Suggested Learning Activities

Computer Skills Suggested Learning Activities
1. Basic Knowledge of Computers
  • Ask students to complete the Computer Skills Self-Assessment, which assesses basic knowledge of computers, word processing, and electronic communication.
  • If further learning is required, refer students to the Computer Skills Resources List.
2. Word Processing
  • Ask students to submit one or more written assignments prepared on a computer using a word processing program.
  • Ask students to develop a letter of application and a resumé using a word processing program.
3. Electric Communication

a. Internet

  • Online search
  • Favourites/bookmark bar
  • Ask students to work in groups to research an HCA-related topic (e.g., cognitive or health challenge) or organization (e.g., seniors’ services organization or WorkSafeBC) on the internet and bookmark their findings. Students can submit a written report or make a presentation to the class on their findings.
b. Online Forms/Applications
  • Ask students to visit the careers page for their local health authority to set up an online profile.
c. Email

  • Send and receive email including attachments
  • Ask students to send an email with an attachment to their instructor.
d. E-Communication and Netiquette
  • Invite students to examine the content of the Health 1: Interpersonal Communications course, discussing e-communication information provided in the course.
e. Professional Use of Technology
  • Invite students to work in small groups to examine the scenario discussing the professional use of technology provided in the Health Care Assistant: Introduction to Practice course.

Computer Skills Self-Assessment

Student Name:                                 Date:                     

Computer Knowledge

I can identify the basic parts of a computer system Yes □      No/Not Sure □
I can properly start and shut down a computer system Yes □      No/Not Sure □
I can start and close a computer program Yes □      No/Not Sure □
I can describe some common uses of computers in society Yes □      No/Not Sure □
I can use a mouse/pointing device Yes □      No/Not Sure □
I can operate a printer (turn power on, put online/offline, load paper) Yes □      No/Not Sure □

Word Processing

I can create a new word processing document Yes □      No/Not Sure □
I can edit a document Yes □      No/Not Sure □
I can save a document to the storage drive Yes □      No/Not Sure □
I can print a document Yes □      No/Not Sure □
I can retrieve a document Yes □      No/Not Sure □
I can use tools such as spell check or thesaurus Yes □      No/Not Sure □

Electronic Communication

I can search online Yes □      No/Not Sure □
I can complete an online form Yes □      No/Not Sure □
I can add to favourites/bookmark bar Yes □      No/Not Sure □
I can send and receive email, including attachments Yes □      No/Not Sure □

Note: This tool has been adapted from the “Generic topic outlines, computer studies: fundamental level, adult basic education: A guide to upgrading in British Columbia’s public post-secondary institutions” (2014), produced by the Post-Secondary Programs Branch, Ministry of Advanced Education, Province of British Columbia.

Download Computer Skills Self-Assessment [PDF].

Computer Resources List

If you answered No/Not Sure to one or more of the questions in the Computer Skills Self-Assessment, you can use the following strategies to help you to complete computer-related assignments throughout the HCA program.

Basic Computer Skills

Ask a friend or family member to demonstrate the basic skills of using a computer, including identifying its main parts, turning it on/off, starting and shutting down a computer program, and using a printer.

Microsoft Word Training

  • Training for Microsoft 365, Word 2021,  Word 2019 , and Word 2016, and
    • Microsoft Word. (2021). Word for Windows Training.
  • Training for Word 2013:
    • Microsoft Word. (2013). Word 2013 training videos.

Internet Searches

  • For assignments using the internet, work with another student who understands how to complete an internet search.
  • Access the following Google search tips:


If you do not have an email account, you can set one up by accessing one of the following:

*Basic tasks and functions of your email, including attaching files, will depend on your account.


Government of British Columbia, Ministry of Advanced Education. (2014). Adult basic education in British Columbia’s public post-secondary institutions: An articulation handbook.

Government of British Columbia, Ministry of Health. (2014). B.C. health care assistants core competency profile.

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada. Literacy and essential skills, skills definitions and complexity.,shtml