That's the upshot of Coursera's Global Skills Index report for 2020. Coursera usage has boomed during the COVID-19 pandemic as university partners moved toward online education and workers moved to upskill. Toss in some extra time during quarantine and Coursera now has more than 65 million online learners with 13 million in the US.
Jeff Maggioncalda, CEO of Coursera, said the GSI report ranks how countries and industries are performing on key skills based on proficiency. Coursera's skill graph, the crux of the report, looks at assessments, average scores, and degree of difficulty. "Employers look at this and get some sense for general skill in talent pools," explained Maggioncalda.
Coursera saw a pop in almost every online education category, but technology, business, and data science courses have maintained momentum, said Maggioncalda, who added that healthcare courses and degrees are the next frontiers for the company. Indeed, Johns Hopkins' contact tracing course landed 430,000 enrollments in the first month as a way to become educated about COVID-19 and pursue a hot job category.
The 69-page report is worth a read because it has breakdowns by industry and countries. Here are some key takeaways:
The top five trending skills related to COVID-19 are public health, recognizing symptoms, understanding risk factors, social distancing, and contact tracing.
For business skills, Switzerland was the top-ranked country followed by Austria, Denmark, Finland, and the United Arab Emirates. Canada was 14th with the US at 17, Australia at 19, and the UK at 19.
Trending business skills include:
Maggioncalda noted that Excel is a business staple since it is the most basic tool for handling data.
In technology skills, Russian Federation ranked No. 1 followed by Belarus and Switzerland. The US didn't make the top 30 and landed at No. 37. Trending technology skills included:
C Programming Language
User Experience Design
Convolutional Neural Network
Internet of Things
Application Programming Interface
In data science, Russian Federation again finished No. 1 in skills followed by Switzerland and Belgium. The US was No. 23 followed by the UK at No. 24. Trending skills included: