Several colleges and universities offer free courses, which do not count as credit but have a lot to learn. Despite that, several students enroll in these sessions in large numbers. Fortunately, regardless of where you are in the world, you can register for these sessions.
Massive open online courses (MOOCs) are the best free online courses. You can enroll in any MOOC of your choice and learn at your pace, appear for the tests, complete your assignments, and avail a certification if applicable.
Now, the big question that may be hovering in your head is:
why do students opt for these free classes, even when they do not receive any credit?
Are there any benefits linked to it?
Below, we will enlist some of the main advantages of free online classes. Let us address them one by one:
The number one benefit for most students opting for MOOCs is scheduling flexibility. While some programs require certificate or degree seekers to commence their sessions immediately, the students can choose between an accelerated eight-week or a traditional sixteen-week class too.
Even though most online offerings run asynchronously to assure maximum flexibility with scheduling, some may demand you to collaborate with the other student learners at a fixed time. In a few, you may also have to meet with your professor during their suggested office hours.
Typically, these meets are virtual. Before you sign up for any of these classes, you should consider researching for the requirements to avoid any confusion.
You will be a part of a vast community of over 10 million students strong.
The three top MOOC online platforms – Udacity, edX, and Coursera, offer about seven hundred online education classes to about 8.5 million students from over 225 territories and countries. Other prevalent MOOCs are Alison, Open Learning, Iversity, Udemy, Miriada X, NovoEd, FutureLearn, Open2Study, Canvas Networks, and CourseSites.
Some other popular colleges and universities are also trying to get on the MOOC bandwagon by compiling the resources from their on-campus programs to promote their programs amplify their reach, and accentuate their knowledge. Boston University is the latest to join the party.
In a short while, they have released their five classes on edX in the last year. HKUST is one of the first-ever universities to provide degree credit for their MOOC. If that’s what you seek, you can enroll in their Coursera-hosted ‘The Science of Gastronomy’ class. TangoLearn has several other MOOC suggestions you can try.
The comfort of learning from home
On some days, you hate to leave your house. In all honesty, we feel you. Work and life become so stressful at times that your body needs rest. Your friends also demand time. In such situations, you cannot spare another moment to travel to study. In those days, it is a blessing to learn from home. So, you get inherent flexibility and self-care to learn without traveling to a university or college with online learning.
Thus, it is a one-of opportunity to exercise your mind, sans the needless fight through the traffic or the daily grind of reaching school in time, sometimes even ignoring the sickness to not miss out on the attendance. Hence, learners who opt for online learning can take their coursework sans any need to step outside.
Moreover, the courses even let you learn on the go. So, you can study your lessons at a coffee shop, subway car, or doctor’s waiting room. They also allow downloading and offline learning. So, the knowledge acquisition can also continue while you are in the middle of a long, hectic flight.
Thus, with online learning, students have an option to learn whatever they want in whichever setting seems convenient and productive for them. Online sessions also let you alter and personalize your environment to suit your personal preferences. So, whether you like studying in a pin-drop silence environment or enjoy some calming music in the background, it is also workable with an online class.
Host of options
In an online class, you have an option to select from an umpteen number of courses. The choices online are more than what you find in the on-campus setup. Further, in online learning, there is no limitation on learning only the subjects offered in the college near you. You can choose from 100s of thousand of different classes and pick the ones that best match your requirements.
It is accessible
With online learning, you have an option to study whatever you want, and from any corner of the world. It implies that you do not have to travel from one place to another or follow a specific schedule. Further, you save time and money with online learning, which you can spend on other things on your priority list.
Since classes happen online, you can enjoy them anytime where you have access to an internet connection. Moreover, you can continue your education as you work because you can study in your time and schedule. Thus, there is no reason to give up one for the other.
It helps you advance your career.
One of the primary reasons most students who enroll decide to continue studying is to further their education and grow in their careers. It is also the number one reason for students opting for online classes. You can grow in your career with the choice of the correct course. It may yield benefits like:
- Earning a salary hike
- Reskilling or upskilling
- Switching to a new career field
Because of its inherent flexibility, working professionals can easily find a class online, which can help them grow further in life.
Easier to focus
In the classroom, it is not always easy for you to focus. On some days, you are tired, while, on others, you do not feel like attending the class. There may also be construction happening outside at times, which may disturb your concentration. However, you will not have such excuses in online learning. You can take your classes only when you are ready and want to.
So, these are the top seven benefits of enrolling in a free online class. Have more such pros to include? Please share them with us in the comments below.
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