Online Courses: The edtech industry never gained so much traction than during the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020. As schools and universities across various countries were forced to shut down indefinitely, millions of learners had no other option but to switch to online learning to continue their education. Those educational institutions that already had the digital infrastructure in place were the ones to cope with these uncertain times sooner and were able to transform their offline learning mode to online smoothly.
One of the options such schools and universities got was to collaborate with an existing edtech platform and connect with the students there. Various eLearning platforms were proactive in dealing with the huge surge in the number of active users and leveraged the technology available to them to offer high-quality education. In light of this trend, we could also see some reputed training providers also offering free courses online on a range of categories like digital marketing, blockchain technology, artificial intelligence, machine learning, cloud computing, and so on. This is because the pandemic highlighted the growing need for digital skills in the job market.
Employees across industries realized that they would need to upgrade their skills to stay relevant, or else become a part of the layoffs conducted by companies. In such a scenario, online courses proved to be the best option to develop digital skills quickly and with the comfort of sitting at home. Now, there are both free and paid courses available on the eLearning platforms. But during the pandemic, people started seeking quality courses that were available free of cost. Now comes the question – Are free online courses really worth your time and effort?
If you too are curious to know, then this article is for you. We will discuss if you can rely on a free course or not and what are those eLearning platforms that offer reliable courses.
The Pros of Free Online Courses
The education sector has seen a lot of progress in the past decade. Today, you don’t have to go to a foreign country or move to metro cities to get a quality education. Courses from world-class instructors are just a click away from you. Moreover, you don’t need to pay a hefty amount while enrolling in them. Online courses are far more affordable than academic offline programs. But, many are of the opinion that quality goes hand in hand with the price, meaning free courses may not offer quality study material and training. But what if we say that such courses are offered by reputed companies like Google, IBM, and renowned universities like Harvard, MIT, Georgia Institute of Technology, and more? Well, you may change your opinion and would like to give them a try.
Here are some of the benefits of taking free online courses:
- You can learn the basics of any trending technology. Though not the advanced concepts, you will have a complete overview of the fundamental concepts to help you get started.
- Some of the platforms also offer course completion certificates that you can present to employers and showcase your skills and practical knowledge in a given domain.
- Courses from reputed platforms are often upgraded regularly to incorporate any new industry trends so that the learners are aware of them and can use them in their job.
- The pre-recorded video lectures that you get access to are designed by industry experts who have rich domain knowledge and experience and know how to explain concepts in a simple manner to the learners.
- You can learn about a variety of subjects through online courses. Whether it is traditional software development or emerging technologies like blockchain or augmented reality, there are courses for all of them.
Which EdTech Platform can I Rely on?
Among the various options available over the internet, it may be tough to pick the most reliable online learning platform that offers free courses. Some of them are listed below.
SkillUp by Simplilearn
Simplilearn is the world’s leading certification training provider and its SkillUp initiative is specifically designed for the learners who want free courses to gain in-demand skills. From project management, cybersecurity, to social media marketing, and DevOps, you will find many courses ideal for beginners as well as experienced professionals. The skillup is also known as the Real project management software. Moreover, you will get a course completion certification at the end.
As the name suggests, this training provider is suitable for everyone willing to gain in-depth coding skills. The platform has helped millions of learners unlock modern technical skills and reach their full potential through code. You will find courses related to many programming languages like Python, Java, C++, Swift, Kotlin, and subjects like web development, data science, code foundations, and web design.
Cognitive Class by IBM
Cognitive Class aims to address the skills shortage in emerging technologies like data science, cloud computing, big data, and blockchain. Along with lecture videos, individuals can also access a virtual lab environment that enables them to practice what they learn. Some of its featured courses are IBM Cloud Essentials – v3, Python for Data Science, Introduction to Data Science, and Introduction to Machine learning with Sound.
Overall, you should go ahead and enroll in free online courses offered by reputed institutes and gain the skills needed to succeed in the 21st century.
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