The current global Coronavirus pandemic is altering work, business, and life as we know it. It might be among the most prominent events of the decade as the present outbreak has provisionally brought to an end or busy, social, and professional lives. Though we wish to return to the office and continue with our normal project activities, it appears that many of us will be locked at home for some downtime.
However, this is not a reason to discard your career nor your entrepreneurial dream. Utilize this opportunity to acquire new skills, master that new programming language you kept stalling for various reasons, or just expand your knowledge from the ease of your home. Whether for a career shift or just to enhance your job prospects or increase your current business, mastering new skills online to attain your professional goals is undoubtedly a constructive way to deal with the present self-isolation.
The following lists a few of the best online learning platforms you can check out to brush up your skills during this downtime.
Definitely among the best online course platforms in the world, Udemy is a superb choice if you’re seeking an extremely large catalog of courses at an affordable price. It presents something for everyone, from finance, business development, and accounting, to marketing, design, and office productivity. Udemy permits you to pick and select the topics that interest you, instead of committing yourself to a rigorous lesson plan, which renders this educational platform highly flexible and user-interactive. Moreover, Udemy is providing many free courses for the quarantine period, so it is truly a pity not to benefit from it.
Tip: As practically anyone can become a course instructor on Udemy, ensure to select courses with high ratings and splendid reviews to optimize the time and money spent learning a new skill. Further, if you’re a business owner, you can select a business account, which will unlock thousands of appropriate courses for your entire team members and in extremely specific fields.
Covering every conceivable topic, Skillshare contains courses on a big number of technical subjects, entrepreneurship, and business, programming, though also painting, writing, personal branding, and other innovative topics. Unlike Udemy where you pay for every course individually, Skillshare operates on a subscription model, which comes down to a monthly or annual fee permitting you to plunge into an extensive range of skills.
If you’re already on LinkedIn and eagerly searching for a job, you’ve most practically activated your Premium subscription – a monthly or annual fee – which also offers you access to many online courses, introduced to aid you to improve your career prospects. Most courses are of top quality and they vary from short, beginner-level to in-depth specialist training. The latter is adeptly illustrated through the Learning Paths, a method used to fast get you up to accelerate and assist you specialize in specific fields, like for instance ‘Become a Manager’ or ‘Growth hacking’. These paths are split down into different courses, but it’s your prerogative to decide on the finest option and select the ones that are most appropriate to match your current needs.
Tip: The platform presents you the probability to include certifications to your LinkedIn profile, so you’ll get to display your expertise and enhance your online resume – mandatory if you wish to draw recruiters on the hunt for top talent.
A highly common platform, Coursera is renowned for its worth and prestige as it associates with top universities over the world who are responsible for developing the courses. It is regarded among the most professional online learning platforms out there and as these partner institutions even present entire Master’s degrees in different disciplines, you’ll obtain a certificate from famous universities and not simply a “Coursera degree”.While numerous Coursera courses are available wholly free of charge, you still need to pay if you wish to get the official credential.
This UK-related learning platform presents a quality selection of online degrees and free certification courses, present on a tablet, mobile, or desktop. Managed by The Open University – among UK’s long-performing educational institutions – the platform intends to join learners from all over the world with their tutors. They actually attach a high worth on the community aspect of online learning, modifying it into a social experience with lots of opportunities to engage with fellow students, associate, and even mentor other students in the process. Connecting to the platform is wholly free of charge as are many courses, which vary from psychology and nutrition, engineering, digital marketing, history, and politics. However, if you wish to obtain a certificate at the completion of the course, you’ll need to pay a specific fee, which will also permit you to download and collect the course materials.
In reaction to considerable demand, numerous online learning platforms are presenting free access to their services, including platforms like BYJU’s, a Bangalore-oriented educational technology and online tutoring firm established in 2011, which is now globally the most highly valued edtech company. Since announcing free live classes on its Think and Learn app, BYJU’s has witnessed a 200% rise in the number of new students employing its product.
Tencent classroom, meanwhile, has been used hugely since mid-February after the Chinese government directed a quarter of a billion full-time students to revive their studies through online platforms. This led to the biggest “online movement” in the history of education with nearly 730,000, or 81% of K-12 students, attending classes through the Tencent K-12 Online School in Wuhan.
Other companies are strengthening capacities to offer a one-stop-shop for students and teachers. For instance, Lark, a Singapore-related collaboration suite first developed by ByteDance as an internal tool to address its personal exponential growth, started offering teachers and students unrestricted video conferencing time, real-time co-editing of project work, auto-translation capacities, and smart calendar scheduling, besides other features. To do so fast and in a time of crisis, Lark spruced up its global server infrastructure and engineering capacities to ensure dependable connectivity.
As an increasing number of countries are opting for school and university closures, there are a few online tools that educators and students can employ to teach and learn virtually.
Classdojo is a free educational app that allows teachers, parents, and students to interact online. It permits teachers to build a virtual classroom in which they can exchange videos and pictures. An account on the app can be built only by the teacher. The student can enter the virtual classroom with an access code dispatched by the teacher.
EkStep is an on-demand platform that permits educators to design, share, and exchange free community-based educational content for K-12 class students. The app is filled with different educational videos that students can access on any occasion and learn in a self-defined way.
LabXchange constitutes a free online platform that assimilates together top quality content from multiple sources, including assessments, videos, and stimulations. The platform was built in collaboration with the Harvard University Faculty of Arts and Science.
Dingtalk constitutes a free interaction and collaboration platform that presents calendar and attendance management, video-conferencing, and instant messaging. The app was currently in the news as students, in Wuhan, who did not wish to attend remote classes, tried to shoe Dingtalk out of the Play store by returning one-star reviews.
Hapara is a digital instructional suite that aids teachers with virtual classroom handling. When employing Hapara to offer instruction, your students view what you view. The platform affords you the capacity to track the webpages that your students have open during the session, exchange files and assignments straight to student Drive folders, and co-teach all in one Workspace.
Kialo Edu comprises an argument mapping and debate platform that offers visual representations of discussions and debates in a communicative tree of pro/con arguments. As a teacher, you can begin a private discussion with any member of your class and present feedback to students through the comment feature. Kialo can be employed to host classroom debates, share knowledge, and assess learning.
Otus is a group of integrated classroom tools for students and teachers. Otus provides Learning Management (employ classroom tools to successfully differentiate), Assessment Management (create assessments to evaluate performance), and Data Management (locate patterns in student growth) products. You can even upload data from tools that your district is already employing (i-Ready, Smarter Balanced Assessment, aimsweb, DIBELS, PARCC, besides more).
Zoom is a video conferencing platform that permits for video as well as audio conferencing. For students who don’t possess access to computers at home, but do carry a phone, they can call in to attend the meeting! The free license of Zoom permits you to have an unrestricted number of video meetings that nearly 100 students can connect. There is also a chat feature that would permit your students to ask you questions while you are presenting.
Leading world events are frequently an inflection point for quick innovation – a distinct example is the growth of e-commerce post-SARS. While we have still to see whether this will assign to e-learning post-COVID-19, it is amongst the few sectors where investment has not dried up. What has been made distinct through this pandemic is the value of distributing knowledge across borders, companies, and all sections of society. If online technology can perform a role here, it is incumbent on all of us to analyze its total potential.