South African people are taking to the internet in greater numbers than ever before to gain workplace skills, according to new figures released by Alison. The organization, which is one of South Africa’s largest free e-learning providers, revealed that a small majority (57%) of its users in 2016 were female, and that the site is most popular in Gauteng, the Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal.
Mike Feerick, Founder and CEO of Alison, said: “South Africa has been quick to take up online learning. The feedback we’re getting from learners here suggests that they value the flexibility and breadth of subjects we can offer. It’s not a surprise to us that the majority of our South African learners are women; this reflects a pattern we have seen in other parts of the world.”
According to newly released figures for 2016, the most popular courses including Touch Typing Training, Diploma in Project Management, Human Resources and Business Management & Entrepreneurship. Other top courses South African learners took included Web Design, Workplace Health and Safety, Psychology and Customer Service.
Eric Corbett, Course Publishing Manager at Alison, said: “Increasingly, we’re seeing learners turn to us for skills that are vital to the workplace but don’t tend to receive much focus in schools – South Africa is no different. The range of free courses we’re offering is set to grow dramatically over the next 12 months, and we expect to grow our learner-base in South Africa in tandem with this.
“We would encourage students, jobseekers and workers who want to upskill to consider how a course might help them achieve their goals.”
Alison will celebrate its 10th birthday next month. The site currently boasts almost 10 million individual learners studying hundreds of courses.
What our South African learners say about Alison:
“There are so many great options that I am excited about. I’ve just completed the Microsoft Access 2010 course and I am enrolled for the ABC IT Suite course and for the Diploma in E-Commerce.” – Nadia du Plessis, Cape Town.
“It is so empowering… I apply Alison to pretty much every aspect of my life due to all the great courses and diplomas offered on the platform. Accounting is teaching to me look at my business in a different language, the language of numbers. HR has taught me about recruiting the best of the best that are aligned with my vision.” – J. J. Oosthuizen, Pretoria
"I learnt a lot about IT on Alison. I am so confident now that I have knowledge that I did not have a few years back, which I can now share with my kids or friends and family." – Andreas Shabalala
Alison is one of the world’s largest free online learning platforms for workplace skills, providing free education and skills training to 10 million learners worldwide with over one million graduates. Alison is a for-profit social enterprise with a goal to drive the cost of all education and skills training to zero. Headquartered in Galway, Ireland, Alison was founded by CEO Mike Feerick, social entrepreneur, Ashoka fellow (2010). Alison has been recognised worldwide as a pioneer in making free online workplace learning more accessible. Awards include UNESCO (2011), the World Innovation Summit for Education Award (2013-Qatar Foundation.