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9 Online Courses to Expand Your Horizons


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With much of the country in mandated or self-quarantine due to COVID-19, there’s a good chance we’re all going to be spending a lot more time indoors than usual — at least for the foreseeable future. If you’re searching for something to do while you’re stuck at home, your options certainly aren’t limited! From getting in shape to getting organized, there are a ton of ways to keep yourself occupied. One of our favorite ideas, however, is to commit to learning something new with an online course for adults.

After all, who says your education has to end once you’ve left the classroom? With thousands of classes and certificates available to you at the click of a mouse, all that’s left to be done is to choose the one that’s most beneficial to you. Keep reading to learn more about them and find a few suggestions for our favorites. 

How do online courses work?

If you’ve never taken an online course before, you probably have a couple of questions, primarily, “How do online courses work?” While each one is different, we’ve broken down some common aspects of these classes that will help clue you in as to what to expect. 

Structure: Depending on the online course you take, the structure will vary from class to class. There’s one similarity you can count on, however: an online portal, or a learning center, that you’ll regularly log on to to access required materials (i.e. e-books, videos, assignments, and instructions) and monitor your progress. To do this, you’ll likely need to set up an account on the course’s website. 

Time: While there are some online courses that will have live interactive components, we’ve chosen a selection that follows a more traditional format, meaning that each one has a “go at your own pace” timeline (notwithstanding any required deadlines).

Workload: Just as with any regular class, online courses do include assignments, but most of the ones found here are open-ended. With more wiggle room on homework, the workload will feel less like a “load” and more like a generous wealth of information you can absorb on your own terms. 

Best Online Courses

From personal finance classes that will help you keep your budget in check ($49, Coursera) to baking classes that will take you from novice to pro ($19.99, Udemy), it’s never been easier to learn a new skill. Keep scrolling to learn more on FIRST for Women’s picks for the best online courses for adults. 

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