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4 things to know before studying IT online

By Ana Isabel Alonsagay | 02 July 2021


As an area of high skills demand (according to National Industry Insights) yet a limited talent pool, Australian workers are encouraged to build their skills in the field of tech – whether to “future-proof” their abilities for a digital future, or to launch their career in a lucrative, growing specialty. Educational opportunities have never been more abundant, with many now offered the option of training online.

We dive into the details of online IT study below, its value in pursuing a tech career, and the potential job roles available after completing a course. 

What things should I know before studying IT online?

1. You’ve got a wide range of specialties to choose from.

Through expansive growth in recent years, the IT field has given rise to a wide variety of diverse roles and specialties. Online courses have now diversified accordingly, catering to each of these new areas and interests. Whether you’re more logically-driven, creatively-inclined, or enjoy more practical, technician work – you’re bound to find a program suited to your specific passions through the vast selection of IT study options online. 

Additionally, such courses are available at varying skill levels, including certificates, diplomas, graduate diplomas, and even short courses. Upskilled, for example, offers an extensive catalogue of IT training programs from certificate to diploma-level qualifications.

2. Online study requires the right tools and discipline.

woman studying at home

While online study offers greater flexibility and autonomy over your training (compared to traditional, on-campus study) – students must ensure they’re equipped with the proper tools. A stable internet connection, laptop (or desktop computer), and a quiet study space are all necessary to successfully engage with your course.

On top of this, online students require the self-drive and discipline to complete their tasks with minimal supervision. Such programs may allow greater freedom and control, but without the proper schedule and time management, one can easily fall behind on the necessary readings, projects, and assessments. 

3. You’ll build soft skills, too. 

Alongside honing a sharp, technical skill set, IT courses can also help you refine the valuable soft skills required for any workplace or industry. Most, if not all tech specialties, require excellent skills in both written and verbal communication – particularly the ability to explain technical concepts in plain, jargon-free language. Studying in an online environment itself also helps bolster one’s communication skills, as this form of training encourages one to actively collaborate and connect with their online peers and trainers. 

Additionally, IT training heavily focuses on various forms of problem-solving, having one consistently practice their analytical and critical thinking skills. You’ll also likely engage in plenty of research-based activities, as well as build a general understanding of business planning and management. All such skills are highly valued in any role, regardless of position or industry. 

4. Pursuing your own side projects is encouraged.

Finally, with the flexibility an online IT course provides, students are highly encouraged to put their newfound skills to practice in the form of personal side projects. 

This allows one to not only foster a practical understanding of specific concepts and theories, but also helps them build on their professional portfolio for future career prospects. Crafting your own personal IT projects demonstrates a sense of drive, passion, and self-initiative – all valued by any employer, and necessary to compete in the job market.

Are online IT courses useful? 

Online courses have soared in popularity in recent years, with recent survey results reporting a significant preference for online study over face-to-face learning among university students today. Pursuing IT training online is particularly useful for those with other work or personal commitments to tend to, as the flexibility of such courses allow students to work at a place, time, and pace that suits their needs best. 

Don’t be fooled by their online structure, either – most digital IT courses offer highly comprehensive training, delving into both the theoretical and practical areas of a chosen specialty, and often culminating in complex summative or formative assessments. 

What are the job opportunities after completing an IT course? 

1. Network administrator. 

Network administrators are responsible for overseeing a business’ computer network; installing, managing, and upgrading any hardware or software as required. They also typically monitor network activity, manage access permissions of network users, help set up new accounts, train employees on network usage (i.e. proper downloading and uploading of material), and ensure overall optimal performance of network-related operations.  

Recommended course: ICT30120 - Certificate III in Information Technology - Focus on Basic Cloud Computing or ICT40120 – Certificate IV in Information Technology (Networking) 

How long does it take to complete the course? 

The Certificate III course comprises 13 units of Competency and can take 12 months to complete. The Certificate IV course comprises 20 units of Competency and takes up to 18 months to complete. 

2. Software developer.

software developer at work

Software developers take part in a more creative aspect of IT – designing, coding, and maintaining programs or applications according to user needs or client requirements. Such software may be used to assist with business processes, automate specific tasks or simply provide entertainment. Others in this field may also focus on larger-scale projects, such as the networks or computer systems used to power such programs. 

Recommended course: ICT30120 - Certificate III in Information Technology - Focus on Programming or ICT40120 – Certificate IV in Information Technology (Programming)

How long does it take to complete the course?

The Certificate III course comprises 13 units of Competency and can take 12 months to complete. The Certificate IV course comprises 20 units of Competency and takes up to 18 months to complete. 

3. Cyber security specialist.

Cyber security specialists oversee the digital security systems of a business, implementing security audits on hardware and software as necessary. They ensure all critical software is patched and up-to-date, and networks for any security risks or vulnerabilities. Additionally, they may guide employees on security best practices, industry standards, and issues of compliance. 

Recommended course: ICT30120 - Certificate III in Information Technology - Focus on Basic Cyber Security or ICT50120 – Diploma of Information Technology (Cyber Security) 

How long does it take to complete the course?

The Certificate III course comprises 13 units of Competency and can take 12 months to complete. The Diploma course comprises 24 units of Competency and takes up to 20 months to complete. 

How to apply for an online IT course with Upskilled 

To apply for an online IT course with Upskilled, one can simply visit our catalogue of available courses – ranging from areas of web development and programming to the emerging, growing specialties of cyber security and cloud computing. 

When you find a course that suits you, select the “Enquire Now” option to get in touch with an education consultant. From there, we’ll answer all your burning questions regarding the course, general online study, and the benefits of training with Upskilled. 

Equip yourself with in-demand skills in IT

With a vast range of lucrative career paths to pursue, paired with its generously flexible learning experience, studying an online IT course is your ideal pathway to new professional opportunities. Step foot in your ideal tech field, or simply build your skills for an ever-digital future – and enquire with us on a course today.
 
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