IT has been a dominant economic force for decades already, but it still shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, IT is arguably the most valuable and fast-growing educational sphere in the nation (and perhaps the world).

It’s no surprise that the demand for IT educational pathways is higher than ever. People old and younger all clamoring to learn more about coding, networking, and all other aspects of IT both out of general curiosity and for future career prospects.

The good news is that there are few countries better than the United States when it comes to finding IT classes. Whether you’re looking for something physical or for education at a distance over the Internet, there’s sure to be something that fits your budget and schedule.

Finding the right adult computer classes for your needs, is, of course, a tricky affair. That’s why we’ve spent time compiling this guide and several others on various key cities, like Chicago: so, you know exactly where to look to find the basic computer classes for adults and kids no matter where you are.

Man writing in notebook on desk with laptop and coffee.
IT learning can be done from the comfort of your home or at a separate physical location.  Image Source: Pexels.

States and IT Education

When it comes to IT education, some states certainly have more opportunities than others. This doesn’t necessarily relate to their online education potential (since anyone can access online classes from anywhere), but it does pertain to their university offerings and their local resources.

So which states are best for finding IT classes in the United States? It somewhat depends on what kind of IT education you’re looking for. Some states have IT educational opportunities that are particularly well-suited for certain avenues of IT, like cybersecurity.

In general, though, you’ll find that states with more cities usually have more digital development and a bigger spread of higher education institutions like community colleges and beyond. This isn’t always the case for IT education, but it’s almost.

Cities vs. Rural Environments

The reason that states with more metropolitan areas, like New York, Massachusetts, California, Virginia, and Washington typically have higher concentrations of schools because of an influx of young people. Younger folks flock to these states because of their cities, who produce more universities, which draws more young people, and so the cycle goes.

However, states with more cities provide better IT education opportunity variety also because they are usually home to many potential IT worker hirers. As an example, most Fortune 500 companies are located in many of the metropolitan centers on the East Coast. These companies and any other digital-focused organizations will naturally create hotspots of IT education wherever they decide to plant their flags.

But this isn’t universally the case. Take Texas, which is largely a rural state, but which also has several high-traffic metropolitan centers like Houston, Dallas, and Austin. All three of these cities are hotbeds for IT development and education. As a result, Texas affords lots of IT educational opportunities despite having lots of open space.

Remember, the state you’re in doesn’t necessarily spell the end of your desire for IT education. The advent of the Internet has made it so that you have many more opportunities than you might think.

Empty classroom with desktop stations.
Large universities often have great resources and collaborative learning environments. Image Source: Pexels

Universities

Let’s touch on universities while we’re still discussing them, though. Generally, community colleges are a great choice if you want to study IT at a foundational level. They provide many basic courses that go through the fundamentals of coding, networking, and cybersecurity without being nearly as expensive as traditional four-year universities.

These basic computer classes are great for beginners to seek out not only because they serve as an excellent academic starting point for the rest of the field, but also because they let you get a taste for the subject before you commit further.

In a way, many of these IT classes offered by community colleges can be seen as trial runs. You’ll be able to see if the profession will suit you before you spend lots of money.

Community colleges can also provide opportunities for certificates, some of which may be enough to get starter IT jobs in particular fields or cities.

But once you’ve gained foundational knowledge, you’ll need to head to a four-year university if you want a degree in an IT subject. Bachelor’s degrees in an IT field will let you obtain higher-paying jobs across the country. They’ll also let you specialize in a niche with advanced computer classes if you so choose, although generalized Information Technology degrees are also available.

Local and Other Resources

Beyond college, there is a multitude of other resources available from which you can get at least some education and IT. These days, public library systems of a state or city are often overlooked or overshadowed because of the Internet.

But public libraries have some of the biggest collections of educational texts you can find. It’s no stretch to say you could easily self-teach yourself a basic IT skillset just by using your local library’s collection. Perhaps best of all, it won’t cost you a single cent!

The Internet does provide some excellent resources for IT education, of course. Many online schools provide beginner computer classes that you can take on your own schedule and without paying nearly as much as you would for any college-level course.

One of the greatest examples of this is Khan Academy, which offers free and paid lessons across a huge spread of subjects. Many IT skills are represented within their catalog. Although you do need to pay for a membership to get the best bang for your buck, it’s another great alternative to signing up for college if you aren’t 100% committed to IT as a profession just yet.

You can use any of the above resources as ways to develop a foundational comfort with IT before you head to school, too, if you need a confidence boost.

Online Tutoring Options

Perhaps the best educational advantage the Internet offers is its ability to connect students with capable tutors. Of course, the Internet can be a tricky place to have you don’t know where to look or how to find appropriate tutors for IT subjects.

That’s why platforms like Superprof are helpful. They’re a digital connector that helps students find tutors that are perfect for their needs and the subject they want to learn.

One of the best ways they provide excellent networking is by letting former students review each tutor as they finish their experience. Basically, you’ll be able to tell at a glance whether a tutor is worth their price tag (which you can filter for, by the way) by checking out those who’ve already experienced their teaching style.

Even better, Superprof is easy on the wallet. So they’re a great way to learn about IT subjects without the time or cost necessities of a traditional university.

Sleeping laptop with notebook, pen, coffee, and cell phone.
Online or in-person?  You decide!  Image Source: Unsplash

 

IT Classes You Should Consider Taking

No matter where you get your IT education, there are several courses or specific classes you’ll likely need to complete to fully grasp the subject. These are some of the most common topics you’ll encounter over the course of your IT education:

Coding

Virtually all IT programs incorporate some kind of coding education within their curriculum. That’s because coding is to IT as spelling is to English: you have to learn before you can do any other more advanced IT stuff.

Coding is normally taught by language. Some of the more common language offerings are C++ or JavaScript, though there are more esoteric options available. In fact, online tutors or resources other than universities are your best bet if you want to learn a less frequently taught coding language.

Data Management

This topic is another foundational IT concept that's in high demand from any organization employing IT professionals. It focuses on data-driven analysis and statistical understanding, which helps with businesses, finance, medicine, and practically every other sphere that uses IT at all.

Systems and Enterprise Architecture

In this day and age, many companies are focusing on aligning their various departments and ensuring efficiency across their myriad systems. Enterprise architecture understanding is thus one of the more sought-after skill sets across employers, so any aspiring IT professional would be smart to get at least a few of these classes under their belt.

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Justin