University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Spring 2015 Computer Classes

Our computer classes help UMass staff gain practical skills for work, home or in the community. The small classes allow hands-on time to practice. Learn new computer skills or add to those you already have, even with little previous computer experience.

Computer classes meet in Dickinson Hall (the former Police building), Room 210. Classes are taught by Fran Fortino and staff assistants.

Introduction to Computers
Tuesdays, 9 to 10:45 a.m.,
February 10 to April 21 (No class on March 17)

Overcome your fear of computers. Start from scratch in this beginner class and you’ll learn the basic parts of a computer, how to buy one, improve keyboarding skills, and create simple documents. You’ll get a free UMass email account and practice sending email while keeping it secure. We’ll also explore the wonders of the World Wide Web, and search it to find useful as well as fun information.

Introduction to MS Office Pro
Tuesdays, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.,
February 10 to April 21 (No class on March 17)

UMass staff can now install MS Office 2010 or 2013 Pro for Windows on their home computers (for $9.95) or free on work computers. This beginner class will get you up to speed with many new features in Office 2010/2013.  You’ll learn Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and more.  We cover Word (Feb.10-Mar. 3) and Excel (Mar. 10–Apr. 7, no class 3/17), then PowerPoint as time allows. Register for the whole class or just blocks. No previous MS Office experience is required.

Introduction to Adobe Photoshop
Wednesdays, 9 to 11 a.m., February 11 to March 11

Have you ever wanted to wow your family with a photo greeting card you designed or impress your friends with stunning image effects? If you do, then join us in this beginner class using the fabulous photo editing software Adobe Photoshop. No previous experience with Photoshop is required. We will introduce you to the essential Photoshop tools that you can use to create amazing graphics with photos, designs and logos. Topics include an overview of common toolbar features, creating images using layers, adding text to images, cropping and editing pictures, retouching & healing, and basic color correction.

Introduction to Drupal at UMass
9 to 11 a.m., March 25 to April 22

Drupal is a powerful and flexible web content management system that lets users more easily manage the content on their Web sites.  UMass now provides a Drupal-based service and templates to groups and departments hosting their Web sites on  In this 5-week class, you’ll learn basic Drupal to navigate and develop your site, including adding and editing pages, changing the layout, adding image galleries, and building webforms.  No previous Drupal experience required.

Adobe Acrobat Pro
Thursdays, 9 to 10:45 a.m., February 12 to March 12

Acrobat Pro, part of the Adobe Creative Suite (available free for UMass staff) allows users to easily make PDFs, delete, extract, reorder or replace pages in a PDF, edit contents of PDFs, create forms and more. In this 5-session class, you will learn how to use Acrobat Pro tools to create, combine, and split PDF files, to add, highlight and replace text, and insert bookmarks, comments, buttons and links. No previous Acrobat Pro experience is required.

Intermediate MS Excel
Thursdays, 9 to 10:45 a.m.,
March 26 to April 23

Build on your knowledge of Excel and learn more functions and formatting tricks. This 5-week intermediate Excel class will cover more complex formulas and useful functions, cell and conditional formatting, charts and pivot tables. You’ll learn how to format worksheets effectively, use Excel functions like IF, VLookup & Match, analyze worksheets, and create pivot tables to make your data easier to understand. Prerequisite: basic knowledge of Excel.

Computer Courses for USA/MTA Members Only 

These two 5-week classes taught by Alexandra Martines. Classes meet in 210 Dickinson Hall. For information, contact the USA office at 545-0165 or

Introduction to Drupal
Wednesdays, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., February 11 to March 11

(See description above)

Advanced WORD
Wednesdays, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., March 25 to April 22

Harness the power of Microsoft Word! In this 5-week course, you'll learn how to work with images, create and use Templates and Styles, and discover hidden features and functions. Create beautiful, professional documents without the frustration. Topics and projects may be added based on class needs.