Which Online Learning Platform Should You Choose? - MOOCs



We all are aware of the MOOCs or Massive Open Online Courses. But when it comes to choosing one, we all are skeptical in which one we should invest our precious time and money. Personally, I have experienced quite a lot of platforms for courses. I have been on self-learning journey for a very long time now. There are a large number of sources you can educated from on the internet. At some places you might get certified while at some you might not. These are all paid courses with a free offerings here and there, if you want to know about FREE ones, then just read this article till the end.

Note : I have mentioned a few reliable sources as per rankings ( best to worst ). All of the below mentioned rankings are as per my personal experience and it may vary.

  1. Udacity : Udacity is a platform which often creates a lot of courses in collaboration with Google, Facebook, and recently there's been a lot of MNC intake. What makes me put Udacity first is that the way they teach things, no matter if its the hardest tensorflow or easiest git. They teach you the topics and even someone who's not quite good as grasping new things can learn easily without any stress. Each concept and it's related uses along with the background theory is explained with ease. The content is really reliable and informative.

    Pros : Each moment and coin spent is worth it. They have a lot of free courses by Google and many other top universities.

    Cons : Too expensive Nanodegree programs. Free courses are hard to search down the catalogue but they do exist. Just doesn't come up in first few options. No certificates unless it's a Nanodegree.

  2. Internshala : I have given this new fledgling platform this rank for two main reasons, first being value for money and another being explanations of concepts. Internshala is world's largest internship search portal. Alongside their main internship providing and finding platforms, they have a separate trainings platform. Some of the courses are in collaboration with other teaching platforms as well but at the end you'd get value for your money.

    Pros : Value for money courses. Each coin is worth being spent. I'd say cheapest courses with the best educational content. You get a certificate and a free combo placement course where they give tips and teach you about resume building and job hunting.

    Cons : Often their courses are on huge discounts (upto 80% at times), which can be counted as a pro but if you're someone who had paid the full value in some off sale season, you'd feel duped. So my advice would be to just wait for a discounted opportunity or contact someone who's Internshala's student partner or been one like me for a 10% off at least.

  3. Udemy : To be totally honest, I was quite scared of going on this platform. I had my fair share of reasons as I had been notified that most creators here take on contents from youtube free courses and just divide it into videos and upload to get money. Although, I am still not sure about the content level here, I'd say it totally depends on what creator or teacher you're taking the course from.

    Pros : Certificates for Courses, Value for money ( most courses are pretty cheap ). Also can easily look up for free offers or coupons for discounts online.

    Cons : It's very easy to get duped. At times there'll be two courses with same price but their content will differ. If content is same then the topic depth might differ, there's no regulation. At times, I have come across courses where a robot is narrating and screen is shared as video. I'd say, be safe while buying anything here. Although, udemy is good on taking actions on complaints but you can't judge when you don't know how much valuable content will you get for your money.

  4. Coursera : My experience with coursera was horrible. Although, I am mentioning personal as your experience or tastes might differ. Coursera has a very rigid robotic structure. Personally, I felt like I was in my college class ( Mumbai University Affiliated College in Remote India). If you're accustomed to that level of boring-ness after paying then I'd advice just you better get admission into some university. I felt that this platform is trying to portray itself as some honorable university but doesn't have any legal standards or permits for it. I couldn't go past one section of a course. I don't want to name that tutor or university which offered the course as I tried many others and the result was the same.

    Pros : Many top USA universities have their courses on this platform and even MNCs like Google and IBM have their courses. You'd get a certificate for completed course.

    Cons : Expensive, Boring classes, Rigid Robot judged or peer reviewed assignments. One point riked me a lot, they  asked to legally sign up as some honor code that every assignment that I'll submit won't be copied and would be original. That's totally fine with me but what's up with legal binding? Another thing, you'd need to submit your some sort for legal document certifying your identity. They'll use some third party thing to click picture from your webcam and then match it with your legal document just to give you a certificate for your course that you completed. WTF!!

    Amidst privacy concerns why would I pay to get some document leaked just for a petty certificate? I am not confident enough to just give out any identity card online. Sorry coursera!
Now, this was the list of all the platforms I study from online. I admit there are many websites and official documentations I refer along with the blogs to study a particular topic but this was just an overview if anyone needed a paid training course. Now coming to the most important Free courses where you can get certified.

FREE COURSES

There are a lot of websites where you can study for free and they ask you a little money for certifications in some options while some totally run on donations. The listing isn't in terms of rankings here.

  1. Every Programming Language Documentation That Ever Exists. If you want to learn python, the best and free source would be it's official documentation. The same goes for programming languages and frameworks.

  2. GeeksforGeeks, Wikipedia, W3Schools.  Alongside other things these websites offer a lot of free education in exchange for minor money in case you need a certification. Wikipedia doesn't offer certifications but it as abundance of knowledge if you can sit and find the thing you need to read from.

  3. FREECODECAMP.ORG - Last and my favourite, free code camp. If you want to learn coding this is the best portal. It's an NGO which runs on Donations. So. if you really choose it as your learning portal, please donate some amount to help it run it's operations smoothly. It has it's own youtube channel, where many creators have offered a lot of free content and some with certifications as well. Though, their main website and blogs have a lot of content to get educated as well.

  4. Youtube : Last, but not the least, the platform which we all are aware about. Just hit up the thing you want to learn in the search box and there will be someone teaching you that. There are many channels which teach you a ton of things. Google has their google developers channel for android, tensorflow as well ( these are the ones I came across, there might be more ). Not sure about certificates but learning is free.




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