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Personal development

Learn about… Computer science

Free courses including cybersecurity, computer networks, AI (artificial intelligence) and cloud computing.

By Fraser Graham Nov 13, 2020

Fancy yourself a bit of a computing whizz? If you love solving problems, and critical thinking, check out some of these courses to help you build the skills you need to kick-start your way into a computing career!

Course 1: The Open University - Discovering Computer Networks: hands-on in the Open Networking Lab

Learn about the principles of computer networking: how computers and other devices connect and work together.

Find out how:

  • computer networks operate
  • data is sent around the internet

Certificate of completion: Yes

Total study time: 24 hours

Study type: Self-paced

Cost: Free

Related jobs: Network engineer, network manager

>> Get started

Course 2: The Open University - Introduction to Cyber Security: Stay Safe Online

Learn how to stay safe online at home and at work.

Find out about:

  • malware and viruses
  • network security
  • identity theft
  • risk management

Certificate of completion: Yes

Total study time: 24 hours

Study type: Self-paced

Cost: Free

Related jobs: IT security co-ordinator, cyber intelligence officer, forensic computer analyst

>> Get started

Course 3: Google - Introduction to Machine Learning

Computers can be programmed to learn from data and information.

Find out how to:

  • train a computer
  • make recommendations using data
  • consider the ethics of machine learning

Certificate of completion: Yes

Total study time: 5 hours

Study type: Self-paced

Cost: Free

Related jobs: Data scientist, machine learning engineer

>> Get started

Course 4: Accenture & FutureLearn - Digital Skills: Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence (AI) is used in many businesses to improve the way employees work.

Learn about artificial intelligence's:

  • past, present and future
  • potential in the workplace
  • working relationship with humans
  • predicted skills and ones needed to work with AI

Certificate of completion: Yes

Total study time: 6 hours

Study type: Scheduled, no instructor

Cost: Free

Related jobs: Machine learning engineer

>> Get started

Course 5: FutureLearn, Institute of Coding & Creative Computing Institute - Introduction to Creative Artificial Intelligence

Learn how AI is used in creative industries, using practical examples.

Find out about:

  • the latest developments in machine learning
  • the skills you need to get ahead in creative computing

Certificate of completion: Yes

Total study time: 4 hours

Study type: Self-paced

Cost: Free

Related jobs: Machine learning engineer, artist

>> Get started

Course 6: FutureLearn, Institute of Coding & Lancaster University - Introduction to Virtual, Augmented and Mixed Reality

There are immersive technologies known collectively as Extended Reality (XR). They either fully virtual or blend the virtual with reality and include Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR) and Mixed Reality (MR).

You will learn:

  • tools and technologies that support extended reality
  • concepts used to create extended reality experiences
  • ethics involved in extended reality

Certificate of completion: Yes

Total study time: 4 hours

Study type: Self-paced

Cost: Free

Related jobs: Software developer, user experience (UX) designer

>> Get started

Course 7: FutureLearn & Accenture - Digital Skills: Web Analytics

Find out about the role of analytics in business and why it is important.

You will learn how to:

  • create a measurement plan
  • measure objectives
  • use Google Analytics

Certificate of completion: Yes

Total study time: 4 hours

Study type: Scheduled, no instructor

Cost: Free

Related jobs: Data analyst-statistician, market research data analyst, entrepreneur

>> Get started

Course 8: FutureLearn, Institute of Coding & Creative Computing Institute - Introduction to Conversational Interfaces

Explore conversational interfaces, like chatbots and virtual assistants.

You will learn:

  • what conversational and voice-based interfaces are
  • how to design and develop one
  • the ethics of conversational and voice-based interfaces

Certificate of completion: Yes

Total study time: 4 hours

Study type: Self-paced

Cost: Free

Related jobs: User experience (UX) designer, app developer, web developer

>> Get started

Course 9: FutureLearn, Institute of Coding & Lancaster University - Introduction to Physical Computing

Explore microcontrollers, the technology used in smartphones, smartwatches and smart kettles.

You will learn:

  • what physical computing is
  • the structure of a physical computing system
  • the ethics of physical computing
  • careers in physical computing
  • what the Internet of Things (IoT) is

Certificate of completion: Yes

Total study time: 4 hours

Study type: Self-paced

Cost: Free

Related jobs: Product designer, software developer

>> Get started

Course 10: Amazon Web Services - Data Analytics Fundamentals

Find out how to plan for data analysis using Amazon Web Services (AWS) and the processes you need to follow. To get the most out of this course, you will need some understanding of databases and enterprise IT systems.

You will learn:

  • about different data analysis solutions and when to apply them
  • how to define different types of data
  • how data is stored
  • different techniques used in data analysis
  • the difference between data and information
  • how to use data to produce reports

Certificate of completion: Yes

Total study time: 3.5 hours

Study type: Self-paced

Cost: Free

Related jobs: Data analyst-statistician, data scientist, technical architect

>> Get started

Course 11: Amazon Web Services - AWS Cloud Practitioner Essentials

The Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud is a popular cloud computing platform, used by many large tech companies. Find out how AWS Cloud works.

You will learn:

  • what cloud computing is
  • how AWS works
  • how to interact with AWS

Certificate of completion: Yes

Total study time: 6 hours

Study type: Self-paced

Cost: Free

Related jobs: IT service engineer, project manager

>> Get started

Course 12: Amazon Web Services - AWS Security Fundamentals

Learn about cloud computing and Amazon Web Service (AWS) security concepts.

Find out about:

  • security benefits of AWS cloud computing
  • how to secure sensitive information
  • network security
  • risk management strategies
  • auditing AWS security infrastructure

Certificate of completion: Yes

Total study time: 4 hours

Study type: Self-paced

Cost: Free

Related jobs: IT security co-ordinator, IT support technician

>> Get started

Course 13: Microsoft - Azure Fundamentals

Find out about Azure, a popular cloud computing service.

You will learn:

  • concepts from cloud computing
  • the benefits of cloud computing in Azure
  • strategies for transitioning to Azure
  • about services available in Azure

Certificate of completion: No

Total study time: 10 hours

Study type: Self-paced

Cost: Free

Related jobs: Software developer

>> Get started

Course 14: Microsoft - Accessibility Fundamentals

Learn how to make accessible content and use accessibility features in popular Microsoft products.

You will learn:

  • what accessibility is
  • about accessibility features in Microsoft products
  • how to make accessible content for the web and mobile apps

Certificate of completion: No

Total study time: 3 hours

Study type: Self-paced

Cost: Free

Related jobs: App developer, software developer, user experience (UX) designer

>> Get started

Course 15: FutureLearn - Introduction to indie games

Find out about the thriving independent games sector and how to launch a career in it.

You will learn:

  • about the culture of indie games
  • why indie games matter
  • how to pitch a game idea
  • roles and skills in indie games
  • where the industry is heading

Certificate of completion: Yes

Total study time: 4 hours

Study type: Self-paced

Cost: Free

Related jobs: Computer games developer, product designer

>> Get started

Course 16: The Open University - Digital thinking tools for better decision-making

Find out how digital thinking tools, like Google Search, help us solve problems and make decisions. Then apply those tools to practical issues.

Learn how to:

  • use digital thinking tools
  • describe how digital tools help us
  • discuss the future of digital tools and artificial intelligence

Certificate of completion: Yes

Total study time: 24 hours

Study type: Self-paced

Cost: Free

>> Get started

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