Lynda.com has been teaching students, business people, and IT professionals new skills for 20 years, and is now known as LinkedIn Learning.
It’s owned by LinkedIn – the world’s largest professional network which has 740 million members in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide.
LinkedIn Learning serves more than 10,000 organizations and offers tutorials in 7 different languages, offering courses that cover subjects within software, business, technology, and creative skills.
Through individual, corporate, academic, and government subscriptions, members have access to a video library of engaging, top-quality courses taught by recognized industry experts.
Courses cover everything from Business Management to Figure Drawing, so there’s something there for everyone.
However, one of the most frequently asked questions regarding LinkedIn Learning is whether or not it’s accredited.
In this article, we’ll be answering this, but will also be reviewing the platform and outlining some of the benefits of joining LinkedIn Learning.
Let’s get one thing straight: while LinkedIn Learning courses are educational and valuable for many different reasons, unfortunately, they’re not officially accredited.
Upon completion, courses can be displayed on the learner’s LinkedIn profile in the form of ‘badges’, so prospective employers and clients will be able to see these qualifications, but the credits will not transfer towards university certificates or degrees.
That said, LinkedIn Learning is not the only platform where courses aren’t accredited.
Sites such as Udacity and DataCamp are also unaccredited, so it’s not necessarily a major disadvantage.
However, LinkedIn Learning does provide continuing educational units (CEUs) for some of their offerings, in which case learners may be able to acquire credits.
LinkedIn Learning Badges can be obtained and displayed on LinkedIn profiles, which can be useful for professional development.
However, if it’s an accredited course you’re looking for or need to complete for a specific reason, it’s probably best to enroll on a course at a university or community college where you will be taught by qualified professionals or academics.
LinkedIn Learning has a very user-friendly interface that provides an intuitive learning space with thoughtful filters to make courses easy to narrow down and navigate. This allows users to more easily sort through LinkedIn Learning’s wealth of courses.
These can be organized by Best Match, View Count, or Newest, and users can also filter their results based on the course length, difficulty level, and taught software.
Users can also narrow their search by specifying whether they’re looking for one that continues education or not or based on whether the material is a course, a learning path, or a video.
The interface is also customizable and tailored to each individual, as the front page will highlight customized topics based on each learners’ LinkedIn profile.
LinkedIn offers more than 16,700 courses, with dozens of new ones added every week.
Most of LinkedIn’s courses are aimed at those interested in professional development, as completed courses are of course displayed on the user’s LinkedIn profile.
Courses can mostly be segregated into three categories: Business, Creative, and Technology.
One of the great aspects of the site is that the content comes in seven languages, including English, Spanish, French, German, Japanese, Simplified Chinese, and Portuguese, meaning it opens up opportunities for learners all around the globe.
The content itself is mainly in video format, with the majority of people learning best through audio and visual methods. This format is good for allowing people to multitask while they absorb information and for mimicking a real-life course or lecture.
However, this video-based style of learning does overlook those people who prefer to read or scan information to absorb it, so LinkedIn Learning may not be for everyone due to this.
LinkedIn Learning’s courses offer a high standard of content overall, but as we say, this is mainly geared towards those looking for courses that will enable professional development.
There’s also the fact that LinkedIn has so much content that there’s probably going to be some disparity in quality, and therefore it should be up to the user to research the credentials of the presenter they’re learning from to ensure this meets their expectations.
It’s also worth bearing in mind that while you should only undertake scientific courses by a trained academic, in the case of business or software courses, the teacher may not be academically trained, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re not qualified to teach on the subject, as they most likely have years of experience in it.
Again, LinkedIn Learning is not an accredited educational source such as a university or community college, so it’s important to recognize this before enrolling in any of their courses.
LinkedIn Learning offers a free 1 month trial for new users, however, after the trial period you can choose from two subscription models:
Unfortunately, you can’t pay a one-off fee to enroll in one course only, so to do this you’d have to subscribe and then cancel, however, this isn’t unusual – most online teaching sites require a monthly or annual subscription.
Some employees purchase LinkedIn learning for their employees to use, as do some universities, and if you have a library subscription it’s also worth checking whether you’re able to access content for free.
LinkedIn Learning is super user-friendly and you can easily filter courses to narrow down your search. Not only this, but the homepage is also customizable and is linked to your LinkedIn profile so it will display the most relevant courses to you.
With 16,700 courses to choose from and dozens of new ones added each week, you’ll never run out of new things to learn, from Strategic Thinking to Figure Drawing, Web Design to Data Analytics.
Not only could these courses help with your current professional development, but they could give you the opportunity to learn skills outside of your area of expertise, which could open up new roles in the future.
English may be a “global” language and the main one used in the business world, however, if it’s not your first language you may be able to view LinkedIn Learning’s content in one of six other languages: including Spanish, French, German, Japanese, Simplified Chinese, and Portuguese.
Who knows, more languages may even be added in the future, as the site is constantly evolving and expanding.
LinkedIn Learning also offers “Learning Paths.”
These are sets of courses grouped together to provide top to bottom information on a given topic, allowing you to acquire a more in-depth and all-encompassing knowledge of a subject niche.
LinkedIn Learning isn’t the only platform to offer these kinds of interconnected courses; for example, Coursera’s MasterTracks, edX’s MicroMasters, and Udacity’s Nanodegrees are all examples of similar types of courses.
While LinkedIn Learning courses aren’t accredited, there is the opportunity to acquire LinkedIn badges and certifications which will then appear on your LinkedIn profile.
These are great for people looking to upskill or develop professionally or those who are seeking a new role. For this reason, LinkedIn Learning is great for those who are career-minded and ambitious.
This relates to the point above: LinkedIn Learning certificates and badges are not formally accredited. However, they are still recognized by employers, ad this is the main point of the courses on the site.
For example, if you did the “Become a Project Manager” Learning Path, which is nearly 27 hours long and consists of 17 courses, at the end, you’ll receive a certificate of completion which will then appear on your LinkedIn profile.
When prospective employers, clients, or anyone else views your profile, they’ll be able to see that you’ve completed this course.
This is good for indicating that you have acquired knowledge and skills in this area, but most of all it shows a proactive pursuit of professional growth, which will stand out to potential employers.
Coursera is an online course platform that partners with more than 200 leading universities and companies to offer flexible, affordable, and job-relevant online learning to over 77 million learners around the world.
Offering courses in a range of areas, from business analytics to graphic design, Coursera prepares learners for work in high-demand fields like IT, AI, and cloud engineering, and even offers the opportunity to acquire a fully-accredited degree online from a world-class university.
While studying for a degree comes with a pretty hefty price tag, Coursera also offers a wide range of cheaper packages and even free courses, too.
Pluralsight offers courses by 1,500+ expert authors and is trusted by 70% of the Fortune 500 companies. It offers the opportunity for both companies and individuals to upskill and further their potential.
You can follow paths that help you or your team gain the necessary knowledge to pass certifications and you can even take practice exams to better prepare you for the real thing.
Pluralsight mainly focuses on Software Development, IT operations, and Information and Cyber Security. They offer a range of different payment plans for both individuals and companies, and there’s the opportunity to try it for free first.
Udemy for Business offers access to 5,500+ courses across 75+ different categories and is designed to give both individuals and companies on-demand access to the best
courses and top trending skills.
They also cater to a range of learning styles and offer fresh content taught by 1,300+ experts and real-world practitioners.
Categories include Development, IT Operations, Marketing, Leadership and Management, and Personal Development, and thousands of new courses are added every week.
They also offer an ‘International Collection’ with courses available in French, German, Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, and Japanese.
Skillsoft offers the most extensive course library in the world, 120,000 pieces of content, and 7,000 courses.
Courses are developed based on the science of learning, and their intelligent learning experience platform has a modern, simple, and intuitive design that delivers an immersive learning experience with 24/7 cloud access to all courses.
Motivate and reward yourself or your employees with Digital Badges, similar to LinkedIn badges, which offer visual, shareable, and portable records of accomplishment to mark professional developments.
Skillsoft offers courses across Leadership, Development and Business Skills, Compliance, and Technology and Development, and uses a combination of teaching methods such as interactive videos and practical simulations to cater to a range of learning styles.
LinkedIn Learning is a great platform that offers a host of different courses across Business, Creative, and Technology sectors. It’s ideal for anybody looking to acquire new skills or build upon current ones.
It’s easy to use, and the filter tools are useful for narrowing down your search and finding exactly the right course for you. Plus there are new courses added on a weekly basis.
The downside of this course is that it’s not accredited, so even if you spend hours learning all about being a team leader, this doesn’t count towards a final degree or accreditation.
However, when you complete a course on LinkedIn Learning, you do collect a badge which will then be displayed on your LinkedIn profile.
This means that any potential employers or clients who view your profile will be able to see you have completed the course and most importantly, that you’re constantly looking to build upon your skillset and develop yourself professionally.
This makes LinkedIn Learning ideal for business and IT professionals who are looking for a flexible way to upskill or enhance their LinkedIn profile.
Jacob has a background in finance and engineering. Outside of his day job, he is a lifelong learner, who enjoys reading, taking online courses, and writing about what he's learned.
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