Get your Brain into the Cloud
By: Kevin Derman Director: Cloud
At the end of 2014 I wrote a blog post entitled “The Brain Cloud”, which essentially was a list of resources for anyone looking to educate themselves on all things cloud. The majority of these resources were free at the time and it is interesting to see that most have moved to a paid model since then.
The world of online education has grown substantially since 2014. It is estimated to be worth $255 billion in 2017 (1), while the corporate e-learning portion probably makes up about 10-20% of this number, individuals are certainly taking their future into their own hands and going online themselves (2). At the pace that technology is moving, the need to stay ahead and maintain ones level of knowledge is key to ensuring relevancy and employability. It’s no surprise that many players are capitalising on this demand.
So here is my list of go-to resources for cloud education, free and some not so free. Just remember the wisdom of my grandfather when he said, “If it’s free, it’s probably not worth much”. You get what you pay for.
Not so free courses
Top of my list is still Coursera. This used to be a 100% free resource, however this has now become a paid for course. In all fairness, the Cloud Computing Specialisation is not a quick 4 week online course. It comprises of 6 separate courses and a “Capstone Project” at the end where you demonstrate the practical expertise you have gained during the course. It’s not for the faint hearted and is somewhat technical. Cost is $39-$79 per 4/5 week course.
Next up is Lynda.com, LinkedIn’s training division. There are a fortune of courses available here for a monthly fee of $19.99. These range from generic cloud courses to more specific Microsoft, AWS, and Google. Very popular courses include those from David Linthicum and a host of Microsoft courses from Sharon Bennett. You can get a free month too, to get you started.
A Cloud Guru has blazed their way into the online cloud education world. Started by two brothers, they focus on AWS education. Here, you can buy the courses necessary to become an AWS Certified Solutions Architect for $29.00. What??? Yes, $29.00. They have some free introductory courses for AWS if you are looking to get started. If AWS certification is your goal, this is a great place to begin.
Pluralsight is not only a courses portal but also a platform that allows you to evaluate the technical abilities of your teams, align learning to key business objectives and close skills gaps in critical areas like cloud, design, security, mobile and data. For an individual the platform costs $29.00 per month, which provides you with access to the entire course library, in addition to course learning checks and exercise files. They will do a 20 question skills assessment and help you identify your knowledge gaps and strengths, so you don’t waste time on what you already know. Great courses both for Azure and AWS.
If you want to get into cloud technology, the best place to start is always the vendor portals themselves.
The Microsoft Cloud Society offers a range of 40+ free Microsoft Azure online courses with 4 learning paths. What more could you want? Here you can also get a digital certificate so everyone can know about it as well.
AWS has some great resources available for partners. I recommend working through the “Checklist for Business Professionals” which can be found here https://aws.amazon.com/partners/training/learning-plan/ . This provides 16 hours of online free training that will certainly have you sounding like a true cloud professional.
Alison has a few introductory courses like an “Introduction to Mobile and Cloud Computing” and “Internet of Things and the Cloud”. These certainly will give someone the basics to get started.
edX has a host of free cloud computing courses that are provided by other institutions. The education is free, however, should you wish to obtain a certificate there is a cost of around $250.00 per certificate. This begs the question, what’s more important the knowledge or the certificate?
That is about it for now. I am sure there are thousands of other resources out there, but at least you know that these are decent and provide quality information. Take the plunge and see you in the clouds!
- World Economic Forum: Is online learning the future of education https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2016/09/is-online-learning-the-future-of-education/
- E-Learning Industry Trends Forecast 2017-2021 https://elearningindustry.com/press-releases/elearning-trends-report-forecasts-tech-driven-growth-from-2017-2021
[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]For all things cloud, please contact Kevin Derman on (011) 540 2640 or via emaill at firstname.lastname@example.org.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]