Lesson 1: The basics of digital communication

The computer is a tool that accompanies us on a daily basis, both personally and professionally. It is versatile and powerful, it allows us to carry out many activities: from creating documents to surfing the Internet, from managing finances to having fun. But to make the most of its potential, it is important to know the basic operating systems and applications:
  • Knowing how to use Microsoft Office or Google Suite is essential for creating documents, spreadsheets and presentations;
  • Knowing the operating system (such as Windows or macOS), is essential for computer management and for installing new programs.

It is also necessary to know how to use the Internet safely and consciously. Browsing the Internet allows us to access a huge amount of information and perform many online activities, such as shopping, booking travel, and communicating with others. However, it is important to know the risks and know how to protect your privacy, while protecting your online safety.

In conclusion, knowing the operating systems and basic applications, knowing how to navigate the Internet safely and consciously and developing one’s ability to use the computer efficiently are all essential elements to make the most of its potential.

The digital world makes many daily activities – such as document creation, information management and communication – much easier and faster. This is possible thanks to basic applications, like word processing, spreadsheets and email. Knowing them and knowing how to use them correctly is essential for many personal and professional activities.

The most known and used tool in this area is definitely Microsoft Office. The Microsoft Office Suite It contains a word processor (Word), a spreadsheet program (Excel) and a presentation program (PowerPoint), an email client (Outlook), a database management system (Access), and a desktop publishing app (Publisher).


Word processing is an application used for creating and editing text documents and Microsoft Word is probably the best known and most widespread. Word processing allows us to create documents with text, images and tables and to modify their appearance using fonts, colors and formatting.

It is useful for various daily activities, for example writing letters, resumes and report.


Spreadsheets are another basic application that allows us to manage information and make calculations and Microsoft Excel is one of the best known and most used in the world. With spreadsheets we can create tables, make calculations and analyze data quickly and easily.

This type of application is particularly useful for managing personal finances and for many business activities.


A truly irreplaceable method of communication is email, which allows us to communicate with other people quickly and easily, often through an application such as Microsoft Outlook. In this way, we can send messages, attach files and keep an archive of conversations and, in many companies, email is the primary means of communication between employees and with customers.

These application allow us to manage text, data and communication quickly and easily and help us save time and perform tasks more efficiently, while also achieving optimal results.


Power point is a presentation program used to create a file (called a “presentation” or “deck”) containing a sequence of pages (called “slides” in the app) which usually have a consistent style (from template masters), and which may contain information. Power point allows us to show informations in a easier and clearer way and to display it to a wider public through tables, images etc.

Google Suite

Another useful tool for day-to-day use is Google Suite, for online use mainly. Google Suite is a collection of cloud computing, productivity and collaboration tools, software and products developed and marketed by Google. It consists of:

  • Gmail, Contacts, Calendar, Meet and Chat for communication;
  • Currents for employee engagement;
  • Drive for storage;
  • Google Docs Editors suite for content creation.

Google Docs Editor.

Although Google Mail is the most known service, GSuite offers a wide range of tools that allow you to work in cloud and  while moving around.

The most useful tool in this respect is Google Docs Editor.

Google Docs Editors is a web-based productivity office suite offered by Google within its Google Drive service. The suite includes:

  • Google Docs (word processor);
  • Google Sheets (spreadsheet);
  • Google Slides (presentation software);
  • Google Drawings (vector drawing program);
  • Google Forms (online forms, quizzes and surveys);
  • Google Sites (graphical website editor);
  • Google Keep (note-taking application).

The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the National Agency and Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.