I remember a time when I said I didn’t want to mention the coronavirus on my blog. In the past few weeks I’ve written about how it is impacting me in New York on a J1 visa, what it’s like to isolate with flatmates, what working from home looks like and how to stay connected in isolation.
It’s very hard to avoid the topic right now and perhaps it’s somewhat of a coping mechanism to write about it and try to help other people that are struggling with it.
While I also don’t like to preach about being productive in this time because everyone has their own lives and their own circumstances, I do have a lot more free time on my hands. Because of this free time, I’ve decided to make the most of it and try to do some self-improvement.
I’ve enrolled in online courses, even purchased some and am trying to gain some qualifications to add to my CV. If you fancy doing something similar or dipping your toes into the possibility of some online courses, here are five that I’ve signed up to or am planning to participate in.
1. CENTRE OF EXCELLENCE COURSES
The Centre of Excellence are offering all of their online courses for just £29 each. Most of the courses are over £100, so you are saving a lot. I purchased two courses; Blogging for Business and Proofreading and Editing.
The Blogging for Business course should be interesting and will hopefully improve my blogging skills on a personal level. I’ve always wanted to be more skilled in proofreading and editing as I’m such a stickler for correct spelling and grammar. I’m not that knowledgeable in punctuation which I’m hoping this course will help me improve.
I love editing and from reading and being in touch with a few publishers, I hadn’t before considered a career or side-hustle of sorts, working in publishing. But imagine if your job was to constantly read and edit? It would be another dream job for me.
If you fancy purchasing a course from Centre of Excellence, use code UPSKILL in the checkout and your course should be reduced to £29. You’ll even earn a certificate and some CPD points, should that be your thing.
2. LEARN SOME SEO
Moz are now offering all of their academy courses for free. If you want to learn more about SEO (Search Engine Optimization), keywords or backlinks for example, sign up to some courses through this page.
I have very minor knowledge when it comes to SEO (only what I know from my blog) and have seen the rise in link-building from those I follow on Twitter that work in digital PR.
I’m very keen to learn more about it and have signed up for the SEO Fundamentals Package which was $149 – but I’ve just signed up for free. All you need to do is use ‘wegotthis’ in the promo code area of the checkout page.
3. TAKE YOURSELF TO HARVARD
Yes, that’s right. You can enroll to Harvard for free. The time has come for us mere mortals and Harvard is now within our reach.
I have enrolled to the Contract Law course which should last around eight weeks, before I undertake the second part of the Contract Law course in July that will last a further eight weeks.
There are (at the time of writing) 65 courses available online for free on the Harvard website, which you can access here. Imagine telling people you completed an online course from Harvard University?
4. GET SOME GOOGLE CERTIFICATIONS
The Google Digital Garage lets you take courses in their applications and tools for free, and even gives you a certificate at the end.
I’m sure you’ve used Google Analytics, Google Adwords or even Google Data Studio in a previous job or in your current job, but why not have the certifications to prove that you can use them well?
These certifications will also be of use to have on your CV when you go to apply for a new role. The courses aren’t too time consuming or difficult either. Gain some free qualifications while you have the free time to do so.
5. LEARN TO CODE
Take a leaf out of Karlie Kloss’s book and learn how to code. There’s often a stereotype when it comes to coding. You know what I mean. When you imagine someone coding, I’m sure you imagine a guy, in a basement surrounded by a lot of computers, cans of Red Bull and working through the night typing all sorts of letters and symbols at rigorous speed.
Coding to me looks like another language. Something I wouldn’t possibly be able to get my head around. But Karlie Kloss has managed to change the stigma around coding and show that even supermodels can learn how to do it.
Thanks to Codecademy, I know understand the basics of SQL coding. The free training only takes you so far, but I know more about coding than I did before taking the training.
I’m currently on the hunt for more coding courses, to add to the new knowledge I’ve gained and to try and become an intermediate coder at best.