Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Nanodegree to level up your career!

By Ramón Talavera-Franco

Nanodegree is a new job-focused credential that Udacity––in partnership with AT&T––will offer starting fall 2014. The first nanodegrees are focused on gaining entry-level software skills. The courses will be completed in 6-12 months and it is expected that students invest 10 hours per week. The cost is $200.00 US per month; however, AT&T is offering scholarships to non-profit organizations such as Genesys Works and Year up. In addition, AT&T will offer 100 paid internships to top students who complete a nanodegree. So… do you want to level up your career?

Sebastian Thurn, a research professor at Stanford University, and Udacity co-founder & CEO, explained that nanodegrees are the solution for those who
want to advance in their careers or want to switch careers but don’t have the time or the economic resources to get back full time to school. Nanodegrees low-cost and online environment permits learners to get access to the courses any where/any time, receive personalized support from subject-matter coaches, learn by doing with real projects, and build a portfolio that will help them get notice in their job search.

In an interview for Reuters, Sebastian Thurn mentioned that the partnership with AT&T is the first approach to take the nanodegrees concept to other companies. Presently, Udacity is working with other 15 companies in Silicon Valley to create more nanodegrees to cover the technological industry jobs needs.

 Are nanodegrees the new way to build professional skills? Will they be more popular in a future than a bachelor’s degree? For now, nanodegrees are designed to provide the skills and credentials that are more relevant for today’s hiring needs in the computer science industry. It will be interesting to hear the experiences of the first cohort of students that register for this new educational approach, and learn what pros and cons they found along the road.

Nanodegrees could be the solution for MOOCs high dropout rate. We just have to wait to see the results.

 Check this video

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