Next move: how do I study IT from home?

Career advice for IT professionals

How do I study IT from home?

I would like to further my knowledge of IT by studying from home. What is the best way of going about this?

Consider your requirements and do your research

There are a number of benefits to studying from home. You can learn new skills and attain recognised certifications and qualifications that are well respected by prospective employers. You will have the flexibility of learning at your own pace within an environment that suits you, and you will be able to work around your daily responsibilities.

Before beginning a course you will need to consider what course is best suited to you, what you hope to achieve, and the benefits that the course will bring to you. It is more than likely that you will fall in to one of the categories below:

1) Introduction to IT

2) Networking and infrastructure

3) Development

4) Web design

5) Database administration

6) Project management

7) Business analysis

8) Testing

There are a number of companies that offer individuals the opportunity to learn from home. For example, Learn Direct, ICS Learn, Computeach, and the Open University. The cost of these courses vary. For example, a basic course in web design could be as low as £100, whereas an MCSD could be in excess of £1,000.

My advice is to identify your exact development needs and research the companies that offer the courses you wish to study. Naturally, the cost of the courses will vary between companies, dependent on the course itself and the materials and support that you will be given during your study time. Once you have decided which course is best suited for you, the time it will take to successfully complete the course will often be down to you.

Answer by Phil Soffe, managing consultant at Hudson

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This was last published in March 2008

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