How Can I Optimize Online Courses?

I don’t know, I am figuring this out as well.

Alex Guanga
2 min readJun 6, 2021


Photo by Emily Morter on Unsplash

I will be selfish. Shouldn’t we all be at times? In fact, I think it’s in our interest that people act selfishly.

It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker, that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest. We address ourselves, not to their humanity but to their self-love, and never talk to them of our necessities but of their advantages. — Adam Smith

Photo by Micheile Henderson on Unsplash

I am not the smartest person. However, I always attempt to learn new things. I am a Data Engineer but did not graduate with a Computer Science major (graduated in Economics with minors in CS and Math). One thing that has helped me transition to a Data Engineer is to find gaps in myself frequently.

Once I find gaps, I find ways to fill those gaps, either through online courses, articles, or books.

While this has helped, I sometimes struggle to maintain my learnings.

Photo by Erik Mclean on Unsplash

I heard Barbara Oakley in a Knowledge Project’s podcast. Intuitively, I knew I had to adjust my learning, so the podcast confirmed my intuition.

What am I doing wrong?

I don’t challenge myself… enough.

Completing a course feels rewarding but could be misleading. There’s no value in the course if the information is not fully retained. Also, I do not practically test my learning. Thus, I feel I don’t maximize the learning in the courses I take.

Solution (at least I hope)

I will transform my course’s notes into Medium articles. The goals are:

  1. Test my understanding.
  2. Help anyone taking the courses.

Please stay tuned!


This list will be updated as I include post new articles (last edited on June 6th, 2021).


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Alex Guanga

Data Engineer @ Cherre. Mets die-hard. Hip-hop junkie.