that their next academic year will begin with entirely virtual lessons, for instance, and many adults are using the internet for the first time to order food deliveries or manage their finances in lieu of going to the bank.

With respect to online learning, people of all ages have sought to refine their skills or learn something new in recent months. In fact, searches for ‘online learning’ reached their peak in April this year. Several charities and organisations aimed at supporting the elderly during these uncertain times have been equally quick to get on board with this rising trend, knowing themselves how online learning can benefit elderly adults by increasing their computer literacy, allowing them to pass on their experience, and helping combat the loneliness that many older adults feel.

In fact, charity Age UK has recently created a “University of the Third Age” (U3A) programme, designed entirely to help put elderly, isolated individuals virtually in touch with adults of all ages so they can acquire a new skill or share information with others. Other organisations and charities are equally doing all they can to make online learning as accessible as possible for adults of every age. 8Billionminds very much seeks to replicate this attitude by making its platform as accessible as possible – regardless of age or subject of interest. The fact 8BM developers are working on making the website design as simplistic and straightforward as they can, to cater for all age ranges, is a testament to its ease of access commitment.

Everybody has information or a skill they can share. The elderly, with their informed wisdom and experience, more than most. When more than three-in-five elderly respondents to a recent Merrill Lynch survey confirmed that they were actively seeking out new educational opportunities, it is evident that there is a demand there for a service like 8BM. As we see a marked shift towards the older population becoming active internet users, it is fortunate that online platforms like 8Billionminds are here to serve their educational needs. Age really is just a number when it comes to online learning. 


Lloyd Ross

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