Brits increasingly using the web to learn new skills

Never let education get in the way of your learning, a wise man once said, and it seems that Britons have taken this man's words seriously.

According to new figures released by Hitwise, a division of Connexity, more than four millions of Britons searched 'how to' queries in the first quarter of 2016. More than a million (1.3m) of Brits visited a learning site in Q1 this year, but there is a significant difference between the younger population, and the somewhat older ones, in terms of what exactly was searched for.

Those younger ones, aged 18 – 34, are 3.9 times more likely to end up searching ‘how to code’, or anything else related to learning the new trade. They also account for more than 50 per cent of all visits to online learning sites, despite the fact that they make up a third of the country’s population.

The ‘older’ ones’ (34+) searches are more on the entrepreneurial side. They are 135 per cent more likely to search terms such as ‘how to be self-employed’ or ‘how to write a business plan’ (109 per cent).

“This trend supports the UK population’s desire to educate themselves in order to support their work life, be that for employment or entrepreneurial ventures,” said Nigel Wilson, Managing Director at Hitwise.

“The sheer pace of digitalisation within the UK workforce means young people are required to learn with an almost ‘immediate effect’. We continue to see year on year growth with sites such as YouTube (displaying video tutorials) and online learning sites such as FutureLearn and Udemy.”

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