Cullen noted that a certificate from a MOOC is not the same as earning a certification through a traditional certification program. For example, companies seeking a network engineer certified in Cisco Systems technology want someone who earned a certificate through an authorized program.
"There's a difference between course work and certifications," he said.
But that course work can give candidates an advantage in the competitive IT job market.
"If they're competing against someone with the same skill set but you've taken additional course work that's going to probably push that person up the food chain into getting the job."