Coursera, edX Offer Free Online Courses As Cloud Computing Learning Options Proliferate
Focusing on the learning needs of IT professionals who need to apply cloud technologies to solve complex business problems, many of these programs and courses sell out before classes begin. This is because CIOs’ career paths are increasingly defined by how well they apply cloud technologies to the unique challenges and problems their businesses face. For CIOs and other members of senior management, getting a solid education on cloud computing’s business benefits is essential for managing effectively today, increasing their long-term marketability and career growth.
These programs are designed for C-level executives and senior managers to get up to speed quickly, often including guest CEOs of prominent software companies as part of the curriculum. Stanford’s course offered this fall online and on campus has five different CEO guest speakers including Aaron Levie, CEO of Box.net for example. These programs have an entirely different set of learning objectives versus certifications. For an excellent analysis of cloud certifications please see David Linthicum’s recent post Are you on the right cloud computing career path? Also excluded are vendor-sponsored certification programs as the intent of many of these is to promote a very specific view of cloud computing that aligns with their product and service strategies.
Here are key take-aways from following this area:
- Georgia Institute of Technology is partnering with Coursera, offering Health Informatics in the Cloud, beginning on September 16th for free. Coursera is an education company that partners with many of the worlds’ leading colleges and universities to offer free online courses to anyone, anywhere. They have partnered with 62 universities in 16 countries and offer over 300 courses as of today.
- University of California, Berkeley is partnering with EdX offering Software as a Service (CS169.2X) beginning August 13th for free. MIT and Harvard partnered to create EdX, a non-profit organization that is committed to bringing the best of higher education to students around the world. EdX offers MOOCs (massive open online courses) in addition to interactive online courses in the subject areas of law, history, science, engineering, business, social sciences, computer science, public health, and artificial intelligence (AI).
- Stanford University’s CS309A looks like one of the best being offered this fall, with five different CEO guest speakers including Hamish Brewer, JDA Software; Godfrey Sulliva, Splunk; Bob Beardon, Horton Works; and Aaron Levie, Box.net. Dr. Timothy Chou, former president of Oracle OnDemand and Lecturer at Stanford University for over three decades is teaching the course.
- The following is a comparison of the cloud computing courses and programs designed for senior management starting this fall. Those entries in green are the free courses that take just minutes to enroll in. Please click on the image to expand it for easier reading.