15 Free Online Certifications That Can Launch Your Resume Ahead of Other Applicants

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Get certifications that can make your resume stand out when applying for jobs.
Updated Dec. 18, 2023
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Job searches can be competitive, and sometimes you need a little something extra on your resume to make it stand out. A talent that sets you apart or extra experience in your particular field can get you noticed. 

Certifications are a good example of something that can give you a step up on your competitors. The good news is you don’t have to spend a large chunk of money to get certifications you can add to your resume. 

Here are a few to consider that are free and that might help you to move beyond living paycheck to paycheck.

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Computer Science for Business Professionals

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Harvard University’s Computer Science for Business Professionals course might be the right fit for a business professional who has to make decisions related to cloud computing, web development, internet technologies, or other computer issues.

This course can help you understand computer issues in the business world, and the Harvard brand on your resume could make you stand out and maybe even make a little extra money when you get the job.

Quality Assurance Certification

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Quality assurance is an important part of computer software testing to make sure computer programs and web applications respond the way they are supposed to.

Grab a freeCodeCamp Quality Assurance Certification to learn how to make sure your applications work as planned.

Google Ads Video Certification

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Google allows you to put video ads on online sites such as YouTube in order to maximize your advertising impact.

So, check out the Google Ads Video Certification, which teaches you how to increase your market reach by using ads on websites such as YouTube and Google Video.

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Grow Offline Sales Certification

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Not all commerce is done online: There are important skills you need to know if you work for a company that sells products in stores or directly to customers.

Check out the Grow Offline Sales Certification if you want to be a more well-rounded job candidate who can demonstrate an understanding of how to sell a product in different types of markets.

AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner

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AWS, which stands for Amazon Web Services, is a cloud-computing platform that offers its services to businesses, individuals and others.

Get started in AWS with the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner certificate, which can be an important mark on your resume if you’re applying for jobs with companies that use AWS services.

The Science of Well-Being

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Yale University’s Science of Well-Being is a personal development course that helps you build productive habits you can use in both your personal life and work life.

You will find out more about what makes you happy and how to overcome biases, for example. Yale suggests adding the certification "to your LinkedIn profile, resume, or CV."


Introduction to the Incident Command System

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The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) offers courses for emergency responders to learn about the basic structure and uses of the Incident Command System, a standardized method of dealing with many types of emergencies.

This could be a great certification to add to your resume if you are in a position that potentially requires you to respond to emergencies.

Supervision Skills

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As you move up the corporate ladder, it may be important to learn skills to successfully oversee a team of employees.

Alison’s Supervision Skills certification can help you learn how to supervise and motivate your employees to achieve the best work possible.

Google Analytics Certification

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Analytics can be a great tool for marketers who are trying to make important decisions and gain important insights about their marketing campaigns.

Google offers Google Analytics Certification that demonstrates your understanding of how to collect and report crucial data.

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Get Started as a Project Manager

Kateryna/Adobe young woman in stylish casual clothes studying remotely

Project managers need to guide projects from conception to completion. LinkedIn Learning’s Get Started as a Project Manager certification can increase your proficiency in executing these skills.

Be aware that LinkedIn Learning normally charges a fee of $19.99 to $39.99 per month, but you can get your first month free and earn certifications during that period.

Technical Writing

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Technical writers need a specific set of skills to convey detailed information about particular subjects. You’ll need to know how to communicate both inside an organization and how to reach out to a specific audience.

Saylor Academy offers a free Technical Writing certification that you can add to your resume.

Free Online Photoshop Course

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Photoshop can be a great resource if you work with illustrating, graphic design, and other visual arts.

The EDUCBA Free Online Photoshop Course is a certification that proves you have an understanding of one of the better-known types of graphics editing software.


Introduction to Public Health Surveillance

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Health care providers may want to get a certificate that shows they know how to properly track and analyze data in response to the spread of disease.

The Public Health Foundation’s Introduction to Public Health Surveillance was developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and may be a good option if you work in the public health field.

AI-Powered Performance Ads Certification

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Artificial intelligence software has become an important tool for different fields, including marketing and advertising.

Google’s AI-Powered Performance Ads Certification allows you to learn more about Google Ads and how the addition of AI can optimize your marketing reach.

Responsive Web Design Certification

Wayhome Studio/Adobe asian woman studying on laptop

If you’ve ever considered web design as a career option, you may want to build up your resume with a web design certification, which could help you eliminate some money stress.

The freeCodeCamp Responsive Web Design Certification helps you learn basic languages that you’ll use in a web design career.

Bottom line

Liubov Levytska/Adobe asian girl studying remotely from home

Free certification programs are great options if you want something to make your resume stand out. If you have a similar background to other candidates, the right certification can help you get above the rest. 

Consider different options that are relevant to your particular field and that might lead to promotions and other opportunities to get ahead financially.

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Author Details

Jenny Cohen Jenny Cohen is a freelance writer who has covered a bit of everything, from finance to sports to her favorite TV shows. Her work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and FoxSports.com.

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