We all need to take charge of our education and careers, and one of the cheapest and easiest ways to do this is by utilizing online education options. Online options can provide a way to advance or maintain existing skills or gain new skills in a much more convenient way. For many people, like myself, we live in areas that may not provide a lot of in-person educational options. Online then becomes the only way we can carry out some extra training.
The problem you often run into with some online training is that it is either cheap and bad or overpriced and barely acceptable. You rarely find exceptional training options, and when you do, it tends to cost as much as a hands-on training course. I have seen online courses that cost $1200, and they amount to nothing more than a video training series. That might work okay when I only pay $10, but I won’t spend $1200 on something like that.
With the following 3 options, I tried to find the highest quality courses that had the lowest costs. The courses they offer can vary greatly, so if one doesn’t offer a course that interests you or meets your budget, check out one of the others. They do sometimes have overlapping areas as well.
360 Training has a lot of courses focused on areas that are often underserved in online education. You can take classes on everything from workplace sexual harassment training to basic forklift training. 360 Training has options for the business looking to offer low-cost training for its employees as well as opportunities for the individual looking to gain new skills or study for certifications.
A few 360 Training Courses:
- IT and Software Skills
- Food Safety and Food Allergen Training Courses
- OSHA safety training courses
- Real Estate License Training (Cost Varies By State)
- Insurance Adjuster License and Insurance Exam Prep
- Construction Safety
- Employee Sexual Harassment Training for $30
- Microsoft Certification
Udemy allows people to create their own courses for others to purchase. This results in several possible courses on the same subjects for learners to choose from. It can also create some courses with questionable quality, but Udemy does offer a limited return policy if a class does not meet your expectations. There are some really great options on Udemy when it comes to training, including earning the PDU’s needed for PMI exams and Agile Training.
Coursera tries to connect colleges with learners by offering Massively Open Online Courses (MOOC). In some cases, they will provide the first few classes needed to obtain a college degree. This can substantially reduce the cost of getting a college education.
Many of the courses on Coursera are in business or technology related, but they do have options in math, science, literature, and engineering. With some classes, paying is optional if you want to receive a certificate of completion.
Personally, I used Coursera more several years ago when they let you purchase by the course. They now have a subscription model that I don’t care for, but others seem to like it. I have not personally taken any of the college degree options Coursera offers, but I have taken some of the computer science courses and project management courses.
- Free Courses
- Learn How to Apply to College
- Bachelor of Computer Science from the University of London
- Master of Computer Science from the University of Illinois
Similar to Coursera is Ed2Go and they offer some different options compared to Coursera.
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