“Learning never exhausts the mind.”
I love learning new things. I remember going for my job interview and being asked what I want to get out of the potential new job I was faced with. I told my now-boss that I wanted to learn. I was completely honest. I didn’t have an extensive knowledge of Digital Marketing before I got my job, but I expressed my interest and a thirst for learning new things. Well, what can I say. I got the job and I learn something new and exciting every day at work.
Before I accepted my job, I started an online Copywriting course to try and get myself up to speed with how to write effectively for my newly chosen career path. Now, I was a bit nervous about doing this. I didn’t know anyone that had studied online before, and the idea of jumping into something like this without any recommendations first scared me a little. However, me being me, I did it anyway. If there was a chance it’d help me find a job or teach me something I didn’t already know about a writing career, something I was so determined to have, then I didn’t really have anything to lose.
The first thing to remember here is that most accredited courses don’t come cheap. I’m sure there’ll be hundreds of online ‘courses’ out there that claim to teach you everything you’ll ever need to know about writing (or any other topic for that matter) but if you’re after something that employers will look at and recognise, you’ll need to open your wallet. It does depend on the employer though. A lot of workplaces these days surprisingly prefer determination, a passion for the industry and a desire to learn over qualifications. It’s true; having a degree doesn’t necessarily mean you can land your dream job. I’m a prime example of someone who never went to university and managed to land themselves a job doing what they love. It’s never impossible.
I’m certain though that whatever type of online course you’re thinking of, it will go down well with a potential employer. A free course or a £500 course shows you are determined to learn and can earn you big brownie points when it comes to finding a job. You don’t have to pay to learn something new, it just depends on how in-depth you want your new training to be.
Before I’d even got half way through my course, I was offered my current job as a Digital Marketing Strategist and content writer. I continued my course in my own time because a) I’d paid for it, and b) well, there’s no harm in continuing to learn something you’re so passionate about! It turned out to be very beneficial for me; I came out of my course with a Merit grade and Qualified Copywriter status!
I chose the College Of Media and Publishing to complete my Level 4 diploma after a bit of research online. A lot of courses were way out of my price range and I didn’t want to spend hundreds on something, only to find it might not be what I was interested in later down the line. Thankfully, I stumbled across a hefty discount code which dramatically decreased the cost, and started some extra learning on my evenings. Trust me, it’s worth looking for discount codes as it can get ridiculously expensive.
The course content was exactly what I needed and covered the essentials I’d need in my job, such as SEO and Social Media. There was even a little about blogging in there too! I had a great tutor who would always give me detailed feedback on my assignments and some helpful tips along the way. Exactly the sort of thing you need.
I’m not going to say every online course is worth it, because I don’t believe it is! I’d recommend only choosing topics/courses that interest you, or those linked to what you plan on pursuing as a career. It can get very in depth and the only way you’ll come out alive is if you put all your energy into it and learn as much as possible.
Overall, is an online course worth it? Of course it is if you’re determined. There are some points you need to consider before you start, and hopefully these can help you decide whether or not an online course is something you’ll benefit from:
- Does it interest and inspire you? – If yes, go for it. There’s nothing to lose! If you’re a learner, you’ll love the online way. You get the freedom you wouldn’t get in a ‘school’ type setting and you’ll get see all your learning material in one place.
- Fit your studies in around your lifestyle – If you’ve got a full time job, perhaps kids (or dogs) to look after or you like getting out and about often, it doesn’t mean you can’t complete a course. I’ve found many sites to be very flexible without course or assignment deadlines. This means that you can work as much or as little as you like. I completed my course over a 3 year time span, sometimes not working on my assignments for months. As long as you’re determined and don’t forget about your studies, you can take as long as you need to get it finished and grab that qualification.
- View your assignments beforehand – Before you purchase an online course, look at the topics you’ll learn about first. If you’re keen to study a psychology course for example, and you want to learn about the minds of criminals and serial killers, you’ll not be best pleased if you find out there are modules about relationships and how people fall in love. You wouldn’t enjoy it!
So, if I’ve not scared you off completely and you’re still curious about diving into the world of online learning, I’d definitely encourage it! You’ll learn an awful lot and you never know – it might just land you that dream job you’ve been after for a while. Never say never!
Has anyone completed an online course before? If so, which site did you use and what did you study? I’d love to hear your own experiences! 🙂