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Courses and qualifications in Libraries

May Bank Holidays

East Sussex Libraries will be closed for the following Bank Holiday

  • Monday 27 May

How do our courses work?

We offer online courses that you study – in Eastbourne or Hastings Library Learning Centres or at home – with support and guidance from qualified tutors.

They are for people of all levels, from beginners who have never touched a computer to experienced computer users who want to gain a qualification. We assess your needs and select a course that suits you best.

Where to sign up

To discuss your learning needs, please contact us.

You and your tutor will set out a learning plan and target dates, and decide how much support you will need to achieve your goals. You can then work on your course at either Eastbourne or Hastings Libraries or at home.

To get the best from the course you will need to meet with your tutor regularly, and attend a learning centre for any assessments.


  • Maths and English courses are free to anyone 19 and over who does not already have a grade A-C at GCSE.
  • The IT courses are free to anyone 19 and over who is actively seeking work or needs to remove barriers to employment.

IT Courses are free if:

  • you are on benefits and seeking work, removing barriers to employment or needing to retrain to find a new career.
  • you earn less that £17,004 a year and are seeking alternative employment.

If you do not meet any of the above:

 Level 1 International Computer Driving License (ICDL) costs £155
 Level 2 International Computer Driving License (ICDL) costs £199

If you want to purchase an online course in the following, without taking an examination but with tutor support, please call the centre. Course modules start at £55:

  • Word Processing
  • Excel Spreadsheets
  • PowerPoint presentations
  • Internet and email use

If you are not able to commit to formal study or would like to build your confidence first, IT for You could be the answer.

IT for You 1 to 1

Free support on everyday computer skills at your local library.

Learn to use email and the internet, stay safe online, search and apply for work, download and use the NHS app, keep in touch with friends and family online, discover Microsoft Office and more – all with the help of your very own volunteer!

You choose the skills you learn, there are no tests and no exams, and you can attend as many or as few sessions as you need.

Use our desktop computers or bring your own laptop or tablet.

Available now at Battle, Bexhill, Crowborough, Eastbourne, Hailsham, Hampden Park, Hastings, Heathfield, Hollington, Lewes, Newhaven, Peacehaven, Rye, Seaford and Uckfield Libraries.

Call 01323 463759 to find out more or book your place. Or see further information here.

IT for You Together

Available now at Eastbourne Library and Hastings Library.

A great option if you’d like to learn how to use a computer as part of a group. You’ll learn everything you would in our 1 to 1 sessions, but you can attend with a friend to learn together - or just book yourself a session and make new friends when you get here!

Call 01323 463759 to book your place or find out more.

Free one to one weekly adult reading sessions with the same trained volunteer reading mentor at your local library. For adults who cannot read at all, and for those wishing to improve their reading confidence and skills. Aged 18-80, we can help with reading and support spelling, writing and basic maths skills.

Readers can progress onto IT for You where they can learn to use the internet and email. Step into Reading is suitable for adults with any reading difficulty, for example dyslexia. The programme is also suitable for adults whose first language is not English, provided they can listen and understand and speak conversational English.

Learners use the ‘Yes We can Read’ workbook and have access to games and activities with their mentor to help make learning interesting and interactive.

Available at any local library. Email: library.enquiries@eastsussex.gov.uk or phone: 0345 60 80 196 for more information.

Maths and English

Maths and English Functional Skills – City & Guilds

Free Maths and English Functional Skills courses are available with Learning Services.  Starting at Entry Level 3 to Level 2. At the end of the course you will take an exam and gain a qualification that is the equivalent of an A-C at GCSE. Courses are accredited with City & Guilds.  Find out more at the City and Guilds website.

Multiply Maths Courses

  • Multiply offers easy access to free numeracy courses and initiatives that can help you brush up your maths skills and help you become more confident with numbers. Whether you need help in managing your bills, budgeting, helping the children with their homework or you want to improve your potential at work. 

  • If you’re aged 19+ and do not already have a GCSE at grade C (or equivalent) in maths, Multiply is available to you. 

  • Multiply offers easy access to free numeracy courses and initiatives where you can gain a qualification, and build your confidence in using numbers at work or in everyday life.

  • There will be courses and initiatives for beginners and those who want to build on the foundations of their maths knowledge – to more advanced offers such as the free Level 2 Functional Skills Qualification, or equivalent. With online tutorials and content also available, you will be able to learn at a pace that suits you.

  • You can sign up for updates on Multiply and available courses and initiatives or take the short quiz to understand what currently available offers might be right for you. 

If you would like to enrol on this course, please complete our Adult Learning enquiry form.

IT Courses

The International Computer Driving Licence (ICDL)

The International Computer Driving Licence (ICDL) is accredited by the British Computer Society. It is useful if you want to use Microsoft Office products to enable you to gain a qualification to work in an office or for general use at home. It is well recognised in industry as a bench mark for the skills a job applicant has when applying for work. This course covers:

  • Level 1 – Security online, computer basics and Internet & email use.
  • Level 2 – Word processing, Excel Spreadsheets, PowerPoint Presentations and Improving productivity in the workplace.
  • Single Units at level 1 and 2 in Word Processing, Spreadsheets, PowerPoint, Internet and Email Use, Computer Basics, Online Security. These units can then be built up into a full level qualification. These units are ideal for people who don’t want to take a full qualification straight away and get back into study.

If you would like to enrol on this course, please complete our Adult Learning enquiry form.

English For Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL)

ESOL courses are now available in Eastbourne and Hastings Libraries. These courses are for non-English speakers or ESOL learners who need to move up to Entry 3, Level 1 and Level 2. We also have the opportunity for free accredited courses.

If you would like to enrol on this course, please complete our Adult Learning enquiry form.

How to Study

  • If you have a computer and internet access, we offer online courses where you can work at home and be supported remotely.
  • You can work on our computers in one of our learning centres at Eastbourne or Hastings Libraries.
  • You need to have at least 4 hours a week available to study.
  • You will be allocated a trained subject tutor throughout your course who will help you achieve your qualification.
  • Each level takes approximately 12 weeks to complete.
  • Exams will be taken in the learning centres at Eastbourne or Hastings

To find out more about all of our courses, visit our website at:
Learning | East Sussex Libraries (spydus.co.uk)

If you have any questions about any of the above courses and would like to find out more, please click the button below to send us an enquiry and leave some details for us to contact you.