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Hello devs, with the rise of online education platforms like Coursera and Udemy, more and more people are turning to online courses to acquire new technical skills and knowledge. However, one common question that arises is whether these courses and the certificates they offer have any real value?
In this article, we’ll explore whether a Coursera certificate has value and whether it can benefit you in your career.
From my 20 years of experience in Tech I can say that as a tech professional, staying on top of the latest technological advancements and developments is crucial for your success, particularly in today’s fast-paced industry.
But with new technologies emerging every day like a new programming language or a framework, or a tool, it can be really challenging to keep up with the latest trends and best practices. That’s where Coursera and Udemy comes in
While online courses provide an excellent platform for learning at low cost, at your schedule, and at your own pace, I often received questions from my readers about the worth of their certifications.
Many of my readers asked me whether professional certificates offered by Coursera, edX, Educative, Udacity, or any such online platforms are worth any?
The answer to this question is both Yes, and No because it totally depends upon what worth means for you? In my opinion Coursera certificate definitely have value because they are well structured program where you can learn in-demand tech skills and you get certificates from trusted and well reputed tech companies like Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Meta, and IBM which can take you one step closer for getting a tech job.
But, If you are thinking that just completing a Computer Science or Data Science course on Coursera and displaying a certificate on your resume or on LinkedIn will land you a job, then definitely, it’s not worth it.
But, These certifications can certainly put your resume forward to many Recruiters looking for Data Scientist and also help you to learn essential Data Science skills at your own schedule.
Coursera offers a wide range of courses and professional certificates in various technology-related fields, from data science and machine learning to cybersecurity and cloud computing. And as a tech person, there are several compelling reasons why you should consider taking a Coursera course.
In this article, we’ll explore the benefits of taking Coursera courses for tech professionals. We’ll discuss how Coursera can help you stay up-to-date with the latest trends and technologies, acquire new skills and knowledge, and improve your career prospects.
Whether you’re a seasoned tech professional or just starting out, read on to discover why every tech person should take Coursera courses. In the end, I will also share best tech certificates from Google, which you can earn on Coursera.
Does Coursera Certificate Have Value?
If you ask me, Yes, Coursera certificates do have value. It offer many tangible and non-tangible benefits like learning in-demand tech skills. While they may not be equivalent to traditional degrees or certifications, they can still be a valuable asset for your resume and professional development.
Here are a few reasons why:
1. Recognized by employers
Coursera works with leading universities and companies to create their courses and programs, which means that their certificates are recognized by employers in a variety of industries.
2. You learn in-demand skills and knowledge
Completing a Coursera course and earning a certificate demonstrates that you have acquired new skills and knowledge in a specific area, which can be valuable for career advancement or personal growth.
Coursera courses are often more affordable than traditional education options, making them a cost-effective way to gain new skills and knowledge.
Coursera courses are online and self-paced, which allows learners to fit them into their schedules and learn at their own pace.
Overall, while a Coursera certificate may not be a substitute for a traditional degree or certification, it can still be a valuable asset in your professional development and a way to showcase your skills and knowledge to potential employers.
Remember, a course completion certificate doesn’t make you an expert, but it does show that you have completed a course on a particular subject, which means you know about it, and you are a constant learner, an essential attribute when hiring Programmers, Engineers, Developers, and Data Scientists.
It’s a sad truth that almost 90% of people who join an online course never complete them. Yes, the number might seem surprising, but it’s true. I know many of my friends who have classes on Coursera and thousands of learners enrolled in them, but hardly a few complete the course, so a course completion certification definitely gives you a heads up.
But at the same time, you need to remember that a course completion certification is very different from Oracle’s Java certification or AWS certification from Amazon, Google Cloud Certifications from Google itself, or Azure Certification from Microsoft, which really tests your skill and then awards your certificate. They are much more valuable than a standard course completion certificate from Udemy, Coursera, edX, and Udacity.
Does Coursera Certificates help get a job?
I have been on both sides of the table in Programming interviews. As a candidate, I have seen Recruiters showing interest in my resume and talking about my certifications, while as an Interviewer and hiring manager, I also give importance to people who have certifications on their resume to those who don’t have them, provided they are similar on other things like experience.
I have also seen recruiters storming developer profiles after adding Java, Spring, and AWS certifications, so there is certainly value there, but just having the certification will not guarantee you anything except initial exposure.
When I see a Resume with a certificate on it, I always think that this guy is a constant learner, believes in upgrading his skills, and puts some effort apart from his job to learn something valuable for his career. These are definitely some of the important traits I look at a potential hire.
But, you need to be extremely careful here. It’s Ok to not put a certification or a course completion proof on your Resume, but If you have evidence, you must be ready to prove that you have acquired them.
For example, if someone says he is an Oracle certified Java developer and can’t answer a couple of tricky questions about operator precedence in Java, I will doubt that he is really worth the certification.
Similarly, if you say that you complete The Google Cloud Certification on Coursera but don’t know what is a compute engine, BigQueury or BigTable then I take this that you are not sincere and you are just concerned about papers instead of learning skills, which is the primary goal of these online courses.
This means it’s definitely worth putting course completion certificates on your CV or LinkedIn Monster or Naukri.com profile, but you must be ready to show that you have enough knowledge to justify those certificates.
If you fail to justify your certification with knowledge and experience upon your interview than its a big negative, and for many of them, it’s just the end of the interview.
My Favorite Coursera certificates from Google, Meta and IBM
Coursera offers a range of certificates and courses from various fortune 500 companies, including Google, Meta (formerly Facebook), and IBM.
Here are a couple of of the best Coursera certificates from my favorite company, Google.
1. Google Data Analytics Professional Certificate
This certificate program is designed for those looking to start a career in Data Analysis. It covers a range of topics, including data analysis, data cleaning, SQL, and data visualization.
2. Google IT Support Professional Certificate
This certificate program is designed for those looking to start a career in IT support. It covers a range of topics, including troubleshooting, git, Linux, and operating systems.
3. Google Project Management Certificate
This certificate program is designed for those interested in project management. It covers the principles of project management, project scoping and planning, and project risk assessment.
4. Google UX Design Professional Certificate
This certificate program is designed for those interested in UI and UX Design. It covers the principles of UI Design and tools like Figma which can help you in UI Design.
For Meta and IBM courses, you can also checkout my earlier article about best Coursera courses for 2023
By the way, instead of joining these courses and specializations individually, you can also join Coursera Plus, a subscription plan from Coursera which gives you unlimited access to their most popular courses, specialization, professional certificate, and guided projects.
It cost around $399 per year but gives access to more than 3000+ top-quality courses and certifications on Coursera which makes it a worthy investment, especially if you want to complete multiple certifications.
So, does Coursera Certificate have value, is it worth it?
So far, you have seen that Coursera certification definitely have value but it depends on various factors. Coursera certificates demonstrate that you have completed a course and acquired new skills and knowledge, which can be valuable to employers.
However, the value of a Coursera certificate ultimately depends on your goals and how you present it to potential employers. If you want to showcase your expertise in a particular area or supplement your resume with additional credentials, a Coursera certificate can be a valuable asset.
It’s also important to note that Coursera certificates are not equivalent to traditional degrees or certifications, but they can still be a cost-effective and flexible way to acquire new skills and knowledge.
Ultimately, the value of a Coursera certificate depends on how you leverage it in your career and professional development
That’s all about whether course certificates from Udemy, Coursera, edX, and Udacity are valuable or not. They are definitely valuable in terms of providing recognition, adding the keyword to your resume, and providing initial boots, but you just cannot get a job or start a career by using them. You need to have solid skills to back those certificates.
Another subtle thing I would like to mention about the value of a course certification is perception.
For example, Coursera or Udacity certificates offered by Google, Microsoft, AWS, IBM, or Stamford University are much more valuable than a random certificate provided by some unknown author.
Don’t get me wrong, you may be able to learn better on the other course, and that should be the primary goal, but companies like Google, AWS, Microsoft, IBM, SalesForce, and Universities like Stanford, Michigan, and Hong Kong university enjoys a lot of trust of people’s eye.
Whenever they say you are associated with these big companies, they pay attention, and it acts as an affirmative vote for your Resume and profile. Never join an online course just for certificates; your primary goal should always be learning skills and improving yourself; documents are a by-product.
I would any day hire a Java Programmer who is an expert in coding, algorithms, Java, then a person who is completed a couple of online courses on , Coursera, edX, Educative, Udacity, or any other online platform but cannot write a program involving a couple of classes.
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P. S. – If you are looking for IT certification, I highly recommend you to go for a Cloud certification as the cloud is the most in-demand skill in today’s world. And in the cloud, AWS is the most popular, hence AWS solution architect is the best cloud certification to acquire. Go for that.