Massive open online courses were the term that was once referred to internet-based distant learning programs that cater to people from different geographic locations. Now the term you are looking for is online learning platform.
Online learning is affordable, flexible and legit. The 3 key things you require as learners.
Now if you’re wondering who uses virtual learning methods, it’s for those who want to advance their careers, acquire new skills, and get a legit certificate to showcase on the CV.
Speaking of CVs, while LinkedIn Learning or the infamous Lynda, has the perk to associate your qualification directly on to the job platform, other online CV builders must not be ignored. Why? Because your CV is the first impression recruiters have of you and gaining the interest of future employers is why you need to tailor your application.
Good CV builders help you create eye-catching resumes that stand out from the crowd. They usually come with templates and a bunch of other great guides that tailor your experience in CVs to grab your recruiter’s first impression.
How does Online Learning Platform work
What we’re doing here is giving you a list of elearning platforms that offer recognisable certification.
The course providers which offer online education can be an educational institution like a university or college. It can also be a corporation, such as Microsoft or Google, or an organisation, like the Linux Foundation or Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).
Every eLearning platform enrolls hundreds or thousands of learners at a time. To accommodate this large population, classes are usually open all year round. So, each student can choose how and when they want to progress in their learning.
Moreover, many famous higher education institutions around the world offer financial aid as well. These include the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Stanford University, and Harvard University.
Some of the learning content available on educational platform are:
- PDF Books
- Recorded audio or video lectures
- Online quizzes and examinations
- Interactive learning modules
- Problem sets
- Interaction with fellow students through forums
Best Online Learning Platforms
There are several pointers which come together to make learning experience valuable and the course material valid.
A trusted and secure platform for learners to study new skill improves their chances on a stable income. People prefer this type of professional development avenue as it allows them to:
- Learn more about a particular field
- Improve their current or gain new skill
- Advance their career, and
- Access quality educational experiences
- International & Recognisable Certification
Here are some of the best online learning platforms that can help you reach your new certificate.
Coursera is perhaps the best online learning platform.
It partners with about 190 companies and universities to provide quality and self-paced education to learners.
Coursera boasts a catalogue with more than 3,900 courses and specialisations across different learning fields. These include the arts and humanities, public health, languages, business, computer science, physical science, and engineering etc.
And, of course, all its certificates are recognised around the world.
Coursera offers both free and paid courses.
Its free courses provide access to reading materials and video lectures only, so you can’t engage in online quizzes and practice questions.
The paid courses, on the other hand, provide access to all course material. These include online reading materials, quizzes, video lectures, practice exercises, and certifications.
There are unlimited courses you can take in the paid structure call Coursera Plus. You earn a Certificate for every course, Project, Specialisation, or Professional Certificate that you complete under its umbrella.
Coursera Plus has a 7-day free trial, 3 plans and a 14-day money back guarantee.
Coursera also has certificate-based payment as well and the cost varies.
The platform accepts the following payment methods:
- American Express cards
Additionally, to get the financial aid this platform offers, you can qualify for it by writing a letter stating why you need it. If you are accepted, you will receive a confirmation within fifteen days. Bear in mind that only a few courses offer this option.
edX is the second largest online learning platform in the world after Coursera. It has over 40 million students and partners with over 140 higher education institutions.
edX provides more than 3,000 courses with topics ranging across humanities, accounting, business and management, computer programming, arts, science, engineering, and language.
It also offers different types of certificate programs, including MicroMasters, XSEeries, Professional Certificate, Bachelor’s Degrees, Master’s Degrees, MicroBachelors, and Executive Education.
Also, if you earn a good score before your course ends, the platform gives you verified certificates.
edX offers audit courses, in other words, free learning, which provides access to all course materials except graded assignments. However, you can only access the free content for the specified course length. Once this period elapses, you will lose access to the course.
Finally, the audit courses do not offer certificates.
Unlike other courses, you only have to pay for certificates in edX. You can do this with:
- Credit/debit card
Alison is one of the world’s oldest perhaps, and largest free learning platforms for education and skills training with over 4000 free online courses.
It is dedicated to making it possible for anyone, to study anything, anywhere, at any time, for free online, at any subject level.
Alison offers accredited certifications in PDF format in parchment and online form. These are paid for and that’s how the e learning platform earns. Courses on Alison are accredited by CPD UK, an independent organisation.
The platform has a plethora of courses in different fields, including health sciences, hospitality & tourism, finance, human services, manufacturing, Govt. and public administration, science and engineering, education and training, information technology, and Law etc.
Alison has an iOS mobile app as well as one for Android. And unlike many MOOCs, all online courses are free. But if you want an accredited certificate or diploma for individual courses, you need to pay. There are different prices for eCertificates and parchments.
There is a monthly subscription at €7.99 per month, where you get Exclusive Monthly Discounts, Discounts Never Expire, Up To 50% Off Your Certification, and Absolutely No Ads.
FutureLearn is a unique e learning platform created to give UK institutions a foothold in the MOOC space.
The platform has over 175 partners in varying institutions within and outside the UK, including the National Film and Television School, the British Museum, and organisations like the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and the BBC. The universities it partners with include the University of Leeds, King’s College London, The Open University, Coventry University, and the University of Glasgow to name a few.
FutureLearn offers a variety of programs you can choose from. These range from short courses and ExpertTracks to MicroCredentials Programs and Online Degrees.
In other words, FutureLearn has something for everybody, no matter what their direction is.
Every course or degree has a set syllabus & course material, requirements, instructors’ profile and reviews.
FutureLearn covers numerous courses across different categories, including psychology and mental health, IT and computer science, history, literature, human resources, law and politics and Teaching etc.
To earn a certificate on FutureLearn, you need to upgrade your course and complete over 90% course steps. Also, you need to attempt every test question and get a minimum score of 70%.
FutureLearn offers both free (audit) and paid courses. To get a certificate, you have to register for a paid course.
FutureLearn offers a monthly and/or annual subscription plan. The amount you have to pay, however, depends on the program you choose. For instance, ExpertTracks cost £38.90/Month, whereas Unlimited learning costs $189.99/Year.
In both instances, the learning material in virtual classroom stays for you and there are no time-limits on expiry of study period.
FutureLearn offers different payment methods:
- Visa & Mastercard
Kadenze is a for-profit educational platform for good course content focused on creative and arts education.
The learning platform offers courses on visual arts, music, and creative technology. It partners with top art institutions and universities around the world to create quality online courses. These institutions include Princeton University, Stanford University, Goldsmiths University London, and Rhode Island School of Design.
Kadenze offers access to classes in different fields, including sound production, cinematic storytelling, project for designers, and many more.
Kadenze courses run in two modes: Adaptive or Scheduled.
Adaptive courses are flexible with schedules. As a result, you can start a course and progress through it at your pace. However, assignments remain locked until you complete the previous assignment.
Scheduled courses, on the other hand, have a set start and end date. They also have due dates for assignments. They use Google Classroom as their standard for learning management system.
Similar to FutureLearn, Kadenze offers subscription plans. It has two payment plans – Free user and Premium member.
- Free user: It is free for everyone.
- Premium member: It costs $20 monthly.
Kadenze accepts credit cards only.
Edureka is an online learning platform that provides IT related courses.
It is the ideal learning platform if you are looking to advance your career in the IT industry. It provides classes in fields like programming, data analytics, web development, and more.
Edureka provides its learners with a quality virtual education experience. To achieve this, they employ qualified, vetted instructors who give an in-depth and deep understanding of the topic. They also provide a high support level and an intuitive learning space.
The platform currently offers more than 180 courses. Their most popular courses are DevOps Certification Course, Python Programming Certification Training, Big Data & Hadoop Certification Training, and AWS Architect Certification Training. Also, the platform provides its users with recognized certifications at the end of their courses.
Edureka does not have a subscription plan. Instead, each course on the platform comes at an individual fee. The platform also only accepts payment via PayPal.
Online Learning Platform, In a Nutshell
As you can now conclude, there are several benefits to an elearning website.
To choose the best tool you need to know your goals, so define what your goals are. Do you want to learn a new skill so you can switch careers, or is it for a promotion? Or are you simply interested in learning for the fun of it.
Your answer to this question, among others, will guide whether you choose a paid online course or a free one, as welsl as the platform.
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