Welcome to the era of massive open online courses (MOOC). MOOC is being seen as the next big wave in education. Although some or another form of distance learning meant for the masses has existed from about a century through mediums such as the radio; the advent of the internet has changed the game.
The term MOOC was coined in around 2008, and the concept has gained widespread acceptability since then. Today, most universities that are well-known around the globe have this learning platform as part of their teaching methods. The popularity of this mode of knowledge dissemination can be attributed, naturally, to the usual advantages that distance education offers: ease of access, flexibility, and cost-effectiveness.
In the decade or so since MOOC acquired shape and has gained popularity; many universities, institutions and individual players have jumped on the bandwagon to offer MOOC. There are many variants of these courses, with some of them being certified courses, some coming with credits, and others with affiliations to organizations. All these varieties go on to make MOOC a medium that has gained universal acceptance today.
Are you on the lookout for an MOOC to enhance your career or grow in other ways in your profession? We have put together a list of 15 well-known MOOC providers that is culled from a list of dozens of such providers. Our aim is to help you understand the nature of these providers, so that you can zero in on the one that fits your requirements better:
Lynda.com is an online learning platform that specializes in teaching areas such as software, technology, business, and creative skills. It offers subscription patterns such as individual, corporate, academic and government.
Khan Academy (https://www.khanacademy.org)
Khan Academy is a non-profit educational organization that offers teaching in math, physics, history, computer programming and many other courses that students can take and finish at their own pace. NASA, Museum of Modern Art and MIT are some of the prestigious institutions that Khan Academy has partnered with.
Udemy is a massive online learning platform in every sense of the term, offering no fewer than a whopping 55,000 courses of various shapes and sizes. It has courses for students as well as professionals.
Coursera is a venture-backed, education-focused technology company that offers courses in any subject ranging from Python programming to soft skills. Its courses are proved between $29 and $599, and some of them come with certifications.
Pluralsight is designed to offer training courses to professionals and businesses and help them gain more from their workforce talent through its 6000+ course that are taught by over 5000 mentors.
Codecademy concentrates mainly on teaching coding, with emphasis on practical, than on rote, learning. It claims to have a learner base of over 45 million.
With emphasis on research and an intention to increase access to education for people either in the online or campus mediums; edX has research on topics as one of its USPs.
Udacity believes that education does not end during a lifetime, because of which it has designed higher education courses that are affordable, accessible and engaging.
Dataquest concentrates on data science. Its unique methodology tunes learners into thinking like a data scientist to help overcome challenges associated with coding and other areas.
Simpliv is a massive platform for learning and teaching online courses on all areas of knowledge from technical to soft skills to yoga to painting. It moves away from pedagogic lecturing methods and brings in lively and practical sessions.
As the name suggests, ServiceSkills provides online trainings on how people in retail and other sectors, who interact with customers and other people, can sharpen their communication skills with customers and coworkers.
Code School (https://www.codeschool.com)
Code School, as the name indicates, is a provider of lively online trainings for coding professionals and learners.
Treehouse offers affordable technical learning that students can take and complete at their own pace.
FutureLearn is a provider of diverse online courses that are selected from leading institutions and learning centers from around the world.
With a rich history dating to 1701, Yale is a prestigious university that offers distance learning through its online division called Open Yale Courses, where a full range of arts, social sciences, humanities and other courses are offered through the MOOC medium.