Join our Gluu/UBC Study

Gluu and University of British Columbia Okanagan (UBCO) researchers are teaming up to determine how effective digital skills courses are for older adults. Our hope is that results from this crucial Canadian study will help funders understand that putting money into free digital skills programs for older adults is good for everyone.

We need your help

Whether you want to teach digital skills virtually or in-person, we’ve got you covered. All you needed to participate are older adults who want to learn how to use a tablet and volunteers willing to help. Your volunteers will receive free training, teaching resources, and support. And, your students will get free printed learning resources, online courses, and support while they learn the basics. 

Volunteers do not need to be experts. If they can use a tablet, go on the internet, and manage email, they have enough skills. And, the Gluu Crew is there to help should they need it.

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About the study

Empowering rural older adults: Promoting equitable digital engagement that sticks.

Principal investigator:
Dr. Kathy Rush, UBCO, School of Nursing

Click here to read more.

Student & Volunteer Benefits

Five Great Reasons to Participate

Use the blue toggle below to learn how students and volunteers will benefit from participation in this study.

Student Benefits
Volunteer Benefits

Here is what participating students receive:

  • Printed Gluu Essentials Student Workbook—96-page full-colour, spiral-bound workbook with detailed step-by-step instructions covering the entire Gluu Essentials course.
  • Gluu Lifetime Membership that gives them access to our online courses for free, forever.
  • Support from a trained volunteer who can provide support and answer questions. This support can be virtual or in-person. Details are below.
  • Be part of a study that we hope will help fund free digital skills training for all older Canadians.
  • Chance to win one of three $100 cash prizes.
About Gluu Essentials

Gluu Essentials is a complete course that helps older adults learn digital skills

Designed for older adults new to Apple iPad or Samsung Galaxy tablets and for those wanting to brush up their digital skills.

It includes printed materials, optional online courses & volunteer support.

With short weekly sessions, it takes about two months to cover the whole Gluu Essentials program at a comfortable pace.

On completion, students will have the essential skills to use their tablets and be online safely.

Completion Certificate is awarded, too!

What your students will learn

Gluu Essentials for iPad (iOS 15)

Gluu Essentials for Samsung Tablets (Android 11)

Who is perfect for this study?

Older adults new to using their tablets and those who want to learn the basics

Students should be ready to embark on their digital learning journey. In about two months, with regular weekly sessions, a student will complete the Gluu Essentials course comfortably. These essential skills will set them up for life. 

Advanced users who want to go beyond the essentials are not a good fit for this study. 

Different learning Styles

Virtual Learning or In-Person Classes?

Whether teaching virtually or in-person, we’ve got you covered. Here is how we support students and volunteers—use the blue toggle below to learn more.

Virtual Training
In-Person Classes

Here is how we support your volunteers to teach students virtually:

  • One volunteer can support four students virtually. This role has a minimum volunteer time commitment of about 3 hours per week over two months.
  • Volunteers do not need to be experts. During 2 hours of online self-paced training using any internet-connected device, we show them how to teach our Gluu Essentials courses virtually. We offer all the teaching resources and support they need.
  • Our team schedules eight weekly 30-minute phone calls between volunteers and students. Every week, volunteers call students to answer questions and help them progress through the Gluu Essentials course.
  • Volunteers are not expected to reply to emails or take phone calls from their students outside of scheduled appointment times. Gluu Support Crew is available to help students via email in between appointments.
  • All volunteers and your staff are invited into our Gluu Slack Workspace to stay in touch with the Gluu Crew, learn tips for supporting their students, get to know other Gluu Digital Coaches, and share best practices.
How the study works

Details about how this study works

Here’s how this study works for each learning style. Use the blue toggle below to learn more.

Virtual Training
In-Person Classes

How Virtual Training Is Supported:

Step 1
Your organization applies on behalf of your senior participants.

Step 2
You find volunteers—they don't need to be experts. Volunteers should be comfortable using a similar device as the students they teach. They need to be willing to help older adults in your community learn digital skills using our Gluu Essentials course. We train your volunteers and provide all teaching resources and support they need. 

Step 3
Printed materials are delivered to your location. Your team handles the distribution to students and volunteers. When students receive their printed materials, they complete a quick survey and return it to UBC in the self-addressed stamped envelope provided.

Step 4
We pair volunteers with students, and schedule their weekly 30-minute virtual visits. Your team gets a link to the calendar to know what is happening. Students contact Gluu for support and appointment changes to keep down the admin burden on your end. 

Step 5
Volunteers meet with students over the phone to begin their Gluu Essentials learning journey. All registered students are entered into the draw for a chance to win one of three $100 cash prizes.

Step 6
Students progress independently through our Gluu Essentials course using their printed student workbooks. They can also use our online courses to expand their learning. Volunteers check in weekly to discuss the next learning module and to provide support and encouragement.

Step 7
Students can email Gluu with questions or wait until the next appointment to ask their volunteer. Any questions the volunteer can't answer are passed over to Gluu. We reply to your senior via email. Volunteers are not expected to respond to emails or take phone calls from their students outside of scheduled appointment times. Gluu Support Crew is available to help students via email in between appointments.

Step 8
Upon completing the course, students fill in an online follow-up survey. They also receive a Course Completion Certificate.

Step 9
UBC delivers the $100 cash prizes to winning students. All students can continue their learning journey using materials on our website.

Use this form to join the study
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