The 7 Best E Learning Websites: Learn New Skills Today

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If you want to improve your prospects, gaining new skills is always a great idea. Thanks to the wonders of the internet, you can start NOW, and even choose a course that costs no money at all. In this round-up of the seven best e learning websites, we introduce a selection of places where you can learn new things straight away, and pick up impressive qualifications for your resumé.

What are e-Learning Websites?

E Learning websites deliver a wide selection of online courses via the internet. The courses cover every subject imaginable, and are often developed by big-name companies, well-known colleges and industry experts.

E-Learning websites are generally a very economical place to learn. Some even offer courses completely free of charge. Also, there are generous free trials available from some providers, so you can begin to learn before committing to spending anything.

What are the best E Learning Websites?

Below we’ve listed seven great e-learning websites, in no particular order, complete with pros, cons and insights for each one.

Towards the end of the article, we’ve made some suggestions as to the best e learning websites for certain scenarios, so you can make a decision based on whether you’re trying to pick up new qualifications, or just do some casual training to learn new things.

It’s worth noting that in most cases, you can try out these sites (or even study complete courses) for FREE. As such, there’s no harm in trying out several e-learning sites before deciding which one suits you best.

LinkedIn Learning

LinkedIn Learning

What is It?

LinkedIn Learning feels like the “new kid on the block” in eLearning websites right now. It’s a website I hear mentioned a lot these days. That’s because it’s been actively promoted since LinkedIn acquired Lynda, a huge online training provider, and merged all of the courses together.

As a result, LinkedIn Learning has an enormous library, with over 13,000 courses covering everything from journalism to programming. It also offers the choice of a subscription service, which provides full access to ALL the courses, or an “a la carte” option where you can buy one course at a time.

The interface the slick, the courses are largely good quality and (unsurprisingly) the system integrates with LinkedIn so you can show off your achievements on your profile.

We have a full review here.

How to Get Started:

The best thing to do is to click here to grab a month’s free trial. You can try (and even complete) some courses with no commitment.

How Much does it Cost?

Subscriptions to LinkedIn Learning, with access to everything, cost from $24.99 per month (or local equivalent). Individual “a la carte” courses start at around $30 each.

The Good

LinkedIn Learning is a modern and well-organised platform with lots to inspire you.

The Bad

The “buffet” nature of the subscription can make it hard to stick to one course – it’s easy to get distracted!

Try LinkedIn Learning Free Here

Coursera

Coursera courses

What is It?

Coursera has been around since 2012, and was one of the first e learning providers delivering MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) to the masses. Coursera works alongside large colleges such as Penn, Stanford and Duke to deliver many of its courses, so you can actually find yourself studying the same materials as people at those universities.

Like several of the course providers listed here, Coursera uses a model where you can study certain courses free of charge, and only choose to pay if you want an official assessment and certificate at the end. This makes it an interesting option if you’re on a budget. If you’re not, there are full professional certifications available, and even online degrees.

Coursera’s range of subjects is vast, whether you’re interested in academic topics or more business-focussed training.

Our full review is here.

How to Get Started:

You can find Coursera here and start exploring the courses available.

How Much does it Cost?

Some courses are free, certifications start from $50-100.

The Good

Much of Coursera’s training is of the quality you’d expect from prestigious institutions, and being able to try courses for free is great.

The Bad

Coursera faces criticism for a lack of transparency in how its courses are priced, and we agree that it’s harder than it should be to work out what costs what.

Try Coursera Now
 

edX

edX Review is edX LegitWhat is It?

edX is very similar to Coursera. In fact, much of the time it’s more a case of choosing between the courses you like the look of than choosing between the platforms themselves.

edX is another provider that lets you try (“audit”) many courses for free, with the option of paying for a verified certificate. Again, like Coursera, there are courses delivered in association with prestigious universities – in this case the likes of Berkeley and Harvard. There are also “Professional Certificate Programs” from companies like IBM and Microsoft.

We have a full review of edX here.

How to Get Started:

You can find edX here and browse the available options.

How Much does it Cost?

Many edX courses are available to audit for free. Official certificates start at $49, and professional certifications start at $220.

The Good

edX offers truly credible training, and the certifications look great on a CV or LinkedIn profile, thanks to links with such well-known colleges. Pricing is also much more transparent than it is at Coursera.

The Bad

While edX has the edge on transparent pricing, Coursera’s courses are laid out slightly better – but it’s a close-run thing.

Try edX Now

FutureLearn

FutureLearn What is It?

FutureLearn is the last of the e learning websites in this roundup that works in league with universities. The twist is that FutureLearn was launched by the UK’s Open University, so the institutions involved are mostly British, and include the University of Edinburgh and University College London.  There are also some courses from large, well-known companies, such as Raspberry Pi and Accenture.

In all other respects, FutureLearn has a similar model to edX and Coursera – the option to take some courses for free, then various chargeable options for certificates and more in depth training. There’s also a “FutureLearn Unlimited” option, which allows you to take as many courses as you like for an annual fee.

FutureLearn has an uncluttered interface and everything is easy to understand. It’s a good choice if you’re not a big fan of video courses, as plenty of the materials here are text-based.

You can read our review of FutureLearn here.

How to Get Started:

You can browse the courses available on FutureLearn via this link. 

How Much does it Cost?

It’s possible to study plenty of FutureLearn courses for free, so long as you’re not bothered about an official certificate. Certifications “upgrades” start at $39. FutureLearn Unlimited costs $269 for an annual subscription, but offers are often available.

The Good

FutureLearn is definitely one of the best e learning sites, and it was created by the Open University, who have decades of experience in distance learning.

The Bad

There’s no app for people who like to learn on the move, and the course selection – while large – is a little lacking in some areas, such as software and marketing topics.

Check out FutureLearn Now

Skillshare

Skillshare

What is It?

Skillshare takes a very different approach, working on a subscription model that allows you to dive in and out of over 27,000 different classes on a vast range of topics. It’s a model quite similar to that offered by LinkedIn Learning.

It’s one of the best e learning websites if you want to learn a range of different skills, as there’s no need to choose a specific course. In fact, the experience is rather more akin to browsing Netflix!

The courses here vary considerably, because anybody can sign up to be a Skillshare teacher, but plenty of the courses are delivered by industry experts and brand-name companies.

We have a full review here.

How to Get Started:

Skillshare offers a free trial, so you can try lots of courses before committing. If you use this link for the free trial, you can get two months free instead of one.

How Much does it Cost?

Skillshare costs $8.25 per month (or local equivalent) if you opt to pay annually. A month-by-month subscription is $15/mth.

The Good:

Skillshare offers a huge amount of choice, and is great if you’re a keen learner who’s going to spend lots of time on the platform.

The Bad:

Although we had absolutely no difficulty cancelling our own trial, there are reports of people who have had issues. We suspect these may be from people who forgot to cancel, so it’s wise to set a reminder if you don’t intend to move onto a paid subscription.

Grab two free months of Skillshare here

Udemy

Udemy

What is It?

Udemy is a well-known eLearning website where you almost always find a sale on! The platform sells individual courses, and they’re often on sale for less than $20.

Udemy’s courses vary in quality because anybody can create and market courses via the platform. It’s best to be lead by the user reviews when choosing courses, as some are better than others. However, it would be wrong to say there aren’t some very good courses on Udemy, with many delivered by key industry figures.

Udemy is a very affordable place to learn new skills, and particularly excels for technical topics, software courses and online marketing subjects.

We have a full review of Udemy here.

How to Get Started:

You can browse through Udemy’s courses here. We also have an article suggesting some of the best courses for freelancers.

How Much does it Cost?

Udemy courses are priced individually, with $20-30 a good average price. Frequent sales often push prices even lower.

The Good

Udemy courses are really keenly priced, making this one of the best e-learning sites for people looking for some budget training.

The Bad

Courses on Udemy don’t come with any official affiliation, so they don’t have the same prestige as those delivered by the likes of Coursera and edX.

Check out Udemy’s current offers here

Teachable

Teachable Discover

What is It?

Teachable is a very different eLearning platform to the others here. It’s typically used by individuals creating specialised, highly-targeted courses, usually with a considerably higher price-tag than those on Udemy. We’ve actually reviewed and recommended a couple of Teachable-hosted courses on this site: Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing, and Pinterest Traffic Avalanche.

The reason Teachable has been added to this roundup is that the company recently launched Teachable Discover, a catalogue of some of the platform’s most popular courses. Covering everything from gardening to marketing, these are generally courses from highly successful bloggers in their fields.

While these courses are more expensive, they may be well worth a look, especially as they’re usually very carefully planned out to deliver a specific outcome, such as teaching you how to speak a new language or to build an email list.

How to Get Started:

You can browse all the courses on Teachable Discover here.

How Much does it Cost?

Courses are priced individually, with short courses starting at around $29. Longer courses can be considerably more expensive.

The Good

Courses on Teachable are often delivered by true experts, and usually focussed on a clear and distinct outcome. They can be worth the investment if you have a specific ambition.

The Bad

These courses can vary in quality, so it’s worth doing your own research to find reviews before parting with your cash.

Find Teachable Discover Here

Our Recommendations

eLearning Recommendations

The Best eLearning Website for Casual Training

If you know you want to pick up some new skills, but you’re not sure exactly what, LinkedIn Learning is the eLearning website we’d recommend.

Thanks to the company’s acquisition of Lynda, the course library is enormous. The month’s free trial is easily long enough to get a feel for it, and you could even complete one or more courses in that time.

Try LinkedIn Learning Free Here

The Best eLearning Website for New Qualifications

If you’re looking to do some training to bolster your resumé, you’ll want to choose one of the eLearning sites with university accreditations.

It’s a close run thing, but our recommendation is edX. The colleges involved are the most prestigious of the lot, and the platform isn’t subject to the same price transparency issues that plague Coursera.

Try edX Now

The Best Website for Bargain Courses

If you’re looking for course bargains, the best e learning website for you is probably Udemy.

Yes, the course quality is inconsistent, but you can get around this by only choosing courses with entirely positive reviews. Take advantage of one of the many frequent sales and you can grab hours of training material for less than the price of a delivery pizza.

Check out Udemy’s current offers here

What are the Best eLearning Websites for SELLING Courses?

Although it’s not really the subject of this article, many people use eLearning websites to sell courses of their own, rather than for learning.

Selling your own courses on Teachable

So what are the best platforms for that?

Of the seven websites listed here, four of them allow you to create, market and sell your own courses: Skillshare, Udemy, LinkedIn Learning and Teachable. There is information about how it works in the individual reviews, which are linked to above.

Our number one choice for selling courses of your own is Teachable. The platform gives you complete control over your curriculum and pricing, and you can even start selling courses on one of their free subscription plans.

Sign up to Teachable Free Here

Further Reading

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Founder of HomeWorkingClub.com - Ben is a long-established freelancer with a passion for helping other people take control of their destiny and break away from "working for the man." Prone to outbursts of bluntness and realism.

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