Short courses: a fast and affordable way to build skills

Sydney Community College Blog | Claire Pickard |

Hand stretched out of car window catching

Life, as John Lennon said, is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.

It’s all in the daily bits and pieces. Life is the happy accidents, chance meetings and opportunities taken and missed. It’s the up days, the down days, and the everything in between.

And that’s a little like short courses. They’re every day, last minute, achievable, practical learning experiences that enrich us while we’re “busy making other plans”.

Of course, we say yes, absolutely, to the hard-gained apprenticeship, the undergraduate degree, the Honours year or the Masters. And yes to the Certificate courses that keep our community safe, smart and skilled. But there’s also so much to be gained from the short course experience.

Here’s why…

Short courses are learning activities that enrich a student’s knowledge on a particular subject, usually providing hands-on experience. Delivered face-to-face or online in a friendly and relaxed environment, in most cases there are no entry requirements and no assessments or homework required. You could try, for example, our range of Adobe Creative Cloud courses to get you up and running with these popular design apps.

The low commitment of time required makes short course learning easy to fit into a busy routine and pays off quickly, with actual ready-to-use skills in a short period of time. The learning is specific and efficient. If it turns out that photography or creative writing wasn’t for you, then that’s a lesson learned, and you can move on to the next interest.

Many students come for the friendly and relaxed learning environment, the affordability, and the timing of classes that are generally after working hours or on weekends. Short courses are a way to pick up knowledge and skills without a large commitment of time and money.

A short course can be added to a résumé to open new job or promotion opportunities. It’s also a great way to meet new people, develop professional and personal relationships, and have fun while learning.

According to career advice website, SkillsRoad, short courses “can help you to get specific skills training in a shorter amount of time... They lean more towards practical skills than mountains of theory... and are a valuable way of showing potential employers that you are proactive and that you value continued learning.”

There’s also the option of turning an interest into a paying job. As SkillsRoad suggests, social media and digital selling platforms make it “easier than ever to turn your passions or hobbies into viable careers... Short courses are often perfect for people with an entrepreneurial mindset, providing them with the tools and knowledge they need to move quickly and capitalise on opportunities.” We can help with our Build a Side Business Course or Digital Marketing Course.

Or maybe it’s just for fun…

Let’s not forget the important social aspect. An evening spent learning a new skill is a great way to connect with a friend or meet new people. It’s a chance to catch up in a different environment than in a restaurant, gym or bar.

With over 400 short courses to choose from, Sydney Community College helps enrich the daily life of more than 8,000 Sydneysiders each year. That’s a lot of learning - and a lot of life living.


Sydney Community College Blog