In this day and age, bloggers and website owners have a large number of options for maintaining their online presence. While some choose to invest money in hiring web developers and SEO firms, others handle things on their own to minimize cost. If you find yourself in the latter category, you can understand why learning WordPress as a skill is now in great demand. However, there still exists a controversial question among learners about whether to learn WordPress yourself or take a formal/online course. Therefore, in order to find out the answer, let’s take a look at the pros and cons of both options. You had better set aside some time to evaluate each option and see what is the best fit for you personally.
1. Learning WordPress On Your Own
- Lower cost: With a little bit curiosity and patience, you can easily access the huge source of free guide and information available on the Internet. For instance, it is the WordPress.org site itself that has been a gold mine for WordPress learners. However, please keep in mind that “self-taught” here doesn’t mean you have to figure everything out on your own. You can absolutely start learning WordPress by asking advanced users who are willing to teach, and obviously it’s for free, or costs you only little amount of money for books/ebooks. It’s great that your limited budget cannot prevent you from learning WordPress skill!
- More flexibility: This advantage of learning on your own may be the most appealing one to almost all WordPress learners. In fact, you don’t have to follow an online tutorial, read a specific book at any particular time, or on anyone else’s schedule. Everything is up to you. Moreover, let’s think about the situation when you have to work all day and have only few hours per night for studying, then self-taught appears to fit you the most.
- Time-consuming: Although learning WordPress on your own may give you more flexible time, it doesn’t really save your whole time. Unfortunately, searching through a huge number of online instructions, videos, etc. takes loads of time that you may not have. Just imagine when you “Google” for something, you always receive thousands of relevant results, and the time you spend on finding the appropriate information is overwhelming. That seems to be a not-so-good signal.
Lack of learning structure: It’s obvious that unlike formal education, self-taught method has no attendance policy. There are no grades to worry about, no teachers and no course syllabus to strictly follow. Some WordPress learners, in fact, do have difficulties in ambiguously structuring their studies and following a routine. For instance, you sometimes don’t know where to start, how you should progress and which way you should go during the time of learning WordPress. In short, the demand for appropriately structured knowledge is something that self-taught can hardly satisfy.
2. Learning WordPress by Taking Formal Courses
- Good structure: No matter which kind of course you are attending, the courses and curriculum have been set up to provide you with a complete knowledge. Learning WordPress with a clear schedule will help you stay focused and organized. Moreover, if you pursue a course, the proper course layout, to some extent, can help you to work through it without needing to practice as much self-discipline.
- A community: One of the greatest access of a formal course (both online and offline) is the extra support from its exclusive community. There exists some Facebook groups and forums that you can only access if you are class participants. Moreover, sometimes your fellow classmates will become your greatest teachers or even assistants. You may believe or not, but the benefit you can gain from this community seems to never end. They will not only be with you when you have questions but also can assist you in launching new product.
- Higher cost: Learning WordPress will cost you money if you decide to take a serious high-quality course. In most cases, WordPress learners are offered very basic course with simple skill and information; however, they must pay to upgrade to more advanced version.
- Time commitment: As for some kinds of formal education, WordPress learners are required to weekly go to class, sit for exams and follow the standard learning process. Even if you choose an online course, time commitment is compulsory in some situations. Therefore, it might be difficult. The time may cause you trouble especially when you have tons of other work to complete.
There is no right or wrong approach to learning WordPress, but following a path that isn’t the right fit for you can result in a waste of time and money. Therefore, it is necessary for you to (i) determine your goals and objectives, and (ii) take all the pros and cons of self-taught and attending courses into consideration to make the wisest choice.