About 73 percent of adults consider themselves lifelong learners, proving that gaining new skills and perspectives doesn’t have to end after graduating from school.¹ It’s easier than ever for you to dive into new learning content thanks to the many available online platforms. From celebrities, to prestigious universities to industry experts, you can learn from knowledgeable instructors about any subject — all from the comfort of your own home.
Whether you want to gain new skills or explore your passion, you can take affordable classes online. Many courses cost nothing at all and you can complete them at your own pace.
There are free and paid courses available to take online, and the following five are some of the best.
- Productivity Masterclass: How to Build Habits That Last
- Video Editing with Adobe Premiere Pro for Beginners
- Graphic Design Basics: Core Principles for Visual Design
There’s no shortage of courses to take on Skillshare. This platform allows users to develop new skills and explore their passions. Courses are taught by industry experts who aim to share their experience, wisdom and tools with you for a complete learning experience.
There are lots of creative, business, technology and lifestyle courses to take on Skillshare. From web development, to photography, to culinary arts, there’s guaranteed to be at least one topic that will pique your interests. Participate fully in the lesson plan with discussion posts, projects and resources for an authentic learning experience.
You can start using Skillshare free for 14 days. Afterwards, sign up for a premium membership that will give you unlimited access for $15 monthly. You can also buy a year-long membership for $8.25 monthly or $99 billed annually.²
2. LinkedIn Learning
- Social Media Marketing Foundations
- Skills for Inclusive Conversations
- Delivering an Authentic Elevator Pitch
Take your LinkedIn account to the next level by exploring over 16,000 courses on LinkedIn Learning.³ This educational portal has real-world industry experts teaching courses in seven languages. There are over 60 courses added every week, so you’re always being introduced to new subjects and ideas.
Whatever subject you’re interested in, LinkedIn Learning has it covered. There are courses covering business, creative and technology industries. Videos guide you through the subject and enhance your learning with a number of exercises and resources to refer to.
You can start a one month trial for free on LinkedIn Learning. Afterwards, pay a monthly fee of $29.99 or an annual membership for $24.99 per month and save 17 percent.⁴ Take the courses anytime you want and set learning goals each week to keep track of your progress.
- Rhetoric: The Art of Persuasive Writing and Public Speaking
- Analyzing Data with Python
- Basic Spanish 1: Getting Started
With edX, you can take university-level courses without having to pay university tuition prices. More than 140 prestigious institutions from around the world provide real college courses on edX.⁵ Around 20 million people have already taken advantage of this website with classes from Harvard, Berkeley, Oxford, Stanford and beyond.
The courses on edX are completely free to use. Some of the subjects you can find include computer science, languages, engineering, psychology and biology. You can enroll in courses and complete them at your own pace.
All courses give you an idea of how long the course will take, the level of difficulty and the suggested amount of hours you should put in weekly. Plus, you can purchase a verified certificate for completed courses to amp up your resume.
- Space Exploration with Chris Hadfield
- Creativity and Leadership with Anna Wintour
- Shooting, Ball-Handling and Scoring with Stephen Curry
Masterclass has the most star-studded instructors of any online learning website. Learn cooking basics from Gordan Ramsay, writing for television with Shonda Rhimes, conservation with Dr. Jane Goodall, filmmaking with Martin Scorsese and more.
The classes and topics from Masterclass cover a lot of creative industries such as writing, film and TV, culinary arts, music and more. High profile instructors will share their stories of failures and successes, while giving you advice along the way.
You can try Masterclass free for 24 hours. After your free trial, buy a single course for $90 or an all-access pass for $180.⁶ Subscriptions will get you a click away from thousands of courses and insight you can’t get anywhere else.
- Financial Markets with Yale University
- Stanford Introduction to Food and Health
- Introduction to Philosophy with The University of Edinburgh
In collaboration with over 200 universities and companies, Coursera brings you a high quality learning experience you can participate in anywhere. Indulge in over 2,900 courses and specializations about computer science, health, language learning, information technology and more.
87 percent of learners who have used Coursera did so for professional development.⁷ The courses help them gain new skills and get them one step closer to getting a promotion, raise or venturing into a new field.
Coursera gives you free access to hundreds of video lectures, homework exercises and community discussion forums. A paid membership gives a more in-depth learning experience with additional quizzes, projects and a shareable Course Certificate upon completion.