Coursera alternatives

Coursera alternatives (7 platforms to consider)

Find the best alternatives to the Coursera online learning platform!

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Last updated on September 15th 2022

Founded in 2012 by Stanford professors Andrew Ng and Daphne Koller, Coursera is a pioneer of MOOCs (Massively Open Online Courses) and has shaped the way online learning works today. With more than 7,000 courses and a broad spectrum of available programs, Coursera has become one of the most visited online learning platforms, teaching millions of students worldwide.

However, there might be reasons why you would want to look for Coursera alternatives. Maybe the pricing and the plethora of options Coursera gives you just seems confusing. Or maybe you've tried out a course on Coursera already and the teaching style just isn't for you.

That's why we've compiled a list of the best alternatives to Coursera, along with reasons you might want to choose them over Coursera.

Let's dive right in!

edX

edX homepageSimilar to Coursera, edX is a platform that offers courses from world-renowned universities. They also have a similarly broad catalog of courses, with both free and paid courses and full online degrees available on the platform. So if you want a Coursera alternative, that's work the same but different, edX might be just the right platform for you.

edX review thumbnail

edX review

FutureLearn

FutureLearn homepageAnother similar platform is FutureLearn. You could call it the British alternative to both Coursera and edX, since it was founded in the U.K. and closely works with lots of university in Europe. Similar to Coursera, they have a subscription offering, as well as the option to buy individual courses. If you haven't the course you're looking for on Coursera, it might be worthwhile to consider FutureLearn.

FutureLearn review thumbnail

FutureLearn review

Pluralsight

Pluralsight homepageIf you're looking to train yourself or your entire team on technical skills, Pluralsight would be a great choice. It's a platform focused on business customers, but they also have an offering for individuals. Unlike on Coursera, you can't purchase individual courses, but you buy a monthly/yearly subscription to get access to their library of 7,000+ courses. They also have lots of additional tools, like their Skill IQ test, Pluralsight labs and Pluralsight projects which are especially well suited for businesses.

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Pluralsight review

getsmarter

getsmarter homepagegetsmarter is an online learning platform that focuses on short courses developed together with top universities worldwide. Just like edX, they're part of the 2U group, which is a company with lots of online learning offerings. If you want the recognition of courses from top universities, but you don't want to take a full or partial degree, getsmarter might be what you're looking for.

getsmarter review thumbnail

getsmarter review

LinkedIn Learning

LinkedIn Learning homepageLinkedIn Learning is an online learning platform integrated into the LinkedIn social network. It's focused on professional development courses, which you can access through their subscription offering. In total, you get access to 14,000+ courses on all kinds of topics, ranging from Excel skills to app development courses. Since it can be connected to your LinkedIn account, LinkedIn Learning can recommend you courses based on your interests on LinkedIn, which makes for a more personalized learning experience.

Overall, LinkedIn Learning has the bigger course offering, while Coursera has more variety in its smaller offering (they have everything from free courses all the way to full online degrees). In the end, which platform you prefer depends on your personal preferences.

LinkedIn Learning review thumbnail

LinkedIn Learning review

Udemy

Udemy homepage

Another one of the most popular online learning platforms is Udemy. They're best known for having a massive library of 200,000+ courses on every topic you can think of, which means you're almost guaranteed to find a course that interests you on Udemy. As the one of the biggest online course marketplaces, they have a broader course catalog than Coursera, with more courses available in languages other than English. Their courses are also typically cheaper than those offered on Coursera (when comparing Udemy courses to Coursera certificates).

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Udemy review

Udacity

Udacity homepage

Lastly, Udacity is a great platform for learning technical skills. They have a library of about 100 so-called "Nanodegree programs", which are online programs (typically 3-5 months long) that focus on preparing you for a specific career in tech through a mixture of video content, real-life projects and technical feedback from instructors. In comparison to most of Coursera's programs, Udacity Nanodegrees are pretty expensive, but they come with extensive technical support, which can be extremely helpful.

Udacity review thumbnail

Udacity review

Summary

Overall, there are some pretty decent Coursera alternatives available. Here's an overview of them all again:

  • edX - the closest competitor (could be described as Coursera's little brother)

  • FutureLearn - the British alternative with courses from top universities, mostly in Europe

  • Pluralsight - the platform focused on teaching technical skills to businesses

  • getsmarter - take short courses from world-renowned universities

  • LinkedIn Learning - the online learning subscription for professional skills

  • Udemy - the marketplace with the broadest course catalog and great value

  • Udacity - higher price, but better technical support

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