The Power of Independent Learning

At OpenClassrooms, we teach the skills and competencies necessary to perform in your future job. It is crucial to us that when you finish your studies you are as well-equipped as possible to succeed in your career.

The way we teach is carefully crafted to prepare you for the “real world” of work – not only with the competencies that you acquire but the way that you learn them as well.

How OpenClassrooms approaches learning

At OpenClassrooms, students are taught through a project-based, experiential learning model and accompanied by a mentor. Additionally, OpenClassrooms empowers students through independent learning.

We have adopted and designed this approach based on guidance and feedback we receive from a diverse network of industry professionals and successful alumni. We want you to have the confidence and conviction to take control of your learning, both during your studies and beyond.

Be assured, even though this learning method promotes independence, at no point during your program are you left on your own.

What is independent learning?

Independent study is both a goal and a process. It is a method of learning whereby you acquire knowledge, not just by following courses and in your mentor sessions, but through your own efforts.  Independent learning develops your ability to research and critically evaluate.

It teaches you to identify gaps in your skills, and then know how and where to find the answers. Personal autonomy in your thinking and actions is developed.

You are taught to reflect, question, and analyze. In short, be in control of self-management as a student.

What does this mean for your studies?

Practically, this means that OpenClassrooms doesn’t provide you with ALL the information you need to complete every single project. Our pedagogy will challenge you.

This is by design. Each project comes with a “project brief”. This brief provide students with context and resources.  It also details all the expected deliverables for the project. The project brief simulates a real professional scenario. And in a real work situation, you will likely have to research and seek inspiration to keep up with changing technology and trends. Your OpenClassrooms experience will have prepared you for this.  

Here is an example from our web development programs. One of the early project briefs will prompt you to create a simple website for a client. The brief might tell you what functionalities to build, but not always precisely what technology, plugins or hosting services to choose. Courses will teach how to make these choices “in general”, how to implement them and where to source them. But you must make all the choices yourself.

Even though our students are informed of our independent learning approach, it often still hits them by surprise when they get to a project and have to do their own research in order to complete it.

Let us explain why OpenClassrooms adopts Independent Learning with an example…

Coding is a fast-growing industry. Coders will have to adopt new tools and languages, and adapt to platform updates throughout their careers. To prepare for this inevitability, we feel it is essential to begin developing these skills during your education, so you’ll always know where and how to look when you’re stuck.

What are the benefits for our students?

  •      Flexibility – in learning and approach with an ability to respond to change
  •      Transferrable skills – these techniques can be used for any area of interest
  •      Motivation – self-direction leads to higher order thinking.
  •      Enthusiasm – the pleasure of independent learning will carry over to the subject itself.
  •      New Perspective – promotes a learning mindset
  •      Confidence – in what you know, and the ability to find answers/solutions.

We value your feedback

If you feel any course content is outdated (forgive us, this happens as the technical skills we teach evolve at an exciting rate!) then we encourage you to email us at to let us know.

We may already be aware, and working on the update, but just in case we are not – thank you!

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