10 Places to Get a Free Business Education Online
Getting a business education doesn't have to be expensive. An increasing number of colleges, universities and even nonprofit organizations offer free business courses online. Find out how you can sign up for these courses and what you can get from them.
1. MIT OpenCourseWare - Sloan School of Management (mit.edu)
MIT OpenCourseWare might be the next best thing to getting an MIT education for free. Through this free online publication you can find bachelor-level business courses, as well as master-level courses, offered by MIT's Sloan School of Management. The curriculum includes lecture notes, videos, labs demonstrations and more. Registration is free and more than 50 courses are available.
2. The U.S. Small Business Administration (sba.gov)
- Courses on Finance and Accounting
- Courses on Starting a Business
- Courses on Business Planning
- Courses on Business Management
The Small Business Administration has one of the best selections of business courses on the web. Topics include everything from starting a business and business management to government contracting and international trade. Most courses take only 30 minutes to complete.
3. The Free Nonprofit Micro-eMBA Program (managementhelp.org)
Free Management Library's Free Nonprofit Micro-eMBA(SM) Program is a great resource for students wishing to learn more about nonprofit management. Completion of this program will not result in an MBA degree, but enrollment is free. The amount of time it takes to complete the program will depend on how fast you learn, but you may expect to spend at least 200 hours on coursework.
4. 'Business Week' Free Online Courses (bwcourses.com)
Business Week's registered users will soon be able to take advantage of instructor-led online courses offered free through Business Week's website. Courses include:
All courses consist of four to eight lessons and last an average of two weeks.
5. My Own Business - (myownbusiness.com)
Nonprofit organization My Own Business, Inc. offers a free online business administration course that would be beneficial to new managers and to anyone who is interested in starting a business. This comprehensive course is split up into 14 sessions covering topics like business plans, accounting, marketing, insurance, e-commerce and international trade. For under $100, students can also acquire the accompanying textbook and a certificate of completion.
6. Business Entrepreneur Courses (trumpuniversity.com)
Trump University offers a number of free online business courses geared towards the entrepreneur. Courses include How to Start a Business on a Shoestring Budget, Write a Business Plan, and Find Start Up Funding. Many courses can be completed in an afternoon. Enrollment is free, but you'll need to enter your name, email and address information before getting started.
7. Kutztown University - Small Business Development Center (kutztownsbdc.org)
SmallBizU eLearning University at Kutztown Univeristy of Pennsylvania offers an online business course that can take less than one week to complete. The course name is Strategic Planning and Execution. As the name implies, this course presents strategies for crafting and executing business visions, mission statements and goals. SmallBizU also provides strategic planning software free to all course participants.
8. iLearn Small Business Courses (ivillage.com)
- The Art of Business Networking
- Get Organized: Managing Time, Space, and Paper
- Advanced Microsoft Excel 2007
iLearn Small Business Courses, courtesy of iVillage, are free general business courses that are available 24/7. The instructor-led courses are split into four or more lessons and include special features including interactive message boards and one-on-one tutorials with course instructors.
9. Financial Management Training Center Courses (exinfm.com)
Course Samples include:
- Managing Cash Flow
- The Management of Capital
- Creating Value through Financial Management
- Project Management
- Full list of All Business Finance Courses
The Financial Management Training Center provides 20 free downloadable business courses for people who need to learn the finer points of financial management. All courses offered can be taken online; courses include full exams as well as evaluation forms for people seeking Continuing Professional Education (CPE) credits.
10. State of Maine - Small Business Development Center (mainesbdc.org)
The State of Maine's Small Business Development Centers offer a few free online workshops that are great for current small business owners as well as for would-be entrepreneurs. The workshops include Starting Your Small Business, Developing Your Business Plan, and Marketing for Small Business. Each workshop takes a few hours to complete and results in a Certificate of Completion.