Free ‘Get Ready’ Online Course

Posted on 11 March 2020

The Open Polytechnic, New Zealand’s largest specialist provider of vocational distance learning, has welcomed the Government’s recent announcement that it will boost funding for literacy and numeracy training in the workplace.

Findings from the OECD’s Survey of Adult Skills shows that a significant number of New Zealand adults do not have the literacy skills to achieve basic tasks at work or home.

Outside of the recent funding announcement, Open Polytechnic has been working to open the doors for employees to learn foundational literacy skills on the job. With the support of Skills Highway, an organisation that helps employers learn how workplace literacy and numeracy training can improve business performance, Open Polytechnic has developed a free course that will teach employees entry-level workplace skills and build foundational literacy and digital skills on the job.    

‘Get Ready’ is a self-directed online course that is designed to allow the learner to work through modules by themselves at their own pace.

This self-study course is available on iQualify, Open Polytechnic’s online learning platform and is activity based to engage and guide the learner through each module. At the completion of the course the learner is awarded a digital iQualify badge. 

Open Polytechnic Principal Curriculum Designer, Linda Lee says, “We are excited to offer a free access course, and opportunity to build entry-level digital and literacy confidence in a workplace context that learners can access and engage with any where, any time, at any pace. The goal is to ‘Get Ready’ for an opportunity, an experience and a pathway.”

The course covers key literacy areas such as improving reading skills, communication skills, how to structure paragraphs and write emails, how to download and upload computer files, do internet searches, and covers essential health and safety information for the workplace including how to fill out health and safety documents.

Open Polytechnic Chief Executive, Dr Caroline Seelig says the free online course teaches skills that will not only benefit employees in the workplace but can also make a positive difference in their personal lives.

“Having foundational literacy skills can make a world of difference to an employee’s confidence, and this can only bring positive results for them, their whānau, as well as the organisation they work for,” says Dr Seelig.

Skills Highway Programme Manager, Dr Nicky Murray says, “The ‘Get Ready’ online course could offer a great pathway from workplace literacy and numeracy programmes, reinforcing the learning gained from those programmes and enhancing digital skill development.”

This course may take up to 20 hours to complete. To sign up, visit:

Image caption (L-R): Linda Lee (Open Polytechnic) and Dr Nicky Murray (Skills Highway)