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Free Online Courses / Training: All Options With(out) Certificate

Free Online Courses / Training: All Options With(out) Certificate

What are the best free options for taking online training / courses – possibly even with a certificate? Are you looking for a way to take complete or individual subjects and courses for free? Read on for an overview of the best learning platforms for free online courses – including how to earn a certificate online.

The best: here you can follow (free) online courses (with certificate)

We start this article with the most useful options for online courses:

  1. Coursera (our # 1 recommendation)
  2. Linkedin Learning
  3. Skillshare
  4. Udemy

The top 4 above is just a quick selection of the best platforms. However, there are many more options. Continue reading this article for all the options.

Why take a (free) online course?

Taking an online course is a great way to expand your knowledge and skills. Courses that increase your chances on the labor market in particular are a good addition to your CV. It is not without reason that online courses in the field of IT, online marketing and management skills are incredibly popular.

Online courses have the great advantage that you can learn at a time that suits you. Whether you want to learn while on the train or at home late at night: you are not bound by a class location and a class schedule, so you have complete freedom.

Do you want to expand your knowledge and start with an online course? You may be looking for a course that comes in handy on the job market, but you want a course of good quality. There are several organizations where you can take an online course for free that is of the same level as a classroom training. In addition, if you are following an online course with a certificate, you can submit proof of participation to demonstrate your knowledge and skills.

Taking a course is good for your development, keeps you sharp and underlines your ambition. So whether you are looking for a free online course in philosophy, communication, law, Spanish, English, HTML, management, psychology or just a hobby … take a look at the recommendations below:

Many online courses are free, but certification costs money

get online certificate

If you want certification, you have to be assessed. This requires man hours – and that simply costs money. So although there are certainly possibilities to take even complete university courses for free – for example via the MOOC principle of Coursera – you will normally have to pay an extra amount if you also want certification.

The added value of a certificate

Expanding your knowledge and learning new skills is a great way to expand your resume. However, an employer would like to see proof that you have this knowledge at a certain level. That is why it is important to choose an online course that provides you with a certificate as proof of successful participation.

You may not attach much value to a certificate yourself, especially if you follow a course as a hobby. But if you want to put your knowledge and skills on your CV, a certificate will certainly add value. A company takes you a lot more seriously if you can demonstrate your knowledge and skills with a obtained certificate.

Where can you display a certificate?

Of course, a certificate looks good on your CV, but it is also useful to be able to show what you can do in other places. For example, obtained certificates are often posted on social media channels such as LinkedIn.

However, certificates do not only help you in your search for a new job, also if you want to grow in your current workplace, following courses and training with certification is a useful way. You show your employer that you have knowledge and ambition.

Where can you take a free course with certificate online?

free online courses with certificate

You can take online courses through various organizations and platforms. Many online courses are free, for other courses you pay a small amount to be able to follow the course and / or to request a certificate. We highlight three providers who offer full-fledged courses of good quality with certificate. This way you can be sure that you not only expand your knowledge and skills, but that you can also demonstrate with certificates that you have the knowledge in-house.

You can choose from many online courses with certificate, but which course is really worth it? We see that courses in IT, management and online marketing are especially popular. You can think of a Photoshop, Scrum or SEO course. Courses that increase computer skills such as Office, Word and Excel also remain popular courses. In addition, language courses such as Business English or Business German are useful courses that can help you in the job market.

1. The MOOC principle: Coursera

The # 1 place to take college-level online courses for free is Coursera. Via you can follow so-called MOOCs: Massive Open Online Courses. These are online courses that are provided by Dutch and foreign universities.

In the Netherlands, for example, Eindhoven University of Technology, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Leiden University, the University of Amsterdam and the University of Utrecht are affiliated with Coursera. MOOCs are offered in various fields at university level. Following a MOOC is free, a small contribution is required to receive a certificate.

2. Google Digital Workshop: completely free

The Digital Workshop of Google enables you to follow a free marketing course that teaches you everything about SEO, SEA and all the ins & out about Google marketing tools. You will receive a certificate from Google after completing the online course.

It is also possible to follow online courses on other subjects via the digital workshop. These courses are curated by Google or by a third party. Most online courses are free. You can filter the offer on the possibility of obtaining a free or a paid certificate with the course.

3. Linkedin Learning: free period

Linkedin Learning is of course an online learning platform for which you have to pay, but the special thing about Linkedin Learning is that you can use it for free for 30 days.

To your success!

About The Author


Hello! Thanks for reading these articles. My intention is to make happiness as simple and clear as posssible. By the way, excuse my English. I am not a native English speaker since I live in Amsterdam. Much appreciated if you use the comments to make suggestions on my grammar. See ya in another blogpost!