DEV Community

Cover image for Are Online Certificates Worth It?

Are Online Certificates Worth It?

saracunn profile image Sara Cunningham ・1 min read

Alt Text
Many online courses are of popularity for people trying to brush up on their skills and/or show off on a resume or LinkedIn. There are many websites out there like Coursera, Udemy, Udacity, edX, Comptia, Skillshare, and many more!

Questions for discussion

  • All of them range in price and can be quite expensive, so are they worth the time and money?
  • Have you used them, if so which one and what was your experience?
  • Do they really set you apart from other candidates?
  • What courses are the most valuable?

Discussion (18)

Editor guide
ben profile image
Ben Halpern

I'd say that the piece of paper isn't all that valuable. Of course, the education most likely is.

The type of certification that may be valuable I think are more ecosystem-specific certifications around stuff like AWS or Salesforce etc. So much of this is perception, and these specific knowledge ones strike me as more valuable.

brandinchiu profile image
Brandin Chiu

All of them range in price and can be quite expensive, so are they worth the time and money?

Like most things, it will depend on the course. Not every paid course is valuable. However, not every free course is worthless.

If cost is a factor, many programs exist to help individuals and organizations offset thses costs depending on where you live. I encourage you to look and see what's out there.

Have you used them, if so which one and what was your experience?

I've used a few from Coursera. While I don't personally put them on my resume, I don't think any less of those that would, and my experiences are overwhelmingly positive. Even if the paper isn't worth anything, the actual knowledge is.

Do they really set you apart from other candidates?

In certain cases, absolutely. Architecture and cloud courses are particularly valuable for devops applicants, and things like Certified Java Enterprise can be very helpful for larger organizations.

What courses are the most valuable?
Personally, I value breadth over depth in the candidates I screen and my employees.

As far as individual courses go that I think every developer should have, those would be:

  • project management
  • database design

These two areas are an essential component (in my opinion) of being a well rounded developer.

Even if you never ever need to exercise this knowledge directly, having an understanding of how these things work drastically improves your ability to communicate and support your team.

petereasterbro1 profile image

I think it depends what you do with them.
Showcasing your skills shows not only ability but also enthusiasm.
Case in point:

upscpadhai profile image

It reminds me the words of Bill Gates. As you know he said-Piece of paper can't decide the future. That's correct.
Online certificates are really helpful. You can get online certificates from different big brand like Google, Yahoo, Bing, Semrush, Apple, Adobe, Shutterstock, etc. You just need to give an exam and that's it.
Thank you.

jrogers8835 profile image

I agree with the comments made already but I would caveat that you should be wary of high version turn over and non-backwards compatible releasing. What am I getting at...
Java certified in general, cool to the point Ben made... that certification you got in Java 5 when new versions roll out every 6 months may be seen as useless by some interviewers.
React certified? (Not sure if it's a thing) cool, they're pretty good about not releasing breaking versions. Angular 1 certified isn't going to help you if the job market is looking for Angular 2 or 4 or whatever version they're on now.
Not a solid "no" on any cert, just be mindful of it's longer term value given what cost you have to put in to it.

Sloan, the sloth mascot
Comment deleted
sanjnha profile image
Sanjha Kaushik

I did say it is very easy to create certificates every easily this day according to allwish of yours. So I think they do not matter.Read naruto filler list it is really post.

jrogers8835 profile image

I would also say the value of any certification goes up if you're a self taught developer trying to break in to the market and need proof of what you've learned on your resume.

techfilx profile image

yes online certificates are worth it. Coin master free spins