Online learning has grown significantly in recent years as the technology to provide really effective training has developed and the need has also grown.
Online or e-learning courses are now commonplace, the quality can be very good and they are often cheap and easy to undertake.
Courses are available in virtually every topic from electronic engineering, to finance, career management . . . . and in fact anything you want.
But many people might ask whether they are worth taking: are they really as good as they are made out to be; when they are completed, do they really mean anything to others; and aren't there a lot of low quality courses available.
In order to discover whether these online training courses are worth taking, its is worth looking at all aspects of these courses and then making an informed decision.
Is online better?
There are many ways in which training can be undertaken, and in recent years the option for studying via an online course has become more widespread.
Online training offers many benefits over the more traditional methods of study.
Accessibility: Online courses are really easy to access. All that is needed is a computer with access to the Internet. It is then possible to sign-up on line, pay, and then start the course. Most courses are available almost instantly, so it makes them particularly accessible. Some courses may be scheduled for a particular time, but many are available when they are needed.
Flexibility: Many courses can be undertaken when it suits the person who is receiving the training. The courses are often pre-prepared and can be accessed as and when they are needed, being broken down into bite sized chunks. IT is often possible to pick them up and put them down when it is convenient. As they can also be accessed from home, or wherever needed, this makes them an exceedingly flexible option for most when compared to other forms of training where there are fixed times and places.
Affordability: With the greater level of accessibility to online training courses, many more people can undergo the training and although set-up costs are higher, this can be more than offset by the number of people being trained. Accordingly, many of the online training courses can be undertaken for a very reasonable sum. This makes them a very attractive option.
These advantages and benefits mean that from the aspect of obtaining the training, these online training courses are well worth taking as they are accessible, flexible, and affordable.
Does additional training advance your career
One of the main reasons for undertaking any online training is to learn new skills. These may be new technical skills; skills associated with managing people; a new software programming language, or something totally different.
First and foremost, taking an online training course will help develop your skills so you can undertake a new task or position in your career.
However, taking an online course has several other benefits:
Display a willingness to learn: Whether paid for by yourself, or by your company, undertaking training will display a willingness to learn, and this will always be beneficial
Improve employability: Any good training that is added to a CV will improve the employability - it shows that the person has the right attitude.
Keeps people up to date: Anyone who does not undertake training during their career will fall behind others. They will become less employable, and as a result they will tend to become sidelined because they will not have the skills needed, and they will be less likely to be able to take on the tasks required of them as technology and techniques move forward.
Undertaking training will almost always be advantageous because it will not only have the direct benefits,, but it will also create a greater level of confidence to take on new areas of responsibility.
Benefits of online training
It is very difficult to judge the exact value of any training. It is normally not possible to determine whether the cost of the training is directly returned by what new opportunities or salary increases have been gained.
Instead it is worth remembering that any new skills and abilities gained from training will reflect positively with any employer, and in addition to this it is likely to provide new skills that will enable new responsibilities to be taken on and new technologies addressed.
Undertaking training will also help in ensuring that one does not become out of date and sidelined.
value for money of online training
Looking at the cost of online training corses it can be seen that the costs of many of them are quite low. It is possible to wonder whether the cost os low because they are of a low quality.
The costs of many are low, because they are online and once they have been prepared they are available for a much larger usage than those that might be in-person and at a location that might not be suitable for all. They can have a global rather than a regional uptake, and many can be undertaken to suit the trainee, and not at a specified time. Also they can be online for many months of longer, again increasing the uptake.
It can be seen why online training courses can be cheaper, but it is still necessary to ensure that the course providers are reputable and provide good value.
it is still necessary to ensure that the courses are not "cheap and cheerful" as the saying goes.
On Electronics Notes we have partnered with reputable course providers who have a good track record of providing excellent online training courses.
Will an employer recognise the training
This is a question that many will ask. If the employer sponsored the training then they should most certainly recognise the training and the effort put into successfully competing it.
If the training was undertaken personally, then this is a little less certain. There are always benefits to undertaking training, and it is likely any employer will recognise the keenness to learn and stay updated. It may also provide some new skills they will recognise, and this will be useful.
It also helps if the online training comes with a recognised certificate. Many online courses are prepared by highly respected training providers like some top universities, etc. Certificates from these organisations are likely to carry more weight with employers, etc.
However other providers can still provide excellent training, even if they are not the top universities.
As Benjamin Franklin once said: "If a man empties his purse into his head, no man can take it away from him. An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest."
In general, any training will be of great benefit, and if a little research is undertaken, then the best course will be found and this will give the greatest benefit.