Top 10 Courses for Products Managers — From Data to Design, and More
The best Product Managers are curious, hungry for knowledge, and always seeking new skills. there are lots of moving part in the product world, and the more of them you understand, the better!
Here are our top 10 courses for Product Mangers in UX design, coding, Machine Learning (ML), data science, and business.
Get Certified as a Product Manager
Before we show you our list of kickass courses (most of them free!) we have to tell you about the best choice for Product Managers… a Product Management Certification.
While it’s great to branch out and gain skills in new areas, it’s also key to solidify your knowledge and build up your core skills. Our certifications take your right from the basics of Product Management, including how to land your first job, to being a Product Leader.
UX and UI Design Courses
You don’t have to be a master artist to understand UX and UI, as these disciplines are just as much about technique, strategy, and research as they are creativity. And there are key concepts that will help you communicate with your designers and understand what a great user experience looks like.
LearnUX is a great place to get started if you’ve got no background in design. Their selection of courses take you right from the fundamentals of good UX design, through to tools like Invision, Framer, and Abstract. It also includes a workshop on basic HTML and CSS, ending with you building your own landing page. (Helpful if you’re working on a side project!)
- Level: Beginner to Intermediate
- Price: $15 Monthly Subscription / $144 Annual Subscription
Design+Code offer courses best suited to those who already have some experience or a background in design, and are looking to improve. With their courses, you can really dive deep on a specific topic.
These courses are best for Product Managers who have the fundamentals of design locked down, but perhaps are working with a very cutting edge design team and feel like they can’t keep up. You can learn about something like ‘ Build an App with SwiftUI’ or ‘ CSS Layout and Animations ‘ or you could get a subscription and dive into a little bit of everything.
Coding and Programming Courses
Do Product Managers need to be able to understand and write code? Not at all! It’s not your job to actually build the product. But it is your job to work with a tech team to ensure they’re building the right thing in the right way. Knowing code will help you feel more confident expressing your ideas and point of view, and will generally make communicating with your teams easier.
When you sign up, you get a physical book and course pack shipped out to you (yes, swag!) and although the course is broken up into 8 weeks, you can take as long as you want to complete your projects. Perfect for those with a hectic work life.
CS50 was born from instructor David J. Malan’s belief that anyone can learn computer science. It’s a free, online, self-paced version of Harvard University’s Intro to Computer Science, and requires absolutely no previous programming knowledge.
The course come with a large online community of students, and ‘Office Hours’ with David to get your questions answered. That’s far more support than many other free courses offer!
Machine Learning and AI Courses
5. Elements of AI
Elements of AI is a relatively new course, but already has 430,000 students enrolled from 170 countries. Another free course, this one takes you through things like solving problems with AI, the Bayes rule, how neural networks are built, and the societal implications of AI.
Part 2 will be coming out later this year, potentially with more actionable classes.
6. Machine Learning Crash Course
This is Google’s free crash course on all things Machine Learning, broken down into easy-to-find video classes. Stacked with cases studies, lessons from real machine learning practitioners, and hands-on exercises, it’s a great introduction to ML.
Google recommends that complete beginners go through the course material a step at a time, and more advanced users can cherry-pick the information that they need.
Data Science Courses
Data science is one of the subjects that looks the most intimidating to those who aren’t in the know. But the whole world is built on data, and that’s especially true in the product world! Time to dive in!
7. Data Quest
Data Quest has 4 main learning paths, to help you tailor your learning experience; Data Analyst in R, Data Analyst in Python, Data Scientist in Python, and Data Engineer.
For Product Managers, if you’re already working with data professionals in your day to day, and want to learn more about their work, ask them which path is best suited to your product.
This course is best designed for those with a base knowledge of data who are looking to pick up some new knowledge. Whether thats Probability Fundamentals in R, Optimizing Code Performance on Large Datasets, or Optimizing Postgres Databases.
8. I Heart Stats: Learning to Love Statistics
While this course has been archived for now, you can still access the course content. I Heart Stats from the University of Notre Dame, has the mission of demystifying statistics. ‘The purpose of this course, then is to help you develop a functional, satisfying, and useful life-long relationship with statistics. “
You’ll come away from this course with a new appreciation of statistics, and the ability to ‘think like a statistical detective.’ All you need is basic maths capabilities and a willingness to learn.
For some, Product Management is their first real leadership role, which can be a learning curve. For some, leadership is a collection of soft skills that you can only pick up through being a leader. But if something can be learned, it can be taught.
9. Shaw Academy
Shaw Academy offer an online leadership course, which does a great job of asking the question ‘ are you a manager or a leader?’
The course structure takes you all the way from a brand new leader, to proficiency, so there’s something in here for professionals at every level. We particularly recommend the final few classes on ‘Leading Through Change’ which will be especially helpful in 2020!
While this is a paid course, every so often it is made available for free.
If you’re serious about crafting a career in leadership, the Certificate in Leadership and Management from Upskilled is a great investment.
This Australia based company offers a range of creative, technical, and business courses, and we particularly recommend their leadership course.
Ready to dive into a new course? Check out our full Product Management Certification offerings!
I’m Carlos González, CEO at Product School, and I enjoy sharing weekly tips for Product leaders!
This article was also published on The Product Management Blog.