Introduction: Coursera – Online Learning with a Firm Academic Foundation
Offering a richly diverse selection of courses and modules, Coursera has become one of the world’s leading online education platforms. Since 2012, it has partnered with some of the most globally-recognized academic institutions and corporations. It now offers its services to over 73 million users across the globe. Hence, in this Coursera review, I'll analyse what has made Coursera such a popular learning platform. And in the increasingly competitive online learning market, what gives it the advantage over other education websites? How friendly is Coursera pricing? Is there a Coursera free trial? These questions will be addressed in this Coursera review.
Be sure to read all the way through to learn how to get Coursera discounts and avail of a Coursera free trial!
Ease of Use:
To start this Coursera review, let's talk ease of use. Signing up and logging into Coursera is easy. You can sign up using either your Google or Apple IDs, your Facebook account, or go the conventional route and give your email address and a password. Logging onto the platform directs you to a “How to Get Started email.” This leads you to the online course catalogue and directory. From that point on, things are straightforward.
The course page gives a backgrounder on the subject, course expectations, course duration, along with the partner institution and a short bio of the professor or lecturer handling the course. This is a welcome change from the way most education platforms present their courses because you know exactly what to expect and what is expected in return from you.
Another thing that makes Coursera so much easier for learners is that some courses are available in several languages (Russian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese, and Spanish, to name a few).
Interested yet? You can take advantage of a Coursera free trial to test the waters! Remember to read all the way to the bottom to know how to get Coursera discounts!
Courses are laid out in a linear fashion. Once you’ve logged into your chosen course, you will be taken to its main page which presents the timeline and course overview.
It’s easy to go from one section to another, thanks to the sidebar on the left. Clicking on Overview displays the coursework in the right-hand pane of the browser window, and you can quickly scroll up or down to either catch up or move ahead with lessons.
Marks given after completed quizzes or exams will appear in the Grades section. At the same time, notes made during a class session will be archived in the relevant section. The sidebar also features links to class resources and discussion forums where one can interact with fellow learners.
If you find this interesting, you can always dip your toes with a Coursera free trial!
Learning videos are prerecorded and are shot in HD. While this makes studying easier, it can be a drain on mobile device resources, and these may fail to load correctly over a spotty internet connection.
The Coursera UI is presented cleanly and utilises collapsible tabs.
First of all, the tab on the left pulls open to reveal the course outline, enabling the student to pinpoint where he or she is in the lesson. Secondly, the main body of coursework appears in the middle, and one has the option to view the whole video, download it to one’s device or computer, read the transcript, share the material, and even rate the material. The tab on the right is where notes made during the presentation are stored.
In our Coursera review, how the platform promotes interaction is important. Graded quizzes are done at the end of each lesson, and these grow more complex as one progresses through the course.
Since Coursera doesn’t appear to have live, interactive online classes, discussion forums serve as a way for students to communicate with each other. It also fosters communication with any mentors currently online, sharing opinions or requesting for clarifications on different points of the lesson.
In this Coursera review, mobility is a crucial consideration with online learning, now that people are on the go all the time. The Coursera app was launched in 2014 and is available for both Android and iOS devices.
All these features and more are available at friendly Coursera pricing options! Even better, you can save up with Coursera discounts if you click here. Test the waters with a Coursera free trial here.
Range of courses:
In this Coursera review, what's particularly impressive about Coursera is the diversity of its course offerings. Most online learning platforms focus solely on information technology as they feel that this is what most working professionals need for their careers. Coursera, on the other hand, offers online classes in eleven learning categories:
- Data science
- Information technology
- Personal development
- Computer science
- Physical science and engineering
- Mathematics and logic
- Language learning from basic to native-speaker level
- Social sciences
- Arts and humanities
For our Coursera review, it's useful to note that classes fall under the following categories:
- Guided Projects which are two-hour-long classes for job-relevant skills;
- Short-term courses with or without certification. Depending on the course, one can avail of the full course and learning materials for free but not receive a certification at the end. Some paid courses offer a seven-day Coursera free trial period so that learners can get a feel of the course and discern if it’s the right one they should pursue;
- Specializations – multiple course suites – in aid of mastering specific skills for career advancement;
- Professional Certification courses, particularly for highly technical careers;
- MasterTrack certifications where learning may be credited in the future towards a master’s degree
These courses are offered in partnership with institutions such as Yale, Stanford, and Princeton; overseas schools such as Peru’s Universidad de los Andes, Israel’s Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and Japan’s University of Tokyo; as well as corporations like IBM, Google, and Facebook.
For reference on the cost of these courses, read our Coursera pricing review below and learn of Coursera discounted prices. Also, you can subscribe to a Coursera free trial by clicking this link.
To inform you what interesting courses are out there, this Coursera review presents the ten most popular courses are as follows:
- Machine Learning by Stanford University
- The Science of Wellbeing with Laurie Santos of Yale University
- Learning How to Learn by McMaster University
- Python for Everybody by the University of Michigan
- English for Career Development by the University of Pennsylvania
- Improve Your English Communication Skills with the Georgia Institute of Technology
- Data Science by Johns Hopkins University
- COVID-19 Contract Tracing by Johns Hopkins University
Check out our Coursera pricing review to find out how much these course costs. Remember there is a Coursera free trial – so you can test the water.
In this Coursera review, the platform stands out for its accreditation option. Learners who finish paid courses can receive certification upon completion. These are deemed acceptable by companies that require their employees to study or complete short-term classes for promotion or lateral transfer. This also applies to those who have completed Specializations and Professional Certificate courses.
For those taking the MasterTrack classes, not only will they receive a certificate upon completion, but the time spent on the course can be credited later on if they choose to pursue a master’s degree or a doctorate. The relevant partner institutions issue bachelor’s and master’s diplomas upon completion of a baccalaureate or graduate degree via Coursera.
In general, studying via Coursera is like going back to school. Most – if not all – of the content presented on the site was developed by world-class schools and universities, or – in the case of technology-centric / social media-driven courses – by global corporations.
It is also interesting to note that for reasonable Coursera pricing options, some courses are actually handled by known experts in specific fields, thus adding both substance and eminence to the class. For example, the trendy Science of Wellbeing course done in partnership with Yale is led by Professor Laurie Santos whose work in the field of psychology and human behaviour has been featured in Popular Science and Time.
Take some time to read our Coursera pricing review for more details on the cost of courses. Learn how to take advantage of Coursera discounts, too!
Support and Resources:
Learning resources are available online and remain accessible for registered users even after they’ve finished a course. Instead of live interaction, discussion boards are open 24/7 for learners and mentors alike.
Technical assistance is available through a dedicated help centre. Still, support may take some time as there are current workforce constraints due to COVID-19.
If you want to learn more about Coursera discounts and Coursera pricing plans, you can contact Coursera customer service.
Coursera pricing options:
How much does Coursera cost? Do Coursera discounts exist?
On average, standard courses which run for a month or less will cost $49. Meanwhile, corporation-sponsored courses such as technical courses by IBM will set you back $39.
A seven-day Coursera free trial period applies to Specializations, MasterTrack, and Professional Certificate courses. Afterwards, learners will be billed $49 a month for the next four or five months.
Given the level of commitment involved in earning a degree, Coursera pricing for bachelor’s and master’s courses are quite expensive. However, the promise of getting a world-class education and a diploma at the end of the course is worth it. Course units for a bachelor’s degree cost an average of $330 each depending on the partner institution.
However, you can get Coursera discounts if you avail of Coursera yearly subscription instead of the monthly billing.
Coursera plus price is at $399/year. This option grants you unlimited access to more than 3,000 courses and more.
Full-term graduate courses running between 24 to 36 months range between $8,000 and 30,000 depending on both the calibre of the partner institution offering the degree and the complexity of the course material.
Don't worry – Coursera discounts will make these courses more affordable to you.
Free trial, Money-Back Guarantee and Refund Policy:
Policies regarding refund and money-back guarantees need threshing out in this Coursera review. Interestingly, Coursera does not appear to have a money-back guarantee. However, it does have well-grounded refund policies.
Note that, in cases where one has paid for a course through a payment app like PayPal, they need to follow the payment platform’s refund policy if they want their money back.
Conclusion and Recommendation:
Who is this course for?
Coursera is an academe-oriented platform. Therefore, it isn’t surprising that its slant leans more towards serious learners. This would make it an excellent option for people who want to earn their degrees but have neither the time nor the means to make it to physical classes.
Who is this course not for?
Coursera is not suitable for younger learners and casual learners. Some of the Guided Project classes require at least some working knowledge.
Many reviews make comparisons such as Coursera or Udemy and Coursera vs Udacity. These two are widely popular and inexpensive and could give Coursera a run for its money. However, the latter is more for professional advancement, particularly for mid-and top-level management.
Given the wealth of information that it offers at one’s fingertips, Coursera may well be the gold standard for online learning. Even if you aren’t in the market for a formal degree, logging on and availing of a course can help enrich your life and – who knows? – may even put you on a different career path.
Can I earn my degree through Coursera?
Yes, the platform offers both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in several disciplines and done in partnership with some of the world’s best schools and universities.
How long is a Coursera course?
It depends on what course you’ve opted for. Guided Project classes run for only two hours. Courses can run from one to two months, while degrees depend on the course you have chosen and can run for as long as 36 months.
That’s all for now:
We hope you have enjoyed our Coursera review and have gleaned some useful information. Please do keep an eye out for our articles as we have lots of information relating to online services offered.
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