Do you want to learn a new skill or make a shift in your career? Learning apps are the solution. Lifelong learning is not a fad. With the emergence of search engines more than a decade ago, information has never been easier to accumulate. Learning apps have quickly become a go-to method of enhancing or accruing skills for students and professionals alike. While college degrees are still seen as high-priority accomplishments in the workplace today, people are becoming increasingly warm to the idea of building skills on the side as an acceptable replacement for a diploma. With so many credible resources available to jump start a new part of your career, what are you waiting for? If you're looking to gain a new skill or improve upon one in which you're already invested, this exclusive list of the very best learning apps can help you reach new heights in your career.
The current king (or queen) of learning apps is Lynda. Owned by technology super-power Microsoft, this platform boasts a wide array of courses not available anywhere else. Lynda was founded in 1995 by a digital arts master named, you guessed it, Lynda Weinman. The top skills you can begin accruing on the site include:
Once you secure your subscription, you get unlimited access to all courses (for the compulsive types that like switching around). All courses are taught by expert instructors and industry experts. Available for iOS | Android | WebPricing: A Lynda membership will cost $25 per month.
2. LinkedIn Learning
The professional network has made a massive push toward educating its dedicated users. LinkedIn Learning is their platform to promote positive growth and learning in your career. While LinkedIn is also owned by Microsoft, there are key difference between Lynda and LinkedIn Learning. The largest differentiator between these platforms is that LinkedIn Learning comes as a package deal with your LinkedIn Premium subscription. This is highly beneficial to those who are already serious enough about their online career development that they hold a monthly membership to Premium. The library here is incredibly vast, spanning from Business to Creative and Technology skills. Available for iOS | Android | WebPricing: LinkedIn Learning is completely free with a LinkedIn premium subscription, starting at $30.
Not the monthly membership type? This one may be just right for you. Udemy is a "learn on demand" website and app that starts their course pricing at $10.99. This allows you the flexibility to take your time on a course you purchase over the course of several months, without worrying about recurring payments before you finish. Many career-oriented individuals want to improve their skills and habits, but the reality is that workdays typically require most of their time. This flexible learning app allows you to take things slow, fast, or anywhere in-between with complete control on your end. Available foriOS | Android | WebPricing: As mentioned above, courses start at $10.99.
4. Khan Academy
For many of us out there, we simply can't afford to splurge on extracurricular skill-building. We want to improve ourselves and advance our careers, but we would need to do so on a minimal budget. Enter Khan Academy, a completely free database of courses where you can learn anything. The skills you can anticipate to build here on less focused on business, technology, and design, and more so on mathematics, science, and finance. Khan is a great resource for students, young professionals, and seasoned career veterans. Averrable foriOS | Android | WebPricing: Free
If you're looking to master in-demand skills, but want to tackle it all at your own pace, then Udacity is right up your alley. Udacity offers what they call Nanodegrees, and help you learn enough to actually consider changing careers altogether! The best part? You can learn on Udacity for free! Available foriOS | Android | WebPricing: Free for skill videos. The Nanodegrees start at around $599, or payments of $50 per month.
Much like similar platforms, Coursera offers courses and certifications to further your knowledge and boost your career. It also offers the opportunity to earn your degree online through prestigious institutions, such as: Yale, Michigan, Stanford, and leading companies like Google and IBM. This site is unique in that it provides free information, but the paid information is directly tied to actual accredited institutions. Available foriOS | Android | WebPricing: Courses are free. Degrees vary in price.
One of the world's most valuable and popular skills to build is coding. Whether you are looking to build websites, apps, or databases, there is a substantial need for this in the workplace. Mimo provides you with the opportunity to make a drastic switch in your career to computer science, or simply refine your current development skills. Available foriOS | Android | WebPricing: Free
By now, you've watched dozens of TED talks and heard a plethora of messages from these events. TED is one of the largest events in the world, and its main ambition is to be a thought leader for anyone seeking knowledge. TED-Ed is an extension of this great effort, taking the form of an online education system. The topics on TED-Ed are not always as tactical as other apps on this list. The courses you find here range from "What is imposter syndrome and how can you combat it?" to "Did the Amazons really exist?" Available for iOS | Android | WebPricing: Free
Speaking another language may have more of a positive impact on the world than acquiring any other skill. Think about it: How many people are there in the world that, if you sparked up a conversation, wouldn't understand a word you say? Duolingo is the premiere leader in language education. You can learn to speak 29 different languages, all at the touch of a button. You'll be invited to not only read new words, but to speak them. You'll learn grammar, jargon, and conversational tactics. Make your impact on the world by learning to communicate with a new portion of its inhabitants! Available foriOS | Android | WebPricing: Free
Going outside the box, one of the crucial skills you can acquire is mastering your mental health. This is no easy task, but with the help of Headspace, you will be able to make a vast impact on your mindset. Headspace uses exercises in breathing, meditating, and being aware to strengthen your mind and build up resistance against stress and anxiety. Learning to improve your mental health through concerted effort will have a massively positive effect on your ability to seize the day and achieve your goals. Available foriOS | Android | WebPricing: Free
11. Mind Tools
Since 1996, Mind Tools has been helping people boost their careers through lifelong education. It focuses specifically on providing the essential content you need to build an excellent career, striving to eliminate the fluff. If you are looking to make a career change in the most efficient way possible, Mind Tools is a great option. Available foriOS | Android | WebPricing: $1 for the first month, then $19 per month.
Are you an avid reader with little time to spare? Or maybe you've never enjoyed reading because the content is too long? Either way, Blinkist aims to eliminate these issues. Blinkist's goal is to give you key ideas from nonfiction books in 15 mins. They also offer the ability to read this content offline. Available foriOS | Android | WebPricing: $79.99 per year.
13. Elevate - Brain Training
The simple things in life are often the most important. Elevate is aiming to prove that to you with brain training personalized to your needs. Inviting you to stay sharp, build your confidence and boost your productivity, Elevate is an app that organizes games and activities on your phone that will accomplish these goals. By improving small habits, you will see an uptick in energy, efficiency, and effectiveness. Available foriOS | AndroidPricing: Free trial, then $45 per year.
While the other platforms for learning on this list provide exceeding value, none allow you to sneak into the mind of an actual expert quite like MasterClass. Do you want to learn to cook like Gordon Ramsey? It may be best to actually have him teach you personally. Want to learn the ins and outs of directing a movie? Ron Howard can offer unparalleled expertise. On MasterClass, these are the teachers: industry experts, the best of the best. Available foriOS | WebPricing: $180 per year for access to all courses.
Boasting a library of over 22,000 free and premium courses, you'll be hard-pressed to find a larger provider of online education than Skillshare. All classes are online, and strive to take you on a journey from no skill to trustworthy expert. Ranging from topics such as creativity and lifestyle to business and technology, there is very little you won't find here. Available foriOS | Android | WebPricing: Free trial, then $45 per year.
Much like Coursera, edX aims to connect you with educators from highly prestigious universities. If you don't want to risk learning from someone who barely has more experience than you, edX is for you. Here, you can learn about computer science, language, statistics, and even humanities from institutions like Harvard, Stanford and MIT. Available foriOS | Android | WebPricing: Free
Focusing more on the creative skills and jobs out there, Creative Live is a leader in helping you "answer your creative calling". You'll be able to learn from key influencers, such as Mel Robbins, Lisa Congdon, and John Greengo. The key difference here as that courses are not free. The app is free to download and explore, but it will take an investment on your part to get access to these expert-led lessons. Available for iOS | WebPricing: Starting at $99 per course.
The bottom line
No matter what you are trying to learn and where you feel is best for you to do that, the most important thing is that you take action! Start learning something new today, and repeat the pattern daily for the rest of your life. Visit the apps in this list and find which one is best for you! Lifelong learning is easier than ever before, and it's something you really should take advantage of.