Learning frenzy at LinkedIn

Want to learn how to become a digital artist? How about a network security expert or an accountant? This week, LinkedIn offers to all its users free access to all content on its Learning site. They offer an extensive collection of online training courses produced by experts in their respective fields from Lynda.com (which was recently purchased by the company back in August).

The learning platform is normally a premium feature at the minimum subscription cost of $29.99. For many of us free-to-play users, this is a one-in-a-life-time opportunity to pick up lots of new skills and spice the profile up with certifications. Every time you finish watching all videos in a course, a certificate for that course is generated, which can be added to your LinkedIn’s profile under “Certifications” section.

I personally don’t think they will mean much to potential recruiters since there’s no exam involved and there’s an easy “Mark as done” button approach. However, it won’t hurt adding a few badges when your profile is lacking some (I know mine was). Not to mention, if you put some efforts to hand-pick quality courses, this can be a great way to showcase your interest in selected topics and instantly communicate with recruiters which tools you’re likely to use. For example…

The above list of completed courses tells the world that I am an avid writer (or screenwriter). Note how I didn’t add the last item to my profile. This is because the said course is not a training course at all but an advertisement masquerading a training course. Watch out for these bad apples when curating which courses to showcase on your profile.

That being said, there are things called “Learning paths” which are “bundles” of related courses pertaining to the mastery of a certain profession. They can be found on LinkedIn by typing “become a” keyword in the search bar and select “Learning paths” as Type filter.

Or when in doubt, check out all available learning paths from the original provider: Lynda.com/learning-paths

Learning paths are great. The courses they contain are already curated by Lynda.com so you don’t have to worry about the bad apples spoiling your experiences (at least, not as much as before but keep your eyes open just to be safe) and you don’t have to look all over the place to continue learning about a topic of interest.

Of course, those course lengths are insane and you have only till the end of this week to consume them. But, before you go on no-life mode on these courses, I have good news. You’re allowed to download the premium exercise materials and all the videos for offline viewing with a simple right click and select “Save video as” option. I recommend downloading learning paths and courses that require a lot of hand-on practices such as “Become a Comic Book Artist” or “Become a Digital Illustrator”.

You bet I’ll grab these courses before the end of the promotion.

Unfortunately, due to the business-oriented nature of LinkedIn, there aren’t many courses on Creative Writing. Instead, they offer numerous communication, leadership, project management and human management training that might help writing more natural character interactions and growth. Some Screenwriting and Design Thinking techniques are also applicable directly to Creative Writing as well. Seek out and learn everything that might be useful in your writing. Be creative!

Before I end this post and get back to my in progress “Become a UX Designer” course, I would like to make the following recommendations for all aspiring writers out there, and especially to my former NaNoWriMo cabin mate Neko.

Writing Fundamentals: The Craft of Story

Screenwriting Fundamentals

Hopefully, you will find these writing courses helpful.

Due to the shame The Craft of Story has brought upon me, I will be furiously revising the story of White Destiny this November, yet again! Therefore, I won’t be joining NaNoWriMo this year. To those of you who choose to brave the 50,000 words challenge next month, good luck, may the god of Viking helmets keep you warm and inspired.

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