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LinkedIn Learning is an online educational platform that offers educational courses to anyone hoping to build their skills. The site is a relative newcomer to the world of online courses, having only established its presence in 2015.
However, while the name ‘LinkedIn Learning’ may be relatively new, the website, its courses, and its infrastructure very much isn’t. LinkedIn Learning, you see, is a rebrand of an online course provider that once went by the name of Lynda.com; a name that will likely be familiar to any podcast listener or YouTube video watcher, given the site’s long history of sponsoring such content. After its formation in 1995, Lynda.com forged an impressive presence as an online course provider.
In 2015, LinkedIn acquired Lynda.com and its library of online courses. The site was eventually rebranded as ‘LinkedIn Learning’, though the Lynda.com branding and name can be seen throughout the modern day site, helping to marry the two brands together in the eyes of users..
After Lynda.com became LinkedIn Learning, the site underwent a further change of ownership; this time when Microsoft purchased LinkedIn and, as a result, became the owners of LinkedIn Learning. Following that acquisition in 2016, LinkedIn Learning completed a period of change and has stabilised, and the platform has developed a well-earned reputation for providing a variety of educational courses to online users.
Building on the back of the stellar reputation of Lynda.com, LinkedIn Learning seeks to offer excellent courses in a number of different subjects at an accessible and affordable cost. In this mission, the site has been successful: the number of courses continues to grow, and Lynda.com’s reputation has definitely transferred over to the new site itself. With a clean website interface, well-designed course content, and good student support services, it seems likely that LinkedIn Learning will continue to flourish as a brand in its own right far into the future. compl
LinkedIn Learning commenced operations in 2015, but Lynda.com – the site bought by LinkedIn – was founded in 1995.
LinkedIn Learning state on their website that there are currently over 15,000 different courses available, and that this number increases all the time.
LinkedIn Learning offers courses for a one-off fee for around £14.99 per course, as well as a membership model that provides access to all courses for £24.98 on a monthly basis, or £14.99 per month when paying annually.
Courses are available in English, French, Japanese, Spanish, Portuguese, German and Mandarin, though not all courses and relevant study materials are available in each language.
In addition to offering courses direct to the public, LinkedIn Learning also provide elearning options to businesses and organisations.
LinkedIn Learning offers two different options for those considering enrolling on one of their courses. The first option is perhaps the most conventional: you find a course you want to try, pay a fee, and you are enrolled and receive your course materials. Simple; straightforward; and focusing solely on a single course. The prices for single courses varies, with most priced between £14.99 and £25. The main indicator of the difference in price seems to be course length rather than subject – it’s possible to find courses on coding, business, cookery, and much more that will fit anyone within the £14.99-25 bracket.
In addition to the above, LinkedIn Learning also offers a subscription model, whereby you pay a fee for access to the courses in their library. The cost of this subscription varies depending on how you wish to pay; if you pay on a month-by-month basis, the cost is £24.98 per month. You can also pay annually, which – according to LinkedIn Learning – reduces the cost by 40%. The subscription model also offers a one-month free trial, for those who would like to learn more about the site before they fully commit.
Both of the options above can be considered very reasonable given what they offer, especially for anyone seeking to build their skills and enhance their CV for relatively little financial outlay. As a result, we can conclude that in terms of expense, LinkedIn Learning performs very well indeed.
As we have learnt, LinkedIn Learning is a strong online educational platform that is built on the strong backbone and experience of the Lynda.com brand. However, what matters most to any prospective student considering an online course provider will always be the types of courses they can take, so let’s look deeper into the LinkedIn Learning provision in this regard.
Business is one of the most well-stocked sections of the LinkedIn Learning site, with a huge range of courses to choose from. Course topics in this area include courses such as ‘Solving Business Problems’ and ‘Writing Better Business Emails’, and there are also courses suitable for those interested in opening their own business, such as the well-regarded ‘Creating A Business Plan’.
As with business, there are a wealth of courses available for anyone who wishes to learn to code (or enhance their existing knowledge) with LinkedIn Learning. Courses focus on a range of pre-existing knowledge – with the highest volume of courses falling into the ‘Intermediate’ category – and also different programming languages, with PHP, Python, and C++ all featuring heavily.
The majority of the finance-related courses focus on business-related topics, such as learning to use software like Quickbooks for business purposes or the popular ‘Excel For Corporate Finances’ course. However, for those interested in learning more about finance from a personal perspective, courses such as ‘Managing Your Personal Finance’ and ‘Managing Your Personal Investments’ could definitely be worth considering.
The photography course options at LinkedIn Learning are extensive, with plenty of different topics covered to ensure that most people interested in the subject should be able to find an option that works for them. There are courses that focus on cameras and how they work – such as ‘Photography Foundations: Lenses’ – as well as in-depth courses that focus on specific types of photography, with options such as ‘Learning Headshot Photography’.
Many of the marketing courses found on LinkedIn Learning focus on digital or social media marketing, with the likes of ‘Marketing on Pinterest’ and ‘Social Media Video for Business and Marketing’ good examples of this. However, LinkedIn Learning also offers courses that focus more on marketing from a generalised perspective, such as ‘Building A Marketing Strategy’ and ‘Marketing To Millennials’.
While many – or perhaps even the majority – of the courses on LinkedIn Learning are focused towards professional development, there are a number of great courses that can be useful for personal development too. Examples include ‘Developing Your Emotional Intelligence’, ‘Become A Thought Leader’ and ‘Improve Your Problem-Solving Skills’, but there are many more to choose from, with courses available across all three levels – Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced.
Prior to assuming the guise of LinkedIn Learning, Lynda.com had earned an excellent reputation for course quality – which has clearly carried over to the new brand. The content of the courses is impressive, walking the line between ensuring that quality information is provided while still remaining straightforward to follow.
LinkedIn Learning is especially designed to be a self-learning platform, which means there are no traditional tutors on the site – i.e. people that can be contacted for assistance with the course. Instead, courses are submitted by ‘instructors’; people who have to apply directly to the site in order to create a course that is then listed on the platform. Having seen the application form to become an instructor, we can state that instructors clearly have to satisfy a long list of substantial requirements before LinkedIn Learning will consider them – which in suggests that the materials provided by the instructors who are accepted will be of a high quality, thanks to the experience and expertise the site requires.. However, self-learning is not necessarily right for everyone, and those who would prefer a more tutor-led experience may want to consider different online learning platform – or at least sample a short course first, just to see how things go.
When checking LinkedIn Learning’s course lengths, we found that the majority of courses seem to be on the shorter side, usually taking less than two hours to complete. However, that’s not to say that longer courses aren’t available at all, it’s just that the site seems to be weighed slightly more towards those that take less time, with fewer options for those that cross over the four hour mark. Nevertheless, ‘fewer’ does not mean ‘no’, so while those seeking longer courses may have slightly fewer options, they should still have no problem finding a course to suit their preferences. Overall, we believe that the course lengths offered on LinkedIn Learning are actually fairly ideal, as there should be something for everyone on the platform. For example, in the business category, there are courses with completion times that range from 10 minutes to more than three hours – so however long you have available, we’re confident you’ll be able to find a course that suits your requirements at LinkedIn Learning.
For the most part, the reviews for LinkedIn Learning reflect a study body that are happy with their choice to enroll. In particular, the ability to take multiple courses under the monthly subscription is well-praised; students mention the flexibility this provides. What’s more, students also comment that the subscription model provides the opportunity to take courses they might not have otherwise considered, which can help people to find new passions or interests – which definitely goes in LinkedIn Learning’s favour.
Of course, there are a few critical statements to be found too. Most of these tend to focus on the self-learning element of the platform, speaking subjectively about how they found this rather challenging, and how they might have preferred the ability to contact a tutor or receive more feedback. However, it’s tough to judge LinkedIn Learning too hard for these issues; they more reflect an incompatibility between platform and student rather than an inherent issue with how the site presents information and educates its students. We can therefore suggest that, provided you are comfortable with the self-learning element of LinkedIn Learning, the feedback from students who found this aspect difficult is not particularly concerning for your own experience.
We discovered that most of the reviews that we read crossed a number of subjects, though the most common were related to business and coding – a fact which is perhaps unsurprising, given that these topics tend to be popular throughout the online learning community. However, regardless of the subject, we saw the feedback from students was fairly uniform, suggesting that LinkedIn Learning offers a fairly consistent experience regardless of topic studied.
Overall, the reviews for LinkedIn Learning that focus on the courses, materials, and subject choice are positive. Yes, there are some less-than-positive reviews, but to attend to these problems, LinkedIn Learning would likely need to redo their entire business model and move away from the self-learning focus. Given that the majority of students are more than happy to self-learn, this would be an unwise move, so if you are comfortable with self-learning, we can conclude that existing and former student feedback suggests an exemplary learning experience awaits you at LinkedIn Learning.
No, courses are paid for either as one-off costs or as part of a monthly subscription. However, new users can access a free month’s trial of a LinkedIn subscription services.
LinkedIn Learning state that they currently have over 15,000 courses at the time of writing.
There are courses available in English, German, French, Mandarin, Japanese, Spanish, Portuguese, German and Mandarin. However, not all 15,000 courses are available in each of the above languages.