Coursera Review, 2019
Want to transform your life and career with education? That’s what Coursera wants, too: as an e-learning option, it’s a great platform for digital nomads and remote workers who want to get ahead in the game.
It’s not just knowledge that they offer, either. The focus here is very much on the actual learning experience. Want to start a business, get a promotion? Want to master a specific career skill set? All options are available to you here. Especially for freelancing digital nomads.
Additionally, many of the courses are taught by top instructors from the world’s best universities.
Course structure can be incredibly important for the majority of people. During this Coursera review, I found that learners could expect the following:
- An introduction to the syllabus with a basic outline of the materials covered in the course.
- Many courses include a set of lectures in video form (usually 3-6, depending on the subject). Each video is between 20 and 30 minutes long. these lectures focus on introducing basic concepts and problems you’ll encounter.
- An assignment, problem set or quiz is also provided. This is done in order to reinforce the material you covered in the videos. Depending on your course, you can discuss some of the topics in the forum.
- After you complete your assignment, you usually receive your grade the next week.
- After a new set of lectures is released. You then go through the entire process again.
In total, you can expect a course to last between 8 to 10 weeks. Afterwards comes the final exam. What’s handy is that these exams are flexible. Usually, you’ll be given a range of days in which to complete it.
Since forums and discussion groups are available, it is highly advisable that you get involved in these. They can a great way to exchange ideas and gain new insights that you just wouldn’t get when studying on your own.
In addition to offering just courses, you can also get online degrees at Coursera. As they state…
Real career transformation sometimes requires a university-recognized degree.
The platform works with universities, attempting to offer affordable and flexible online degree programs in computer science, business and data science.
Is Coursera free?
Coursera offered free courses once upon a time. Learners only had to pay for the certification. Even to this day a few courses are free of charge… however it is that little bit more complicated. There are also programs that you have to pay for outright. The “free” ones themselves usually come in the form of video assignments.
Generally speaking, the features that you do have to pay for include access to certificates (useful for anyone who wants something to show off on their CV) and graded assignments.
Essentially, you pay for the official recognition of course completion.
There’s More!: Handy extra features
You could say that Coursera is extra friendly to digital nomads and those who enjoy working and indeed learning things remotely. There’s a bunch of Coursera apps available for iOS and Android devices. This is particularly handy for anyone who has an hour or two to kill on the train. Why not put that time to good use (and even if you still commute regularly, it’s still worth filling up those hours…).
You’ll also get a certificate and this can be shared on your LinkedIn profile. So, it’s a handy way of showing off to prospective employers. Since the platform is designed to be used on an international level, you’ll likely be able to learn anywhere. Unless you’re currently in a country that has restrictive firewall regulations.
On hand is also a community of Course Mentors… So it’s not just rote learning from videos and texts. If you have any questions, you’ve got guides at your fingertips. This is further reflected in the Learner Support team that’s ready to answer any questions you may have.
After my Coursera review I decided that I quite like the platform… Not only is it useful to get free knowledge that can be applied to life and business, but it has the extra advantage of coming from top-notch universities without the expensive tuition costs. That being said, the degree programs themselves (with certificates, accreditation and all those other frills) are not free… and they can be on the expensive side especially if you live or are from a country where third level education fees are manageable and/or totally free (such as in most European countries). This may naturally dissuade some people.
That being said, the platform is still good for anyone who wants to develop a professional skill.