Open courses, legislation: see everything you need to know

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When we talk about open courses, legislation is a subject that raises doubts. Until a time, teaching a course was seen as something that could not be done by just anyone. However, reality has changed and we know that we can all monetize some of the knowledge we have acquired throughout life, just pay attention to the norms.

People are looking to learn from experts who have already achieved results, and that’s one of the reasons this learning format is on the rise. Then, the professional can use their knowledge and create this source of income, either online or in person.

You might be wondering how to offer free courses, right? Therefore, we have prepared this article with the most important points. Check it out and start planning your classes.

Definition of open courses

Open courses are within the Professional Education modality but are not regulated by the MEC. Therefore, anyone who wants to sell their knowledge can offer this type of course, regardless of their training.

Generally, they have a smaller workload, are distance learning and work in a field of knowledge aimed at solving a specific problem of the student, for example, the use of paid traffic.

Most courses that are sold by info producers fall under this modality. This is because, despite bringing rich content, they do not provide any training — such as high school or higher — to students.

Open courses: legislation

According to Decree No. 2.208/97, art. 4th, “ basic-level professional education is a modality of non-formal education and variable duration, aimed at providing the working citizen with the knowledge that allows him to re-professionalize, qualify and update himself for the exercise of functions demanded by the world of Work”.

This same article also emphasizes that this modality is not subject to curricular regulation. However, the Decree was revoked and there is no other instrument that regulates the practice of these courses.

Therefore, the person responsible for the course can choose the workload, the level of education of the participants and other points without any legal interference. This is because, despite the MEC recognizing the legality of the existence of open courses, no legislation imposes rules.

Even if anyone can buy a free course, it is important that the teacher creates his persona to be able to direct the classes and, at the time of sale, make clear who his target audience is.

Issuance of certificates

Whoever offers a free course can also provide a certificate without recognition by the MEC to their students. This is important for the student to prove that they invested time in pursuit of that knowledge.

In order to enhance your work, you should create some rules before issuing the certificate, such as viewing all classes. Otherwise, its teachings will not be taken seriously by the public and could soon become a failure.

Issuing can be done in different ways, but it is recommended to look for platforms that host your course and already issue the certificate automatically, such as SparkMembers. And we reinforce that, in the case of open courses, no legislation requires any type of registration with the MEC or any other entity.

Difference between technical course and free course

The technical course is one that confers a qualification to exercise a certain profession. It tends to have greater validity in the formal labor market. Unlike open courses, legislation is something that matters. This is because, in addition to being recognized by the MEC, it usually has a longer duration, a regulated workload and may require internships for the student’s education.

However, if you are only looking for learning, the open courses are highly recommended, as they are usually cheaper and have a more practical approach, such as step by step.

Advantages of teaching a free course

Possibility to climb

As there are not many requirements to participate in a free course and it can be taught at a distance, the possibility of climbing is great. That’s because people around the world can buy your product.

A tip is to work with recorded classes and hosted on reliable platforms, so you can sell to different classes and for many years, just updating what is necessary.

One example is the school O Novo Mercado, by Caro de Carvalho. Although its classes are live, the school leaves all classes on a platform, which increasingly increases the authority of the course that adds new classes.

Increased demand for online courses

The Digital Era brought the trend of online classes, as it is more convenient and the student can access it at any time. For those who work or have other tasks that prevent physical presence, this practicality is essential.

This was strengthened by the coronavirus pandemic that started in the year 2020. As people could not leave their homes, they began to look for online classes to continue training.

As a result, people have also moved closer to digital and realized that there is a range of options that go beyond formal education. As an example, there are infoproducts from major market players that teach what they did to succeed.

Ease of creating social proof

Imagine that you own a neighbourhood school for children. As parents enrol their students, they will certainly comment with those they know about the quality of the school and soon the neighbourhood will be studying at their school.

This is also the case with free courses, whether online or in person. People who like the content will advertise and leave testimonials on your platform, confirming the quality of the material.

As the course is not recognized by the MEC, some people may be reluctant to acquire it, but social proof can change this opinion. This is because, with the opinion of those who have already acquired the course, it is possible to use the mental trigger of social proof.

Reduced workload

Since there is no specific regulation, the open course may have a reduced workload, which attracts those people who are looking for quick and specific learning.

It is also advantageous for the infoproducer, as it will require less time to build the teaching modules. In addition, you will not be stuck to a pre-defined pattern, as you will have complete freedom in construction.

In short, when it comes to open courses, legislation is not a big concern. You are free to teach your students following your own didactics and hours. Your course can even be online. This represents a great opportunity for the entrepreneurship universe.

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