Knowing you've got to become conversant with a computer in order to get along these days--get your kids' attention, keep household finances straight, earn your pay--might make you a tad anxious.
You might feel like you have a lot in common with the first-grader opening a Dick-and-Jane reader for the very first time: See Spot run.
You have a lot to learn, and you know it. WETA, Channel 26, and three area colleges want to take you from "see spot run" to computer fluency in 23 weeks.
The public broadcasting station will televise a beginning computer literacy course, starting January 26, which can be taken for credit through the University of the District of Columbia, Montgomery College and Prince George's Community College.
WETA officials said the broadcasts are designed for the working person who wants to know how and why computers operate and wants to start writing programs--whether for personal computer use or to further a career.
The broadcasts will be Wednesdays and Fridays at noon and will be repeated on Sundays at noon. A preview of the series is scheduled for Thursday at 11 p.m.
A textbook accompanies the video course and can be purchased through the colleges or from WETA. Each college has varying requirements and fees if the course is taken for credit. Each offers "hands-on" time in the schools' facilities, and UDC has portable terminals that instructors will bring to any site where a sufficiently large group of students might gather.
Boeing Corp. produced the computer course and Potomac Electric Power Co. is working with WETA on the local telecasts. Information on the course can be obtained from the schools, WETA or Pepco.
For viewers in Anne Arundel County, Channel 22 is offering the same computer course, and Anne Arundel College will give credit. Information is available from Anne Arundel College.