Online Computer Training: Learn Software and Programming from Home

Ah…the convenience that comes with the digital age.  We can spend most of our time sitting back now, because, just about everything is automated…or is it?  Computers and the software that they run constitute the great double-edged sword of our day.  We were sold on these advances in technology as a great relief.  Automation was to replace monotony and the most difficult tasks were to become automatic, or nearly so.  But what do we do when the software that is supposed to make our lives easier is so complicated that one online computer training website has hundreds of hours of video training devoted to just on one piece of software?  I’m talking about Adobe Photoshop and the training site I’m referring to is Lynda.com, where you can find, at the time this was written, 172 courses on Photoshop that average well over an hour long. I don’t know if you have this many hours to devote to learning, not to mention practicing Photoshop, but when we talk about how a technology that was meant to simplify things actually complicates, this is a very good example.

 

3Months 01 250x250 021 Online Computer Training: Learn Software and Programming from Home

 

Fortunately it is unlikely that anyone’s needs would require that they watch the entire library of training videos on Photoshop, but if you are or have ever been a Photoshop novice, that feeling you get when you open the software and say to yourself, “what now?” can be daunting.

And of course Photoshop is by no means unique.  Software packages that you can open and use, at any level beyond the most basic, with no training, are few and far between these days.  Computer programming is even worse.  With every boost in the capacity of the computers that we use, the coding required to write programs that take full advantage of our computers’ resources becomes more and more complex and lengthy.

So what do you do?  You wouldn’t be reading this if you didn’t know that the answer is to get some training.  And what type of training could be better to teach software applications and programming than online training.  It’s only natural that a great place to get the computer training you need is through the computer itself.  Although, you’ll undoubtedly find instructor led training programs that will teach you software, when it comes to the best, cheapest and most efficient way to learn whatever software package you need to learn, self-paced online computer training is the way to go.  When it comes to programming, university degrees in computer science are available online and offline that offer training.  Unfortunately computer science and information technology programs are often criticized for offering training that is out of date by the time that the degree is awarded.  Nevertheless, they do build a solid understanding and a good foundation for additional skills.

 

Programming

If an online degree in computer science is what you need, finding a place to study won’t be too difficult.  It is one of the standard offerings made available by universities that offer online degrees.  US News and World Report, who have long been known for their college and university rankings have recently expanded to online degree programs, and they reviewed graduate programs in Information Technology at this link.  Of course this shouldn’t be your only reference, but all the programs ranked by this source should all be of at least decent quality.  Additionally, although the rankings are for graduate degrees, these universities are likely of similar quality in their undergraduate offerings.

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online computer training 300x225 Online Computer Training: Learn Software and Programming from Home
Start mapping your new career in web design, coding, and more at Treehouse – GET 3 MONTHS FREE!

If you don’t need a degree and just want to learn programming, free online computer science and information technology courses are widely available through various internet resources, including open courseware programs, where universities provide all of their course materials online for free.  So, if it’s programming you want to learn, and you don’t want to pay for it, there are a tremendous number of resources available.  Detailed tutorials and free courses are available on just about all of the major programming languages.  The highly regarded educational blog Edudemic provides a list of some very good options.  Among these resources, W3Schools stands out.  W3Schools focuses on web programming and offers useful tutorials that break down the web programming languages into bite sized pieces that give students the opportunity to thoroughly practice each skill as its taught.  W3Schools even offers certificates to students who complete their training programs.  Of course there is a fee for certificates, but the training is absolutely free.

If it’s a programming language you’re interested in that are not directly related to web design, other resources from the above link can be useful, especially if you’re the type of person who is able to learn technical subjects independently.  If you aren’t, then there are paid training sites like Treehouse and Lynda.com that offer structured courses and video modules to help students along by really breaking down complex concepts into step by step, easy to follow modules.  Lynda.com offers a free seven day trial subscription, and Treehouse offers certain sample courses for free.  Lynda.com has a very extensive library and has training videos on just about every technical subject imaginable, while Treehouse focuses on all aspects of web development.  Both of these websites offer certificates of completion for courses that are completed with them.

 

Software training

Whether the software you’re looking to learn is Photoshop, Quick Books or the latest audio production software, the surest place to find detailed training in it is Lynda.com.  In addition to offering extensive training in just about all aspects of programming, Lynda.com also offers training courses to familiarize its students with all the intricacies of just about every software application that there is.  Lynda.com has been an online only training center since 2001, when it transitioned from being a bricks and mortar computer training center in California.  Because it has been in the business for such a long time, relatively speaking, its library is extremely well developed compared to its competitors.

There are also free options available for software training.  There are plenty of websites that offer tutorials and forums that give tips and answer questions, but these are generally specific to the software package you’re looking to learn.  Therefore, the best way to find free resources is by searching for them.  YouTube has training videos for most software applications, but as is always the case with YouTube, the quality is highly inconsistent.  Along with some very high quality videos on YouTube there are many that are absolutely worthless.  Separating the good from the bad can seem like an endless task.

 

Fortunately for anyone looking to learn computer skills, whether they are programming skills or software skills, the internet is the best place to look.  It is no longer necessary to travel across town or across the country to learn, because all the information you could possibly need is literally right at your fingertips.  By focusing on self-paced online courses, or at least considering using them to supplement a degree, you can learn about the most up to date skills and their most innovative uses from right in front of your computer.

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Leave A Reply (One comment so far)


  1. Carlton (Pugs) Watkins
    1 year ago

    You guys do a very good job and thanks for sharing. Do you guys think, that I would be too old to start your training and get work. I am retired and broke, I want to keep on learning and moving forward. Oh, I am 66 years old. If you have a comment please email at my email and thanks again