Introducing: Universiteplus

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Universiteplus is an online learning platform that features quality education from leading Turkish universities aimed towards Turkish and English speaking learners.  The courses are self-paced, free, and have the opportunity to earn a certificate for a reasonable 69TL. 

As the first Turkish MOOC platform, Universiteplus has three main goals – to provide Turkey (and the world) with free, unique and vital opportunities to revolutionize education, to support the best Turkish professors by giving them a platform from which to teach, and to take advantage of international interest in regional affairs to share Turkey‘s own story. 

Keep watching for more courses, new professors and new universities participating in Universiteplus as they are on the look out for the best and brightest!

The Platform

Taught by leading Turkish professors with tenure at prestigious universities around the world, the courses consist of video lectures, projects, learning activities and final exams.  There are also forums to participate within.  Designed to work around your busy schedule, courses are self-paced and available at any time – it is easy to access on your smartphone and other devices.

 

Profiles

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Universiteplus offers a great profile page for each user.  You can share a little about yourself – your interests, where you are from, and ways in which people can contact you – such as LinkedIn.  You can easily see who is in each class by checking under Participants to contact a coursemate offsite (to follow on Twitter for example)

A Wide Selection of Courses

Universiteplus has a great assortment of courses – these are just a sampling of the courses available.  While these 3 are in English, there are many more in Turkish.  This will be exciting news for our friends in Istanbul, Samsun, and Ankara!

universiteplus course page

Career Counseling

This “Career Counseling” course will explore the basic principles and concepts involved in the career development as well as college and career decision making processes of individuals. It will focus on reconsideration of the roles & responsibilities of career counselors & clients in individual & group counseling. Participants will gain knowledge of occupational-educational information & vocational testing that is applied to the process of career counseling.

 

universiteplus entrepreneurIntroduction to Entrepreneurship

The purpose of ‘introduction to entrepreneurship’ course is to help you begin the process of developing a set of skills and competencies focused on entrepreneurial opportunity recognition, innovation, and small business management. This course is about dreaming and pursuing those entrepreneurial dreams.  This course will challenge you to think and act boldly, and to break with conventional thinking when it comes to the realities of the marketplace and your own business ideas. Introduction to entrepreneurship will equip you with basic skills and tools that will allow you to effectively pursue your entrepreneurial dreams. Entrepreneurs and aspiring entrepreneurs.

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Occasionalism East and West

Philosophy, History, Islamic Studies, Religious Studies majors can take this course. Occasionalism is commonly understood as a theory that ascribes all causal power to God on the one hand and treats cause-effect relations in nature as occasions indicating the manner of divine creation on the other. This doctrine was formulated first by the Muslim scholars in the 10th century, i.e. the Ash’arites and Maturidites. It was transmitted to Europe via the works of Averroes and Moses Maimonides in the 13th century. In the 17th century, it reappeared among the Cartesian philosophers, famously in the work of Nicolas Malebranche. Many philosophers in the 17th and 18th centuries seriously took this theory into account, responded to it and to a certain extent influenced by it. In this course, we will examine wider philosophical dimensions of occasionalism both theoretically and from a historical point of view. Some questions that will be addressed are as follows: What is the relationship between occasionalism and monism (or pantheism)?

Make sure to check out the course finder to see the full selection of courses from Universiteplus – and remember to update your Accredible Learner’s Profile to reflect the new courses you’ve selected!

Introducing Filtered

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“Are you proficient in Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint?”

These are the words that can make even the most proficient users cringe.  No matter how good you are, you KNOW that the interviewer is about to ask for proof – either wanting results from a course or for you to take a skills test next.  Who among us has the certifications to show that we’ve learned so much since we started using Word? Some of us started back when WordPerfect was still the popular choice – and we learned by trial and (mostly) error.  To take a course has always meant napping for the first half of an expensive, stuffy, corporate training course while we waited for everyone around us to catch up.

That’s no longer the case!  

 

Meet Filtered, a learning platform that is focusing on the three most popular Microsoft Office products – Word, Excel and PowerPoint!  There is no need to wait for anyone else around you to catch up so you can start learning – before you start a course, you take a pretest that determines what you already know and filters it out, leaving you the most relevant topics to cover.  Even better, Filtered offers these courses at an affordable price – for the price of two takeout dinners for the family, you could have access to all 3 courses for 3 months.  Best yet, it only takes you a few minutes to do and then you have a personalized course designed just for you.

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Once you’ve set up your program, there is a handy dashboard to track your progress as well as handy reminders sent once a week to help keep you on track!

Word

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Filtered says there is using Word and then there is using Word properly. While Word is pretty easy for most of us to use, many of us don’t know the tricks to using it right.  What’s the big deal? Well, how about gaining a few hours back into your week while increasing the quality of your output?  (Hmmm….can anyone else smell a raise in the air???).

 

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Their algorithm will develop a programme that is tailored to your needs.  The experts will develop a program that is just for you!  Learn the things you really need to know how to do (or do better!) and not quite so much time on the things that won’t help you (removing backgrounds from photos perhaps??).  Build practical skills quickly so you can start applying them immediately.

Excel

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Want to be an Excel expert?  To be completely competent in using the most popular spreadsheet application in the world? Need to set up budgets, to do lists, CRMs or any other data intensive task? Take the quiz and get started!

Designed for all learning styles, Filtered uses many great tools to help you learn – text, imagery, video and Excel workbooks with practice exercises.  Regardless of your starting level, the way in which they use these tools will be beneficial to all.

PowerPoint

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Known to send the most competent of business people into a panic, PowerPoint is a Must-Know for anyone who makes presentations.  PowerPoint users seldom have any formal training, having made do with what they have picked up along the way. This means the presenter may be able to make the slideshow work, but maybe not their full advantage (i.e. the slides change but don’t look so hot!).

This course helps you learn about good slide design, effective collaborations in presentations, and the practical tips for presenting that you wish your mentor/friend/spouse had shared with you BEFORE the presentation with the big boss!

 But wait! There’s more!

At least, there are more coming – courses that is!  A further eight courses are currently being developed for release later this year (don’t worry, we will be sure to let you know more upon release!).  But for now, you can look forward to learning how to better use Outlook or how to write a better business letter in the near future.

By the time you finish with the courses offered by our friends at Filtered, you will be ready to take on any project delegated to you by your boss – or be ready to impress any recruiter or employer for that new dream job you’ve had in mind!  We can’t wait to hear which courses you decide to take – remember to update your Learner’s Profile and let us know in the comments below or @accredible.

Featuring Treehouse

Treehouse Home

Recently, our own Swati Kumar wrote about preparing to attend coding camp.  She spoke of using Treehouse as a great way to learn HTML and CSS.  When learning these skills, it’s important to be able to learn at your own pace.  These basics are important to practice – over and over and over if needed – until you can do it in your sleep.  One neat way Treehouse encourages this is through interactive Code Challenges which allow you to apply what you’ve learned.  As you gain skills, you will also earn badges, visible to anyone online (those badges are great evidence to upload onto your Accredible Slate too!).  Remember, all of these great courses are available for the very reasonable fee of $25/month (see Treehouse for the details).

This week we will  look at HTML and CSS courses – there are many and all seem interesting!

CSS Foundations Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) is a language used to describe the visual look of a web page. Using CSS, it is possible to change colors, margin, padding, fonts, and much more. This content will consolidate the previously released CSS Foundations and CSS3 in a brand new and updated series.
CSS Layout Techniques Learn how to work with the common layout and positioning methods used in web design. Throughout the course we’ll build a layout using display methods, floats, positioning schemes, even Flexbox, the latest and most advanced CSS layout feature. We’ll cover the strengths and benefits of each method, along with common layout issues and how to solve them
Modular CSS with Sass Writing efficient CSS means that it needs to be reusable, scalable and easy to maintain. Today’s websites and applications are larger than ever and a lot hinges on the CSS architecture. So CSS that is poorly thought-out can be a strain on development and maintenance in the long run.
Treehouse Club – CSS In this project, you learn how to edit pre-written code to style a web page for desktops, tablets, and mobile devices. You’ll begin by learning how to connect a CSS stylesheet to our HTML document. Next you’ll edit some CSS and we will learn about basic CSS structure. Finally, you’ll learn about new tags to make text colorful, choose fonts, upload pictures, and more.

HTML This HTML tutorial helps you master HTML. Mastering HTML and its many elements is critical for any type of web professional. HTML or “Hyper Text Markup Language” describes the basic structure and content of a web page.

HTML Email Design MailChimp UX Designer Fabio Carneiro demonstrates how to build a full-featured, mobile-friendly email from scratch. Using the proper mix of HTML, CSS, and media queries, you can design an effective message fit for laptops and mobile devices, no matter what kind of content you need to send.

HTML Forms The web is a two-way communication medium. There’s lots of HTML elements for displaying data and producing output, and conversely, there’s also lots of HTML elements for accepting input. Accepting input from the user means creating web forms. In this course, we’ll learn about all the most important form elements that web professionals use on a daily basis.

HTML Tables The web is filled with text and images, but it’s also filled with information like sports scores throughout the years, list of employee names and email addresses, or nutrition facts for your favorite foods. HTML tables enable the display information in what is commonly known as tabular data, which is information that’s stored in a table-like structure of columns and rows. In general, anything that you might put into a spreadsheet could go in a table. There are many use cases for a table, so it’s important to add them to your skills because it’s a very common method for displaying information.

Treehouse Club – HTML If you’ve never written a line of code before, this is the place to start! In this project, you’ll learn how to edit pre-written HTML code. By the end of this course, you’ll be more comfortable with using Treehouse’s programming tool Workspaces and have a basic understanding of HTML structure.

 

Be sure to tell us which courses you choose by adding them to your Accredible Learner’s Profile

Exploits in Education: Week One

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Welcome back!  Grab a cup of coffee (tea?  soda?) and get settled in for a bit of a read….

Wow – the first week of Discovering Business in Society was a real eye opener!  I have so many things I want to talk about – the exam, businesses vs. organizations, globalization, technology and challenges in management…

But first, I have to comment on my impressions of the course.  Any course which offers blogging prompts is A1 in my books. I believe blogging along with courses only increases the writers understanding of the materials – and of course, the increased understanding by the reader is uber important!  I also really appreciated the weekly recap – love that it isn’t pre-recorded and references our comments.  Did the review change my viewpoints?  Well…maybe not change per se, but definitely provoked further research and thinking.  I really appreciated the discussion on globalization and who the winners and losers really are.  (More on that later!)

The Exam

 

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Last week we talked about the exam that could be written for this course that would lead to an exemption of the ACCA F1 Accountant in Business paper.  You do earn your “Statement of Attainment” with it.  More details are available here.  Exams are delivered by Pearson VUE at one of their 175 testing centers. For a reasonable £119, you can get your certificate and be one step closer to earning your ACCA qualifications.

 

 

Businesses vs Organizations

business and organizations0005AWell, we jumped right in, didn’t we?  Businesses can be organizations, but are not necessarily organizations.  Organizations can act like businesses, but not be one.  Both can have commercial activities. Both can be Global.  Both can have multiple branches.  Both are complex.

This topic is complex.

Seriously though, it is complex.  With so many similarities it is easy to just think of them as one in the same.  But they aren’t.  Organizations exist to meet a social purpose (think Girl Guides and Boy Scouts, the Accredited Sommelier Association of Canada or the Cancer Society) but they still can offer products (Girl Guide Cookie anyone?  Perhaps a Daffodil?  An apple?) and services (life skills, professional development, research and development).

Key lesson for me: consider activities vs entities.  What are the values and missions of the group?  Are they there to meet a social purpose?  You work for a business to earn your wage, but you volunteer with an organization to feel good.

 

 

How has the job of managing a business is becoming more challenging over time

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This was a great discussion on the forum.  I tried to come up with my own list before reading, but I have to admit, I was able to grow my list from the conversations.  My list of 4 factors (with additional thoughts)

 

 

  1. Human Resources
    1. Hiring the right people
    2. Training
    3. Interaction between management and employees
    4. Discipline
  2. Changes
    1. Pivoting
    2. Product
    3. Technology
    4. Regulations
  3. Competition
    1. Maintaining a Competitve Advantage
    2. Globalization
    3. More Competition 
  4. Needed it Yesterday!!
    1. Newer, Better, Faster
    2. Balancing Expectations

Yikes!  I think I just aged myself a good 5 years whilst developing this list!  Management sure has changed from the days of just directing “take A and move it to B and then perform C”.

Globalization

business-316906_150Who wins?  Who loses? Will it reverse?  Three great questions.  No easy answers.

Who wins?

Who loses?

Made_in_USA_Brand_Certification_Mark_logo.svgWill it reverse?

As countries go through economic challenges, there is always a push to move jobs back home, bringing back the idWe ea that products made at home are of a high quality (Who doesn’t proudly buy items stamped Made in “insert your home country name here”?

 

Changes in Technology

When I was in university, there was a major project underway to open a new business school building.  It was going to have the latest and greatest technologies and prepare our business graduates to head out into the big scary world able to use whatever technology was sent their way. That was our way – our school had a legacy of technological advancements to uphold.

It was an amazing sight when it opened.  There were ethernet cable ports built in to every table for students who carried (lugged) their laptops to class (wifi wasn’t a reality then – Cabled Networks was an exciting upgrade from dial up modems!).  We had whiteboards (as in dry erase marker boards not the app) installed in every classroom to avoid getting chalk dust into the computers.  I remember the excitement of using group study rooms to prepare for a test or work on a project.  It was so avant garde.  Cutting Edge.

It was so 1998.

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Fast forward to watching the video of the Exeter lecture hall.  Tables with embedded touchscreens for group work?  Lecture halls with multi purpose screens?  Microphones?  No struggling to hear the professor and having recorded lectures that you can easily review after the fact?  (I remember carrying a little pocket sized recorder with micro cassettes to class and having to ask permission to get a poor quality, grainy recording.  Most times, all I could really hear was me breathing!)

 

Keyboard_on_a_German_mechanical_Olympia_typewriter

Has technology made me more productive?  I doubt it.  Any increase in productivity has likely been lost to the time spent researching topics online, making things look “pretty” and analysing things I never would have considered looking at 5 years ago.  Yes, I can type an article on my laptop much quicker than I could on a typewriter with a lot less wasted paper, but I wouldn’t have worried about having just the right image to highlight my point before either!

In Summary

So, this week covered technology advances (and I only focused on computer technology…others would have led to a far longer post to read!), globalization, the increasing challenges in management and business vs organizations.  Next week we are looking at rules and regulations, taxes and laws.  It should be interesting!

 

How to Become a Programmer in 9 Weeks: Week 2

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Recap: Follow Me from HTML Illiterate to Professional Programmer

In case you haven’t read Week 0 (about my preparation), I am currently a student at a programming bootcamp called Coding House in the San Francisco Bay Area. I finished college a few months ago, but decided my business degree wasn’t going to let me do what I really wanted: to build rather than manage. This realization and my love for startups (and California) led me to begin working toward a career in software development.

 

3 Highs:  Practice means Progress!

Learning Made Easy:  Okay, this is kind of misleading – learning to code without any background in programming is not in any way easy.  Getting used to the daily regimen and long hours, however, makes it easier to focus and learn for longer hours without zoning out.  The constant feeling of never being able to completely catch up is inherent to a boot camp, but it has been a whole lot easier to work with since I’ve physically fallen (more) in sync with the schedule.

Seeing Results:  It is also been extremely helpful to set mini goals.  Everyone learns in different ways and at different paces, which becomes very important to keep in mind in such an intensive learning environment.  Recently, I’ve been taking what the instructor is teaching as a relative syllabus rather than forcing myself to try to learn things at his pace.  It helps to note down the topics and terms that are mentioned during lectures and then spending the evenings re-learning them on my own at my own pace by setting personal mini goals(sometimes even allowing some material to spill over to the next few days).  I’ve actually been able to retain and successfully use more information this way over the past week.

Building Stuff!  Considering the fact that I’ve only been here at Coding House for 2 weeks and only looked into programming for a few weeks before that, I am no expert any any language quite yet.  During my HTML/CSS preparation before coming here, though, what I did learn was a result of using the tools to actually build a website.  In the few bouts of free time I have (often giving up social interaction for it), I’ve taken on a few side projects to help me pick up more material in a short span of time.  For example, I’m currently working on creating a simple single-page website for an international charity I’ve been involved with for a few years.  The site itself is very small, but I’ve been trying to include some interesting features and plug-ins to get some practice in with front end development.  It can be tiring at times to spend even my free time working, but seeing what I’ve learned in such a short amount of time turn into a viable product has been absolutely worth it.  Not only does it serve as encouragement, but I can also add these things to my currently sparse development portfolio.

 

3 Lows:  The Case of the Missing Time Turner

The Command Line:  Using the command line has been…frustrating to say the least.  The command line is an interface that allows users to literally command everything on the computer from a single window.  For someone who has never used it before, though, it looks like a load of Gibberish.  Don’t get me wrong – the command line is a powerful and useful tool once you learn how to use it properly.  The issue is the ‘learning to use it’ part, though.  The tool literally requires its own language which simply calls for a whole lot of memorization and understanding of hierarchies.  It hasn’t necessarily been difficult to learn, just extraordinarily time consuming.  I’m looking forward to becoming capable of using it quickly, though – it makes it a lot easier to search through files and organize.

The Never-Ending To-Do List:  Like I mentioned above, the feeling of never being able to catch up is inherent to a bootcamp.  The entire point is to glean huge amounts of information in a short amount of time.  Making mini goals has certainly helped organize things for me, but the list of said goals seems to get longer faster than I can check items off.  Its like that dream where you are running toward something and can never seem to get there – except less creepy and unfortunate.  The Never-Ending To-Do list is less characteristic of a programming bootcamp and more a usual component of life in the real world.  Preparation is key!

Lack of Time Turner:  No, seriously.  I would pay a whole lot of money for Hermione’s time turner right about now.  I’m here for 60 days and have made every effort to spend as much of my time as possible learning, but there still isn’t enough to do everything I want to while I still have access to the teachers and resources that make the learning process so much easier.

 

The Immersion:  Kudos for Kung Pao  

Camping:  We capped this week off with a camping trip to the Redwoods as a team bonding event.  We played Airsoft and other games, which were a lot of fun.  Then it got dark.  And cold.  And I needed a toilet (which – surprise! – didn’t exist).  And lets just say I’m a city girl.  Being so out of my element was a good experience, though.  Learning to deal with discomfort is a pretty solid life skill.

Dining with Developers:  Sarah (our Food Service Director) put together some pretty awesome meals that definitely provided some bright spots whenever I got stuck debugging!  I’ve been extremely homesick for my mom’s home-cooked Indian meals lately, so seeing Indian stews and spices popping up has been amazing.  Plus, we had some awesome Kung Pao chicken this week.  Not having to worry about cooking and groceries is a huge plus when there’s so little time to learn so much – kudos to Sarah for making life a bit easier at Coding House!

Stockholm Syndrome:  Usually, I’m the kind of person who gets extremely irritated if I don’t get to leave the house and have a change of scenery at all for a full day.  I’ve been going days without setting foot outside here, though, and the kick is that I don’t mind that at all.  I definitely could take breaks and go out for a bit if I wanted to, but I’ve been more interested in figuring the next problem out or designing my next project so it hasn’t bothered me at all.  Stockholm syndrome setting in?

 

Takeaway Advice

  • Don’t beat yourself up over falling behind the instructor’s pace.  Instead, create your own mini goals and work toward fulfilling them on your own time.
  • Build something!  The fastest way to learn something is to throw yourself into the deep end and make it work.  Programming is no different.
  • It is never too early to begin putting together your portfolio.
  • Choose Coding House for the food!

O2S Courses Starting Soon

Open2Study
Starting on September 15th, Open2Study is bringing to you some fantastic courses!  If you’ve not yet taken the time to visit their website, then you should make it now!  From their easy to use chat forums (in and out of class!), to the ability to connect to classmates, to the awesome badges you can earn by taking part in various activities, Open2Study has a lot to offer on top of some top notch courses!  Check out these courses starting soon!

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Education & Training

 

EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION – Examine the world of children from 0 to 5 years. Explore how they develop and learn in this critical stage.

BECOMING A CONFIDENT TRAINER – Become a confident trainer by developing an understanding of Adult learners and what motivates them to learn.

EDUCATION IN A CHANGING WORLD – Explore education as a social institution that’s shaped by and part of shaping a constantly changing world.

TEACHING ADULT LEARNERS – Get a grounding in facilitating a group of adult learners, in an online or face to face learning environment.

 

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Science & Technology

 

CHEMISTRY – BUILDING BLOCKS OF THE WORLD – Discover a world built by atoms, shaped by molecules and kept running with chemical reactions!

AGRICULTURE AND THE WORLD WE LIVE IN – How agriculture feeds the world: a study of farms, farmers and the challenges they face.

ASTRONOMY: DISCOVERING THE UNIVERSE – Explore the evolution of the universe, the future of astronomy & the role technology plays in new discoveries.

BASIC PHYSICS – Learn some basic principles of physics that help you understand how the world around you works.

CLIMATE CHANGE – Find out how climate change will affect us, why we should care about it, and what solutions we can employ.

CONCEPTS IN GAME DEVELOPMENT – Explore key ideas in game design, programming, architecture, game engines, player experience and game AI.

MARINE AND ANTARCTIC SCIENCE – Over 70% of our planet is ocean, and life itself evolved in the sea so come and join us on this tour of Planet Ocean!

MICROBIOLOGY AND FORENSIC SCIENCE – Explore the basics of Microbiology and Forensic Science so you can better understand the world around you.

MINING ENGINEERING – Explore the many facets of mining engineering from exploration to production and mine closure.

MOBILE ROBOTICS – Discover the world of mobile robots – how they move, how they interact with the world, and how to build them!

WATER IN A THIRSTY WORLD – This course explores the world of water management on a drying planet.

 

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Marketing & Advertising

 

 

BIG DATA FOR BETTER PERFORMANCE – Learn how you can predict customer demand and preferences by using the data that is all around you

ONLINE ADVERTISING – Learn more about the evolving, dynamic, and fastest growing segment of the advertising industry.

USER EXPERIENCE FOR THE WEB – Learn to create great experiences for people visiting websites, with proven tools and techniques. (Self paced, start any time!)

WRITING FOR THE WEB – Explore how writing style, web design and structure can grab the attention of and engage online readers.

 

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Business

 

 

PRINCIPLES OF PROJECT MANAGEMENT – Learn the basics of project management, including what a project is and how to manage one effectively.

ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND FAMILY BUSINESS – Discover the tools and techniques that will enable you to succeed in business.

HUMAN RESOURCES – Examine human resources from a modern perspective. This course covers all the steps from staff recruitment to retention.

INNOVATION FOR POWERFUL OUTCOMES – Acquire the ability to help make innovation happen, using a rich mix of practical approaches & robust concepts.

INTRODUCTION TO BUSINESS IN ASIA – Discover business in Asia from the perspectives of culture, leadership, management and personal relationships.

INTRODUCTION TO ENTERPRISE ARCHITECTURE – Delve into Enterprise Architecture & gain an understanding of the tools & techniques for the design of business.

LEADERSHIP: IDENTITY, INFLUENCE AND POWER – This course examines recent research to uncover the practical actions anyone can take to be a successful leader.

SPORTS AND RECREATION MANAGEMENT – Discover the careers in sports and recreation and learn to deliver a simple client-focused session.

 

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Finance

 

 

DIAGNOSING THE FINANCIAL HEALTH OF A BUSINESS – Learn to assess the strength of a business and identify early warning signs of potential future problems.

FINANCIAL LITERACY – Develop your knowledge of personal finance, such as how to control, invest and protect your finances.

FINANCIAL PLANNING – Explore a career in financial planning, including working with clients and the financial planning process.

 

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Health & Medicine

 

 

 

FOOD, NUTRITION & YOUR HEALTH – Walk through the basics of nutrition, how eating disorders develop, and learn the benefits of various diets.

FOUNDATIONS OF PSYCHOLOGY – Start learning how psychologists comprehend and study human nature and its disorders.

INTRODUCTION TO NURSING IN HEALTHCARE – Considering a career in nursing? This course will introduce you to the role of nurses in Australian healthcare.

MIDWIFERY – This midwifery course covers the history of the profession and what it means to be a midwife today.

THE HUMAN BODY AS A MACHINE – This course introduces how the human body works and how it is more than the sum of its parts

UNDERSTANDING COMMON DISEASES – Explore four common diseases and body systems: how they work, how they are treated and prevented.

 

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Management

NEGOTIATION AND CONFLICT RESOLUTION – Understand the theory and practice of negotiation and conflict resolution to build a practical framework.

EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT – Learn the concepts, principles and practice of Emergency Management through real-world case studies

MANAGEMENT FOR A COMPETITIVE EDGE – Learn the strategies of successful managers, including leadership, teamwork and communication. (Self paced, start any time!)

STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT – Learn to proactively take control of your workplace and projects by making more strategic decisions and plans.

 

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Art & Humanities

THE ART OF PHOTOGRAPHY – Get introduced to a range of skills and concepts to broaden your understanding of contemporary photographic art.

BECOMING HUMAN: ANTHROPOLOGY – Gain an introductory understanding of evolution, including how we evolved from primates and became human.

CHINESE LANGUAGE AND CULTURE – Explore the history of China’s language and culture and its adjustment to an increasingly globalised world.

CONTEMPORARY ISSUES IN OCEAN GOVERNANCE – Learn about how the world’s oceans are regulated, protected and preserved.

INDIGENOUS STUDIES: AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND – Explores Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and Māori history, society, culture, language and demography.

SOCIOLOGY  – Sociology examines individuals in their social contexts.

 

UNDERSTANDING THE ORIGINS OF CRIME – Learn to understand criminal behaviour by looking at our evolutionary history and animal behaviour in general.

WORLD MUSIC – Discover a world of music exploring your community or family to learn how music represents cultural identity.

 

Don’t forget to add any courses you sign up for to your Accredible Learning Profile!

Featuring Open Yale

open yale

Open Yale provides a selection of free and open intro courses taught by distinguished teachers and scholars at Yale University. Their courses span the full range of liberal arts disciplines, including humanities, social sciences, and physical and biological sciences.  Each course includes a full set of class lectures produced in high-quality video accompanied by such other course materials as syllabi, suggested readings, and problem sets. The lectures are available as downloadable videos, and an audio-only version is also offered. In addition, searchable transcripts of each lecture are provided.

This month we are featuring their Humanities courses:

 Humanities

Which courses will you choose?  Don’t forget to add them to your Accredible Learner’s Profile!

 

Online Learning Beyond MOOCs

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Massive Open Online Courses are fantastic ways to get a structured education without the typical associated costs, but they often take a long time to get through.  A MOOC could take anywhere from a few days to a few months.  There are other ways to learn something new online within 60 minutes, though.

 

TED Talks

TED Talks might not give you a thorough understanding of Design or Accounting, but many can help you develop a opinion by taking a new spin on things.  They are generally pretty short (some even as short as 5 minutes) and send a message, whether it may be to inform you about an issue, explain a new way of thinking about an existing topic, or inspire you to take a stand or some sort of action.  There are tons of them on Netflix and all over the internet.  Here are a couple great ones to check out.

 

 

 

YouTube Tutorials

Can’t remember how to use a specific feature on Excel?  Or maybe you need to learn how to apply heavy makeup for an awesome costume party.  YouTube has all sorts of awesome vloggers who put up interesting tutorials covering all sorts of topics.  The advantage here is that you can even make requests for something you need to quickly learn to complete a project.  Here are a couple of extremely popular YouTubers!

 

 

 

Helpouts by Google

YouTube tutorials are awesome, but what if its going too fast or you don’t understand a part of it?  Some people just learn better from a live teacher.  For them, Google Helpouts saves the day.  Helpouts lets teachers post their expertise, the duration they are willing to devote to a video, and price (although many are free).  Some Helpouts are pre-recorded and work largely like any other video tutorial, but others allow you to set up a time to meet with a live tutor who can walk you through a task or even teach you about a particular topic like a school teacher or college professor would.  Curious to learn more?  Check out this intro video.

 

 

A lot of fantastic learning happens in a classroom setting (in person or through open online courses), but even more happens just by picking up on what is going on around you and by immersing yourself into a project that you need to look up information in order to complete.

 

ryanlerch_Green_-_Query_IconCareer Tip:  You can add achievements to your Accredible profile that aren’t courses your registered for through our course finder feature!  Just click on the ‘add course’ button on your profile and select the wrench to customize your entry and add your projects and courses completed outside of MOOCs.  Then remember to link your Accredible profile to your LinkedIn page so your connections can check out all your accomplishments!

Exploits in Education: Discovering Business in Society – The ACCA

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Welcome back!

 

Glad to see you again – grab a mug of your favourite beverage and let’s begin!  Last week we chatted about the new “Discovering Business in Society” course being offered by Exeter and the ACCA via FutureLearn.  We discovered a little about Robin Mason, the lead instructor for the course and then we signed off with plans to learn more about the ACCA this week.  I don’t want to forget about FutureLearn – they had some exciting news this week that I thought would be fun to share with you.

 

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What is the ACCA?

 

ACCA (the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) is the global body for professional accountants.  Their goal is to offer qualifications to people based on application, ability and ambition who are looking for careers in accountancy, finance and management.

The formation of the ACCA is an interesting tale.  Way back in 1904, 8 people got together and formed the London Association of Accountants.  While there were 2 existing accountancy organizations around, they had a goal of providing greater access to the accountancy profession . As typically happens, they went through several mergers over the years.  In 1984 we were granted a Royal Charter of Incorporation. In 1996 they took on their current name, the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA).

 

Why did the ACCA partner with Exeter?

 

I got to wondering why the ACCA decided to partner with Exeter (which is, of course, an excellent school).  I asked around (inquiring minds want to know, etc!) and was told that it was because of an existing relationship with them to promote an MA in Leadership Studies for ACCA members.

More than their existing relationship, the ACCA knew that Exeter had been amongst the first universities to launch a MOOC on FutureLearn and that experience would be beneficial – Exeter already has a great production team with many ideas that could be applied.

This ties in well with ACCA, who started delivering computer-based exams as early as 1998.  As an innovator, the ACCA would want to be involved with MOOCs.  Their commitment to both innovation and education lends well to this project.

 

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What are the ACCA qualifications?

 

According to Wikipedia, “The ACCA Qualification is the professional body’s main qualification. Following completion of up to 14 professional examinations, three years of supervised, relevant accountancy experience and a professional ethics module, it enables an individual to become a Chartered Certified Accountant…The syllabus comprises 14 examinations, although some exemptions are available. The qualification is structured in two parts. The Fundamentals level consists of 9 examinations: F1 Accountant in Business, F2 Management Accounting, F3 Financial Accounting, F4 Corporate and Business Law, F5 Performance Management, F6 Taxation, F7 Financial Reporting, F8 Audit and Assurance, and F9 Financial Management. The Professional level involves 5 examinations. Within the Professional level three papers are compulsory: P1 Governance, Risk and Ethics; P2 Corporate Reporting; and P3 Business Analysis. Two of the following four options papers must also be completed: P4 Advanced Financial Management, P5 Advanced Performance Management, P6 Advanced Taxation and P7 Advanced Audit and Assurance.”

According to the course details, you just need to complete the summative assessment of the course to earn an exemption from the paper F1, Accountant in Business.  I’m looking forward to learning more about how this will work…as more details come out, you can be sure I will share!  In the meantime, I am going to take screen shots of my work (scores, not answers!) and scan my notes to upload to my Learner’s Profile (Feel free to connect with me there!).  I’m also going to start saving my change so that by the end of the course I have enough “change” saved up to get the Statement of Achievement (if that’s how you write the summative assessment) or the Statement of Participation.

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Next Week

 

We start exploring week 1!  I’m pretty excited to begin – I’ve warned the family that this course is starting soon and they should prepare themselves to make a sandwiches for supper while I am studying.  I’ve loaded up on loose-leaf and pencils (yes, I like to write my notes instead of typing them!) and stopped by my favourite coffee shop to stock up on my speciality pods for those times I stay up late watching videos.  How have you prepared?  Share your preparations in the comments below or on Twitter using #exBIS and tagging @accredible.

How to Become a Programmer in 9 Weeks: Week 1

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Recap: Follow Me from HTML Illiterate to Professional Programmer

 

In case you haven’t read Week 0 (about my preparation), I am currently a student at a programming bootcamp called Coding House in the San Francisco Bay Area. I finished college a few months ago, but decided my business degree wasn’t going to let me do what I really wanted: to build rather than manage. This realization and my love for startups (and California) led me to begin working toward a career in software development.

 

3 Highs:  Success!

 

A Whole New World: Learning to code with absolutely no computer science experience (like learning to do anything without field experience) is mind boggling. We generally learn best by relating to the concept we want to learn to something we already know – its called mind mapping. There are terms and concepts that I not only haven’t heard of , but can’t really connect with other pieces of knowledge either. This makes the learning process a bit harder for complete beginners (like me), but the feeling of accomplishment after understanding something new is all the better too.  completed-javascript-road-trip-part-1-b9f5af5196fb596271f7f97b6b477d24

 

Balance, Young Grasshopper: Although I’m certainly no expert, having learned a good chunk of HTML5 and CSS3 in the couple weeks before making the trip to San Francisco has been extremely advantageous. Obviously, I wish I’d had time to learn more about JavaScript (considering this is a MEAN stack boot camp), but having what little background I managed to build is great for building confidence. Every time I have trouble with a concept, there’s always something else I can contribute from what I do know – which is a good ‘frustration buffer’.

 

Coding Builds Character: Debugging has probably consumed most of my time as an upcoming developer, which is frustrating because I never know if my code isn’t working because of a conceptual mistake or just a missing semicolon. The high, though, is that this is such a typical part of the job that my patience before becoming frustrated and angry has increased significantly after only being here for a few days.

3 Lows:  That Time I Fell Asleep on My Keyboard

 

Falling Behind: The worst thing is feeling as though you are the most behind in a group and are slowing everyone else down. Although I am certainly not as far in the learning process as I would have liked to be by now, apparently everyone gets this feeling and it works as a driving force. My solution thus far has been to prepare for lectures ahead of time. I generally try to find out which topics will be covered in the next few days and find video tutorials (Code School is my favorite for JavaScript!) and articles (JavaScript is Sexy; perfectly appropriate for work, I promise). I use these to pick up whatever basics I can so that I have at least been exposed to the terms and concepts I hear during class.neuropsychology

 

Slower Learning Process: This just comes with the ‘Whole New World’ territory – trying to learn something without any exposure to the topic can be a much slower process. I generally pride myself on being a fairly quick learner, but learning the logic behind programming can be tough (don’t believe me? Look up some loops within loops within loops – super nested loops. Loop Inception, seriously.) and can make things frustrating very quickly. My solution thus far has honestly been to suck it up. There are some things that just take time to pick up, but are necessities.

 

Sleeping is Silly: At least, that’s the philosophy around here. Most nights, I’m up until 2:30 in the morning and have to be up by 7:30 for the daily workout. 5 hours doesn’t seem too bad (as a result of a bad habit – really, 8 hours is ideal), but staring at a computer screen all day after what usually is a killer workout in the morning can be really taxing. They’re not kidding when they say you code 90+ hours per week at Coding House! Note: This is only okay because its for a few weeks. Obviously, lack of sleep will result in low productivity in the long term.

 

The Immersion:  The Food.  That is All.

 

Amazing Weather: Coding House is closer to the San Jose area, where people can’t really appreciate the perpetually beautiful weather like I can as an Ohioan (who went through a ridiculous Winter this past year). Plus, its always nice and cool in the evening to ward off a hot day’s fatigue.

 

Fantastic Food: Sarah, our Food Service Director, is probably going to be Betty Crocker in a few years. Needless to say, she’s an amazing cook! From Chinese to Indian to Thanksgiving dinner staples, she makes amazing everything. I was a fan of the Maple Pepper Chicken this week, but check out her blog – her recipes are definitely worth trying out at home!

 

Discipline: We wake up by 7:30 (at the latest) every morning, have what is usually a very intense workout, start working by 9-ish, have lecture until noon with a 30 minute break for lunch and then get back to it until around 6pm when we have dinner. Then, we work on projects on our own until we start dropping like flies. Generally, people are done with the day between Midnight and 2:30. Then we do it all over again. Workouts and team bonding activities are mandatory and we have healthy meals at our set times. Being in the schedule can be grinding at times (especially when you claim an allergy to exercise like me), but it is obviously good to fall into a disciplined daily schedule. Don’t get me wrong – everyone has tons of fun here! There are plans to go to the Redwoods next week to play Airsoft and camp out over night. I am 100% a city girl who doesn’t mesh well with the wild, but it will definitely be an interesting experience even for me!

 

Insights

 

The fact that Coding House is a full immersion bootcamp where we all eat, sleep, code, and repeat together is definitely its competitive advantage. Its one thing to spend 8 hours a day coding in class and completely different to literally spend all day learning. The bootcamp itself is a bit shorter than the average 3-month programming bootcamp, but the sheer amount I’ve learned in a single week speaks for itself in terms of quality. I’m looking forward to diving deeper into JavaScript next week after this week’s intro – and hoping to survive my first camping trip in a forest. Check this series out next week to follow my learning curve and pick up some tips on learning to program yourself!