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  • Writer's pictureThe Publishing Post

Free Courses to Upskill

Within the current climate, upskilling can be difficult with the financial difficulties many of us face as students or being unemployed during lockdown, so we’ve compiled an extensive list of free resources so you don’t have to! Many of these supplement our previous features on Excelling With Excel and Adobe InDesign.


  • Ain Chiara – An event and sales manager working in publishing in London, Ain does YouTube videos to help entry-level candidates on topics such as how to get into publishing and dealing with rejection. She also runs a blog and does Instagram live sessions with publishing professionals on a weekly basis.

  • Society of Young Publishers – Many of their webinars/live Q&As are now online, spanning a range of topics with industry professionals discussing every role available. Be sure not to miss their ‘20/20 Visibility’ Event.

  • Books & Quills – Sanne is now a freelancer but undertook several internships (one at PRH) and worked her way up to a social media producer. She interviews colleagues who work in different departments and her video ‘Publishing Phrases 101 With Lena’ is particularly useful for upskilling.

  • Adobe InDesign – Design Like a Pro

Future Learn

Once you enroll in their huge range of courses, you will have two weeks to complete the course for free and will receive a digital certificate.

  • Create a Social Media Marketing Campaign: This course teaches you valuable skills and knowledge associated with running a successful social media marketing campaign, including how to plan one and content needed.

  • Digital Skills – Digital Marketing: Teaches you important topics for this form of marketing, including different digital marketing strategies, why they are important, and how companies target customers.

LinkedIn Learning

It is important to note that many universities offer access to LinkedIn Learning for free, but usually a subscription will be needed of £24.98 per month or it is free with LinkedIn premium, and you can use your free one month trial.

  • Learning Ebook Publishing: Teaches you how to publish an ebook successfully and how to market your ebook to increase the chances of it being read.

  • Learning Metadata for Book Publishing: Metadata is very important in the publishing industry. You will learn not only what it is and crucial components like creating XML Markup and ONIX files, but also how to add necessary information for selling ebooks.

LinkedIn Learning courses mean that you can add your certificates once you've completed the course with great ease, as well as skills learnt being added automatically to your profile.


A subscription based platform that offers a free two month premium trial, with roughly 29,000 classes to choose from. Here are some basics for beginners or for brushing up previous learning:

Open University OpenLearn Courses

Open University provides accredited certificates in a wide range of courses and industry-specific skills to help get into whichever department of publishing you might be interested in.

  • The Digital Scholar: For those interested in Academic Publishing and the ways in which the digital landscape has forever changed the sector.

  • Effective Communication in the workspace: for recent graduates or those looking to join the Human Resources department.

  • English Grammar in Context: a useful refresher for those interested in pursuing a career in the Editorial Department.

  • Exploring Books for Children: for those considering a career in children's publishing and want to understand the commercial considerations of the role.

  • Intermediate Spanish, German or French: may be useful for those considering working in the Sales department as selling rights internationally may require you to have some knowledge of the language of whichever country your travelling to.

  • Start Writing Fiction: For budding authors who may not be able to afford a MA in Creative Writing, save yourself a pretty penny and learn the ins and outs of writing here.

Google Digital Garage


  • Bookcareers: Bookcareers have become an invaluable resource to entry-level publishing candidates and their podcast sessions include a range of topics and tips that can help publishing hopefuls at the start of their career journeys.

  • The Slumbering SlothCast: An exciting podcast in conversation with industry professionals, giving you an essential insight into what your working day could one day look like.

We hope that this variety of resources will be useful in helping you to gain some skills that could help you land your next opportunity. Our next feature will be our top tips for networking, so stay tuned!


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