Coursera is one of the top online learning platforms, with thousands of courses from schools like Yale and companies like Google — here's how it works
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- Coursera is an online learning platform with thousands of free courses as well as professional certificate and degree programs.
- Course topics range from computer science and IT support to art history and positive psychology, and are offered by top universities and companies.
- Below, find answers to Coursera FAQs, reviews, and every article we’ve written about the company so far.
What is Coursera?
Coursera is an online learning platform founded by two Stanford University computer science professors. It offers thousands of online courses in partnership with over 200 of the world’s leading universities and companies, including Yale, Princeton, UPenn, Google, IBM, Amazon, Facebook, and more.
The site offers individual courses as well as bachelor’s and master’s degree programs that reduce barriers to higher education. There are also professional certificate programs designed to aid workers in securing new roles or promotions.
What kinds of classes does Coursera offer?
Coursera’s education offerings run the gamut, from personal development courses like its extremely popular Yale Science of Well-Being course to workforce upskilling programs from companies like Google and IBM. Coursera also offers online degrees in industries such as public health and computer science. While each course or degree program leans more academic than infotainment (which is more MasterClass’ domain), you can learn about virtually anything on the platform.
Is Coursera free?
Many Coursera courses are free to audit, but students don’t get access to things like graded homework assignments or certificates of completion when they’re auditing a course.
Courses that are part of longer programs or specializations are usually free to try with a seven-day trial.
How much do Coursera courses cost?
Courses can range from $39 or $49 per month to hundreds of dollars depending on the type and topic. The site also offers Coursera Plus, which is a $399 annual subscription that gives its members unlimited access to over 90% of the e-learning platform’s online courses (over 3,000 classes).
Does Coursera offer degrees?
Yes, there are options for online master’s and bachelor’s degrees.
Does Coursera offer certificates?
Yes, Coursera offers certificates of completion for its courses if you pay for the course and complete the assignments.
Does Coursera offer financial aid?
Yes. However, programs like Coursera MasterTracks (partial master’s programs) are not eligible for financial aid.
Here are all the articles we’ve written about Coursera:
30 of Coursera’s most popular courses right now, offered by Yale, UPenn, Johns Hopkins, Google, IBM, and more
Including a Google IT support certificate program, a Python programming intro course, and Yale’s most popular class ever, The Science of Well-Being.
Coursera’s free online resume course will teach you how to organize, write, and format a resume that gets to the top of the stack
Offered by SUNY, How to Write a Resume is a short, free course that goes over the best formatting and buzzwords to use if you want to make your resume stand out.
13 popular online courses that people enroll in and actually finish, according to Coursera
Coursera shared a list of courses that the company says have both high enrollment numbers and high completion rates — and the list ranges from Machine Learning to the universally useful Learning How to Learn course.
Coursera and edX are two popular online learning platforms — here’s how they compare in terms of price and programs offered
Everything you need to know about the difference between Coursera and edX, from how free auditing works on each platform to the certificate programs and online degrees each one offers.
As an alternative to a full master’s degree, edX and Coursera offer MicroMasters and MasterTrack certificate programs at a fraction of the cost of grad school
Both edX and Coursera offer similar certificate programs that also offer some college credit towards a full master’s degree — or that can serve as an alternative to one altogether. This guide covers the key differences in pricing and programs available through each platform.
This free online course from Johns Hopkins teaches people how to become a contract tracer in just 6 hours
The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Health created an online course that teaches students how to become contact tracers to help slow the spread of COVID-19. “COVID-19 Contact Tracing” takes six hours to complete, and offers free certification along with a few other Johns Hopkins/Coursera COVID-19 courses.
Coursera has a free CME-eligible course that gives students an overview of COVID-19 in just 3 hours
Osmosis, a medical education site, and the IPMA created a free and CME-eligible Coursera course that gives students an overview of COVID-19. COVID-19: What You Need to Know combines current information issued by the CDC, WHO, and other leading agencies while also exploring topics like personal protective equipment, diagnostics, and more.
12 public health courses you can take online for free, offered by schools like Yale, Johns Hopkins, Duke, Emory, and more
Here are a dozen of Coursera’s free public health courses that offer a certificate of completion. Topics range from disaster preparedness to infection prevention in nursing homes.
Over 2.7 million people have enrolled in this free online course that teaches you how to learn better
Learning How to Learn teaches students about the science of learning — from how the brain processes information to the fundamentals of memory-building — so they can master any topic they want, and it’s one of the platform’s most popular courses ever.
Yale’s most popular class ever is available free online — and the topic is how to be happier in your daily life
Professor Laurie Santos taught a Yale class called Psychology and the Good Life in 2018 that went on to become the university’s most popular class in history. This is the online version of that same course, combining positive psychology with the concrete habit-building of behavioral science.
11 of the best Yale classes you can take online for free — including the most popular course in the university’s history
Coursera carries more than a dozen Yale courses that range in topics from the financial markets to the moral foundation of politics. Yale also offers versions of previous courses through Open Yale Courses, but Coursera is your best bet if you’re interested in a more “traditional” online experience — like having peers and a bit more structure. While most courses are available in English, you’ll also find a couple of popular Yale courses taught in Arabic and Chinese.
The 9 most popular online courses people are taking on Coursera from Stanford, Yale, and Princeton
The classes with the most students enrolled in them on Coursera include Stanford’s Machine Learning, Yale’s The Science of Well-Being, and the University of Michigan’s Programming for Everybody. If you’re looking for Coursera’s “greatest hits” list, this isn’t a bad place to start.
UPenn is offering an online master’s degree in computer science that prepares students for a successful career in tech — for one-third of the on-campus cost
UPenn’s online Master of Computer and Information Technology (MCIT) program helps students who don’t have a computer science background to enter the field. It’s the online version of its on-campus graduate-level course, and it takes 16-40 months to complete. You can find more details on the cost and curriculum here.
Coursera’s MasterTrack programs let you take virtual master’s classes and get certified in different subjects for an affordable price — here’s what it’s like to be in one
Coursera offers a portion of master’s degree programs online for a far more affordable rate than you’ll find on campus. Each MasterTrack is a stackable, for-credit program comprised of several courses completed over a few months. In some cases, they allow students to earn credit toward the full master’s degree program from which the MasterTrack certificate program is based, though rules vary by institution.
Coursera’s new annual subscription, Coursera Plus, grants members unlimited access to over 90% of its online classes for $399 a year
Coursera Plus is a $399 annual subscription that grants members unlimited access to over 90% of the e-learning platform’s online courses (over 3,000 classes) for a year. You can skim the list of classes included with the membership here.
I use Coursera to take all the fun classes I never got to take in college, like the history of modern art — here’s what it’s like to use the platform
Online-learning sites are great tools for both personal and career-based development, and I used Coursera to take a Museum of Modern Art course — the kind of learning experience I couldn’t fit into my schedule in college.
5 free online courses from UPenn that teach you how to lead a happier and more fulfilled life
The University of Pennsylvania offers a series of five courses about positive psychology on Coursera that are designed to build both theoretical and practical tools for happiness. Students learn about the history of positive psychology as a study, its practical applications, and more, completing a final project where they identify opportunities in their daily life to increase their own well-being.
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