For many of the high-paying jobs with many of the top companies, a college degree is no longer a requirement. For example, in the technology sector; companies like apple, google, and tesla are saying that they just want people with the necessary skills, whether they have a degree or not. So here you’ll get 10 useful websites offering online college-level courses where you can learn. A new skill that is in high demand for free.
Here you go-
First up in no particular order is edX. this non-profit was founded back in 2012 by Harvard University and MIT to provide people without the financial means and with location barriers, access to high-quality courses from institutions and universities from around the world. There’s a wide variety of subjects to choose from including economics and Finance, History, medicine, computer science, and a whole lot more. other than MIT and Harvard, other contributors include the University of California, Boston University, and the Ivy League Brown University. You’ll even find courses for major companies like Microsoft. In this example, if you take this course the cost is completely free with the option to add a verified certificate for a fee, adding this is not accreditation. It just proves that you completed the course.
2. Future Learn
Future Learn just like edX was founded in 2012. it’s jointly owned by the Open University based in the UK and the employment company Seek Limited. They offer courses from over 100 Universities and organizations located around the world. Not all are free on Future Learn. You’ll find the free courses in Future at the top. Click courses and select short courses, let’s scroll down the page and find the subject and course you’d like to take. You can go with IT, Computer Science, Artificial Intelligence, and many more. Look at the bottom of the page. It’ll show you the duration; weekly study and it’ll show you that cost to learn is free. Typically, this means that you have access to the course for its duration + 14 days and to the right of that for Digital Upgrade. It usually includes added benefits with an additional cost.
In this example, that’s also free. A newer player offering free online courses is Kadenze. It launched in 2015 and offers courses geared towards Music, Art, Engineering, Science, Technology, Design, and Math. Some of the top contributors offering courses and programs. Including Columbia University, Stanford, Princeton, The Paris College of Art, and many more. When going to their course catalog; you simply choose a subject. For instance, you are going with Music technology and then you choose the skill level. Your choices are beginner, intermediate, and expert. You are going with beginner here. All of the courses are free. Letting you participate in forum discussions and allowing you to build a portfolio to showcase your work. They also have a premium plan for twenty dollars per month with additional benefits. Including the ability to collaborate with your peers.
Stanford University mentioned in our previous entry, has its very own education initiative; called Stanford online. Their site is user-friendly, making it easy to find the free courses you want. at the top of the site, select free content. then click on free online courses. It will show you some of the categories available. If you don’t see yours listed; click browse all. This will bring you to their catalog in Filters. Make sure that free is selected. Use the other filters to narrow down your selection. Then select your course to get additional information.
One of the oldest online learning platforms is Udemy. Which launched way back in 2010. Their primary focus is providing courses to improve job-related skills. They have the largest selection of courses with more than 150,000 available, taught by more than 50,000 instructors worldwide. Some of the top categories include IT and Software, Marketing, and Photography. A majority of their courses are not free. To find the free stuff on offer; click at the top, go to categories and select your category. For example, I’ll go with IT and software. Then select all in IT and Software. Scroll down the page to the section with the filters. In filters find a price and select free and if needed use the other filters to find what you want. For those of you getting into programming, python is a good one to learn right now. If you’re just starting these are two that look promising with good reviews. On Udemy, just like most of the other sites mentioned in this video only paid courses will offer any possible certification or accreditation.
Alison is another oldie but goodie that launched in 2007. Unlike many sites with a large number of courses. Allison is more focused on providing high-quality courses to learn skills to be used in the workplace. All courses are completely free to enroll, study, and complete in several categories including IT, Business, Math, Health, Science, and many others, while the assessment is included, you will need to achieve 80 or higher to be eligible for certification depending on the certificate earned; there is an additional fee.
Udacity, which was founded in 2012 is what I recommend if you’re looking to acquire a skill to be used in the technology sector. They offer nano degree programs that are recognized by top companies like Google, Facebook, AT&T, and many others. While not being free, they are a fraction of the cost of a traditional degree. If you’re just looking to acquire the knowledge for free here’s where you can access the past free courses to audit. So here at the top go to programs and select full catalog in the filter by click select program details and for type select free courses. You can also select your skill level and estimated duration then select your course. Unlike other courses on Udacity that require you to start and go at the same pace as everyone else. The free courses are more casual letting you go at your own pace.
This will be a quick one; the open learning initiative from Carnegie Mellon University, doesn’t offer a large database of free courses but what they do have is first Grade. find them at the top of the website, go to courses, and select student courses. Scroll down and select “independent learners”. Free courses are clearly labeled open and free. The various categories are listed on the right to refine your search.
Coursera is yet another heavy hitter in the world of online learning. It launched in 2012 like some of the others already mentioned and was founded by two computer science professors from Stanford University. In addition to working with top universities like Duke, Princeton, and the University of Michigan. There are also courses taught by big tech companies like Amazon Web Services, IBM, and Google. Coursera is a paid service and I assure you they don’t let you forget about that. If you want to gain knowledge and don’t care about the certificate, here’s how you can take a course for free. In this example, I’ll go with “Google IT Support” offering the professional certificate. The overview page letting you know it’s a five-course series. on this page when I click enroll for free, it will require signing up for 49 dollars per month. after the free trial ends. Instead let’s go back, click on courses down on the website and select a specific course that you would like to take. Obviously, we’ll go with the first one here with the course selected. Now click enroll for free. You’ll still get the offer to sign up instead right below it. Click audit the single course. This way you can gather the knowledge for free or at least it gives you a taste to find out for yourself if you’d like to pursue that certificate.
Just like future learn mentioned earlier, OpenLearn is from the folks at the Open University. OpenLearn predates their other site. It launched way back in the last century in 1999, long before the most popular sites of today. All courses are free for beginners to experts in various subjects including health, sports and psychology, money in business, science, and technology, and many more. Upon completion of any course, you’ll receive a free statement of participation. It’s kind of like a participation trophy. There’s no accreditation, but at least it does provide proof to employers of your interest in learning a new subject having completed the course.
Before closing out this blog, here are some bonus sites worth checking out; including khan academy. It’s primarily for those in K through Twelve. But does have valuable content for those wanting to learn computer programming.
For those of you wanting a career in computer programming. There is Codecademy and I’d recommend checking out.
The dash course on the general assembly site, which will teach you the basics of Web Development.
- For those of you that noticed that there is an emphasis in this blog on Computer Programming. There’s a good reason for that. There’s a shortage of programmers right now and it’s expected to be more demand in the future.
All the websites links-
- Alison https://alison.com
- Codecademy https://www.codecademy.com
- Coursera https://www.coursera.org
- Dash General Assembly – Learn to Code https://dash.generalassemb.ly
- edX https://www.edx.org
- FutureLearn https://www.futurelearn.com
- Kadenze https://www.kadenze.com
- Khan Academy https://www.khanacademy.org
- OpenLearn https://www.open.edu/openlearn
- Open Learning Initiative https://oli.cmu.edu
- Stanford Online https://online.stanford.edu
- Udacity https://www.udacity.com
- Udemy https://www.udemy.com
Thanks for reading this blog. If this is useful for you, share it with others. if you know of a website not mentioned that is great for learning a new skill, let us know about it in the comments.