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I cant believe I actually fell for this rubbish, despite already having a university degree, i thought an extra qualification and being "certified" will increase my chances of employment, as well as being an alternative to a masters. Thats what i was promised anyway, by the "salesman" at home learning college.
The course is so damn basic it can easily be taught at GCSE level.
Materials provided arent anything special, you could find this information online.
Nothing you learn here is likely to benefit you when it comes to employment.
The so called dedicated tutors, arent very dedicated at all, most of the questions I asked were never answered properly, i would also be told something vaguely or asked to contact somwhere else, they just dont seem the least bit bothered, they would say anything to you just for you to stop hassling them.
Once you sign up, your stuck with the payments for two years, as well as the guilt of time/money wasting for the rest of your life.
It is beyond me how anyone can charge £1800 (includes interest) for this trash, its so bad it should be illegal.
My experience with the CIW Foundation course has been frustrating, patronising and expensive. The course itself is a patchwork of very basic subjects that will in no way improve your career prospects on their own (it seems that the Foundation course is just a stepping stone to more relevant courses), and at £1300+ a go isn't worth a fraction of the cost. The Home Learning College themselves aren't all bad, but I couldn't recommend this course to anyone.
Given my interest in a career in web development, I enquired about the CIW Foundation course. The college's salesperson confidently told me that the course is designed to get people started in the field of web development and, on completing the course, I would be eligible for Junior Developer level roles. The course wasn't cheap (with a payment plan it ended up costing me around £1800 over 2 years), but that's an investment in my career that's worth making, right?
No, it really isn't. On receiving the course materials I got stuck in straight away with my studies, working through the chapters of each module. The alarm bells started to ring during the first of three modules ("Internet Business Foundations") when I got to chapters along the lines of 'How to surf the web', 'Introduction to using email', 'Using search engines'... would an aspiring web developer really need to be taught how to surf the internet or use emails? The rest of the chapters in this module were all of the same beginners level.
It would appear that the third and final module, "Network Technology Foundations", has been lifted from another course and slapped on the end of CIW-F to justify the price tag. While I'm sure it would help to have some knowledge of the subjects it deals with (such as networking infrastructure, protocols, and how they relate to the internet) they're by no means essential or, arguably, necessary - and the same old sinking feeling kicked in once more when I kept on coming across references in the notes along the lines of "You will need to know this when training to be a Network Administrator"... who said anything about training to be a Network Administrator?!
To be fair, these are all issues with the course material and not necessarily the Home Learning College itself. On starting the course you will gain access to the HLC's forums, where you can discuss issues and ask for help from fellow students. You will also be assigned a tutor that can lend a hand if you still need help. Good luck trying to book your final exam though - the Student Services department aren't nearly as helpful or efficient.
I've recently finished paying for the course - now that I'm no longer making the monthly payments I'm able to afford to go back to uni full time to study for a masters in computer science. I realise this isn't an option that's open to everyone who wants to get started in web development, but sadly the CIW Foundations course really isn't the way to do it either.
For £70 a month you get some books that are worth about £3.00 each, with content that could easily have been copied & pasted from the internet and poor online support from tutors. They rope you in and once they have your signature on the dotted lines you're trapped for TWO YEARS.DO NOT USE THE HOME LEARNING COLLEGE!DO NOT USE THE HOME LEARNING COLLEGE!!DO NOT USE THE HOME LEARNING COLLEGE!!!!
If you are thinking of using this company to gain your qualifications, THINK AGAIN! The service I have recieved from them has been nothing short of appauling. I have so many complaints that I barely know where to begin. The amount of money you will be charged for a course is far greater than you will pay through another provider and you will not get the service or support that would warrant the extra expense. They provide manuals containing incorrect information, take up to two months to mark an assignment, fail to respond to enquiries and if you get through all of that to the point of sitting your exam they will fail to enter you or give you a days notice! PLEASE don't just assume I am a one off case. There are hundreds of other people who have had simular experiences if you take the time to search for their reviews too. Whoever you are, please do yourself a favour and learn from all our mistakes. DO NOT USE THIS COMPANY!!!
Home Learning College is a service which allows you to study fro qualifications at home.
But I would advise against this company!
I am currently 18 months into a 24 month payment plan with them and it's a total waste of money due to the extremely poor service they provide.
I am paying £1500 in total and for this I get no service or support whatsoever.
There are tutors online all the time and they are supposed to contact you and be available but they never are. The advice they give is very poor in standards and they don't even respond a lot of the time.
I don't know why these people are employed.
There is an online community on the Home Learning College website but this is poor as there is a forum in which people give answers to others to help them do the assignments. Whats the point in that?
You have to submit all the required assignments in the books before you can go into the exams and sometimes it takes 2 or 3 months for them to get you your results. By then its too late to enter the exam and they usually are only twice a year.
When you sign up for home learning college you get all your membership fees included but when I was doing my AAT course I was amazed when after a year I get letters from AAT saying I owed them money and that if I wanted to do any further exams I would have to pay another £80 per time!
When you sign up to Home Learning College a rep will come to your house to try and sell the courses to you. Beware! They will be pushy and try and get you to sign straight into it.
They will use the famous "There's only a couple of places left" line so don't be fooled by this. There is no restriction on the amount of places, they just want your money.
Once you sign up for Home Learning College you are tied into the payments for however long you signed up for.
You can not cancel your course or payments even if you cant afford it. They will still fight you even if you can't afford to pay anymore.
The books they provide for you to work through are very poor quality. There are lots of mistakes in them and there are often pages on the website which are basically corrections on errors.
Customer service at Home Learning College is a disgrace. They do not want to talk to you and help you out but if you say you want to cancel or can't pay they soon pipe up and threaten you with court action if you don't pay.
Yes you do get proper qualifications at the end of if but are better companies out there and much cheaper too.
Avoid Home Learning College!