Career Coach Corner

Meet Lynda (AKA your new best friend)

lynda

By Julianna Hutchins
Industry Career Coach for Business Sectors
GW Center for Career Services

When I recommend Lynda.com to students, the conversation usually goes something like this:

Student: “I need to improve my Excel skills – do you have any recommendations?”
Me: “Have you heard of Lynda?”
Student: “Uhhh….who?”
Me: “OK, I’ll take that as a no. It’s actually not a who, but a what . . . “

Or more accurately, I guess it’s actually both. The what: Lynda.com is an online learning platform purchased by LinkedIn in 2015 for a cool $1.5B. The who:Lynda Weinman, who created the platform in 1995; read more about her story in this Fast Company article. According to Forbes.com, “Every week, Lynda users complete more than 50,000 courses on the site and watch about 25 million minutes of video content. Lynda’s catalogue has more than 4,000 courses . . .”

Here’s a quick sampling of available courses:

  • Excel 2016: Advanced Formulas and Functions
  • PowerPoint 2016 Power Shortcuts
  • Code Clinic: Ruby
  • R Statistics Essential Training (also SPSS & others)
  • Content Marketing Fundamentals
  • Creating a Business Plan
  • and the list goes on, spanning an array of topics….go hereto see more.

And the best news is this: thanks to GW, membership to Lynda.com is free to all GW students, faculty, & staff. FREE. You can set up your free account here (or get info on how to merge your existing account with a GW account). (If you’re not part of the GW community, membership info can be found here.)

Lynda has also rolled out “Learning Paths,” described by the same Forbes.com article as “a package of ordered courses intended to prepare users for a specific role or to update users’ skills for their current job. . . . [each path] includes a sequence of courses with quizzes, practice sections, reminders and accolades to encourage users as they progress. When users finish a “Learning Path,” they receive a certificate of completion that they can share with their network on LinkedIn and other social sites.”

So if you want to gain new skills or deepen existing ones ahead of your next round of job/internship applications, make time this summer to complete a few courses on Lynda.com. First on my list? Either “PowerPoint Tips and Tricks” or “Data Visualization Storytelling Basics” – ask me what I learned come August!

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