How to leverage online learning to drive business growth
University of Manchester
Jan 14 | 7 minutes read
As the technological blitzkrieg of Industry 4.0 continues to transform global economies, the greatest takeaway from the experience so far is this: the need to upskill and reskill for the future.
According to the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Future of Jobs Report, 75 million jobs will be displaced by 2022 in 20 major economies. At the same time, technological advances will see the creation of new products and services grow at scale to meet the needs of future industries, generating some 133 million new roles in the process.
For organisations and individuals to realise the full benefits of these changes, WEF says at least 54 percent of today’s workforces must be reskilled and upskilled by 2022.
But how? The commercial reality is that with the quickening pace of progress comes the shortening of product life cycles and the resultant strain on resources for in-house training.
And realistically speaking, how many employees would have the financial freedom to take a sabbatical from work to upskill or gain a postgrad degree?
The benefits of online learning
To fulfil the needs of modern workforces, online learning offers the best, most cost-and-time-effective solution.
It allows individuals to receive a university-level education without having to physically attend classes on-campus, making them an attractive option for any organisation or employee that wants to upskill within an area of expertise or reskill for an entirely new one.
Learners can also choose to study part-time by committing just a few hours a week to lectures and revision, a feature that promises the least disruption to work productivity for the organisation and a financial safety net for individuals who cannot afford to leave paid employment to further their study.
Another attractive feature is the opportunity to pick up a qualification from a world-class institution on the other side of the world and gain access to its vast network of academic resources – without having to tangle with logistical issues.
Of course, the growing popularity of online learning means the market today is chock-full of provider options. Most universities supplement their traditional campus offering with online programmes.
But when it comes to delivering quality education, only a handful have invested in creating superior online learning models.
The University of Manchester in England is a stellar example of this.
A world leader in education
Part of the prestigious Russell Group of universities, the University of Manchester is a name synonymous with world-class education.
Ranked the 6th best university in the UK, 8th in Europe and 27th in the world in the latest QS World University rankings, a University of Manchester qualification is one that opens doors.
The university has a glowing reputation among employers, scoring 97.7 out of 100 in the QS league table. It is also the fifth-best UK institution for employability, according to Times Higher Education, and the best higher education provider in Europe for social and environmental impact.
The same standards apply to its online and blended learning programmes.
A truly global institution, the University of Manchester has offered flexible learning for more than 25 years, with an established reputation for postgraduate study in the UK and across the world, especially in the areas of Health, Social Sciences and Management Education.
The university is today expanding its online and blended learning provisions to offer learners across the world more opportunities to burnish their academic credentials with a University of Manchester qualification.
A variety of high-quality and industry-leading postgraduate Master’s courses sit within the university’s online and blended learning portfolio, such as:
This course helps learners develop and sharpen their understanding of how future electrical networks will be designed and operated, and learn the characteristics of components such as generators, lines, cables, transformers and power electronic devices.
Learners will benefit from a comprehensive understanding of the challenges faced in the ever-evolving electrical power systems industry and how to overcome them.
A fast-track conversion course that culminates in a Master’s degree accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), the MSc Real Estate helps learners develop a comprehensive understanding of the role of real estate in society, business and to the end-user.
Students will examine international legal and regulatory frameworks and property markets, gain an understanding of the impact of globalisation and sustainability on the global real estate practice, and learn how to apply teachings directly into real-world scenarios.
This flexible MSc introduces modern-day finance practitioners to the most sophisticated tools and techniques to step up in their profession.
Designed for those looking to progress in their careers, it guarantees learners will come away with a deep understanding of the characteristics and functioning of financial markets and the ability to offer data-driven solutions to complex business challenges and provide comprehensive analyses of financial strategies, among others.
The fully-online PGCert is a practical, clinically-focused course that equips learners with the necessary skills to produce high-quality bioinformatic workflows to analyse and interpret clinical genomic data.
Among others, students will understand the theory and practice of clinical bioinformatics; develop a critical understanding of how data is generated by clinical genomic laboratories; use this information to deliver effective clinical management of genetic conditions; and contribute to innovation in the field.
The medical and health profession needs more than expert clinicians – it needs world-class educators too. Created in collaboration with the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh, the PGCert in Medical and Health Education helps learners grow in their professional teaching careers to play a more crucial role in educating the practitioners of tomorrow.
Delivered exclusively online, students will learn how to apply evidence and theoretical principles to the teaching practice; work with peers across disciplines; reflect on their practice to understand how to effectively contribute to teaching and learning in various settings; and consider the influence of meaningful assessment on learning.
MSc International Fashion Marketing
Delivered through a mix of lecturing, blended small and small group tutorials, the MSc International Fashion Marketing at Manchester University exposes students to key developments and issues related to the fast-evolving global fashion industry.
Core aspects of the course will focus on the international scope of fashion business, looking at global challenges and insights on trending issues such as design, sourcing, production, consumption and sustainability of fashion.
The beauty of online learning at Manchester
Although gaining in popularity for its flexibility, cost-effectiveness and lack of locational restrictions, some might argue that online learning still loses to the traditional campus education for various reasons such as lack of tutor support and feedback, and access to university resources and peer network.
Fully cognisant of this, the University of Manchester has taken pains to prevent this from impeding study progress.
For example, here, studying remotely doesn’t mean studying alone. To ensure every student receives the full Manchester experience and feels a part of the campus community, the university promises the same level of support to online learners as they do to campus students.
For each course unit, learners will be part of a small group of fellow students who can be contacted through the institution’s online communities, offering them an ecosystem of support should they need to interact with their peers.
Learners will also be assigned an academic tutor and an advisor, both of whom will be available to answer any questions, provide feedback on progress and offer advice on course time management and scheduling.
Distance learning students are effectively a fully registered student of the university, which means they have the same level of access to campus resources as on-campus students, even if they may access them in different ways.
For example, papers and textbooks used in the university’s online courses are all available in digital format from the university library. Some courses also include workbooks or similar materials that learners can complete online or download and keep.
The university also promises technical support to those who may have difficulty setting up any equipment or software. When a student first starts a course, course advisors will give them one-to-one training on how to use the university’s virtual learning environment, video conferencing and community platforms.
In addition, the university’s extensive global reach with international centres in Dubai, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Singapore means learners can gain access to an inspiring space to study and collaborate through workshops and networking events, and whatever else their course may require.
All this and more are why the University of Manchester is today the first-choice institution of learners all around the globe, and a world-leading provider of online and blended learning.
If you’re looking for a career boost or to upskill your workforce with industry-leading knowledge, learn more about the university’s online learning programmes by contacting a representative at firstname.lastname@example.org.