As a person trying to navigate through today’s increasingly demanding job market, you’ve probably already considered all the possibilities of improving your resume. Among these possibilities, one of the most comfortable is enrolling for online training programs of various sorts, especially if they offer certificates upon completion, and especially if they’re free. Practically, after putting in some time (usually between weeks and months), you get a certificate of completion which attests your newly gained skills. Then, you can use those skills in a great number of ways which can help you advance tour career goals. But to make sure you make the most of this opportunity, here are a few basic steps you should take.
1. Figure out your goals.
First of all, you need to figure out what exactly you would like to obtain from these courses you’ll be attending. If, for example, what you’re in for is the knowledge itself, then basically you’re free to enroll in whatever you find promising by browsing the general offers related to your field. But frankly, the only situation in which such an approach would be worth it is if you’re already attending a traditional university program and need a bit of help to synthetize the general information before a major exam or something like that. For any other situation, you should also seek something other than just the experience.
Among such things could be anything from obtaining a certificate which will allow you to enroll into some other form of education, especially if you’re transitioning to a completely different career, to obtaining the skills required to apply for a new job you’re not quite qualified for yet. Imagine that you’re currently working as a nurse or health care officer, but would like to enroll in actual med school. A well-chosen certificate, even if you obtain it by studying online in your limited spare time, can help you with that. So can an online certificate help you transition to other jobs as well, even if you lack the graduate degree specifically targeting that field. To keep a long story short, as soon as you define your goals (and no one can do it for you), you’ll be able to know exactly what kind of online training would benefit you most, and therefore narrow your search terms.
2. Verify the course’s certifications and credentials.
If you manage to decide what you’d like to obtain out of your chosen online training program, then you’re good to go. Browse what’s on the offer for the oncoming semester, but before definitely choosing something, there are a few validity issues you need to consider. You don’t want to enroll in a program, maybe even pay a (usually small) fee for it, invest all that time and effort only to find out that the certification obtained won’t be recognized where you want it to be. Of course, if you only limit your searches to programs offered by prestigious universities, like UNC online courses for example, you’re not exposed to this risk. Still, since not all online training programs advertised online come from such established colleges as the University of North Carolina, it’s better to take some precautions.
To avoid any unpleasant business, there are two main things you should consider. First, if the online course you’re considering is recognized by the state it’s in or by the relevant educational authorities. This can be verified with a single phone-call to the authority source. The second thing you should check is that the certificate you will obtain at the end can be accepted into whatever future program you plan to enroll in or the job you’ll need it for (check above at the “define your goals” section). This is done by calling the public relations office of your next destination and just ask them if so. You’ll be surprised of how much you can find out like that.
3. Manage your time properly.
Now, let’s suppose you manage to find something that suits your standards and enroll in it. Let’s even go as far as suppose it’s as serious as UNC online courses. Even if the course is conveniently held online, that doesn’t mean it won’t require you to put in a fair share of genuine work. The danger with online courses though is to get caught in the procrastination spiral and then just find it way too hard to catch up with everything. In order to avoid that, you need to keep better time management, even if you’re not actually dealing with the pressure of attending physical classes daily. Keep up with every lesson as often as you’re supposed to and prepare thoroughly for that final exam.
Hopefully these general pointers will help you find the ideal online training program for you, while avoiding disappointment or being ripped off. The offer on online education is obviously very rich, and sour apples are unavoidable within it; but the good news is that if you’re reasonably careful and know what you want, the online training sector can also be an incredible opportunity. Never in the history of institutionalized education has it been so easy to catch up with your missed degrees or gain new knowledge while also observing other responsibilities of daily life. Since you’re reading this material, you’re already interested in enrolling for at least one course, and that’s the most important step. So congrats an make the most of it.