Hunter's Woods PH

How I Enrolled in 113 Coursera Certificate-Earning Courses for FREE

When a friend posted in Facebook about having a received a grant from the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Caraga to enroll in as many Coursera courses as he wanted, I bookmarked his post but otherwise didn’t take much notice of it at first, mostly because I thought the grant application process would take too much time and effort, and who has extra time these days, right? Plus, applying for things — asking people for something — is one of those things that I really don’t like doing, for some reason.


Eventually, however, I had a bit of time in my hands while waiting for my son to finish an activity for his Montessori homeschooling program, and I thought, ehh, why not try it? Thank God I did, because it turned out to be fairly easy to apply for the grant! And the thing with Coursera — as well as many other massive open online course (MOOC) platforms — is that many of the courses are free but you have to pay if you want to get a certificate of completion. With the 75,000-slot grant that Coursera gave to DOST Caraga, though, a grantee can enroll in an unlimited number of courses and get certificates FOR FREE. Because, you know, it’s all very well if you’re just learning for the sake of learning, but with the pandemic, a lot of people have lost jobs and need to polish their resumes. Training certificates — whether it’s from Ivy League schools like Yale or Princeton, or company-specific courses from Google or IBM or Facebook — can be very useful.

Further below, I listed all the courses that I signed up for in Coursera, in case you’ve signed up for Coursera too and need ideas. There’s one with Jane Goodall. A lot of how-tos for Google and Canva. I majored in psychology at the University of the Philippines so there are a lot of psych-related courses, as well as ones on well-being, which was my thesis topic. There are topics I’m actually learning along with my son, like Dino 101 and Astro 101. Parenting courses too — we could all use a little help there! But a lot of the topics I enrolled in are ones that anybody would find useful, including courses on financial planning and time management. And there’s even one that Stanford University — whose courses are usually not available through the DOST-Coursera partnership — is offering for free! Check them all out in the section after next.


But first: how to enroll.

How to Sign Up for FREE Courses with Certificates in Coursera

There are step-by-step instructions here


DOST-Caraga also prepared answers to frequenty asked questions HERE.


Edit 10/31:
The 75,000 slots have been filled BUT the DOST Caraga sent out an email last night saying that several hundred slots are available again because some people didn’t enroll in any courses. If you’ve been invited to the grant, all you have to do is click the Join Now or Join Program in your email. If you haven’t been given a grant yet, you can still apply
here and you will be waitlisted. I know a friend who applied just last night and got in, so hurry!


Edit 11/1:
The deadline for enrollment was yesterday, so I don’t know if people can still avail of the grant. Probably not. 🙁 Let’s hope that Coursera extends the deadlines and gives DOST-Caraga more slots! Meanwhile, I think that one of the things we can do is to raise awareness about how we really appreciate a program like this. Perhaps we can clamor for the government — maybe the national government, since they have more say about budgets — to get in touch with Coursera and negotiate a program that can benefit a lot more people. I’ll quote two of the FAQs in DOST-Caraga’s websit. First, about the deadline:

Q: Is there a possibility to extend the deadlines for course enrollment and completion to earn free certificates?

A: As of the moment, the deadlines are final and there is no possibility of extension.


And what a lot of us would like to know:

Q: Will there be another Coursera scholarship grant next year or in the coming years?

A: We don’t know. The scholarship program granted to DOST-Caraga by Coursera for free is a very rare opportunity which probably won’t happen again. As to government-funded Coursera or MOOCs scholarships in the future, we are hoping that someone in the government will take the initiative to push for the institutionalization of this program for the benefit of the Filipinos.


We never know! There are elections coming up so maybe someone can sponsor this.


And now here’s the list of some of the amazing courses at Coursera.

123 Free Courses with Certificates Available in Coursera through the DOST-Caraga Grant

These are divided roughly into categories by topic but do scroll down to Random Interests because there’s a lot of really good stuff there.


P.S. This list started with 113 but then I enrolled in some more courses today, bringing the total to 123. I don’t expect I’ll be able to finish all of these — and DOST-Caraga says that’s perfectly fine, there won’t be penalities for enrolling in courses but ultimately not finishing or even starting them — but at least I’ll have the option to learn more about all these topics. In fact, I expect, for some of the topics, I won’t necessarily do the entire course, but just the parts that I’m interested in.


  1. Create a Business Marketing Brand Kit Using Canva
  2. Create and Design Digital Products using Canva
  3. Design a Client Welcome Kit using Canva
  4. Design Online Course Printables using Canva
  5. Use Canva to Create an Interactive Mind Map
  6. Use Canva to Create Social Media Marketing Designs



  1. Agile Leader Training (University of Colorado System)
  2. Career Decisions: From Insight to Impact (Wesleyan University)
  3. Compassionate Leadership Through Service Learning with Jane Goodall and Roots & Shoots (University of Colorado Boulder)
  4. Converting Challenges into Opportunities (University of California San Diego)
  5. Creative Thinking: Techniques and Tools for Success (Imperial College London)
  6. Developing a Systems Mindset (University of Colorado Boulder)
  7. Genius. Talent. Golden Mediocrity (National Research Tomsk State University)
  8. Introduction to Personal Branding (University of Virginia)
  9. Mindshift: Break Through Obstacles to Learning and Discover Your Hidden Potential (McMaster University)
  10. Personality Types at Work (University of Florida)
  11. Urgent Optimism: How to Turn Foresight into Action (Institute for the Future)
  12. Work Smarter, Not Harder: Time Management for Personal & Professional Productivity (University of California, Irvine)



  1. Children Acquiring Literacy Naturally (University of California, Santa Cruz)
  2. Learning How to Learn: Powerful Mental Tools to Help You Master Tough Subjects (McMaster University & University of California San Diego)
  3. New Learning: Principles and Patterns of Pedagogy (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
  4. Providing Social, Emotional, Behavioral, and Special Education Services in School (University of Colorado System)
  5. SEL for Students: A Path to Social Emotional Well-Being (University of Colorado Boulder)
  6. Teaching Character and Creating Positive Classrooms (Relay Graduate School of Education)



  1. Financial Planning for Young Adults (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
  2. Personal & Family Financial Planning (University of Florida)



  1. Advanced Google Classroom for Education
  2. Create a Budget with Google Sheets
  3. Create an Engaging Marketing Pitch using Google Slides
  4. Getting Started in Google Analytics
  5. Getting Started with Google Classroom
  6. Gmail: The Foundation To Accessing Google Apps
  7. Implementing Parent Feedback with Google Forms
  8. Increase Student Buy in with Google Slides
  9. Mental Math Confidence with Google Docs
  10. Using Google Forms for Student Success



  1. Build Personal Resilience (Macquarie University)
  2. COVID-19 Contact Tracing (Johns Hopkins University)
  3. COVID-19 Training for Healthcare Workers (Stanford University)
  4. Finding Purpose and Meaning In Life: Living for What Matters Most (University of Michigan)
  5. Foundations of Mindfulness (Rice University)
  6. Healing with the Arts (University of Florida)
  7. Health Behavior Change: From Evidence to Action (Yale University)
  8. International Travel Preparation, Safety, & Wellness (Johns Hopkins University)
  9. Living with Dementia: Impact on Individuals, Caregivers, Communities and Societies (Johns Hopkins University)
  10. Managing Asthma, Allergies, Diabetes, and Seizures in School (University of Colorado System)
  11. Mind Control: Managing Your Mental Health During COVID-19 (University of Toronto)
  12. Mindfulness in Integrative Healthcare (University of Minnesota)
  13. Music for Wellness (Berklee College of Music)
  14. Preventing Chronic Pain: A Human Systems Approach (University of Minnesota)
  15. Psychological First Aid (Johns Hopkins University)
  16. Psychosocial and Spiritual Aspects of Palliative Care (University of Colorado System)
  17. The Science of Well-Being (Yale University)
  18. Understanding Medical Research: Your Facebook Friend is Wrong (Yale University)



  1. First Step Korean (Yonsei University)
  2. Spanish Vocabulary: Cultural Experience (University of California, Davis)
  3. Spanish Vocabulary: Meeting People (University of California, Davis)
  4. Spanish Vocabulary: Sports, Travel, and the Home (University of California, Davis)


  1. Everyday Parenting: The ABCs of Child Rearing (Yale University)
  2. Supporting Parents of a Newborn Baby (University of Colorado System)



  1. Agriculture, Economics and Nature (University of Western Australia)
  2. Understanding Plants – Part I: What a Plant Knows (Tel Aviv University)
  3. Understanding Plants – Part II: Fundamentals of Plant Biology (Tel Aviv University)



  1. Effective Altruism (Princeton University)
  2. Introduction to Psychology (University of Toronto)
  3. Introduction to Psychology (Yale University)
  4. Managing ADHD, Autism, Learning Disabilities, and Concussion in School (University of Colorado System)
  5. Positive Psychology (The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)
  6. Psychology of Popularity (The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)
  7. Social Psychology (Wesleyan University)
  8. Understanding Child Development: From Synapse to Society (Utrecht University)
  9. Understanding Memory: Explaining the Psychology of Memory through Movies (Wesleyan University)



  1. Game Theory with Python
  2. Programming for Everybody (Getting Started with Python)
  3. Python 3 Programming
  4. Python Basics
  5. Python for Everybody



  1. Facebook Social Media Marketing (Facebook)
  2. Social Media Management (Facebook)
  3. Social Media Marketing (Northwestern University)
  4. What is Social? (Northwestern University)



  1. Build a Full Website using WordPress (Coursera Project Network)
  2. Increase SEO Traffic with WordPress (Coursera Project Network)
  3. Introduction to Search Engine Optimization (University of California, Davis)
  4. Use WordPress to Create a Blog for your Business (Coursera Project Network)



  1. Business Writing (University of Colorado Boulder)
  2. Effective Communication: Writing, Design, and Presentation (University of Colorado Boulder)
  3. Creative Writing: The Craft of Character (Wesleyan University)
  4. Creative Writing: The Craft of Plot (Wesleyan University)
  5. Creative Writing: The Craft of Setting and Description (Wesleyan University)
  6. Creative Writing: The Craft of Style (Wesleyan University)
  7. Good with Words: Writing and Editing (University of Michigan)
  8. Writing and Editing: Word Choice and Word Order (University of Michigan)
  9. Writing in First Person Point of View (Wesleyan University)


  1. Age of Cathedrals (Yale University)
  2. Astro 101: Black Holes (University of Alberta)
  3. Astronomy: Exploring Time and Space (University of Arizona)
  4. Basic Elements of Design: Design Principles and Software Overview (University of Colorado Boulder)
  5. Be Your Best Creative Self (University of Colorado Boulder)
  6. Chimpanzee Behavior and Conservation (Duke University)
  7. Coexistence in Medieval Spain: Jews, Christians, and Muslims (University of Colorado System)
  8. Dino 101: Dinosaur Paleobiology (University of Alberta)
  9. English/French Translator: Long Short Term Memory Networks (Coursera Project Network)
  10. Equine Welfare and Management (University of California, Davis)
  11. Evolution: A Course for Educators (American Museum of Natural History)
  12. Frozen in the Ice: Exploring the Arctic (University of Colorado Boulder)
  13. Introduction to Classical Music (Yale University)
  14. Magic in the Middle Ages (Universitat de Barcelona)
  15. Mountains 101 (University of Alberta)
  16. Oceanography: A Key to Better Understand Our World (Universitat de Barcelona & Fundació Navegació Oceànica Barcelona)
  17. Paleontology: Theropod Dinosaurs and the Origin of Birds (University of Alberta)
  18. Planet Earth…and You! (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
  19. Roman Architecture (Yale University)
  20. Roman Art and Archaeology (University of Arizona)
  21. Sports and Society (Duke University)
  22. Sustainable Tourism – Promoting Environmental Public Health (University of Copenhagen)
  23. The Brain and Space (Duke University)
  24. The Changing Landscape of Ancient Rome. Archaeology and History of the Palatine Hill (Sapienza University of Rome)
  25. The Changing Status and Perception of Animals (University of Colorado Boulder)
  26. The Mediterranean, a Space of Exchange (from the Renaissance to Enlightenment) (Universitat de Barcelona)
  27. The Truth About Cats and Dogs (University of Edinburgh)
  28. Toledo: Deciphering Secrets of Medieval Spain (University of Colorado System)
  29. Urban Nature: Connecting Cities, Nature and Innovation (Lund University)