Online Learning Platforms That Can Help You Upskill
December 30, 2020
Online courses come with a plethora of advantages — they offer flexibility, affordable fees, and a variety of academic networking opportunities that can help in your career advancement. You could pursue these courses alongside your university degree and complete them at your own pace. Additionally, you can get a certificate upon the completion of your course that you can then add to your CV. Moreover, the skills you pick up in online courses can be a great talking point in interviews.
Here are some popular online learning platforms that you can explore for courses that can boost your employability.
Udemy is one of the most popular online learning platform for students. The platform provides a wide variety of online courses, with topics ranging from business, finance, and IT to photography, health, and music. Students can access over 150,000 courses (taught in over 65 languages) in a wide range of subjects.The price varies according to the course and you can even preview courses to make sure that they are in line with your expectations. Additionally, you are entitled to a full refund within the first 30 days of purchase if you aren’t satisfied. Once you pay, you get lifetime access to the course, and the platform will provide you with a certificate of completion at the end.
Skillshare offers video-based courses in creative fields like animation, design, photography, lifestyle, film, business and writing. The platform comprises short video lessons taught by prominent artists, writers, and other creatives and take an hour or less to complete. Additionally, it is a membership-based platform so you can access all courses for a fixed membership fee. Students can even save 50% off the cost of a premium membership by registering with a valid .edu address.
LinkedIn Learning offers professional courses on business, technology, and creative fields in the format of video lessons. The platform comes as a premium service for LinkedIn users, therefore we would recommend you make a LinkedIn account before starting any course. The platform offers more than 16,000 courses in 7 languages and focuses on helping individuals invest in their professional development. There are several advantages to using this platform, it allows you to assess your progress using quizzes, it even has offline learning access to learn on the go and comes with a one-month free trial.
Coursera is an online learning platform that can give students access to academic courses. There are over 4,000 courses on this platform, from over 200 universities and companies, including Yale, Google and the University of Pennsylvania. There are several types of courses and programs offered: regular courses, specializations (which focus on skills mastery), professional certificates (aimed at helping job-seekers), master track certificates (which include modules from masters programs) and online degrees from universities. It is a pay per course model so the price varies depending on the course you choose. This means that students can receive certifications from renowned institutions upon joining their paid courses. The time required to complete each type of course or program varies widely.
The courses have video lectures, self-paced quizzes, group forums and hands-on projects.
edX is another learning platform where students can find online courses from various universities. They mainly specialize in the sciences — engineering, computer science, data science, math, humanities, business, and management. Additionally, the classes are interactive which allows students to chip in.
It has around 8,000 online courses from 100 prestigious universities and businesses that offer higher education in many disciplines. The courses can be accessed free of cost by enrolling in the Audit Track. The Free (Audit) Track grants students access to all course materials, such as lectures, videos, ungraded assignments, and readings, for the duration of the course. However, you won't receive graded assignments and verified certificates of completion. If you want to have access to graded assignments and earn a certificate upon successful completion, then you would have to enrol in the Paid (Verified) Track.
MasterClass is another platform for creative development and learning. The classes are divided into nine categories: Film & TV, Culinary Arts, Writing, Music & Entertainment, Sports & Games, Business, Photography, & Fashion, Business, Politics & Society, Lifestyle, and Science & Technology
It is a unique platform as the courses are actually taught by the best in these fields – for instance, you can learn acting from Natalie Portman, film making from Martin Scorsese, singing from Christina Aguilera, cooking from Gordon Ramsay, and writing from Dan Brown, etc. It is best suited for creatives who are looking for personal development and seek inspiration from the best professionals in the field. Classes include high-quality video lessons, assignments, workbooks, and community activities. You can also join discussions to ask questions, get feedback, and connect with other students.
However, MasterClass does not offer certificates of completion which might be a drawback for some.
So what are you waiting for? Enrol yourself in an online course at any of these platforms and enhance your skill sets!
(This blog was written by our wonderful intern Nainika Mehta, an international student from India studying at the University of Bristol)