online course on public relations

Do you want to learn more about public relations (PR) as a tool for improving market awareness? There’s so much to know, and there must be a way to gain some insights from others who have been in the industry.

The online course includes detailed information on the historical background of public relations, case studies to demonstrate how each of the 12 major public relations functions are performed in practice, as well as a series of questions at the end of every unit together with example answers to help you build up your own knowledge and confidence. You’ll build up your communication skills, strategic imagination and systematic approach to carrying out the six core tasks of public relations (4Ps), interpret the information provided by a variety of interactive charts and tables, and answer fully-worked case study questions on rebranding, crisis management and other areas.

  • What is public relations, and why is it important to study?‎Public relations (or “PR”) is the creation and preservation of a company’s good public image through the use of the media. As such, public relations is important because it shapes the image, builds the brand, and spreads the message of an organization. Traditionally, the main media channels utilized included writing press releases, coordinating advertising, and using other marketing communications tools such as interviews and speeches.In today’s digital marketing era, there are more channels than ever to manage. A comprehensive public relations strategy might combine the reputation-building capability of influencer marketing, content marketing that provides value for customers, and shareable social media to drive impressions and click-thrus. PR professionals today can also use software tools for sentiment analysis on social media to better understand how a company is perceived, and even join the online conversation directly to mitigate negative publicity.Regardless of which media channels and tools are being used, at the end of the day the goal of all public relations is the same: shaping a consistent, positive narrative for clients.‎
  • What kinds of careers can I have with expertise in public relations?‎Public relations careers require strong communications skills including writing and speaking, whether you are fundraising for a political candidate, managing community relations in a large city, or promoting a new online streaming TV show. You also need the interpersonal skills required to build relationships with media gatekeepers and influencers.Public relations specialists work as liaisons with the media, helping clients communicate with the public through speeches, interviews, and social media programs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, public relations specialists have a median salary of $61,150 per year and typically have a bachelor’s degree.‎
  • Can I learn public relations skills through online courses on Coursera?‎Yes. Whether you are looking to increase your knowledge of advertising and branding, or dive deep into the use of data analytics in social media marketing, Coursera has a wide range of courses and Specializations to take your public relations skills to the next level.These courses are offered by top-ranked institutions from around the world including IE Business School, Northwestern University, and Rutgers the State University of New Jersey. Thanks to virtual office hours and collaborative projects, you can learn online from leaders in the field, all while doing the same coursework as on-campus students but at a significantly lower cost.‎
  • What skills or experience do I need to already have, before starting to learn public relations?‎The skills and experience that you might need to already have before starting to learn public relations would include having excellent communications skills in both writing and speaking, good creative thinking skills and analytical skills, and excellent planning and presentation talents. You might also have a nose for news, an interest in top media personalities, and insights into how media operations work. To learn public relations with a more distinct business focus, one might show interest in a certain industry or have several years of experience working in the industry.‎
  • What kind of people are best suited for work that involves public relations?‎The kind of people that are best suited for work that involves public relations are people who are often extroverted and creative with a strong sense of self and knowledge of how to use their personality to help a client gain favorable media coverage. Smart, agreeable people are often well suited for work in public relations, as the work demands building relationships with many different people. Additionally, public relations has evolved to the point where social media is now the driving force for many PR efforts. So the types of people who are best suited for public relations would ideally have strong internet knowledge, social media skills, and the ability to weave words, video, and images together to create compelling messages. It would also be beneficial to be a good strategic thinker and a data-driven professional.‎
  • How do I know if learning public relations is right for me?‎Learning public relations is right for you if you are a creative person who is often working with written words and promotion for podcasts, videos, speeches, and events. You may be the extroverted one in your group that seems to always help friends with promotion ideas for their schemes. If this is you, learning about a career in public relations might be a good step. Many talented writers who start out in journalism may find their way toward work in public relations, writing press releases, calling reporters, and helping their clients share their messages on social media.

 Free Online Public Relations Courses With Certificates

Different websites have made available many free online public relations courses and you can even find nearby schools or programs using your electronic gadget like smartphone, tablet or PC to search online.

The sweet thing about some of these free online public relations courses is that you get certificates after completing your studies.

So many students have leveraged on several free online courses platform to learn, grow and connect, so you shouldn’t be left out.

However, exploring free online public relations courses with certificates of completion can open up a whole new world of management, business, and career opportunities for you.

Public opinion is the single most powerful and influential factor in determining whether or not any business or organization will succeed.  The same is true across private and public sectors alike public opinion having the power to make or break a brand in record time. 

For instance, just as strong public opinion can propel a business to succeed in an instant, a poor reputation can have the exact opposite effect.

So, as a profession, public relations is challenging, rewarding, and fulfilling equal measures.  Along with practical experience and a very specific set of character traits, it takes a strong educational foundation upon which to build a life-long career in PR. 

It’s super-easy to do and you can start from the list of free online public relations courses with certificates we’ll be sharing in this article.

Below is a comprehensive list of free online public relations courses with certificates you can enroll in for now. Don’t let this opportunity pass you by.

So, before we continue lets go through the table of content.

Why Choose Free Online Courses?

The current challenges facing traditional colleges and universities including higher tuition, budget cuts, and course shortages which cause many students to search for alternatives.

However, here are the reasons of free online courses:

1. Variety of programs and courses:

From regular four-year universities to fully online career colleges, higher education today offers different types of options for students. This means that no matter what students study, from nursing to neuroscience, they can find the courses or programs they need online. Also, students can also earn every academic degree online, from a career certificate to a doctorate.

2. More comfortable learning environment:

Having a good learning environment is very important. So, students listen to lectures and complete assignments sent to them electronically, with no need to fight traffic, leave work early for class, or miss important family time.

3. More interaction and greater ability to concentrate:

While still think about the rate of online student participation versus participation in traditional courses exists, one thing remains certain: Online courses offer shy or more reticent students the opportunity to participate in class discussions more easily than face-to-face class sessions. Some students even report better attention in online classes due to the lack of classroom activity.

4. Career advancement:

Students can take online courses and even complete entire degrees while working, while in-between jobs, or while taking time to raise a family. So, earning a degree can show ambitiousness to prospective employers and a desire to remain informed and prepared for new challenges.

5. Convenience and flexibility:

Online courses give students the opportunity to plan study time around the rest of their day, instead of the other way around. In other words, students can study and work at their convenience.

How To Take An Online Courses  

If you’re considering taking online college courses (or you’re already enrolled in a program) the tips and advice below can help you know how you can take an online course.

1. Treat an online course like a “real” course

When it comes to online classes, you need to have the discipline to sit down and say, “I am going to work on this,” as well as the dedication to actually follow through. Though you can be flexible as to when you choose to complete your work during the week, you can’t put it off indefinitely.

Even though is free, one of the easiest way is that, you must “show up” if you’re going to get real value out of your class. Treat your online classes the same way you would a face-to-face class or, better yet, a job and you’ll be off to the right start.

2. Hold yourself accountable

Set goals at the beginning of the semester, and check in with yourself weekly. In a traditional classroom setting, you’ll often receive verbal or visual reminders of an assignment’s upcoming due date. But without someone actively reminding you, it’s up to you to make sure you’ve allotted enough time to complete the work so you’re not starting an assignment the day before it’s due.

But if you are having problem holding accountability of yourself, you can pair with your classmate or ask for help from your friend to check in as your accountability partner.

3. Practice time management

The flexibility to create your own schedule is often one of the biggest appeals of taking online classes. But that freedom can also be detrimental if you do not have solid time management skills. Without them, you might easily find yourself cramming before classes or handing in compiled assignments.

Though how you manage your time will depend on your schedule, learning style, and personality, here are some tips that will help you improve your time management skills.

  • Look at the syllabus at the start of the semester and make note of major assignments: Marking them on a calendar and you check regularly so you know what workload is coming in the weeks ahead.
  • Create a weekly schedule that you follow, by designating certain hours of each week to read, watching lectures, completing assignments, studying, and participating in forums.
  • Check-in periodically throughout the term, and look at how you’re spending your time. Ask yourself: How much time am I dedicating to course reading and assignments? A little self-reflection and adjustment can go a long way.

4. Eliminate distractions

From Netflix to social media, you’ll be faced with many distractions that can easily derail your studies. The best online students know how to lessen these distractions and set aside time to focus.

5. Figure Out How You Learn Best

Once you’ve established where you’ll learn, think about when and how you accomplish your best work. If you’re a morning person, make time to study the first thing. More of a night owl? Set aside an hour or two after dinner to cozy up to your computer. Do whatever you need to get into the zone and down to business.

6. Actively participate

Participate in the course’s online forum to help you better understand course materials and engage with fellow classmates. This might involve commenting on a classmate’s paper on a discussion board or posting a question about a project you’re working on. Also, if you have any questions, you can ask for clarification.

Which Of The Universities That Offer Free Online Course?

Top universities around the world are offering free online classes that include recordings of lectures to interactive courses with assignments and final projects. These types of learning opportunities can be a great way for job seekers to boost their skill set, gain valuable knowledge, and enhance their likelihood of career progression.

However, the common term that’s come to define these free classes is MOOC, which stands for Massive Open Online Courses. Many of these universities offer free classes via a MOOC platform, such as Coursera, edX, and Udemy.

So, here are some of the Universities that offers free online course.

1. Carnegie Mellon University

The university is located at Pittsburgh and was founded in 1848 by Andrew Carnegie as a technical school and merged with the Mellon Institute of Industrial Research in 1967 to become its current iteration.

Through its Open Learning Initiative, CMU offers low-cost courses and also has an “Open and Free” section that allows students to access the course material for free.

These courses are self-guided, meaning there is no instructor or grades assigned, along with no credit. “Evidence-Based Management,” “Introduction to Programming in Java,” and “Spanish I” are just a few of the courses available. Click on the school website for more informationSchool Website

2. Harvard University

Harvard is the oldest higher education institution in the U.S. The Ivy League school is located in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Online learning website edX hosts Harvard’s free courses. These self-paced courses are free on an audit basis, but a certificate can be awarded for a fee.

Each course will provide information on how much time is required, the difficultly level, and information on instructors. You can click on the school website for more information.School Website

3. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Known for its academic focus on engineering and computer science, MIT is a Cambridge, Massachusetts–based school. In 2001, the institute placed nearly all of its course content online.

Known as OpenCourseWare (OCW), the site contains material from 2,400 courses. OCW doesn’t require any registration and courses are categorized by topic, department, and MIT course number. Each course contains lecture notes, readings, and assignments. To know more about the school, click here.School Website

4. Stanford University

Stanford University, near the Bay Area in California, is a top school often known for its proximity to Silicon Valley. Since 2011, Stanford Online has been the university’s online collection of courses.

According to its website, “Stanford offers over 100 unique, free online courses or MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) in service to the world, for lifelong learning and self-enrichment.” Free college classes can be found on its website in a wide range of topic areas that span humanities, medicine, engineering, and more. For more information, click here.School Website

5. Yale University

Yale University is a private Ivy League research university, established in 1701. It is well known for providing quality education in several disciplines. Architecture, art, drama, engineering, applied science, forestry and environmental studies, medicine, music, nursing, and public health are a few of their specialities. 

Yale offers online courses through Coursera and a site called Open Yale Courses. They provide free access to a selection of introductory courses on topics including astronomy, biology, economics, history, philosophy and psychology, and others.School Website

6. University of California, Berkeley

UC Berkeley is a public university that serves as the flagship campus of 10 universities within the University of California system. The U.S. News & World Report includes the school in the list of Best Colleges, making it a top college.

In 2012, UC Berkeley created a resource to house all of its online courses and degree programs. In conjunction with edX, courses ranging from statistics and marketing to business writing and literature can be audited for free.School Website

7. Vanderbilt University

Vanderbilt University is a prestigious private research facility based in Nashville, Tennessee, which offers a full range of degrees in the areas of Arts and Sciences, Engineering, Education and Human Development, and Music. There are also graduate programs in Divinity, Law, Medicine, Nursing, and Management. 

However, topics include programming, business, health and medicine, teaching and social sciences. Paid certificates are available for some courses. Online courses are available via a website called Class Central. School Website

 List Of The Free Online Public Relations Course Websites

On many of these websites, students may audit courses at no charge but can also pay to earn certificates of completion and gain access to additional features including graded assignments and instructor feedback.

So, here is a list of websites:

  • Coursera,
  • edX,
  • Lynda,
  • Udemy
  • Alison etc.
  • Open Culture Online Courses
  • Udemy
  • Academic Earth
  • iTunesU Free Courses, etc.

These website list above offer a range of free online course options. 

List Of Free Public Relations Online Courses

This will be of great interest to professionals who work in PR and Communications and would like to know more about the different functions and sub-functions of PR. Also for learners who have an interest and will like to know more about the role of PR within the modern business environment.

Therefore, you can try the courses yourself to building your PR career.

Based on research, here are the list of ten(10) free online courses

  • Public Speaking 
  • Introduction To Public Relations – Revised
  • Diploma In Public Relations – Revised
  • Public Relations: Best Practices and Ethics- Revised
  • Public Relations: Optimise Systems Theory and Stakeholder Management Practices – Revised
  • Foundations of Business Strategy by Coursera
  • Introduction To Public Relations
  • Public Relations: Optimise Systems Theory and Stakeholder Management Practices
  • Public Relations: Best Practices and Ethics
  • Diploma In Public Relations

1. Public Speaking

Offered by: Workforce Academy Partnership

Learn how to become confident and effective at public speaking with this free online course For more information click here.Course Link

2.  Introduction To Public Relations – Revised

Offered by: Saylor Foundation

You will learn how to incorporate PR principles into your business practices with this free Public Relations courses. For more information, click here.Course Link

3. Diploma In Public Relation – Revised

Offered by: Saylor Foundation

In this course, you will discover the key theories, principles, and best practices of effective Public Relations with this free online course.Course Link

4. Public Relations: Best Practices and Ethics- Revised

Offered by: Saylor Foundation

In this course, you will learn about the best practices and ethics in PR management with this free online Public Relations course. More information click here.Course Link

5. Public Relations: Optimize Systems Theory and Stakeholder Management Practices – Revised

Offered by: Saylor Foundation

Learn how to protect and enhance your organization’s reputation with an understanding of PR research and theory. Click here for more information.Course Link

6.  Foundations of Business Strategy by Coursera

Develop your ability to think strategically, analyze the competitive environment, and recommend firm positioning and value creation.

In this course, you’ll explore the underlying theory and foundation of a successful business strategy, and gain the tools you need to understand that strategy.Course Link

7. Introduction To Public Relations

Offered by: Saylor Foundation

Learn how to incorporate effective PR principles into your business practices with this free Public Relations course.Course Link

8. Public Relations: Optimize Systems Theory and Stakeholder Management Practices

Offered by: Saylor Foundation

Learn about the organizational prioritization and research theory behind PR functions. Click here for more information.Course Link

9.  Public Relations: Best Practices and Ethics

Offered by: Saylor Foundation

Learn about best practices and ethics for excellence in Public Relations. Click here for more information.Course Link

10.  Diploma In Public Relations

Offered by: Saylor Foundation

You will discover the principles and practices used in effective Public Relations and learn to develop a professional PR strategy. For more information, click here.Course Link

FOR MORE ON PUBLIC RELATIONS YOU CHECK THIS What Can You Do With A Public Relations Degree? | Online, Jobs, Salary

Benefits Of An Online Public Relations Certificates


Online PR has a wide reach compared to other online channels and it’s possible to reach people who are not aware of the brand but could benefit from it. So, This is true for startup brands and promotional tactics like press releases, blogs, directories, and social media can be used to spread the news.


Comments that are made about your company or brand from an independent source are seen as more believable with the public than advertising messages.

People have more trust for news items from online and offline media and they are usually sceptical of adverts, especially banners which promote features and benefits of your products or services.


beneficial mentions and stories of your brand can enhance its image with your target audience and boost sales.

However, wrong ones can damage your brand and you need to have a plan in place to manage your online reputation.


Online PR can be very cost-effective because there are no costs incurred in placements in online media. The only costs to the business are an agency or internal staff to create the messages and send them to the important online media like news sites.


Online PR can help to boost search engine rankings when a wide range of news sites, blogs, and websites pick up your story and publish it on their platforms.

This helps to generate backlinks and this is the number one off-page factor for achieving high rankings especially from authority sites.


Why is online learning more effective?

It is because online courses give students full control over their own learning, students are able to work at their own speed. They are able to move faster through areas of the course they feel comfortable with, but slower through those that they need a little more time on.

How do you survive online classes?

Take The Course With A Professor On Campus.
Follow Your Syllabus Closely.
Familiarize Yourself With Your Course Shell.
Check Your Email And Course Shell Daily.
Work On Your Course Throughout The Week.
Do As Much Of The Reading As You Can. …
Find A Few Classmates To Work On The Class With.
Create A Distraction-Free Workspace.

Can I get a job with online courses?

Yes, it is possible to get a job using online coursesOnline courses are sometimes better than the traditional course and even better when both of them work parallel.

Does Harvard offer free online courses?

Yes, Harvard offers free online courses. You can browse free online courses in a variety of subjects. Harvard University courses can be audited free or students can choose to receive a verified certificate for a small fee.

What is the role of a public relations?

Public relations professionals shape an organization’s image. They build the brand, spread the organization’s message and minimize the effect of negative publicity. At larger companies or big PR firms, staffers can have more specialized roles to handle different organizational needs.


In conclusion, Public relations is the practice of deliberately managing the release and spread of information between an individual or an organization and the public.

However, this Public Relations course is free and online that you can access them freely at your convenience. also have a certificate at the end of the program. Therefore utilize the opportunity now.

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