Enhance Your Job Marketability by Taking Massive Open Online Courses
Massive open online courses, or MOOCs, can be your best friend as you strive to make yourself more marketable. In many cases, MOOCs are free, widely available and actually useful in that you learn valuable content and strategies. Employers know the value of MOOCs, and many of the classes meet standards for training and/or continuing education. They broaden your skill set and increase the number of positions for which you are a good fit.
Limitations of MOOCs
Starting with the (somewhat) bad news, MOOCs do have some limitations. Depending on your field, course selection can be limited. Plus there?s a fair chance you won?t be able to use the classes toward educational credit, certificates or degrees. However, more and more colleges recognize what MOOCs offer and are granting credit for courses taken. Last but not least, the online delivery is not the best fit for some learning styles, and teacher availability may be an issue.
To find the right MOOCs for you
Check out specific colleges or universities online. Find out what free classes are offered. Sites such as edX.org also serve as central information hubs that list many courses on one site. Review the courses to make sure they fit what you are looking for. Ensure you can work with the date, time and technological requirements.
Once the MOOC has started, participate to the fullest extent possible. Show up for online seminars and add to the discussions. Treat it as you would an in-person class or job. Despite common myths to the contrary, online courses can be challenging and therefore require a bit of commitment on your part.
Good times to use MOOCs for maximum marketability
While you probably can?t go wrong with a MOOC at any time, there are certain times where taking one (or a few) can really benefit you. An example is if you are in between jobs or out of work for whatever reason. MOOCs give you education and skills to help plug potential gaps on your resume. Another example is if you want to enhance your skill set for a job pay raise, promotion or lateral move. Also, if you?re really tight on money, MOOCs can help save the day.