The hardest part about growing up … is realizing you still have a lot to learn about everything, and no time or funds to make that kind of learning happen.
All any of us really want is to be taken seriously, especially when we enter the professional world. Even with four years of post-secondary education, we often still lack the full range of skill sets necessary to be considered a true expert.
Thankfully, there are plenty of online resources to give you the expertise you need to succeed in any field you are trying to break into. Make yourself an expert in any field using these free websites to learn new skills to enhance your professional career.
Learn (almost) anything with edX
When it comes to learning specific subjects one by one, probably one of the greatest burdens is cost. You might want to start a business relating to health or medicine, and need some basic knowledge of the subject matter before you decide exactly how to focus your efforts. That’s expensive, though. Or, at least, it usually is. In the case of edX, it’s completely free.
Using edX you can browse and enroll in a variety of free courses to learn almost anything from coding to language skills to life sciences, law, medicine and much more. The courses themselves are free, but once you complete the course you can also pay for a signed certificate if you choose.
Many of the courses offered across various subjects on the edX website are self-paced, so even if you already have a crammed schedule, you can still make time for learning. You can make your way through the course whenever you have the time. Become an expert as quickly, or as slowly, as you want.
Gain useful background knowledge with TED-Ed
TED Talks are great for learning … for those who have interest in the subjects and the attention span to sit through them. As a future expert, you need a free way to make learning more fun, so that you will actually absorb the content and be able to apply it to whatever projects you are working on.
TED-Ed is a video based, relaxed learning environment that helps you learn just about anything you are interested in. The free platform offers content on subjects ranging from the arts to business to mathematics and even education.
Each video on TED-Ed clocks in at around 10 minutes or less, so you can easily learn while on the go or while you’re in-between other tasks. The videos are also entertaining, with music and animation, so it’s many steps above sitting in a classroom or listening to an expert give a 15-minute speech.
Engage in hands-on projects with Skillshare
For some, hands-on learning is a must. No matter the field you are trying to immerse yourself in, you can’t just skim through a bunch of reading material and expect to be able to walk away and be successful. Knowing this, you might be turned off by the online learning model. Skillshare, therefore, is where you need to head next.
Like edX, this free online platform offers free courses in a variety of different subjects. However, its range of topics is much more diverse, including courses in the culinary arts, photography and writing. This is the ideal place to go if you are looking to develop more of your creative skills, which can be applied to many aspects of a business or other personal project.
Hands-on learning is important, but receiving feedback on that work is just as essential. A unique and worthwhile feature of Skillshare is that, as you complete projects, you can both give and receive feedback to and from other students who are also enrolled in your course. This way you can learn as you receive constructive criticism and make improvements along the way.
Expand your knowledge with YouTube – Education
You may have heard of this video website called YouTube. It’s a video-based platform where anyone, anywhere, can watch, create and post videos about anything they want. What you might not have known is that YouTube has a special sector dedicated specifically for educational content.
YouTube – Education is a place online, also free like its parent site, filtered to show you videos that include educational content only. Accessing YouTube from this side of things, you don’t have to sift through hundreds of random videos to find one that will actually teach you what you want to know.
Using YouTube – Education, you can watch educational videos created in many different styles by a variety of users, so unlike TED-Ed, this site may be able to appeal to a wider variety of learning styles. Videos also vary much more in length, everything from quick five-minute videos to videos that last over an hour.
Grow your expertise little by little with Highbrow
You may really, really want to become an expert in your field, but time is also a factor you have to consider when trying to develop and refine skills and gain knowledge. Even an online course or watching multiple videos in a day can take hours. How can you make this all work, even with a full schedule?
Try Highbrow. It’s a completely free email subscription service that sends over a new five-minute lesson every day, straight to your inbox. You get to manually choose which subjects you want to learn about, so you will never receive information on anything you are not interested in.
You can engage in these simple and quick lessons in no time at all, and take away from them whatever knowledge you want to use to your own advantage. This is a great online learning method for someone who is most easily reached by email and is motivated to learn something new on a daily basis.
There’s no excuse for not being able to make yourself an expert in your field with all the free online resources available to you. You can pretty much learn whatever you want, whenever you want to learn it.