Online Training: A Good Way to Learn a Trade or Advance a Career

Online training courses are good learning opportunities for working professionals, trades people, and non-traditional students. They provide students with valuable career training, workforce training, personal enrichment and professional development. Some online courses serve as post-secondary education for workers who already have college degrees. Others are designed as vocational training for skilled trades.

Unlike face-to-face classes on a college campus, which may be difficult for full-time workers to attend, online training courses allow students to work at their own pace and on their own schedules. Popular as evening or weekend courses, they easily accommodate the needs of working students.

Online Training Formats

Online training is a type of electronic learning or e-learning. It uses information and communication (ICT) technologies to deliver education. It is sometimes called multimedia learning, technology-enhanced learning, computer-based training, web-based training or virtual learning. It can occur in or outside a classroom.

Online training courses use multiple electronic media to deliver professional or vocational training. The most common technology applications include online text, image, animation, audio, and video files. Some training courses also utilize satellite television, CD-ROMs and other computer-based learning.

Online Training Categories

Students can find online courses for every imaginable category and study level. The most common professional courses include business management, computer basics, customer service, entrepreneurship, health and fitness, information technology, social media skills, and workplace safety. Automotive repair, cosmetology, culinary arts, heating and air technology, construction and floral design are popular vocational training courses.

Online Training Costs

Online training is available from online colleges, continuing education companies, professional organizations, government agencies and other sources. While some courses are free, most courses involve tuition fees. Many employers cover the cost of continuing education for their employees. Students who pursue vocational education online may qualify for financial aid.

The cost for online training is usually less than the cost of pursuing a college degree. Students who complete online vocational courses are prepared for entry-level positions in their chosen fields. Due to the job-specific training, some vocational programs require students to gain experience through internships or externships. In addition, a state examination may be required for certificates and licenses.

Closing Thoughts

Online training is a good way to advance a career or keep up with the latest developments in a particular field. The need for employees skilled in trades and service occupations will always be in demand. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), many trade positions are unfilled due to the recent trend toward business or computer-based education. Online training courses are a good way for full-time employees to pursue a trade or advance their current careers.