Online Learning : Your Path to Career Advancement
November 11, 2015 by Ed Weirauch
Frustration is all too common in the workplace today. We may find ourselves looking toward new opportunities outside our current organization, but too often think to ourselves:
- I can’t seem to find the time
- My field has changed and I no longer have the right skills
- I can’t leave my office to go to a course or seminar
- My company doesn’t pay for further education or training
There is an answer to these kinds of concerns: online learning. Using online learning resources can be your ticket out (or up!) because you can train yourself from anywhere at any time; the seemingly endless world wide web has courses, seminars, and workshops that you should be taking advantage of.
There are a few steps to take before starting your online career advancement:
Do some web-surfing to find the right program for you. With a lot of resources come a lot of choices to sort through; you need some time to investigate what your options are. In your research you’ll find a range of programs that can take you from the basics all the way up to college degrees – you’re almost certain to find courses that will enhance your career.
Prepare yourself to learn alone. While some online learning offers people interaction, much of it does not. Therefore, self-discipline is crucial. If you log on after everyone else has gone to work and the house is empty, your focus can be challenged. Stick by your commitment and set yourself timed goals.
Before you take a course online, look to make sure you’ll get some certificate or other documentation that you completed the course. That can come in handy as evidence that you actually participated. Many of these certifications can be helpful résumé boosters!
That being said, look to see if your course is recognized by your professional association. If so, that can make a stronger impact on your current manager as well as any prospective hiring managers.
Here are a few sites you can check into for programs that work for you:
- coursera.org – Seemingly unlimited options, from sciences and liberal arts to personal development.
- oedb.org – “Open Education Database” lists 10,000 free online courses to earn certificates to Associates to Doctorate degrees.
- udemy.org and www.score.org are two more sites offering extensive online learning.
Use your resources and see how you can cancel out those excuses you may have thought were holding you back.
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