Seniors Go Online with New Computer Skills

"You can't teach old dogs new tricks." "Old habits die hard". These archetypal sayings don't bode well for older adults who didn't grow up with the Internet, social networking or smart phones.

But seniors are getting a bad name according the 2009 Pew Internet study entitled Generations Online. It illustrates a dynamic growth of seniors on the Internet. A vital statistic shows high-speed broadband access tripling for seniors 65 and older. It also shows that 45% of the 70-75 year-old age group is currently online compared to 26% in 2005.

Beyond the statistics of a study, there's the case in point of 65-year-old Linda Bacon of Fenton MI, who has enrolled in a Skype class. Another Fenton resident, 69-year-old Gloria Williamson, gained greater access to information around the world.

“I’ll email people sometimes, but most of the time I will call them,” Williamson told the FentonPatch.

Kelly O’Connell, a computer instructor at Fenton's Loose Senior Citizen Center told the media source that non-social networking computer skills can help seniors keep in touch with others. O’Connell was in contact with a woman in one of her classes who owned a computer, and decided to write her life story and share her experiences with her family.

She enrolled in O’Connell’s Microsoft Word class and finished the writing and is now in the editing process. When finished, she plans to have it bound and distributed to family members.

It is common for seniors to be given access to computers in Active Lifestyle and Independent Living residences.

So, the 65+ generation is on the move with the Internet.