Best IT Courses Online in 2020
As the demand for skilled IT workforce continues growing worldwide, IT training courses or IT university courses are gaining huge popularity. Many people are eager to master such skills and search for IT courses online as an alternative to formal educational institutions.
Studying online has many benefits:
- Time saving,
- Less spending on commute, outdoor snacks etc,
- No stress from surrounding people,
- Convenient time.
Though some people prefer live communication outdoors, the interest in online education and training courses is growing fast. Naturally it is especially interesting to find free IT courses but how to be sure it is a decent choice? Let us take a closer look at several best platforms of IT courses online, with certification and good quality of content.
Price: $39 – 79 / month
One of the most popular educational platforms on the Web. IT university courses are a major and rapidly growing Coursera’s segment. One can find various programs for nearly any kind of IT career, namely:
- Data science
- AI algorithms
- Quality Assurance
- Test Automation
- IT projects management, etc.
Coursera aims at obtaining a broader range of educational partnerships. As a result, classic Computer Science programs (such as MCIT from the University of Pennsylvania) as well as certifications from leading IT companies (such as Google and IBM) are available to its users . In addition, the platform has lively forums where attendees can exchange their experiences and help each other with different questions.
There are several different paid plans in Coursera and a special “Apply for Financial Aid or Scholarship” option is available for students. Besides, a number of free online IT courses can be found here, though obtaining a certificate usually requires a payment.
Price: $19 – $60 (for a certificate)
An Ireland-based company, Alison has quickly gained a significant popularity in English-speaking countries and currently boasts more than 12 million of active users. Its main peculiarity is that the majority of its IT online courses are free, with certificate being a paid option however. A student has to do it via the Alison Shop where they can select from:
- A downloadable PDF file,
- A printed certificate, officially branded and protected by security marks,
- The same printed certificate with a stylish frame as a bonus.
In order to obtain a certificate a student has to achieve a 80% or higher mark in an online It course of their choice.
The range of educational areas proposed by Alison is significant, with networking and hardware related programs being among its major segments.
Price: $50 – $300 (total for a verified course)
Similar to Coursera, EdX relies much on partnering with a great variety of educational institutions including world’s leading ones such as MIT and Harvard. Its programs include most of standard IT specializations like:
- Web Development,
On top of that, more general online IT certification courses groups such as Computer Programming are available as well as cutting edge ones like Blockchain or Data Science.
Compared to Coursera, EdX’s programs are somewhat more oriented at the self-paced process of learning and often provide richer additional content, according to students’ reviews.
Price: $25 – $37.50 / month
This is an online platform with some history, being founded in 1995 and still having a notable popularity today. There are 1,500+ online IT courses and 45,700+ video tutorials on IT related topics available at Lynda today. Up-to-date segments such as Big Data and Cloud Computing are included. Some of the segments however might contain outdated educational materials that were not removed or replaced in time, according to Lynda’s users reviews.
Lynda’s users get their 1st month of taking free IT courses online and after that they have to proceed with the basic or advanced plan (the latter provides access to some extra educational materials in each course).
It is worth noting that after an acquisition by LinkedIn the platform was renamed as LinkedIn Learning and requires users to log in with their LinkedIn accounts.
Price: $12 – $250 (total for a course, as decided by its instructor)
While it has been growing rapidly lately, Udemy’s popularity is not as high as Coursera’s yet. In fact, this platform has a different business model: it allows its users to create their own courses as instructors. Therefore, each owner of an online IT course can decide whether to take money from students and whether to obtain official certification for this course from a trusted 3rd party certification provider. In general, the platform is best recommended for adult professionals who aim to enhance their knowledge of specific technology niches or development techniques.
There are more than 10,000 courses available today at Udemy. A lot of them are really quite specific, namely:
- AWS Certified Solutions Architect,
- The Complete Ethical Hacking Course,
- Azure Architecture Technologies Exam Prep 2020, and others.
Udemy’s interface is quite handy even compared with Coursera’s and EdX’s: a lot of filters are available in order to locate best matching IT course for one’s needs; most popular courses and most popular instructors are listed separately and a list of discounts can be found at the bottom of the IT Courses page. All courses at Udemy have a 30-day money-back guarantee which is quite convenient for most students.
Which Online IT Courses Platform To Choose?
You need to prioritize your needs at the moment. Are you searching for a quick skill upgrade or a in-depth educational program? Do you like your online IT courses free? With certificate from a trusted organization? The latter option is likely to cost you some money. Once you know what to choose now, follow these steps:
- Pick a platform that suits your needs
- Check what is available without registration – at least browse through available courses
- Sign up and don’t forget to check for free options
- Pick a course and make sure to save any downloadable content for later
- Connect with other users and ask for their advice when necessary.