11 Amazing Online Learning Platforms Reviewed (in 2020)

11 Ultimate Online Learning Platforms Reviewed - Blogging Academic

Last Updated on August 22, 2020 by Gunnar

Online learning platforms have seen a large increase in demand as technology has become more and more accessible.

They have, therefore, drastically evolved and changed the face of modern education. It is now highly desirable to take control of your academic life and to learn at your own pace, without pressure.

Compared to a few years ago, there are many online learning platforms offering services at a lower cost. As a result, these cost-effective options have led to more people switching to e-learning.

Online learning has also allowed users more flexibility with their time commitment. Traditional forms of education, however, are still based on rigid timetables.

Because of its convenience, many people are taking online courses in their free time. This not only teaches them new skills but also makes them more employable.

Worldwide, six million students are currently taking online courses as part of their higher education programs. In addition, 85% of them find this method to be the same or better than the traditional classroom experience.

Given current global challenges, the online learning industry is reaching new heights. It is projected to be worth a whopping $243 billion by 2022 and $325 billion by 2025.

More parents choose to home-school their kids to avoid social contact. This, however, is new for many parents and they increasingly use online learning platforms to provide education for their kids.

How do I choose between Online Learning Platforms?

All online learning platforms aim to provide online education that makes it possible for the user to learn at their own pace. But some systems are specialized in individual niches, offer anything that you want to learn, and more.

There are online learning platforms that offer entire degrees through their partnership with leading universities, while others do not provide certificates after completing courses.

There is also a great range of costs and monthly fees. edX, for example, is predominantly free, while Udacity does not even offer a free trial.

So, how do I choose?

Don’t worry! To make the choice easier for you, I have reviewed the 11 best ones out there. So, keep reading.

1. Skillshare

Skillshare is one of the most popular online learning platforms out there. It has over 4 million students, 24,000 courses, and has paid more than $5 million to its instructors.

They believe in the success of interactive learning. That is why they offer video-based courses and open discussions for their creative topics. Students can share their progress and get feedback from their fellow classmates and instructors.

Skillshare tries to bring you one step closer to the traditional classroom experience. In such a setting, social interactions are highly encouraged.

KEY FEATURES

  • Excellent social interaction: Four interactive groups to enhance social interaction amongst students and teachers:
    • Creative. The group caters to a larger group of creators. This includes animators, graphic designers, photographers, artists, writers, musicians, and business owners.
    • Technology. This group is for developers, designers, and the coding community.
    • Business. A group for digital marketers, entrepreneurs, business owners, and freelancers.
    • Lifestyle: A small group for calligraphers and crafters.
  • Learn interactively: Lesson durations vary from 20 to 60 minutes of interactive learning via small videos. They also include class assignments and discussion forums amongst the student body.
  • Taught by prominent experts: The coursework is exclusively designed and taught by prominent artists, writers, and other creative instructors.
  • Access all courses: Offers a membership system to make it possible for the students to have access to all the courses available on site.
  • Popular courses: The platform’s most popular courses are web design, email marketing, photography, and painting. Courses on personal branding and other creative topics are also sought after.

PROS

  • A supportive discussion forum to encourage more social interaction. It makes it possible for students to exchange feedback.
  • Helps premium members with production, course planning, and online course creation.
  • Provides access to many courses at the same price.
  • Skillshare has a large base of creators and entrepreneurs and is a great platform to get recognition.

CONS

  • Not an accredited institution.
  • The platform does not offer certification or any other form of recognition upon course completion.
  • Courses are mainly focused on the creativity field with very little emphasis given to other fields.

PRICING

Unlike many other online learning platforms, students do not have to pay for individual courses. Their monthly subscription gives them access to all the available courses. This way students can explore and enhance their skills and even see if a new skill interests them.

Individual course fees start at $8 while the subscription costs $19 per month ($99 annual subscription).

Skillshare also offers many free courses for students and a 2 months free trial. This is the longest free trial period amongst online learning platforms and will allow you to get a good feel for the interface and courses.

CONCLUSION

Skillshare is a great online learning environment for students and instructors in the creativity field. Their large student base makes it the ideal spot for getting your creativity noticed.

Their extensive 2 months free trial is a great draw for new students. The all-encompassing monthly subscription structure lets you easily explore new areas of study.

Despite this, the range of courses offered is not as big as on other online learning platforms.

2. LinkedIn Learning

A few years ago LinkedIn bought the existing e-learning platform, Lynda.com, and created LinkedIn Learning. The company now offers over 1600 high-quality courses for all levels of students.

LinkedIn Learning is part of the LinkedIn social media site. It provides selected quality content to premium subscribers to the main LinkedIn platform.

The site not only caters to individual learners who wish to develop new skills or increase their employability. The platform also provides tailored training to corporate clients.

Besides individual tutorials and courses, you will also find entire learning paths on the site.

For example, if you wish to become a digital marketeer, you will get a curated list of courses that form the learning path. At the end of these paths, you will also get a certificate.

LinkedIn Learning Certificate - Blogging Academic

KEY FEATURES

  • All levels: Courses are available to all levels of students, from beginners to the very advanced.
  • Excellent selection of courses: Subjects fall into three broad categories: business, creative, and technology. Each category contains a large selection of many excellent courses.
  • Courses and mini-lessons: They offer both in-depth courses and paths as well as mini-modules and video lessons to let you learn at your own pace.
  • Downloadable courses: You can download courses to view them offline.
  • Certificates: LinkedIn Learning offers certificates after completing courses and learning paths.
  • Exercise Files: Most courses come with extensive exercise files for you if you choose to follow along and ‘learn by doing’.

PROS

  • Unlimited access to a wide range of courses.
  • A low price point for the amount of content offered.
  • The platform publishes new courses on a weekly basis.
  • The platform offers a very pleasant user experience.
  • Courses are available in several languages.
  • Question and answer forums increase social interaction.
  • Certificates provided upon course completion.
  • Interactive courses help students increase motivation, engagement, and boosts learning.

CONS

  • Not an accredited institution.
  • Has a passive learning approach which can be an issue if you are not highly self-motivated.
  • The quality of the creative courses is not as high as the technical content.
  • Some technical courses can be slightly outdated. (Note: LinkedIn update old courses regularly)

PRICING

Unlike many other online learning platforms, LinkedIn Learning only provides a monthly subscription-based fee. Students have unlimited access to all the available content in the library.

The Premium subscription costs $29.99 per month.

You get two months free if you pay your subscription on an annual basis.

LinkedIn Learning offers a risk-free one-month free trial.

CONCLUSION

LinkedIn Learning is the ideal platform for those who wish to jumpstart their careers and achieve professional goals.

You can choose many courses to develop your skills and complement existing expertise.

As a bonus, the subscription lets users access LinkedIn’s Premium Career features. This allows you to contact potential contacts directly on the main LinkedIn platform.

As you probably noticed, I am a big fan of LinkedIn Learning and use it as my go-to online learning platform.

There are many excellent courses on LinkedIn Learning that will teach you skills from scratch all the way to expert level. Go check out their tech, creative, or business courses!

I learned all my Illustrator and Photoshop skills following Deke McClelland’s One-on-One series. I personally highly recommend them!

3. Udemy

Udemy - Blogging Academic

Udemy is one of the most popular online learning platforms out there, with 40 million students and over 50,000 expert instructors.

Its huge repository of over 150,000 courses, makes it one of the best online learning platforms in terms of content.

I particularly like Udemy’s extensive range of subjects. On one hand, you can improve your business, finance, or IT skills. On the other, you can become an expert in basket weaving or clowning – you name it and Udemy will most likely have it.

KEY FEATURES

  • All levels: Udemy offers courses for all levels: beginner, intermediate, and advanced.
  • Huge range of courses: There are 13 different course categories to choose from: Business, Design, Development, Finance & Accounting, Health & Fitness, IT & Software, Lifestyle, Marketing, Music, Office productivity, Personal Development, Photography, Teaching & Academics
  • Multi-lingual: To make learning accessible to a wider audience, some courses are available in different languages. You will find courses in Chinese, German, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, …
  • Different formats: Udemy offers an interactive learning experience to all its students. Most courses and lessons include audio, video, presentations, and text elements.
  • Faster learning: Each course consists of a video tutorial lasting between 30 minutes and 5 hours. They often include assignments, exercises, practice tests, and quizzes. This helps the learner test their new knowledge.
  • Download courses: Udemy allows students to download courses and watch them offline at their convenience.
  • Certificate: When you complete a course on Udemy, you receive a certificate, which will enrich your CV.
  • Mobile Apps: Udemy has an app for both iOS and Android to make studying accessible from anywhere, anytime.

PROS

  • There is no membership fee.
  • You get lifetime access to courses that you buy.
  • A certificate is issued at the completion of a course.
  • A vast library of courses, often available in several languages.
  • Intuitive user interface
  • Excellent mobile app to watch courses on the move
  • Courses can be downloaded and watched offline.
  • Affordable courses with a 30 days refund plan if the course does not suit you.

CONS

  • Limited interaction between students and instructor.
  • High competition between course creators.
  • Very little possibility for personal branding.
  • Udemy controls the price structure of courses and often sells these for very low prices.
  • Tutors do not receive data ownership or control over branding. Udemy does not share information such as email and user data and with their instructors.
  • Visibility depends on the instructor’s marketing strategies. The platform only promotes courses that are already popular.

PRICING

Udemy has no subscription fees and many courses are easily affordable. Prices for individual courses vary from $15 to $200.

When you buy a course on Udemy, you pay a one-off fee. With this fee, you gain lifetime access to the course content.

Instructors can offer discount codes for their courses. You can often find these advertised on Udemy’s social media sites.

If a course does not meet your requirements, you can apply for a refund from Udemy within 30 days. This is something that the company takes seriously as it upholds the standard of its courses.

CONCLUSION

Udemy is one of the world’s largest and most famous online learning platforms. It aims at improving people’s lives through learning. It is the ideal choice for those who want to develop new skills or enhance their existing talents.

If you like to download learning content and study it at your own pace, Udemy may be the right e-learning platform for you.

4. MasterClass

Masterclass, a slightly different and interesting online learning platform. In recent years, they invested heavily in online advertising and have seen a boom in membership. It offers over 80 classes with thousands of lessons.

MasterClass is unique in that it managed to attract celebrity instructors to run the classes. The likes of Martin Scorsese, Samuel L. Jackson, Herbie Hancock, and Neil deGrasse Tyson are just a few A-listers teaching on MasterClass.

MasterClass - Blogging Academic

You can learn acting from Natalie Portman, singing from Christina Aguilera, cooking form Gordon Ramsey, and writing from Dan Brown.

Now, who wouldn’t want the very best as their masters and educators?

Compared to the other online learning platforms in this list, MasterClass is more of an inspirational platform. For example, astronaut Chris Hadfield teaches Space Exploration. This is not a skill that the layperson will use, but it is a tremendously inspiring course to take.

KEY FEATURES

  • Bite-sized lessons: Courses consist of an average of 20 lessons with the lesson duration being around 10 minutes each.
  • High-quality production: Classes are made up of high-quality video lessons, assignments, workbooks, and community activities.
  • Forums: There are community discussion forums, where students can share opinions and connect with others.
  • Own pace: Students can learn entirely at their own pace.
  • Celebrity teachers: There are nine main categories, such as music and entertainment, science & technology, or lifestyle. Each category contains courses by several celebrity experts.
  • Mobile Apps: The MasterClass app is available on the Google PlayStore, Apple AppStore, Amazon Appstore, and the Roku Channel Store.
  • Downloadable: Students have the facility to download their lessons and watch offline or use audio mode wherever that want.

PROS

  • Classes are not too long and are run by celebrities.
  • An interactive form of lessons.
  • The discussion forum encourages social interaction.
  • No deadlines, students are free to learn at their convenience.
  • The MasterClass app is very good and available in many online stores for easy access.
  • Classes can be taken in video and audio form as per the students’ wishes.
  • Affordable price point.

CONS

  • MasterClass does not offer a certificate at the completion of coursework.
  • The variety of subjects is rather limited
  • Courses will not add to the resume and are more for personal enjoyment.

PRICING

Annual membership at MasterClass costs $180, which works out at $15 per month. It provides unlimited access to all the classes available in their library.

Students can try classes for up to 30 days from the date of purchase of their subscription. If they are not satisfied, MasterClass offers a 30-day guarantee and offers a full refund.

CONCLUSION

MasterClass is a great platform for those seeking inspiration from professionals in the field. Their goal is to provide ‘a class that looks like a movie’. The price point is fair despite the limited number of subjects taught, given the high production value.

If you want to be inspired by the passion of celebrities at the height of their game, then give MasterClass a chance.

5. Udacity

Udacity is another e-learning marketplace at the forefront of innovation in online education. It is widely known for its Nanodegree programs, which consist of unique skills and project-based learning concept.

Nanodegrees at Udacity are well-regarded and students who complete them are able to bolster their CVs. Completing nanodegrees is often the springboard for promotions or landing great jobs.

Udacity - Blogging Academic

KEY FEATURES

  • Job market: Focuses on teaching skills that are relevant and in-demand in the job market.
  • Vast variety: The range of topics of their nanodegree program vastly varies. They include coding, robotics, business, mobile programming, data science, and many more.
  • Long-term courses: It takes between 3 to 6 months to complete most of their courses.
  • Executive programs:  for business leaders who want to expand their knowledge in a short period of time to apply it to their businesses. These courses usually finish within a few weeks.
  • All-inclusive: All their courses include:
    • Real-world project reviews from top industry professionals. This gives the students a wide understanding and firsthand insights into how the industry works.
    • Technical mentor support. A one on one mentorship is offered to all the students to guide them, motivate them, and keep them on track.
    • Personal career coach. This includes career coaching sessions, interview preparation advice, and professional profile reviews to help students boost their careers.
    • Flexible learning plan. Customized learning plans that are tailored to suit the students’ needs.

PROS

  • A unique learning system based on skills and projects.
  • The platform teaches sought after skills with employment in mind. They give users higher chances of improving their portfolio and landing desired jobs.
  • A diverse range of subjects is available.
  • One of the very few online learning platforms that provide one-on-one mentorship and guidance to their students.
  • Customizable study plans.
  • The personal career coach aids in preparing to land the perfect job.

CONS

  • Not an accredited institution.
  • In comparison to similar platforms, their prices are much steeper.
  • A limited learner community
  • Courses are only offered in English

PRICING

Udacity’s pricing system is very simple. Nanodegree program cost between $1,200 and $2,400 which the executive programs costs approximately $1,500 per month.

Discounts are applicable for students who pay for a few months upfront.

CONCLUSION

Udacity is the ideal platform for those who wish to enhance their skills fast and land good jobs.

If you are a business owner or high-level manager who wants to develop new skills to apply to your business, give Udacity a try. Their tailor-made course structure will yield fast results.

You should consider the higher price point and limited user community. If neither of these is an obstacle, then you’re onto a winner with Udacity.

Online learning environments that offer accreditation

6. Coursera

Coursera is one of the online learning platforms that offer courses and degrees from leading institutions.

They give students access to academic courses that can lead to university degrees, for a lot less than the on-campus programs.

In total, Coursera offers more than 4000 courses from over 200 universities. These include very famous ones like Yale, Princeton, and the University of Pennsylvania, to name a few.

The platform aims to make it possible for anyone to get a world-class, accredited education. This is particularly useful for students where a traditional classroom system is not available.

KEY FEATURES

Coursera offers five types of certification:

  • The Professional Certificate: aimed at those who want to enhance their skills and improve their working styles.
  • The MasterTrack Certificate: for those who want to get credits similar to a degree.
  • Specialization Courses: to expand and develop the skills that you already have. It allows users to become more of an expert on it.
  • Degree Courses: to obtain a degree.
  • Free courses: for those who prefer to check on the Coursera style before going ahead with a paid course.

The cost and timeframe of a course vary depending on the course.

Courses consist of video lectures, assignments, eBooks, quizzes, and group discussions.

Courses are offered in a variety of languages to make it accessible to as many people as possible. These include English, Chinese, Russian, Arabic, Italian, and German, to name a few.

There is a wide range of topics taught. Whatever your niche, you are likely to find suitable courses on Coursera. These will most likely be of a more academic nature. Unfortunately, you won’t find a course on basket weaving.

PROS

  • Offers degree qualifications from accredited universities.
  • Provides industry credentials after the course via certification from reputable institutions.
  • Offers a 7-day free trial, which is rather short but will give you a good idea of the platform.
  • Has a wide variety of qualifications, from beginner’s short courses to the full-length master’s degrees.
  • Coursework is available in several languages.
  • Hundreds of free courses!
  • Cheaper than the comparable on-campus education.

CONS

  • There is a rather small selection of lifestyle courses in comparison to other online learning platforms.
  • The higher-level courses are very expensive.
  • The free audit courses do not provide you with certifications or bonus materials.

PRICING

Coursera offers different fee models depending on the level of the course and whether you want a subscription.

  • Individual courses run from $29 to $99 each, while professional certificates start at $49 each.
  • Online degree courses range from $15 to $25,000, which can be on the expensive side but you will get a full degree from an accredited university.
  • The Coursera Plus subscription costs $399 per year. It includes unlimited access to over 90% of courses, specializations, and professional certificates.
  • For individual specializations, fees range between $39 and $79 per month.

CONCLUSION

Coursera is a platform that offers a wide range of university-accredited courses. You can learn at your pace at a relatively low price.

If you are looking to get a recognized certification and or improve your existing skills, you should consider Coursera.

If you wish to take several courses at once, I’d recommend the Coursera Plus plan. It can be a little pricey at first, but definitely worth it, given the great content on offer.

7. EDX

edX is a non-profit organization, founded by Harvard and MIT.

It considered one of the best providers of college-level e-learning education. On top of it all, all edX courses, except for micro-credential programs, are free of charge.

Over the years, edX has grown and now offers over 2,500 courses and programs from more than 140 universities and institutions worldwide. This makes them the leading online learning platform with over 25 million students.

All courses are taught by the world’s leading experts in their field. Professors from Harvard, MIT, Microsoft, and The Smithsonian, are amongst the instructors.

KEY FEATURES

  • All levels: They have courses that are suitable for all levels from beginners to advanced.
  • Different teaching materials: Like in all other online learning platforms, edX courses also consist of video lectures, ebooks, projects, and exams.
  • Great variety: Subjects fall into six main categories: computer science, language, data science, business & management, engineering, and humanities. Each category contains a range of sub-categories stuffed with individual courses.
  • Niche courses: The platform offers a range of diverse and niche courses that you will not find on other online learning platforms. For example, Women making history or Cyber Security and Privacy.
  • Micro-credentials: Besides the range of courses, edX also offers micro-credentials. These are MicroMasters, MicroBachelots, Xseries, Professional Certificates, and Executive Education including a Master’s Degree.
  • Forums: Discussion forums are available to encourage social interaction.
  • Financial Aid: The company offers financial aid for the best of the students if they need it.
  • Downloadable: You can download most course materials and access them offline.

PROS

  • Offers a wide range of university-level courses from the world’s top universities and institutions.
  • The vast majority of the courses are free.
  • Accredited certification is provided at course completion.
  • You can take the courses from anywhere at any time at both yours or the instructor’s pace.
  • Diverse and niche courses available unlike in other similar online learning platforms.
  • Students can access an excellent range of micro-credentials.
  • Discussion forums let the students share ideas and interact with each other.
  • You can download courses onto your iOS or Android edX app.

CONS

  • Certificates are only awarded to those who enroll in the verified paid track.
  • The Master’s programs are quite expensive.

PRICING

All edX audit courses are free. This includes all resources except the verified track programs.

Certificates, however, are not provided and to get them, students have to pay extra. The verified track consists of:

  • MicroMaster: $700 to $1400 (duration- 1 to 1.5 years)
  • MicroBachelors: $500 to $1500 (duration- 3 to 6 months)
  • Professional Certificate: $100 to $2340 (duration- 3 to 6 months)
  • XSeries: $100 to $450 (duration- self-paced)
  • Master’s degree: $10,000 to $25,000 (duration- 1.5 to 3 years)

CONCLUSION

edX gives its students excellent education from some of the world’s top universities and institutions.

Getting certificates from some of the world’s best learning institutions looks great on your CV. If you are serious about investing the time, which can be months or years, then give edX a try. But, be aware that not all courses offered have accredited certifications.

The micro-credential programs can be expensive but in comparison to the on-campus programs, it is still quite cheap when compared to other online learning platforms.

8. FutureLearn

FutureLearn is an e-learning platform that offers fully-accredited courses. It is co-owned by The Open University, which is one of the world’s foremost distance-learning universities.

It operates as a massive open online course (MOOC) and includes over 175 international partner institutions.

FutureLearn is one of the big players with more than 10 million students worldwide.

KEY FEATURES

  • Degrees: They offer courses, micro-credentials, and online degrees.
  • Free courses: Plenty of audit courses are free of charge.
  • Interactive learning: Students get access to weekly units in interactive forms, such as quizzes, videos, audio clips, eBooks, and assignments.
  • Forums: A discussion forum is available to share perspectives and connect with others.
  • FutureLearn gives its students three membership options:
    • Free: students get full access to the course materials but do not get certified.
    • Upgrade: allows the student to receive certificates for the chosen course. It also gives them access to examinations if there are any.
    • Unlimited: a yearly subscription that gives students unlimited access to all courses and tests.
  • Premium courses: There are also premium courses for those students who prefer to study in small groups.
  • Micro-credentials: FutureLearn also offers 24 micro-credentials that are created and accredited by leading universities. These cover topics such as Change Management, Data Science, and Sports coaching, for example.

PROS

  • Courses are run by universities rather than individual instructors.
  • Certificates are accredited by FutureLearn as well as the institutions that developed the course.
  • A wide range of subjects is available to suit students of all interests.
  • Many of these are offered free of charge.
  • There is interactive coursework with discussion forums encouraging social interaction.
  • One of the very few platforms that connect students with leading universities.
  • Compared to traditional university fees, which are extortionate in the UK, courses are fairly cheap.

CONS

  • Audit courses may be free to learn but do not provide certifications, students have to pay for them separately.
  • Prices are higher when compared to other online learning platforms.
  • Most courses are of an academic nature, so you won’t find many lifestyle courses on FutureLearn.
  • There are no iOS or Android apps.

PRICING

As mentioned, all audit courses are free of charge. You will need to upgrade to get certified, which will cost you between $39 and $99, depending on the course.

To go premium costs between $100 and $400, while micro-credential programs & online degrees start at $600.

The Unlimited subscription costs $249.99 per year and includes over 600+ short courses.

CONCLUSION

FutureLearn provides a great way to expand knowledge and all courses are of high quality. You can learn for free as the audit courses do not cost anything to take.

The platform has an outstanding selection of online degrees and certification courses. The highly active peer-to-peer discussion forums make it an excellent platform for any student. There is a strong sense of community on the site.

It offers some certification courses for free, though the majority requires payment. The user interface is very intuitive and the user experience is excellent.

If you are after university-level courses with excellent syllabuses then FutureLearn might just be for you.

Technology-oriented Online Learning Platforms

9. Treehouse

Treehouse is a promising new online technology school that offers a wide range of technical courses. They provide more than 300 technical courses to over 50,000 students.

According to them, they aim to bring affordable technology education to students from all over the world. Their goal is to help students achieve their dreams and change the world.

By collaborating with several well-known companies, Treehouse is able to offer high-quality services. Partner companies include Microsoft, Amazon, Alexa, and Google Developers.

KEY FEATURES

  • Programming-oriented: Treehouse offers courses in game development, web development, mobile development, and coding.
  • They offer three types of plans:
    • Basic Plan: features on-demand courses, interactive practice sessions, and access to the online community.
    • Pro Plan: designed to give students access to bonuses, beta features, and downloadable content.
    • Techdegree plan: helps the students create a real portfolio and get job-ready skills. It provides them with personalized feedback, real-time support, and a custom curriculum.
  • Varied materials: The coursework consists of a combination of video lectures, assignments, and quizzes.
  • Theory + Practice: Courses comprise both theoretical (videos) and practical (project) elements.
  • Quizzes: Quizzes help to test and confirm the acquired knowledge.

PROS

  • Offers a wide range of technical courses on diverse subjects
  • Their courses allow the students to achieve in-depth knowledge of the technological world.
  • Their interactive coursework gives students complete and in-depth knowledge of the subject studied.
  • Monthly subscriptions allow students access to all the courses available in the library.
  • You can pause and resume enrolment at any time.

CONS

  • The free trial requires a credit card.
  • Monthly fees can get expensive.
  • Courses can vary in quality.
  • Quizzes are sometimes too easy and do not fully test knowledge.

PRICING

Treehouse provides a 7-day free trial for the students. This is rather short but given the narrow niche of the platform, it is plenty of time to look around.

If you like what you see, there are three subscription options. The basic package at $25 a month, is what the name promises. Basic. If you want features such as content download, bonus content, and access to beta features, you will need the Pro plan at $49 a month.

The big kahuna, or Techdegree, includes curated content, flexible scheduling, and real-time support. The price at $199 a month is a big jump up from the Pro package, but it also includes personalized feedback.

Students who wish to pay for course-based subscriptions can do so well.

CONCLUSION

Treehouse, though a new platform, looks very promising as it has progressed rapidly in a very short time. If you are looking for an IT education then you should give Treehouse a thorough look. It might be the right fit for you.

Though a little pricey, the Techdegree offers some nifty features that will make your learning more enjoyable.

You will get real-life projects as part of your assignment and get peer reviews of your work. You can also access the cohort discussion forum, where you can discuss ideas with other experts and fellow students.

Overall, Treehouse is an ideal online learning platform for tech students and anyone who wants to become a coder.

10. Codecademy

The clue is in the name. Codecademy is a platform designed for computer programmers. This is the ideal place for those who wish to learn how to code but never knew where to begin.

Codecademy offers courses for any level of experience, whether you are a complete novice or want to learn a new language. You will start writing real code from the very beginning.

If it’s coding you’re after, Codecademy is the place to be.

KEY FEATURES

  • All levels: Courses available for all levels, from beginners to seasoned nerd.
  • Tech-oriented: Subjects include most programming languages and full-stack topics such as web development or data science.
  • Entry quiz: Students begin by taking a quick quiz to figure out the level they start at.
  • Free: They offer free lessons as well and free 7-day trial for those who wish to consider a pro membership.
  • Lots of practice: Pro-members receive members-only content and lots of real-world practice. This not only provides a more complete training but also strengthens learning.

PROS

  • A unique and one of its kind e-learning marketplace that specializes in programming skills.
  • They cover a wide range of programming subjects.
  • Codecademy makes sure that students join the right course by letting them take placement tests.
  • They offer a standard 7-day trial membership.
  • Many lessons are free.
  • Pro subscribers have access to real-world practicals allowing them to build up a portfolio, which is vital for getting a good job.

CONS

  • Not an accredited institution.
  • It does not teach you the fundamentals of programming.
  • Programming languages only have one course (at different levels)

PRICING

Codeacademy offers a very simple pricing model. You can have a basic subscription, which is free. This gives you access to basic courses and not much else.

If you want access to members-only content, real-world project, and peer support, you will need to upgrade to a pro subscription. This will cost you $15 a month, which needs to be paid annually.

CONCLUSION

A very unique system that focuses on computer programmers and information technology. It is great for beginners to get a taste of programming and learn how to code their first projects.

However, it will not teach you everything. If you are serious about becoming a programmer, you will need more depth. Much more depth.

Codecademy tends to reward the user in a playful way without teaching them the core concepts of programming.

I would recommend using Codecademy together with other sources. You can pick up a book or another online course and use Codecademy to apply what you have learned.

Online Learning Platforms for hosting your courses

11. LearnWorlds

LearnWorlds is a remarkable online course platform. It is well known for its interactive course experience and student engagement.

The cloud-based system allows users to find solutions for their specific learning needs. A team of experts is there to help achieve your goals.

Their main focus is their student needs and satisfaction. That is why LearnWorlds emphasizes communication between learners and instructors. Students immerse themselves in the study materials while receiving feedback from the teachers.

KEY FEATURES

  • Interactive learning: Offers an interactive learning experience with questionnaires, tests, and engaging elements. This makes the coursework more interesting for the students and helps with learning.
  • Customizable: They offer customizable solutions to train employees and sell online courses to a large audience.
  • Lots of features: LearnWorlds offers built-in social community support, templates, modular page builders, assessment engines, automated certificates, and advanced analytics. These help instructors design a comprehensive online learning experience for their students.
  • E-commerce: Their all-in-one learning management system includes interactive video editors, automated video transcripts, and e-commerce systems.

PROS

  • LearnWorlds has an easy setup system with no cost.
  • Teachers can create an unlimited number of courses.
  • The platform offers interactive ways of learning with a variety of tools such as exams, assignments, and grade books. These come with clear instructions on prerequisites and completion requirements.
  • There are e-commerce, marketing, and affiliate features to help instructors sell their courses.
  • The system offers in-built online community and discussion forums.
  • Certificates can be issued upon completion of coursework.
  • A 24-hour customer support system is available for new instructors and students.

CONS

  • The LMS interfaces take time to get used to.
  • The platform does not let you broadcast unique emails to users.
  • They have limited gamification options and do not include a pre-built sales funnel.
  • Students will have to complete coursework quickly to avoid monthly charges. The longer they take, the more they have to pay.
  • Unlike some other online learning platforms, they do not offer a lifetime subscription.

Pricing

LearnWorlds offers a 30-day free trial to students. If students commit to the platform, there are three subscription pricing plans.

  • Starter plan: $29/month (plus $5 per course sale)
  • Pro trainer plan: $99 per month (No transaction fees)
  • Learning Center: $299 per month (many more features, including automated sub-titling of videos)

Students have to pay the monthly subscription for as long as they take to complete their coursework but their course fee is only a one-time payment.

CONCLUSION

LearnWorlds is a premium platform that creates high-quality learning content for its students.

They rank high in the e-learning world by maximizing interactivity between students and teachers.

Entrepreneurs, individual instructors, professional trainers, and companies find the platform particularly useful. It is oriented towards training employees who are looking into acquiring new skills.

Regardless, it is not the best option for the average learner or those who want to explore new topics in their free time.

The final verdict on Online Learning Platforms!

When choosing a place to learn new skills, it is important that you choose the perfect place. Online learning platforms have to, therefore, suit your style, comfort, and convenience and offer content at the right pace for you.

Since everyone’s tastes and needs differ, so do their preferences for online learning environments. If you want a more in-depth analysis of what makes a good online learning platform, we have compared them to Learning Management Systems.

They are surprisingly different but have key features in common.

To find the best match for you, I highly recommend going through the list above and pick out a few contenders. Sign up for the free trial period and look around until you find the perfect match.

What do you think? Are there any online learning platforms that I missed out that you absolutely love? Let me know in the comments if there are online learning platforms that should make it into the list or if you’ve had experiences with the mentioned platforms.

Blogging Academic - Gunnar Mallon
Gunnar Mallon

Dr. Gunnar Mallon is a full-time Assistant Professor at the University of Groningen and passionate blogger. Join Gunnar and over 10,000 monthly readers on BloggingAcademic.com to learn how to start a blog like an academic. Gunnar also publishes academic journal articles on the topics of statistics, education, and climate science.

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The blogging academic - online education
About Gunnar Mallon

I put over a decade’s worth of experience, writing modules for some of the world’s top research universities into writing to 10,000 readers worldwide about creating engaging online educational content.

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