Can anyone help me get direction/advice in beginning a career in QA in Ontario Canada brand new in tech?

Can anyone help me get direction/advice in starting a brand new career in QA with no school and brand new to tech without doing bachelors? I live in Toronto Ontario Canada.

I’ve been doing research on multiple platforms and YouTube watching masterclasses, and other material looking to get into it deeper and pass the ISTQB certifications first to start. I’m finishing the LinkedIn training for QA right now and learning some HTML and Python currently on the side.

Is this the best way to get qualified, are there any free programs or ways to practice other than this intro course here which I will also finish. Where can I go after, and what would be enough to land a job as a junior QA? What other certifications do you recommend I look into and do?
I want a strong portfolio and have time for the next 8 months to grind doing solo stuff without going to school for it as I’d prefer self taught and get experience right away, as much as I can, so I would love your advice and recommendations.

I have thought about Udemy and Bootcamps as well.

Would love the feedback to see if what I’m doing is getting me closer to where I want to go. And the best way to get there.

Thank you so much!


This LinkedIn post I did a few days ago is feeling more and more timely. I recommend these kinds of resources as being far more valuable than any certifications out there.

Also, are you looking for free resources, or do you have some amount of budget? Several of those courses I mention at the top of my post aren’t free, but they’re quite helpful and some of them are pretty short. If you had the budget for it, Rapid Software Testing Explored is probably the biggest bang for your buck (side note, I think Michael Bolton lives in Toronto!). They may even offer discounts for people like yourself–doesn’t hurt to ask.

You might also consider looking into crowdsource testing sites where you could gain a little hands-on experience to add to your resume.


Oh so great thank you so much! I’ll do my research in your post and with the links provided. I appreciate your perspective in the certification process not being necessary if I have the proper tools and resources like what you’ve given me. I have a small budget but I am preferring it little to no cost invested just time and energy! But I’m open. Excited to see what else people recommend. Thanks again!

Since I haven’t gotten around to writing another post full of just links to blogs…you could check out Michael Bolton’s since it will cover a lot of the same thoughts as the RST courses:

I’d recommend just to start applying for junior jobs now. First, you’d get a feel for what are employers looking for, and second, it’s actually possible that you might land a great job - and then continue your learning on the job.

I got my first testing job as a complete newbie, after having done just two or three weeks of reading random testing-related stuff on the internet. What my employer was looking for at that point wasn’t certifications and theoretical knowledge, but common sense, logical thinking and willingness to learn. Four and a half years later, I’m still at that same job, no longer a “clicking monkey” but an accomplished QA engineer. These things can happen, you know :wink:

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As for Caleb’s recommendations: RST and BBST courses are both awesome but personally I probably wouldn’t recommend them to somebody who’s not in testing yet, especially since they’re quite pricey. I’ve done BBST Foundations and I feel that if I didn’t have any experience working as a tester at that point, most of the learning would fly right over my head.

Someone in my LI network just shared this video by Alan Richardson and it was too good not to reshare, covers a lot of the points I wish I could tell every person looking to get started in testing:

I’ve written some blog posts on this topic and have a YouTube playlist.

I highly recommend you look into the BBST Foundations course. I’ve found that very valuable and I know multiple employers who understand the value that certification has. Also look into creating a testing portfolio.

My Youtube channel videos and the blog posts should cover your questions but if you have any follow up ones, feel free to reach out

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Can you reach out to Lavanya Mohan on twitter or Linedin. She would guide you.

Hi Hailey!
I saw that you already got some helpful advice and resources in this thread. Additionally, this article might be valuable in understanding what it takes to become a QA Learning Software QA Engineering and Testing in 2024