The list: Free courses online to help your job prospects in 2021

The coronavirus pandemic has shifted gears on everything. Most if not all schooling went online, and is most likely to continue for the rest of 2021. Many tertiary institutions will be welcoming first-year students in an online setting. But for many, many matriculants, formal education is just not an option. There are however options. We have put together a list of free and accessible alternatives to standard higher education.

Microsoft Digital Literacy

A basic digital literacy course is offered by ICT-ED online. The course is open to all South Africans for free. It covers four modules covering the basics to Microsoft Office Programs. 

There is an assessment at the end of the course, and you will receive a certificate sanctioned by Foundation for Professional Development. This will allow you to claim recognition of prior learning in Digital Literacy at any institution of higher learning.

Google Digital Skills for Africa

Expanding on the basic digital skills you can branch off into more advanced courses.

Google Digital Skills for Africa is 100% free and online. There are three course categories; Digital Marketing, Career Development and Data and Tech. You will have access to over 150 courses, and can structure it according to your schedule. For each full module completed course you will receive a recognised certificate. One of the most popular courses is the Fundamentals of Digital Marketing course

Free Code Camp

Free Code Camp  helps people learn code for free. They have put together thousands of videos, articles and interactive coding lessons all freely available. The worldwide network has study groups around the world offering support and assistance. The courses are from beginner to advanced level, and can be done at your own pace. Thousands of people have been employed as developers after completing these courses; it is a valuable online resource. 


FutureLearn offers free access to online educational courses. Every course has been designed according to principles of effective learning, through storytelling, discussion, visible learning, and community support to celebrate progress. Learn 100% online with world class universities and industry experts. Get started with their new featured digital marketing course and explore the value of digital marketing and the challenges of digital disruption. 


edX is an American massive open online course provider created by Harvard and MIT. It’s relentlessly pursuing their vision of a world where every learner can access education to unlock their potential, without the barriers of cost or location. Explore their top courses in data science and computer science.

Compiled by Ling Shepherd and Kelly Mutizira 

Featured image via Unsplash