More people than ever are turning to online learning, and rightly so. It’s comfortable, convenient, and cost-effective. In fact, almost all schools and colleges have switched to online education. However, e-learning isn’t just for school and college students. Online classes for adults are the new normal.
Research shows above 40% of people taking online classes are over 30 years of age. Upskilling is an essential aspect of career growth, and online learning is an excellent platform to fulfill your learning requirements.
The issue, however, is where you should start learning? Today, we’ll talk about eight online classes for adults to learn almost anything.
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Online Classed for Adults
Udemy is my personal favorite, and many online learners will agree with me. With over 100,000 courses, Udemy arguably has one of the largest collections of online courses in the e-learning space. From coding to marketing to writing to even physiotherapy, you can learn anything on Udemy.
What’s even better about Udemy? Anyone can become an Udemy instructor and start teaching. This is unlike other platforms that have courses in affiliation with certain universities. While this may add to the credibility of those courses, it slows down the pace at which new courses are uploaded.
Since Udemy allows everyone to teach, you can find newly-updated courses on any topic.
Not many people know about Alison courses, but it’s a gold mine for online learners for two reasons.
- It has over 1,000 online courses across all subjects available from all expertise levels (from beginner to advanced).
- All the courses are absolutely free. You’ll need to pay a fee if you want a certificate, but if you only want to learn, you don’t need to spend a single penny on Alison Courses.
Alison offers two types of courses: Certificate Courses and Diploma Courses. Diploma courses are more detailed and provide an in-depth learning experience.
You probably already have heard of Coursera. If not, Coursera is one of the largest online learning providers, with over 70 million students from around the world. Unlike Udemy that allows everyone to teach, Coursera only works with universities to deliver online learning experiences for students. The trainers are university faculty members, so you get a chance to learn from the best.
Coursera offers three types of learning programs:
- Certification courses
- Specialization courses
The only downside to Coursera is that most of its courses are paid. But in return, you get to do assignments and give examinations. If you’re looking for a place to learn for free, Coursera may not be the right choice for you. But if you don’t mind spending a few bucks on your development, you can try Coursera.
Skillshare is another popular online learning platform with a vast library of online courses. It offers courses across various subjects, including creativity, business, technology, and lifestyle.
Like Udemy, Skillshare allows anyone to become an instructor and teach students worldwide. However, Skillshare is a membership-based platform where you need to buy a monthly membership to access all the courses. This is unlike Udemy and other online classes for adults that charge a per-course fee.
Online Classes for Adults
If I had to put edX in a few words, I’d say it’s a blend between Alison Courses and Coursera. Like Coursera, EdX works with universities worldwide to offer online courses. And like Alison Courses, all the courses available on edX are free, unless you want a certificate.
EdX offers three types of learning solutions:
- Online courses
- Learning programs
- Online degrees
You can access the courses for free; however, programs and online degrees come with a tuition fee. EdX offers courses on all subjects, from architecture to biology to marketing.
LinkedIn recently launched its learning platform called LinkedIn Learning, and it has gained popularity among online learners. It is relatively a new player in the online learning space, and it’s already offering hundreds of courses across business, creativity, and technology subjects.
The benefit of LinkedIn Learning is that you get a chance to learn from proven experts. On the downside, all the courses on the platform are paid. You get a free trial for a month, but you’ll have to pay for the courses after that.
FutureLearn is an England-based online education platform jointly owned by The Open University. It shares numerous similarities with Udemy in terms of both the interface and course structure.
FutureLearn allows anyone to be a learner, so the courses on the platform are fresh and regularly updated. It also offers academic accreditation programs and online degrees in affiliation with the leading universities in the world.
Four types of learning solutions are available on FutureLearn:
- Short courses
- Microcredentials and programs
- Online degrees
You can choose from various subjects, including business management, IT, healthcare, literature, law, language, and media.
One of the recent online classes for adults on the list, MasterClass, is an online education subscription platform. Like Skillshare, MasterClass is a subscription-based e-learning platform where you can take a monthly subscription and access all the courses.
MasterClass is different from other e-learning platforms in two ways:
- You’ll find courses from experts online. These include Neil deGrasse Tyson, Gordon Ramsey, and Natalie Portman.
- Unlike other classes where you find the majority of courses about technology, marketing, and management, MasterClass focuses on unconventional subjects. These include cooking, music, acting, and even wilderness survival.
Wrapping Up: Online Classes for Adults
Now, the question is which platform you should choose for online learning. There’s no right or wrong answer to that question, and your choice will depend entirely on what you need. If you just want to learn cost-effectively, Udemy is an amazing pick. You can get courses for as low as $10.
On the other hand, if you want university-recognized certificates, Coursera, edX, and FutureLearn will be better picks, as they partner with universities and companies across the globe.
Alison Courses can be a good choice if you just want to increase your information for free and don’t care about certifications. And lastly, if you want to learn unconventional subjects like cooking and acting, check out MasterClass.