Free or Low Cost University Level Education
With Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs), universities and professional associations have been able to make general education coursework in many disciplines available at little or no cost to a much wider audience. If you missed something in your education, a MOOC course can be an effective way to fill in the gap.
Keep in mind that in the MOOC environment you may have thousands or even tens of thousands of classmates. That makes MOOCs best for people who can learn well on their own or with limited interaction with the teacher(s). While most MOOCs have teaching assistants, they may not be able to answer all questions posed by the student body.
Coursera.org – Take the world’s best courses, online, for free.
Coursera is an education platform that partners with top universities and organizations worldwide, to offer courses online for anyone to take, for free. A paid option provides a path to a certified letter of completion available for employers to view on the web.
Choose from more than 400 courses created by the world’s top educational institutions. Explore topics you are curious about. Broaden your knowledge with a wide-ranging catalog of courses, from music to computer science. Stay up-to-date in your field or forge a new career path.
Learn on your own schedule. Watch short video lectures, take interactive quizzes, complete peer graded assessments, and connect with classmates and teachers through the on-line forums.
One course in particular may be of interest to job seekers: Enhance Your Career and Employability Skills offered by the University of London.
edX.org – Empowering learning in the classroom and around the globe.
EdX was created for students and institutions that seek to transform themselves through cutting-edge technologies, innovative pedagogy, and rigorous courses.
Through our institutional partners, the xConsortium, along with other leading global members, we present the best of higher education online, offering opportunity to anyone who wants to achieve, thrive, and grow.
Our goals, however, go beyond offering courses and content. We are committed to research that will allow us to understand how students learn, how technology can transform learning, and the ways teachers teach on campus and beyond.
EdX is based in Cambridge, Massachusetts and is governed by MIT and Harvard.
Other General Education
GCFLearnFree – Learn the essential skills needed to live and work in the 21st century. From Microsoft Office and email to reading, math, and more, GCFLearnFree.org offers more than 180 topics, including more than 2,000 lessons, 800+ videos, and 55+ interactives and games, completely free.
Round Rock Public Library – Research and Learning resources available through the Round Rock and other local libraries. Some resources require a valid library card for access. Cards are currently free to Texas residents. Some resources can only be accessed from the library itself, but many can be accessed on-line. | 216 East Main Street, Round Rock, TX 78664 | 512.218.7000 or 512.218.7001
See the Research and Learning section of the web site for a complete list of resources available. Some that may be of particular interest:
Job and Career Accelerator: Combines all the elements needed for a successful job search: occupation surveys, job postings, resume and cover letter tools, and interview skills practice.
Learning Express: Help preparing for job tests, the GED, and several college and graduate school entrance exams.
Mango Languages: Learn a language online using material derived from native conversation and real-life situations.
ReferenceUSA Directory: Access millions of U.S. residential and business phone numbers and addresses. Conduct market and competitor research as well as business analysis by industry or geography. This can be very useful in preparing for an interview.
Lynda.com – LinkedIn’s online learning platform, with hundreds of courses covering technical, creative, computer, management skills and many other areas of interest to job seekers. Free access to this premium LinkedIn service is available through the Round Rock Library portal. You will need a Round Rock Library card to access it this way.
SkillPointAlliance.org – Offers Gateway: Job Training in several skills trades areas including Certified Nurse’s Aide, Machine Operator, Electrical, HVAC, Plumbing and Welding. Applications are required.
Udacity – Udacity brings accessible, affordable, engaging, and highly effective higher education to the world. Using nanodegrees in very specific areas, students develop a rapid understanding of new knowledge and skills to advance their education and careers.
Udemy – Udemy is a global marketplace for learning and teaching online where students are mastering new skills and achieving their goals by learning from an extensive library of over 55,000 courses taught by expert instructors.
Paid Professional Education
Several local companies offer professional training for certifications in demand in the Austin-Round Rock and surrounding areas. These programs ore often eligible for WIOA and TAA funds. Please speak to your local Workforce Solutions office about eligibility and availability of WIOA and TAA grants for your educational needs.
AARP Back to Work 50+ – A program for older women sponsored by the AARP Foundation. This program can help you gain the confidence, skills, and opportunities needed to find full-time employment, improve financial capability, and avoid poverty later in life.
Austin Community College – ACC provides the quality education and hands-on training you need and employers in the area demand. You can earn a degree, transfer to a 4-year university, or advance your career. Continuing education offerings can build new skills to advance your career or take it in a new direction.
Consulting Solutions – Offers training in high-demand skill areas including, Project Management, Oracle and Java, Microsoft Certified IT Professional, Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS), IMDBOS (Web Design, Mobile Apps, and Social Media), Cisco, Computer Support Certifications. Offerings are subject to change based on community needs.
Extellent – Formerly St. Edwards, Extellent offers training in business and Information Technology areas leading to industry standard certifications.
Galvanize – Web Development, Data Science, Entrepreneurship and Business Transformation. Works with employers to place their students.
General Assembly – Courses in Coding, Design, Data, Marketing and Business. Also offers small workshops.