Ben Hall, a final-year law and business management student at the University of Queensland, has set up Old Dogs Training to teach over-50s how to use computers, digital cameras, mobile phones and more.

Who Says Old Dogs Can't Learn New Tricks?

In Australia's ageing yet increasingly technology-driven society, one Logan City resident is doing his bit to dispel the notion.

Ben Hall, a final-year law and business management student at the University of Queensland, has set up Old Dogs Training to teach over-50s how to use computers, digital cameras, mobile phones - in fact, "everything technological."

"Old dogs can learn new tricks, and they do - I see it every week," Ben says. "Octogenarians becoming laptop whizzes, doing everything from blogging to combating viruses. It's inspiring."

He explains: "I provide free information seminars at retirement villages, introducing computers to seniors and showing them the amazing things that can be done. For a fee, young people like myself also travel to the homes of seniors and teach them how to use their computer on a one-on-one basis."

According to Ben, the advantage of Old Dogs Training over TAFE or library courses is its personalised service. Group learning, he says, "can be great but can also be extremely confusing. For those who are at square one with computers, face-to-face learning is much more effective."

Old Dogs Training is currently focused in Logan City and surrounds, though Ben is working towards taking the service nation-wide. He wants to see seniors actively involved on the internet, creating communities that interest them and benefit society.

"Our seniors know 10 times more than our youth, yet the youth are the dominant force on the internet," Ben says. "Skilling up seniors with information technology will open up a dialogue between young and older Australians - this can only lead to good things for everyone involved."

For more information on Old Dogs Training, please contact Ben Hall on 0411 447 064 or via email at [email protected] 

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