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FutureLearn launches new ‘ExpertTrack’ online subscription model in response to high demand for always-on learning to boost employability

Professionals can now upskill at their own pace in high demand sectors like data science, technology, health and social care, education, marketing and more, the leading social learning platform which partners with over 25% of the world’s top universities, is announcing the launch of its new digital product called ‘ExpertTrack’. Designed to give individuals flexible, subscription-based access in-demand skills, on-demand. ExpertTracks will allow learners to build knowledge and expertise around their lifestyle, shaping their own personal development journey towards their ultimate career goals. 


In recent findings 87% of people globally believe the skills needed for jobs are different than five years ago due to the increased use of technology in day-to-day work. Now open for enrolment, the first set of 35+ ExpertTracks cover a wide range of job-relevant subject areas, from Fintech to Cyber Security, Data Analysis, Social Media Marketing, Psychology, Project Management, Entrepreneurship, Leadership and more. Created in partnership with world class higher education and industry partners including the University of Michigan, Coventry University, the University of Leeds, STEM Learning, AllBright, Monash University, Tableau, Salesforce and Xero.


ExpertTracks are available on demand and have been designed to fit the needs of learners of all backgrounds and experience levels, meaning they can dive deeper into a subject and learn new skills around their busy lives. Consisting of three or more short courses, ExpertTracks are automated and peer assessed, and learners can earn valuable employer relevant certificates as they progress through their chosen pathways, helping them stand out across CV, interview and internal progression discussions.


Learners are able to access ExpertTracks via a flexible subscription model that costs GBP £36 per month (EUR €36, USD $39, AUD $59) per ExpertTrack, with payment cancelling automatically on completion of the materials. Learners will also have the opportunity to try each ExpertTrack via a 7 day free trial, before purchasing a subscription.


Susannah Belcher, Chief Operations Officer at FutureLearn, said: “With the launch of ExpertTrack, we’re meeting learner demand for deeper, skills focused learning at an affordable price. With an accessible and manageable monthly subscription and content delivered by top tier universities, ExpertTrack will be a game changer for many professionals; especially in the highly competitive post-covid job market. The courses have been designed as an on-demand series designed to demystify and open up complex learning areas, all with career goals in mind. Whether you’re a learner who has just started your career journey, you’re looking for a change, or an experienced professional looking for that competitive edge; ExpertTrack has been designed as a resource to empower your next step up.”


Ed Biden, Director of Product at FutureLearn, said: “We’re thrilled to announce the launch of FutureLearn’s ExpertTracks at such a crucial time. Not only do they allow our learners to benefit from a much deeper learning experience alongside peers and experts at our renowned partner institutions, but they also open up access to new and vital career-boosting skills at a low and affordable price point. We’ve also specifically designed ExpertTracks to meet the high demand for speedy and unbundled education, and we look forward to seeing how this new offering positively impacts learner engagement.”


Justin Cooke, Chief Content and Partnerships Officer at FutureLearn, said, “Our mission at FutureLearn has always been to transform access to education. That’s why we’re excited to unlock a new way of learning to millions of people with the launch of more than 35 new subscription-based ExpertTracks across high-demand areas such as technology, digital skills and business management. The need for career-relevant education and easily accessible skills development has increased exponentially, with predictions that at least 54% of employees will need to upskill or reskill by 2022 as the workplace continues to evolve rapidly. Through ExpertTracks, FutureLearn and our world-class higher education and industry partners will create a truly unique online learning experience that meets this need and empowers professionals across the globe.”


Hanna Celina, Director of Insights at FutureLearn, said: “At FutureLearn, we’ve seen huge demand from both learners and employers for more professional skills development opportunities. For example, our business and management courses saw an almost 200% year-on-year increase in enrolments in 2020, while our digital skills courses from the Institute of Coding have seen an almost 2,000% increase since the start of the year and are now on over 700,000 enrollments to date. We’re excited to announce the launch of our new ExpertTracks, which target the most in-demand skills within a range of high-growth job sectors. From AI and data science, to teaching and business management, individuals will be able to gain career-specific expertise in a way that’s affordable, stackable, and easily accessible.”


James DeVaney, Founding Executive Director of the Center for Academic Innovation, University of Michigan, said, “ExpertTracks will help put learners in charge of their own educational journey. FutureLearn and the University of Michigan share a commitment to transform educational access and an objective to prepare learners for jobs which may not exist yet in our ever-changing world. We look forward to working with FutureLearn and our faculty partners to create new ExpertTracks that prepare individuals and organizations for the future of work.”


Adrian Devey, Director, Monash Centre for Professional Development and Monash Online Education, said: “Monash University is excited by the opportunity the new Expert Track program provides to make high-quality, high-demand courses accessible to a global professional audience.”   


Professor Neil Morris, Interim Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Digital Transformation at the University of Leeds, said: “We are delighted to be working with FutureLearn to offer our first ExpertTrack – a new flexible, affordable study model that can fit into busy schedules, making learning accessible to all. 


“This new development builds on our successful partnership with FutureLearn, which since 2013 has enabled us to open up our academic expertise to a diverse group of learners, enabling them to build their skills and grow their opportunities in the post-covid job market. 


“This year, almost 650,000 adult learners have accessed our Digital Skills for the Workplace courses developed in partnership with FutureLearn, with six of these adopted by the Department for Education for its Skills Toolkit. 


“Looking to the future, we will continue working in partnership with FutureLearn to develop new online study models to help adults from a wide range of backgrounds achieve their potential.”


Debbie Wosskow, Co-Founder, AllBright, said: “AllBright is delighted to launch our new ExpertTrack, designed to help professional women around the world recharge, reset and move forward with focus. According to research conducted by AllBright, 69% of women are more likely to invest in their career development post pandemic. ‘Believe, Build, Become: How to Supercharge Your Career’ will help them do just that – offering the chance to focus on what they bring to the table whilst also exploring opportunities to develop their personal USP.”


Fran Dainty, Head of Education, STEM Learning, said: “We’re excited about launching three ExpertTracks, designed to further STEM education across the world. These ExpertTracks build on our established online professional development courses, written by leading educational researchers and experienced teachers. The ExpertTracks will enable FutureLearn learners to build a portfolio of evidence and reflection, demonstrating the change to their thinking and practice through learning with others online. What makes our courses distinct, is their focus on making an impact on the practice of educators and volunteers in STEM, their colleagues, and ultimately the achievements and aspirations of the young people they work with.”


Notes to Editors


About FutureLearn

Here at FutureLearn, our purpose is to transform access to education to help create a brighter future. We do that by partnering with over a quarter of the world’s top universities and industry partners to support millions of learners across the globe to develop skills and achieve their personal and professional goals. We’re a leading social learning platform founded in December 2012 by The Open University and are now jointly owned by The Open University in the UK and The SEEK Group. We use design, technology and partnerships to create enjoyable, credible and flexible short online courses and microcredentials, as well as undergraduate and postgraduate degrees. In addition to top universities, we also partner with leading organisations such as Accenture, the British Council, CIPD, Raspberry Pi, SamsungUK and Health Education England (HEE), as well as being involved in government-backed initiatives to address skills gaps such as The Institute of Coding and the National Centre for Computing Education.

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