Originally Posted by sbu22
I do not have any experience with on-line courses. However, I know the US Power Squadron has beaucoup course (I believe some are on line) offerings. I've found the USPS "live" courses I've taken to be high quality and to the point. There has to be an active chapter in the Bay Area (probably several) that could point you in the right direction.
+1 for USPS courses.
I consider online similar to reading a book vs live where you get the interaction. If available I would opt for the live.
Even if you can't attend all live sessions you can self study from the material and interact during a later session.
Some Squadrons are now offering some on the water courses which add obvious benefits.