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Free Online Courses You Can Take To Better Yourself

by Beatrix Kang |

Lifelong learning is becoming ever easier with the ease of technology allowing us to view subjects that we wish to learn from our phones or desktop computers. However, these reputable online courses tend to cost a lot, at least considering most conversion rates cause supposedly affordable courses more expensive, making learning not as accessible as we would like it to be.

Thankfully, some organisations release educational content for a more affordable price or even for free that can help you with building the skills and credentials you desire. Here’s a list of a few programs that can help you gain leverage in the current digital market.

1. Fundamentals of Digital Marketing - Google Digital Unlocked

Google has been releasing a series online called Google Digital Unlocked which is a compilation of content that teaches users how to be better at managing digital content. One of the most notable courses among these is Fundamentals of Digital Marketing, which teaches the basics of setting up an online business, strategising for the online business, search engine optimisation, social media, web traffic, and globalisation of the business.

This course takes about roughly 40 hours to finish and each class takes around 30 to 40 minutes to finish. Despite that, there is no time constraint with this course so you can finish it within your own time, speed run it if you’d like, or even take a few months. Furthermore, Digital Unlocked uses a mix of video and practical learning tactics with quizzes and exercises, so there is a better comprehension of the topic through practice rather than just a visual and auditory input.

You can even get free certification from Google for completing this course, which can add some significance to your resume on top of having a better understanding of online marketing in general.

You can access the course at this link: https://learndigital.withgoogle.com/digitalunlocked/course/digital-marketing

2. Introduction to Sustainability - University of Illinois

Economic advancement often also has to take account of the environment too, so why not take a course about the Introduction to Sustainability by the University of Illinois? This course aims to teach the academic perspective of how our economic activities are affecting the environment in terms of population, climate change, energy usage, and environmental policies.

The course has a recommended pacing of 8 weeks, with each week taking about 3 to 5 hours to complete; but you can always go by your timing. Besides that, this is a mostly lecture-based course, so it is good for auditory and visual learners, but there are still a few short quizzes in between to test your knowledge on the subject. This course requires you to pay 49USD if you wish to get certification for the course; however, by choosing the audit option, you can still access the course materials for free and learn as you would, just without certification, which is certainly a good deal as any.

The course can be accessed at this link: https://www.coursera.org/learn/sustainability

3. CS50 Computer Science Principles-Harvard (edX)

Knowledge about computers is pretty essential in times where digital devices are used in most sectors, so the Computer Science course provided by Harvard on edX gives some basic knowledge about them. You can even start as a total novice about the topic because this course covers the basics of computer functions, from hardware to Internet, multimedia, and security.

These lectures are about 1 hour long each but the lecturers of the topic have segmented the hour up into 5 or 10 minutes bursts so that you can take some time off to fully absorb the topic. Furthermore, the lecturer often uses visualisation and concepts to explain more abstract parts of computers so it is pretty easy to understand even without prior computer knowledge.

There is no certification with this course because it is an AP course to be taken with the SAT exam in the US, but it does provide materials like assignment questions and quizzes that allow for your practice and further comprehension of the subject.

You can gain access to the course through https://courses.edx.org/courses/course-v1:HarvardX+CS50+AP/course/

4. Essentials of Global Health - Yale

Post recent events regarding Covid-19, health has become a major concern to most people, so a course about the essentials of global health can help with easing anxiety through gaining knowledge and proper measures to take about the topic. The discussion about global health in this course mainly focuses on the impact of the disease, health systems as well as the causes of death and diseases.

This course takes about 10 weeks to complete, with each video taking about 10 minutes to an hour to watch. Similarly to other Coursera courses, you can get full access to the course if you choose to take the audit option, however, you can also gain certification if you choose to pay 49USD.

The course can be accessed at this link: https://www.classcentral.com/course/essentials-global-health-7337

With the flexibility of learning, education cannot simply be bound to the four walls of a classroom anymore. So, let us continue to expand our knowledge beyond the professions we are in and so that we may become better and more wholesome in our understanding of this world.

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