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Adding to your resume without formal schooling

CTGuy

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Recently I have really gotten into listening to open source college courses through open.yale.edu as well as reading some books on my own to improve areas of my professional knowledge/skills.

I mostly do these things out of my own interest/curiousity, but I am just curious whether anyone else has experience with placing this type of stuff on a resume in some form.

I took and enjoyed a lot tax law courses in law school and I was thinking of devoting some time to an accounting certificate or something similar to that in the future as something that would be more "formal."

Any thoughts?
 
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In Thailand you can buy fake degrees from just about any college you care to name
In all seriousness, I've wondered about this myself actually....I suppose you could be a little creative with the truth and pass off the Open Yale stuff as 'attended courses in__' - which is just short of lying....as for the reading, maybe under other skills you could list it as 'well versed in ___'...but both are kind of a stretch.
 

Blackhood

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I would put it down as something like:

Self taught (via the Open.Yale.Edu scheme) in blah blah blah.....

The Yale scheme isn't exactly a For Dummies book that you picked up and you haven't lied. It also shows that you took initiative to learn even if money and time were tight.
 

BDC2823

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I can't really provide an answer but have a similar concern.

A couple years ago I started a certificate program at the local university which I am now attending full time. The certificate is in Urban and Regional Planning. It consists of taking 5 required courses. Each course is only offered once a year and involves 2-3 three hour classes. Also one must complete 3 of about 6 electives.

I completed all 3 electives and 4 of 5 required courses, but couldn't complete the final required course the year and year after I was in the program due to being out of town. The program was not offered last year and even though it is still on their website and they say the program still exists, there are no classes slated to be offered for any of the classes.

I'd like to finish this damn program so I can toss it on my resume as I only need 1 more class completed. But, without completing it, I don't think I can reasonably add it to my resume. Plus, I have no clue when I'll be able to take the class.

I'm really not currently pursuing a job, but my resume looks great as far as work experience is concerned and shitty as far as education is concerned. I have 5 AA's completed and listed those on there, but just went back to school and have upper division and concentration courses (54 total units including this semester) left for my undergrad.
 
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Originally Posted by Blackhood
I would put it down as something like: Self taught (via the Open.Yale.Edu scheme) in blah blah blah..... The Yale scheme isn't exactly a For Dummies book that you picked up and you haven't lied. It also shows that you took initiative to learn even if money and time were tight.
Well even the For Dummies book shows that you took the initiative to learn - and cost more than the Yale coursework, so it was 'an investment undertaken at your own cost' too. Still you can't really claim the Open Yale stuff as anything that you are 'taught' - you may or may not have watched the videos. You probably didn't do any of the required reading, you almost certainly didn't take it upon yourself to do any of the required assignments or write any of the papers, and even if you did take that initiative (we're well into the sub-one-percentile now), that was not graded or subject to any kind of review that would give it credibility. "Official" online MBAs tend to be looked at quite poorly, and they do require reading and assignment submissions...these things sit well south of those. I can't really see an honest way to put that on a CV that won't either be scoffed at, or called into question, which is why I suggested only abstract references to it (that would make it sound more like your previous employer stuck you through a short course)... FWIW I do think the 'showing initiative to learn' is worth something. I think it's worth quite a lot actually, but think it is the sort of thing that gets raised later in the interview phase - perhaps in the interview when you are asked to explain a gap between employers, you could say something like 'and I took advantage of that time to put myself through the Yale course materials in [whatever] which I found fascinating because...'.
 

Milpool

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I never really thought about this before, but this brings up a question in my mind.

If someone is a self taught programmer, for example, is that different than say self teaching something like marketing? If there is a demonstrable skill associated with the learning, is it ok to list that?
 

giraffe lookout

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Originally Posted by Milpool
I never really thought about this before, but this brings up a question in my mind.

If someone is a self taught programmer, for example, is that different than say self teaching something like marketing? If there is a demonstrable skill associated with the learning, is it ok to list that?


The thing about things like programming and design is that most interviews are granted based on a portfolio of work. Education is great but if your portfolio looks good, then employers will be interested. If by marketing you mean advertising, then you can show off a portfolio of work or ideas as well. I think those fields are much less concerned with education.

More general marketing roles like product management probably aren't as well expressed in a portfolio so brand name experience or education becomes more important. Even in these cases, it can be useful to try and put some previous work together in a pdf and send it along with your resume.

As for the open source Yale classes, I would probably avoid putting that on your resume. Sorry to say it.
 

Don Carlos

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If it's a professional certification of some sort (Six Sigma, PMI, Series 7, various software developer certs, etc.), it can go on your resume. If it's just some online coursework you've done, it should stay off. Just my 2 pennies.
 

Connemara

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OMG!!! Now I can say I went to Yale!!!! This is the best day of my life.
 

Piobaire

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Just don't have a page of "workshops" you've attended on your resume. All professionals do workshops, most of us because we have to get CEUs to maintain various licenses and certifications. It ain't impressive.
 

CTGuy

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Originally Posted by Matt
I can't really see an honest way to put that on a CV that won't either be scoffed at, or called into question, which is why I suggested only abstract references to it (that would make it sound more like your previous employer stuck you through a short course)...

FWIW I do think the 'showing initiative to learn' is worth something. I think it's worth quite a lot actually, but think it is the sort of thing that gets raised later in the interview phase - perhaps in the interview when you are asked to explain a gap between employers, you could say something like 'and I took advantage of that time to put myself through the Yale course materials in [whatever] which I found fascinating because...'.



That's good advice. Probably not something that belongs on a resume, but perhaps it's something you may mention during an interview when relevant. Thanks.
 

CTGuy

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Originally Posted by Don Carlos
If it's a professional certification of some sort (Six Sigma, PMI, Series 7, various software developer certs, etc.), it can go on your resume. If it's just some online coursework you've done, it should stay off. Just my 2 pennies.

I think you are right and this was my gut instinct as well. The Yale courses are just an example of something I have been doing lately. It's just for fun, but it sparked the idea/question.

I know USDA graduate school offers some interesting programs I may look into in the future, but I may look into some certifications as well.
 

Syl

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First question - how much experience do you have? If you are employed then academics don't matter much on a resume (if you are even asked for a CV is another question).

If you are still in school, then perhaps there's some value but I'd say, overall, consider it self-beneficial, but not noteworthy enough to include.
 

countdemoney

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Originally Posted by CTGuy
I think you are right and this was my gut instinct as well. The Yale courses are just an example of something I have been doing lately. It's just for fun, but it sparked the idea/question.

I know USDA graduate school offers some interesting programs I may look into in the future, but I may look into some certifications as well.


You would be better off to pad with service work - shows you are a good community member, blah, blah, blah. If you can be some type of leader in a community group, all the better. If you can be a leader externally, you can be a leader internally.
 

imageWIS

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JP,

If continual personal curiosity to learn and better oneself, coupled with the ability to readily access and utilize gained data were actually taken into consideration when employing people, the job market would look quite different.
 

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