No matter what field you work in, there’s always more to learn. Sometimes it comes from experience, other times from technological developments, but often the best way to learn is to sign up for a course.
If you want to learn a completely new skill or brush up on something you’re not fully confident in, there are plenty of options to add to your education both online and across Australia.
With some of the most respected web development courses around, General Assembly has built a strong reputation and a global network. Choose from a range of digital courses such as data analysis, user experience design and iOS/Android development.
General Assembly offers a mix of online and real-life courses. With 20 campuses worldwide, there’s plenty of choice for where to study, but if you want to stay in Australia you can choose between Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney. Prices range between $1000 and $17,500, depending on your method of study and the course you choose.
Academy XI is an Australian-based institution that offers short courses teaching students in-demand skills. Some of the courses currently on offer include Blockchain, Growth Marketing and Virtual Reality Design.
All the Academy XI courses are run from either their Melbourne or Sydney campuses, but an online course is in the offing. With prices ranging from $3500 to $10,000 for the courses, which generally run for 10 weeks on a part-time or full-time basis, it’s not cheap. But the hands-on experience of some of these courses, especially those in cutting-edge fields, is not to be sniffed at.
There are a range of MOOC (massive open online courses) sites available, many offering you the chance to study courses and subjects from some of the world’s best universities, while others have been created purely for the site. Many of these portals are completely free to join and to use. Some of the best options include:
Coursera – featuring subjects from the likes of Caltech, Princeton, Stanford and Yale (as well as Australian institutions like Macquarie University and the University of Sydney), Coursera provides courses through video, with quizzes throughout to make sure you’re on track. Depending on what you sign up for, you may also get official accreditation, but this may incur a fee.
The front page gives you the chance to select from popular courses or sections, such as the business courses that can teach you Excel skills, negotiation tactics of the foundations of business.
Khan Academy – while many of these courses are aimed at school children, there are some that are suitable for beginners of all ages. Learn coding, computer science and animation, brush up on your grammar or learn about finance to give yourself the skills you need.
Unlike similar sites, all of the Khan Academy’s courses have been designed for the site. Funding has been given to the organisation by the likes of Google, AT&T and billionaire Carlos Slim.
edX – Like Coursera, edX teams up with top universities (including Berkeley, Brown, Juilliard and Oxford) to provide courses online. Some of these are free, while some have a fee.
edX breaks down courses by subject, partner and program – showing you quickly which ones are credit-eligible, which give you a certificate and which are verified. While some are self-paced, others are done alongside the courses at the universities.
TAFE is a great resource to learn new skills, whether you want to do it in person or online. Even better is that this year both the NSW and Victorian governments have pledged to help small businesses by letting people sign up for certain courses for free.
Small businesses in New South Wales and those with an ABN can sign up for courses in the Skills for Business range, including financial and digital literacy courses.
In Victoria, the offering is more generous, with many qualifications and apprenticeships completely free. This includes courses in accounting, printing and graphic arts, plus more to be announced.
In the rest of the country, and in those two states, there are plenty of other TAFE courses that are available for a fee, which could help propel your career.
The Left Bank
Based in Sydney, but with a campus in Melbourne, The Left Bank specialises in courses in digital marketing. Its accredited course is a Diploma of Business (specialising in digital marketing) and there are also online short courses available in social media marketing, content marketing, data analytics and SEO/SEM.
Online courses run for 10 weeks and cost $990, while the diploma takes 52 weeks full-time (two years if part-time) and costs $8,850.
No matter what field you work in, there’s always more to learn, whether it’s directly linked to your service or not. To make sure you can provide the best work to clients, it’s important to make sure you take time to keep improving.