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The Student Insider

Discover your interests with an online short course


Written by
Lindsay Alexander

Our world has changed drastically in the past six months. Many of us have had to work from home through the lockdown period, and have had more time to reflect on our careers and our futures. While learning how to bake an assortment of breads or how to crochet have been productive ways of spending evenings and weekends at home, now is the ideal time to explore subjects you’ve always been interested in or learn new skills that could help advance your career through online courses.

Student working on laptop

Over the past several months there has been a surge in moving classrooms online, making education more accessible and flexible for students around the world. The University of London has been a leader in distance and flexible learning for over 150 years. With a reputation for delivering world-class online degree programmes that are globally recognised, we also offer a range of short courses that can be studied on a stand-alone basis and used towards continuing onto many of our programmes should you wish to further your studies.

Whether you’re interested in diving into the world of machine learning or keen to examine the works of Shakespeare, you can choose from over 300 individual courses and modules in a variety of subject areas, including business management, computer sciences, veterinary sciences and sports management, just to name a few.

Why study a short course?

One of the main benefits of studying a short course is that they offer you the flexibility to study key topics from degree programmes without the need to make a commitment to studying a full programme.

Studying a short course also offers you the freedom to choose between different subject areas, letting you discover where your interests lie. Trying a short course is an inexpensive way of finding out which direction you’d like to take your career in. You’ll build up practical and transferable skills and in many cases, if you successfully complete a module or course you’ll be able to apply it as a credit towards a full degree programme or qualification.

As we’ve become more reliant on online communication and applications amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, you can be confident when studying a short course with the University of London. The University has years of experience of running online programmes, and our courses are specifically designed to give students access to the highest quality of educational resources from anywhere in the world. With interactive learning and a wealth of online activities, our short courses and modules provide in depth content that you can access from wherever you are on a range of devices. You’ll be able to complete your studies around your own schedule and at your own pace.

What’s the difference between a MOOC and a short course?

The University of London also offers a wide selection of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) that can be studied online for free.

A MOOC is a short non-credit bearing course that can prepare you for the next steps towards studying a degree programme. They are designed to introduce you to topics that appear in our programmes and are open to all students without minimum entry requirements.

Our short courses and modules are part of our full degree programmes and most are credit bearing, which may be used towards continuing your programme of study. For short courses, you can pay-as-you-go and won’t have to pay full programme fees at once, so they are also an economic way of taking your education further. Short online courses are an inexpensive and flexible way to build towards the career you want without paying the daunting costs of full-time study. They can also lead you towards a higher education degree, often facilitating admission into the second year of a full-time degree programme.

So what’s stopping you? Browse through our broad range of individual courses and modules and open yourself up to a new world of opportunities.