Essential Skills for the Workplace and Everyday Life

Free courses online and in London.

Join Essential Skills and learn the key skills you need to progress in work and participate fully in everyday life.

Our courses develop your communication, decision-making, problem-solving, team-building and analytical skills, at the same time as you improve your English, ESOL, maths, digital skills, and data literacy.

The classes are at all levels from beginner literacy to GCSE English, for new office-workers to experienced managers, from maths for life to data analysis in the workplace.

Join the courses below and develop the skills essential to your job success, well-being, and ability to express yourself in all settings, digitally and face-to-face.

Many of our courses are free to all UK and EU citizens living in London, and most are free if you are:

  • on a Low Wage or
  • on Jobseekers' Allowance (JSA) or Employment & Support Allowance (ESA), or
  • receiving other state benefits (including Universal Credit)

To find out more, please read this information pack. You can also apply to our bursary if you need help with fees.

For help or advice, please contact us on 020 7492 2511 or email universal.skills@citylit.ac.uk. Most of our classes are now live online. You will need a computer with a microphone, a camera, and a good internet connection. Some courses are taking place in the City Lit building in London.

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  1. Word 2016 for the workplace (intermediate)
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sun 16 May 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Are you using Microsoft Word in an office or in administrative job? Or are you preparing for this line of work? This course will develop all the skills you need to perform your workplace Word 2016 work to a high level . Become confident in creating long, consistently formatted, well-presented documents such as reports and performing the tasks most commonly associated with Word in the office. Such tasks will include developing your use of Styles, modifying pictures in documents, using templates, controlling text flow and using mail merge. This a course for those who already have some experience of using Word. For beginners, please see our Introduction to Word course.

    This course is FREE if a) you are on a Low Wage or b) you are either on Jobseekers' Allowance (JSA) or Employment & Support Allowance(ESA) or c) you receive other state benefits (including Universal Credit) and your monthly take home pay is less than £343. For more information click here

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £159.00 Senior fee £127.00 Concession £80.00
    Rating:
    90% of 100
  2. ESOL and film: discussion, expression, critical writing (level 1-2)
    Last Few Places Weekend
    Course Date:  Sun 30 May 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Love film? Learning English? This course will help you develop your English through watching, discussing and responding to a variety of film clips. The course willl focus on improving your listening skills so you can understand the meaning of what is said and not said, as well as developing your vocabulary and range of expression in speaking, listening, and giving opinions. You will also improve your reading and speaking through performing short dialogues.

    Before this course, you need to do a pre-course assessment. Contact universal.skills@citylit.ac.uk / 020 7492 2511 or click the Start Assessment button on this page. Log on with your email address (not name). Use Chrome if possible.

    This course is FREE if a) you are on a Low Wage or b) you are either on Jobseekers' Allowance (JSA) or Employment & Support Allowance(ESA) or c) you receive other state benefits (including Universal Credit) and your monthly take home pay is less than £343. For more information click here

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £129.00 Senior fee £103.00 Concession £79.00
  3. Word 2016 for the workplace (advanced)
    Course Date:  Thu 3 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    This course will develop all the skills you need to perform your work to a high level and give you the confidence in creating long, consistently formatted, well-presented documents such as reports and performing the tasks most commonly associated with Word 2016 in the office. Such tasks some of the more advanced features, including creating master documents, referencing, working with templates, styles, advanced tables, forms, linking and embedding, editing mail merge documents, creating macros and using automatic formatting.

    This course is FREE if a) you are on a Low Wage or b) you are either on Jobseekers' Allowance (JSA) or Employment & Support Allowance(ESA) or c) you receive other state benefits (including Universal Credit) and your monthly take home pay is less than £343. For more information click here

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £159.00 Senior fee £127.00 Concession £80.00
    Rating:
    90% of 100
  4. Pathway to ECDL level 3
    Course Date:  Fri 4 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Level 3 Certificate in IT User Skills (ECDL Advanced) is an important commitment. Prepare yourself on this short course and make sure Level 3 is the right one for you. This course will ensure you make the most of your ECDL Level 3 course and have the skills to achieve the qualification once you start.

    This course is FREE if a) you are on a Low Wage or b) you are either on Jobseekers' Allowance (JSA) or Employment & Support Allowance(ESA) or c) you receive other state benefits (including Universal Credit) and your monthly take home pay is less than £343. For more information click here

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £149.00 Senior fee £119.00 Concession £75.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  5. How to be an administrator: the paperless office
    Evening
    Course Date:  Wed 9 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    The excessive use of paper is high on the agenda for companies and countries in the face of environmental waste and destruction. From administrators to senior managers we can all play a part in the helping to reduce the amount of paper that we use. Join this course to gain a greater insight on how as individuals and in our work we can help to preserve our environment, reduce costs and become more administratively efficient.

    This course is FREE if a) you are on a Low Wage or b) you are either on Jobseekers' Allowance (JSA) or Employment & Support Allowance(ESA) or c) you receive other state benefits (including Universal Credit) and your monthly take home pay is less than £343. For more information click here

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £79.00 Senior fee £63.00 Concession £40.00
  6. Design and build your own website - for Deaf people
    Course Date:  Wed 9 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    This course will help you how to create and design your own website using free resources. Ideal if you want to create own websites for deaf organisations, deaf clubs or deaf websites.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £0.00 Senior fee £0.00 Concession £0.00
  7. Digital skills: using SignVideo, SignLive, NGT or Relay UK for essential communication (entry 2 - entry 3)
    Course Date:  Thu 10 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    This course will help you to set up a new account with different communication and relay services - SignVideo, SignLive, NGT or Relay UK. You will be able to make your own phone calls through relay services.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £0.00 Senior fee £0.00 Concession £0.00
  8. Learn English - discover London, its history, culture and people, level 1 - level 2
    Last Few Places Evening
    Course Date:  Mon 12 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Do you want to improve your English and learn about London, its history, culture and people at the same time? On this course, you will visit places of interest and learn about the history of these places especially about the different people and cultures who have lived there, and about important events which have shaped the city. You will do your own research and so improve your reading and writing skills as well as your speaking and listening. In addition, you will feel more at home in London and able to participate in its rich and diverse life.

    Before this course, you need to do a pre-course assessment. Contact universal.skills@citylit.ac.uk / 020 7492 2511 or click the Start Assessment button on this page. Log on with your email address (not name). Use Chrome if possible.

    This course is FREE if a) you are on a Low Wage or b) you are either on Jobseekers' Allowance (JSA) or Employment & Support Allowance(ESA) or c) you receive other state benefits (including Universal Credit) and your monthly take home pay is less than £343. For more information click here

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £55.00 Concession £42.00
  9. ESOL pronunciation: stage 2 (level 1-2)
    Evening
    Course Date:  Mon 19 Apr 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    What are the different ways of pronouncing 'a'? Does 'for' always sound like 'four'? Is 't' always pronounced the same way? Learn the answers to these questions as you focus on fluent pronunciation practising linking, rhythm and stress and discover how context affects the pronunciation of English. This course is aimed at students with a good level of English - level 1 and 2 (B2-C1), who have completed Stage 1. Please contact the department on 020 7492 2511 or universal.skills@citylit.ac.uk for more information. Highly fluent students at level 3 or above should apply to the courses in the drama department.

    This course is FREE if a) you are on a Low Wage or b) you are either on Jobseekers' Allowance (JSA) or Employment & Support Allowance(ESA) or c) you receive other state benefits (including Universal Credit) and your monthly take home pay is less than £343. For more information click here

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £139.00 Senior fee £111.00 Concession £42.00
    Rating:
    95% of 100
  10. Getting ready for English Language GCSE
    Last Few Places
    Course Date:  Mon 19 Apr 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Are you excited by the English language? Do you want to gain an English language GCSE but are not ready yet to achieve this in a single year? Do you need to test your abilities before attempting the qualification course? Then this Getting Ready for English Language GCSE is the course for you. It will prepare you for the accreditation and familiarise you with its content, level and expectation.

    Before this course, you need to do a pre-course assessment. Contact universal.skills@citylit.ac.uk / 020 7492 2511 or click the Start Assessment button on this page. Log on with your email address (not name). Use Chrome if possible.

    After you have completed your assessment, please also click on the following link and tell us more about yourself -https://forms.gle/WpjbXEsfBRtByVjz5.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £0.00 Senior fee £0.00 Concession £0.00
  11. Develop your English: grammar foundation (level 1-2)
    Last Few Places
    Course Date:  Wed 21 Apr 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    What’s the difference between a verb and a adverb, a subject and an object, a main clause and a subordinate clause? What is a compound sentence? What does a determiner do? Understanding and analysing grammatical structure is a key component in developing your English skills whether speaking, writing or even reading. This course will provide you with all the grammar knowledge you need to become familiar with the language you use everyday and will be a very effective foundation of other work you do to improve your English. It will also assist you when you learn other languages.

    Before this course, you need to do a pre-course assessment. Contact universal.skills@citylit.ac.uk / 020 7492 2511 or click the Start Assessment button on this page. Log on with your email address (not name). Use Chrome if possible.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £129.00 Senior fee £103.00 Concession £32.00
  12. Prepare for IELTS and improve your academic writing
    Last Few Places Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 24 Apr 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Do you need to improve your academic writing for university? Do you need proof of your English level to study at university or for professional purposes? This course will help you develop your essay writing and prepare for the IELTS Academic test, which is recognised as evidence of proficiency in English by more than 10,000 education and training providers worldwide. The IELTS Academic test is suitable for entry to study at undergraduate or postgraduate levels, and also for professional registration purposes. It assesses whether you are ready to begin studying or training in an environment where English language is used, and reflects some of the features of language used in academic study.

    Before this course, you need to do a pre-course assessment. Contact universal.skills@citylit.ac.uk / 020 7492 2511 or click the Start Assessment button on this page. Log on with your email address (not name). Use Chrome if possible.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £229.00 Senior fee £183.00 Concession £140.00
  13. Outlook 2016 for the workplace: integrating Outlook, Excel and Word (advanced)
    Evening
    Course Date:  Mon 26 Apr 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Are you working as a Secretary, PA or an Administrator or thinking of becoming one? Do you need to learn more about Outlook 2016? This course is for Outlook users who needs to become more expert in work related Outlook tasks. Join this course and learn how to: create advanced message rules, create and manage categories, apply advanced filtering, create and copy group contact lists, share contacts, copy calendars, use a scheduling tool to create appointments, create advanced signatures as lists and emails, use advanced mail merge using MS Word and how to archive your mail box.

    This course is FREE if a) you are on a Low Wage or b) you are either on Jobseekers' Allowance (JSA) or Employment & Support Allowance(ESA) or c) you receive other state benefits (including Universal Credit) and your monthly take home pay is less than £343. For more information click here

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £149.00 Senior fee £119.00 Concession £75.00
  14. Business: find the right word (advanced)
    Last Few Places Evening
    Course Date:  Tue 27 Apr 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Are you already working at a good level of English but still not sufficient for the needs of your workplace or to develop your career? Do you need to find just the right word, the correct tone, the exact phrase' This course will help you develop the right English for the right situation particularly in the world of work. Learn about different styles of writing, and effective and appropriate communication.

    Before this course, you need to do a pre-course assessment. Contact universal.skills@citylit.ac.uk / 020 7492 2511 or click the Start Assessment button on this page. Log on with your email address (not name). Use Chrome if possible.

    This course is FREE if a) you are on a Low Wage or b) you are either on Jobseekers' Allowance (JSA) or Employment & Support Allowance(ESA) or c) you receive other state benefits (including Universal Credit) and your monthly take home pay is less than £343. For more information click here

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £189.00 Senior fee £151.00 Concession £115.00
  15. Grammar in practice: advanced (level 2+)
    Last Few Places Evening
    Course Date:  Wed 28 Apr 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Is your grammar holding you back? Learn how to communicate more effectively by analysing, discussing and experimenting with English grammar. This course will help you realise that grammar is really about meaning: understanding better the meaning of what someone is saying and expressing yourself more meaningfully.

    Before this course, you need to do a pre-course assessment. Contact universal.skills@citylit.ac.uk / 020 7492 2511 or click the Start Assessment button on this page. Log on with your email address (not name). Use Chrome if possible. The course runs over three terms (though you may start any term, places allowing).

    This course is FREE if a) you are on a Low Wage or b) you are either on Jobseekers' Allowance (JSA) or Employment & Support Allowance(ESA) or c) you receive other state benefits (including Universal Credit) and your monthly take home pay is less than £343. For more information click here

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £179.00 Senior fee £143.00 Concession £109.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100

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