opinion

Get Certified!

Joe D
Yes, the times are changing. Are you keeping up?

The stories of how various people got into the Internet industries could literally fill books upon books… Most developers – believe it or not – got into online ebiz without so much as a bit of HTML training in their backgrounds. Many learned from how-to development books, others learned from online sites, free courses or tutorials – and just a small group really came from any kind of Web developmental trade school.

However, times change and many of the businesses in the world today – both in adult and in mainstream – are seeking educated, trained and certified developers when they set out to hire new blood. Fortunately, there are lots of ways you can increase your knowledge-base, get certified – maybe even use your new training to increase your pay-scale expectations and get your new knowledge and years of amateur work experience to finally pay off!

Online Training Courses
  • The HTML Writers Guild – Online courses are available all year long through the HWG, which was founded back in 1994 and has a solid reputation for providing useful and productive training courses in Web development. Prices range depending upon the subject, from $80 on up, and discounts are available for IWA-HWG members – on courses that range from basic topics such as HTML to Java development, Photoshop training, SEO workshops, Internet marketing and more. www.hwg.org


  • W3Schools – The World Wide Web Consortium Offers a FREE online training course in standards compliant Web development on everything from basic HTML to “hot” development technologies such as AJAX, XML, CSS and more. www.w3schools.com
Online Certification Programs
  • Sessions Online School of Design – This is a fully accredited online certification program based in New York. Students can register today and start taking courses “tomorrow” – registration is simple and the course programs are easy to follow. Courses cost between $199 for basic certification on up to $959 for more extensive and advanced topics. Graphic design, Web development, Flash animation, Internet marketing and many other related online ebiz courses are available. www.sessions.edu


  • Eclectic Academy – Over 100 online certification courses ranging over all online ebiz topics including graphic design, Web development, advanced programming, networking and more – all for just $20 per course. Certificates are mailed upon completion of courses. www.eclecticacademy.com
College Certification Programs
  • O’Reilly Learning – Fully accredited online courses that earn CEU (Continuing Education Units) at the University of Illinois, these courses range from $200-500 per certificate (plus monthly lab fees) and range from basic HTML and CSS skills on up to Virtual Basic, PHP, SQL Programming and more. All courses are completed at your pace and begin when you are ready. www.oreillylearning.com


  • University of Advancing Technology – The UAT Online program offers four major areas of coursework including The College of Multimedia, The College of Software Engineering, The College of Technology Commerce and The Graduate College in Applied Technology. This is more than just a mere course-by-course certification program; this program awards a college degree in various Web business technologies and is something to help you build your career upon. Costs vary per program – please check for prerequisite requirements. www.uat.edu
These are just a few of the online courses and study programs available online. As you can see there are free programs, low-cost programs, mid-cost programs and full tuition type courses available, so the choice is totally yours. How far do you want to go? Your combined education and real-life experience can take you as far as you are willing to take it.

Taking Your Show on the Road

Once you get your accreditation, certification or degree, it may be time to look around and see what else is out there on the World Wide Web. Many mainstream companies look to hire developers and/or marketers from the adult side because they know that they come from intensely competitive markets and would like to integrate that work ethic and experience into their own businesses. On the other hand, many adult companies are now looking to hire mainstream developers, especially those that are fresh from school – because they can bring new ideas, new technologies and new methods to their programs. For you – it’s a win-win situation all around.

There are lots of ways to find jobs in your area – or around the globe if you are able to travel, but the top two places usually recommended are Monster.com and CareerBuilder.com. Primarily mainstream resources, many adult companies also advertise available positions – a quick scan in their database will bring up well-known companies, and a deeper look will reveal mainstream-sounding parent companies of established adult entertainment businesses.

When using one of these programs make sure to carefully consider all of your skills when filling out your profile and resume. A few tweaks on your skill list, including years of experience as well as any formal training – including online courses, certifications and degrees – will benefit you greatly. Any examples of past work, recommendations from former or current employers or an online portfolio of designs or development projects will help too.

If writing isn’t your thing, consider hiring someone to create a quality resume for you. Your resume and online profile are your first impression – making sure that they reveal your professionalism, training and experience will be well worth any cost or effort involved. Most of all – aim high. Major companies such as Google, eBay, NBC Universal, Web Side Story, Spherion and others use these services frequently. There’s no reason why your skills can’t get you a position with one of these top Internet companies.

Knowledge is power and education is key, so never stop investing in yourself, for that is truly the most important investment you can make and carries through all of your days. Brush up on your skills, have confidence in your knowledge and experience, and see where it can take you!

Related Reading:

An Xbiz Blast from the Past!
The Need for Continuing Education

Is College Really Worth It?

Most Popular Online Degree Programs

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