Are you looking out for some courses online to improve your skills? You must have definitely come across a wide variety of education service providers online. So, how does one choose amongst the plethora of online learning platforms? There are some platforms that offer a lot of courses related to IT skills. There are some which focus on giving you training in different areas along with projects and practical exposure. A few focus on personal development and a few on hobbies and interests. There are platforms offering a lot of free courses, huge discounts, degrees, certifications, etc.
What matters in your selection of the platform of online learning is your budget, your requirements in terms of knowledge and skills, whether a course is required for advancement in your career, whether you just wish to learn and improve on your hobbies, whether you want a course similar to ones offered by institutes, or whether certificates are essential to you or not. These are some areas that must be looked into before you select the e-learning platform. This review is about two platforms that offer e-learning courses and are quite popular – Lynda vs Coursera. Read through the article to know which platform suits your requirement.
Lynda Vs Coursera 2020 | The Ultimate Comparison ( Pros & Cons )
Lynda Vs Coursera: Overview
Lynda is quite popular in the online learning world. The platform has a humongous user base which has people from different firms and organizations spread worldwide. Lynda offers many classes where you can develop specific skills such as web designing, business development,
software, web development, and there are a few creative topics as well such as photography. This platform, Lynda was developed to assist people and help them attain their goals – professional or personal. Lynda has been offering courses for 20 years and at present 10000 or more companies have benefited from the online training system offered by Lynda. The tutorials can be accessed in 5 languages – French, English, Japanese, Spanish, and German.
Coursera is a platform that offers online learning. This platform was formed in 2012, by 2 professors from Stanford University. Coursera partners with a lot of professors from the best universities to develop courses and present them.
There are about 35 million learners (users) in Coursera, it has around 150 partnerships with institutes and universities, and more than 2700 unique courses, 250 unique specializations. The platform also offers some full degree courses. Coursera might look like any other generic platform, however, it offers a certificate when you complete any course.
Lynda vs Coursera: Courses
Lynda is popular for courses on web designing, marketing and sales, creative writing, photography, mobile app development, business development, and professional development. Lynda has more than 5000 courses being offered on its platform. Most of these courses are being taught in English, however, people can choose from the languages – German, French, Spanish as well as Japanese.
The videos of the courses are of short duration, maybe seconds to even minutes. The courses are not long and intense. You can also receive a certificate once you complete the course you have chosen.
Coursera is a platform which offers the following type of courses:
(i) An Online Degree
There are online degrees on Coursera. This is similar to courses which you take up in a regular institute. The difference between the two is that these are online courses. There are quite a few options in this segment though.
(ii) A Specialization
If you want to develop skills that are required for your career or maybe for professional development, you can choose from the specialization courses, which come in a series. Once you complete the course you will get a certificate. It also has some practical activities for the user.
(iii) An Open Registration Course
Under this category, the course can be taken up by anyone for any reason, be it for developing your skills or for professional development. However, no category is created for courses that are being taught by expert professors.
Lynda Vs Coursera: Content & quality
Lynda is a site that is quite attractive and has a very professional appearance to it. But, this should not be a factor to judge a site on. A lot of learners on this platform have indicated that they are not very happy and not satisfied with the content and the course quality on this platform. A few claims are made regarding the courses being outdated and the topics being quite irrelevant, especially in the IT courses. This is an era where technology is literally all over the place and in every aspect of our lives, and there are updates made almost every single day. It becomes quite difficult to match these changes and updates.
However, a website that is charging you for these courses cannot take this as an excuse and turn face from offering the latest courses and updates. They have to make sure they stay abreast of all the changes taking place and incorporate them into their courses as well. Another issue faced is that the courses which are quite basic are dragged for as long as ten minutes, which is frustrating and boring. However, overall, students love the site and the experience they have with it.
Does Coursera take content quality seriously and is it worth investing your time? Yes! Coursera has partnered with many universities from all over the world. The professors from these universities are the content creators and also offer their expert knowledge.
These are individuals who have years of expertise in the subjects and have researched on these areas as well. People have stated that they are quite satisfied and happy with the content quality offered by Coursera. A few small issues pointed out are that some professors are camera-shy, and this can be distracting especially while learning a tough subject.
Lynda Vs Coursera: Features
Learning paths are a feature that is found in Lynda. Here, you will have many sub courses which come under the main course, which is known as the “umbrella”. For instance, if you wish to take up a course in software development, and you want a learning path that will focus on this area, you can find many such courses that are taught by various teachers, and different areas are covered by them. There are a few courses that could be part of the learning path, whereas a few others might just be gathered and just created into some learning path. You will need time on your hands to finish off these courses. In contrast to a normal course, learning paths are tough. You have a wide range of learning paths and you can select the one that suits you the best. Also, if you want to select a learning path course, it is pretty similar to courses taken up in regular colleges for gaining credits. The courses can be accessed in the offline mode as well which is pretty helpful.
Coursera is quite unique in terms of features. IN case you have decided to take up a course on this platform, there are some options available to select from. They are audits, specializations, certified courses, and degrees.
In case you are looking for free courses and you just want to take up a course and go through the materials, you could audit the course. When you do this, you cannot participate in various activities, you cannot get a certificate when you complete the program and you cannot give your assignments and get graded.
Here, you can select multiple courses under a single topic. For example, if you take up creative writing, then you could either opt for just the main course or you can specialize in it, wherein you take up five courses focusing on this area, yet they cover the distinct subject matter. Specializations come with their special certificates that you receive when you complete the specialization.
– Certified course
This is a very basic option. A fee is paid, you get enrolled, and you begin the course. There are assignments and tests which can be taken up as per your schedule. A completion certificate is granted on completing the certified course.
This is the real deal. Just like you would attend a university and get a degree in the subject of your choice, you can do the same online on Coursera. There are plenty of courses in business and IT on Coursera.
In case a student wishes to learn but the fees cannot be afforded by him/her, they can apply to Coursera and submit a form. Once the company is certain that you require financial assistance, the company will bear the course expense for you. This is an amazing feature of Coursera.
Lynda Vs Coursera: Navigation
The landing page has a preview of the courses and a few subjects. You can also check out their promotional offer. Once you scroll down, there are sections on reviews, the top courses, the partner list, the learning path, and a lot more. This appears to be basic data that is offered by every platform offering online courses; however, it has been presented in a really good way on Lynda. The theme of Lynda’s page is very professional. Each section on Lynda is very simple yet is very appealing at the same time. It cannot be termed as “generic”.
The user can browse and check out all the subjects, the courses, etc. Once the user registers on the site, they can check out the courses and access the materials. When a course is selected, the course page will give you the course description, the lectures, the instructor details, and notes, etc.
You will find flashy websites with a lot of colorful designs. However, these aspects are not vital as it just confuses the students. A website must always have an intuitive interface and a user must be able to navigate through it easily. It must be quite simple to understand. When the user visits Coursera, they will be greeted with a simple catchphrase which is simple but is quite effective. It tells you exactly what Coursera is and what it offers. Coursera has a very simple landing page in terms of its information and its design.
There are course details, a list of partners, and the page has a “how it works” segment too. There are the basic search bar and function buttons which are simple. You can search for any course either by looking up for it in the drop-down menu of categories or by using the search bar. The user can select their course, the language of the course, or even language for the subtitles, etc. The site is aesthetically pleasing, it has a very minimal color scheme, and gives you a professional feeling.
Lynda Vs Coursera: Pricing
You can get to try out this platform free of cost for a month. On completion of this trial period, the user can select any plan as per their requirement. The monthly subscription will cost you $19.99 for a month. The premier subscription will cost you $29.99 for a month. The user can choose any plan based on his/her learning requirements.
However, remember that when you complete the trial period, if you wish to cancel the membership, kindly do so before the period ends, else the membership plan gets automatically renewed. An employer or business can also select training programs for their teams or employees and give them the essential skill training that is required. There are plans for businesses and organizations as well.
In Coursera, you will get the prices of every course upfront. you can join this platform without any charges. But the courses have prices fixed. The course page will give you the price range of the courses. Note that some courses might be charged every month, but some might take a fee for the entire course. The open-access programs come at a cost of $39-$79 each month and the duration of the course is about 4-6 months.
The degrees will come at a cost of $15 to $25,000 and this is based on the degree you choose. It will be for a duration of 1-3 years. The courses appear to be costly, however, students are given expert-level services by the company. There are very few such online learning platforms that give you an education that is not just professional but also of a university-level and is taught by expert and certified professors.
Lynda Vs Coursera: Learning experience
So, is it really worth investing your money on the Lynda membership? As far as the learner reviews are concerned, there seems to be a mixed feeling. Many have stated that the site is very helpful and they found it very useful. They also indicated that the prices were reasonable. But, some people were not happy with the quality of the courses which was offered by Lynda. A few people complained about some outdated and irrelevant courses especially in the area of technology.
But, apart from these minor issues, the site is quite professional and offers some great courses in the development of skills. And if your area is IT, definitely it would be quite useful to you.
As mentioned earlier, Coursera offers its users a learning experience that is very professional, no matter what subject or course you take up. The people who create and teach the courses are experts – they are professors with experience and knowledge. This itself is enough to guarantee you about the quality of information that will be passed on to you.
Also, you can modify the test timings and course timetables as per your schedule. This platform is great for those who are working full-time and wish to take up courses for skill development. It is a good platform for all those who have the thirst for learning new skills and concepts. The platform gives you a certificate when you complete the course and this is quite motivating to people. These certificates can be attached to the user’s LinkedIn profile and probably it would help you in your career too.
Pros and Cons of Lynda and Coursera
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Conclusion: Lynda Vs Coursera 2020
The platforms, Lynda and Coursera are both exceptional platforms that offer a lot of courses online for professionals as well as beginners. The choice of selecting a platform depends on what you wish to learn, how much time you wish to spend, whether you want to get a certificate or degree or whether you just want to develop your hobby.
If you want some great IT courses, head to Lynda. In case you look out for other topics, you can check out Coursera. Both platforms are worth investing your time and money.