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Free online courses: are they worth it?

By Katie Quirk

When it comes to further education and building on your overall employability skill sets, the saying “you get what you pay for” needs to be carefully considered when you are considering free versus paid online courses.
While there is lingering uncertainty about the global economy and Australia’s financial and employment trajectory, taking the “free” path when it comes to pursuing an online qualification may be more of a loss than a saving in the long run.
Before making a decision, it is worth understanding the pros of paying for a qualification and how doing so also has the potential to improve employment outcomes.

1. Credibility.

 Learning resources and programs that have the word “free” attached, while fiscally alluring on the surface, can understandably be interpreted by future employers as offering a “come one, come all, dime a dozen” qualification.
Putting your money where your mouth is, so to speak, shows a seriousness in furthering your education and knowledge and illustrates that you consider your professional growth worthy of investing not just time into, but a financial commitment as well.
In addition, the majority of courses offered by Upskilled are also nationally-recognised qualifications.

2. Improving employment prospects.

two men shaking hands

 Not only does investing in a certified qualification help expand your knowledge and build on existing capabilities, it can also look favourable to prospective employers and  put you a step ahead of other job candidates.
In an increasingly competitive hiring environment, demonstrating the willingness and commitment to grow your value as an employee by investing in a paid course to upskill your offering shows dedication, proactiveness and an ability to self-motivate and work autonomously.
It also illustrates that you have a core awareness of what areas of your knowledge can be further built upon.

3. Access to world class educators and trainers.

Undertaking paid courses not only offers flexible study options, but students receive access to dedicated support teams who provide assistance and guidance throughout coursework and assessments. 
At Upskilled, all trainers and facilitators have “real world” experience within commercial organisations relevant to their industries, meaning they don’t just offer theoretical knowledge pertinent to your studies but practical insights as well.
From making outgoing calls to students and replying to course queries promptly and personally, the aim of Upskilled’s Student Support team  is to make your learning journey as positive and productive as possible during the lifetime of your course.

Socially distant but not isolated

online learning concept

With the universal upheaval created by the COVID-19 pandemic, it is easy to feel adrift from others, whether that be friends, family or colleagues, and combating these feelings of isolation are imperative to maintaining your mental health and motivation during study.
Enrolling in paid courses through Upskilled offers students the opportunity to connect with other like minded individuals and build relationships with experienced industry professionals and organisations.
For example, Upskilled students who enrol in BSB30415 - Certificate III Business Administration, BSB40515 Certificate IV Business Administration and BSB50415 - Diploma of Business Administration qualifications will be eligible for a free 12-month membership to the Australian Institute of Office Professionals (AIOP) upon application to AIOP.
The Australian Hospitality Institute (AHRI) also offers the same benefit to students enrolled in BSB41015 - Certificate IV Human Resources and BSB50618 - Diploma of Human Resources Management.
In addition, Upskilled students studying any course qualification receive complimentary access to the entire LinkedIn Learning library, which includes instructional videos that cover the latest software, creative and business skills taught by accomplished teachers and recognised industry experts.

Why is a paid course worth the investment? 

  • You work towards  a nationally-recognised qualification
  • There is a structured curriculum with tangible learning outcomes 
  • There is opportunity to study consistently and see the course through to its end
  • It can show initiative and a vested commitment to furthering your education and skill set
  • You have access to educators, mentors and field experts who can  support and encourage you throughout your learning journey
 To understand more about how an Upskilled course can help lead you to various career pathways, get in touch by calling 1300 009 924 today.
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*By providing your information, you agree to our Privacy Policy and to receiving email and other forms of communication from Upskilled. You are able to opt-out at any time.