With an Internet connection and some free time you can hear lectures and advice that Ivy-league college students and entrepreneurs are privy to — and at a much lower cost than they pay.
Online learning community creativeLIVE offers live streamed courses with famous photographers, designers and business leaders. Classes are live streamed in HD from the company’s studios in Seattle and San Francisco. The classes are free when they happen, and if you want to own the content you can purchase it for download at a later date for about $99-$149.
With each session, there are two students who monitor the Twitter feed and Facebook page to find your questions and ask them in the session. Past instructors include Tim Ferriss, Ramit Sethi, Pulitizer Prize winner Vincent Laforet and Emmy nominee Gale Tattersall.
“We have had more than one million people from 200+ countries attend our classes,” said CEO Mika Salmi. “World class instructors from all corners of the globe are jumping at the chance to teach on our platform. These instructors are excited to ‘give back’ by sharing their knowledge. They also like the impact on their personal brand and their other business interests.”
Two weeks ago, creativeLIVE hosted a course with Ramit Sethi, author of the New York Times bestselling book, “I Will Teach You To Be Rich.” In the free session, Sethi spoke about the psychology of money (how our minds relate to saving, spending and investing) for business and creative entrepreneurs. The class was a three-day intensive format that allowed him to go into greater detail than would be possible in more short-form, weekly formats.
An upcoming course with Tim Ferriss, author of The Four Hour Workweek, will take your through Ferriss’ time-saving tips for a better life and provide a boost of motivation — six hours in two days for $149.
While the class selection seems great, it appears the user-submitted questions below the videos have yet to be answered. A spokesperson for creativeLIVE says this feature is not the focus right now, so if you have a question, it’s best to post it on Twitter or Facebook. Also, during the course, you’ll be able to share your thoughts and opinions with peers through the live chat feature. Salmi said they have a “grand vision for the way the social and live aspect of the company will come together.” They’re working on rolling that out over the next few months.
“creativeLIVE‘s goal is to provide consumers with real-life skills and knowledge that will help them turn their passions — whether photography, film and video, software, design or business — into their own business, dream job or side gig, or an advancement in their current career,” Salmi said.
Salmi says their target audience is “creative entrepreneurs” — “Whether they are in a creative industry or are an entrepreneur in any industry, these people have a passion and may need some help with the skills and expertise needed to turn that passion into a job or business. We want people to be able to do what they love for a living.”
The online education space is rapidly growing (it’s a $34 billion market). Whether your goal is to get college prerequisites out of the way or simply expand your knowledge, online learning sites are an affordable way to accomplish those goals. But creativeLIVE is not the only online learning destination; competitor sites include Coursera, Udacity, Khan Academy and BenchPrep, to name a few.
Coursera offers free online classes from top universities including the University of California, Berkeley and Stanford. If you sign-up for a course on this site, you’ll have to do more than sit and listen — these courses have deadlines, evaluations, and sometimes you’re required to submit a statement of what you learned at the end of class.
Khan Academy was founded in 2008 by Salman Khan. Initially, his intent was to teach his cousin math using instructional YouTube videos and it has since blossomed into 3,000 short, free lessons that anyone can access. Khan Academy recently launched its first iOS app so users can learn from their iPad.
Udacity has a focus in the sciences and technology, with courses like algorithms and “Introduction to Physics.” Many classes are free and students can learn at their own pace. Some classes have an $89 fee, which allows students to take an exam and earn a certificate.
All of these online education sites create opportunities for adults looking to further their career or passions.
“The days of educating the world from a stuffy ivory tower are numbered. We built creativeLIVE to provide people with more than a sheet of paper, a pedigree and student loan debt,” said Founder Chase Jarvis. “We want to honor our students and teach them real, tactical skills that they need to enhance their career or hobby, or even help them transition into their dream job. Our goal is to deliver the best, most relevant knowledge in the world to creative entrepreneurs on a massive, global scale — to overcome geographic, access and cost boundaries.”
Have you ever used an online learning site? What course did you take and what did you think of it? Tell us in the comments.