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Best Online Platforms to Learn Something New

Although many of us have submitted our UC app and don't have to think about what to write for the Activities & Award section (the real struggle imo) anymore, it is a good habit for us to never settle and keep learning. Due to the pandemic right now, the campus is closed and many clubs/organizations activities are paused. What should we do to keep improving our knowledge and skills?

Here are some of my favorite online platforms to learn new skill/knowledge. Whether you just want to learn for fun, or even get certification and include it in your resume.

1. Skillshare Price:

Premium Membership (includes unlimited access to 20,000+ classes) - $15/month or $99/year

Free Membership (includes unlimited access to 2,000+ classes) - free Library:

20,000+ classes

Free Trial:

Yes (2-months free trial)

Skillshare is one of the most popular online learning platforms. It has a massive collection of over 20,000 classes that are divided into three categories: Thrive (Lifestyle, Productivity), Build (Business Analytics, Freelance & Enterneuprenship, Leadership & Management, Marketing), and Create (Animation, Film & Video, Graphic Design, Music, Creative Writing, Photography, Web Development, and more).

Skillshare believes in a project-based approach to learning that allows students to expand creativity and apply new skills in life. All courses consist of two parts: a video presentation (which usually lasts around 20-minutes) and a class project.

2. LinkedIn Learning

Price: Premium Subscription (includes unlimited access to all courses) - $29,99/month or $299,88/year Library: 16,000+ courses Free Trial: Yes (1-month free trial) A few years ago, LinkedIn acquired one of the oldest e-learning sites called Lynda, and transferred all content to its own platform - LinkedIn Learning. The company now offers thousands of high-quality courses for all levels, from beginners to advanced, covering a wide array of subjects, including Web Development, Software Programming, Economics, and Business Management. LinkedIn Learning has a single monthly subscription fee that gives you access to all the content on the platform. The courses consist of bite-sized modules that help absorb information better. LinkedIn Learning allows you to download any course for offline viewing, which I find to be very convenient. LinkedIn Learning is not accredited, but most courses offer a Certificate of Completion that you can later add to your LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn Learning is a good platform that can help you jumpstart your career or achieve professional goals. If you are interested in joining the platform, you can do that by signing up for a 1-month free trial.

3. Price:

Verified Track Courses - from $50 to $300 each

Audit Track Courses - free Library:

2,500+ classes

Free Trial:


edX is one of the best providers of college-level online courses. The company was founded by Harvard and MIT, and the quality of courses is top-notch. All the courses on edX, with the exception of professional education courses, can be taken for free.

To join the course without paying you to need to enroll in the Audit Track. The Free (Audit) Track grants students access to all course materials, such as lectures, videos, ungraded assignments, and reading - for the duration of course. However, you won't receive graded assignments and verified certificates of completion. If you want to have access to graded assignments and earn a certificate upon successful completion, then you would have to enroll in the Paid (Verified) Track. The certificate can be added to your resume or LinkedIn profile. If you enroll in the Audit Track but then decide that you want to earn the certificate, you will have a chance to switch to the Verified Track. Each course has an upgrade deadline so make sure you check that first.

edX offers over 2,500 courses on different subjects including Biology & Life Sciences, Architecture, Chemistry, Art & Culture, Electronics, Education & Teacher Training, Medicine, Food & Nutrition, Physics, Science, Music, Law, History, Language, and Environmental Studies. Most courses are available in English, but there are also some courses in Chinese, Russian, French, Italian, Spanish, etc. There are courses for introductory, intermediate, and advanced levels. The courses usually consist of both text and video content and assignments. There are also course discussions where you can ask questions and interact with fellow students. Some courses include group projects. You can download any edX course for offline viewing.

7. Price: Coursera Plus Subscription (includes unlimited access to most courses, Specializations, and Professional Certificates) - $399/year Individual Courses - from $29 to $99 each Specializations - from $39 to $79 per month Professional Certificates - from $49 each Online Degree Courses - from $15 to $25,000 each Audit Option - free Library: 4,300+ courses Free Trial: Yes (7-day free trial for subscriptions) Coursera is an online learning platform that offers university-level courses and certification programs. The courses are taught by instructors from top companies and universities such as Stanford, Yale, and Princeton. The price for individual courses varies from $29 to $99. However, there are thousands of courses that have the Audit option which allows you to take it for free. If you choose to audit the course, you won't receive graded assignments, a certificate, and bonus materials. Most courses consist of video lectures, assignments, reading materials, quizzes, projects, and group discussions. There are courses available in many languages: English, Spanish, Russian, Chinese, Portuguese, Arabic, French, German, Korean, Vietnamese, Japanese, and more. Some of the courses' topics are Arts and Humanities, Business, Computer Science, Data Science, Information Technology, Health, Math and Logic, Personal Development. Each course takes 4-6 weeks to complete. If you want to master a specific skill, you can enroll in a Specialization - a series of online courses, each takes 4-6 months to complete. Once you complete the Specialization, you will earn a Certificate to add on your resume. You get a 7-day free trial to try a Specialization at no cost when you start your first subscription. And if you are looking to change your current career or start a new one, then you can enroll in one of the Professional Certificates programs. Like Specializations, Professional Certificates are a series of courses, but the difference is that the Certificate of Completion will be issued by the company that developed the course. Finally, there are online degree courses granted by world-class, accredited universities. The main advantage of getting your degree online is that it costs much less than on-campus programs. Also, you can study at your own pace and complete your degree faster. If you plan on taking several courses, it might be a good idea to subscribe to Coursera Plus, an annual plan that grants unlimited access to over 90% of courses, Professional Certificates, and Specializations. You can take as many courses as you like and you will earn a Course Certificate for every course you complete.


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