Top 6: Find the Best e-Learning Platforms in 2021

While there is no shortage of e-learning platforms to choose from, you should do your due diligence when shopping around for the best.

With college costs at an all-time high and a growing need for hard skills such as web development and computer programming in the workforce, the demand for e-learning platforms is at an all-time high. But how do you go about choosing the right platform that will teach you a marketable skill? And what about if you want to learn something to enrich your soul instead? Well, through some detailed research of our own along with sampling a variety of e-learning platforms, we’ve put together a roundup of six of the best e-learning sites you should consider looking into. Let’s take a look. 

1. Skillshare

Price Tag:

Premium membership starts at $15 a month or $99 a year. Premium membership will give you access to the entire collection of courses. There is also a free membership that offers unlimited access to a little over 2,000 classes. Sample the site with the free trial that lasts for two months

Courses Offered: 

Over 20,000

One of the leading e-learning platforms that is making its mark with users is Skillshare. Skillshare has an impressive collection of over 20,000 courses for you to choose from. The courses are divided into three categories which include Thrive, Build, and Create. Under the “Thrive” category, you can learn about all things lifestyle and productivity related. Courses include skill-sets revolving around how to eat healthier to how to manage your time better and everything in between. Under the “Build” category users will learn skills including business analytics, how to pursue entrepreneurship, freelancing, marketing, and all other tangible hard skills required of many professions today. In the “Create” category, users can learn about videography, filmography, web development, graphic design, and all other skills revolving around creativity. 

This popular platform follows the PBA or project-based approach. This project-based approach allows you to have a hands-on experience that strengthens your ability to grasp onto the skills that are taught. Courses are broken up into two parts which include a video presentation followed by a class project. Classes typically take no more than one hour to complete. The courses offered through Skillshare are not accredited through any institution< Rather Skillshare offers a comprehensive alternative to expanding your knowledge base and whatever skill you want to pursue. 

2. Masterclass

Price tag:

An unlimited subscription that offers access to all the courses available is $180. 

Courses Offered:

There are just under 100 courses offered to users

Do not let the limited amount of courses offered by Masterclass throw you off. While Masterclass offers a significantly lower amount of courses as compared to other e-learning platforms, the quality of the courses taught is exceptional and memorable. The classes are taught by some of the most iconic figures in today’s society; they include popular celebrities such as Christina Aguilera, Natalie Portman, and Gordon Ramsay. Whether you want to learn how to cook, how to write, or how to compose an award-winning script, Masterclass gives you a unique perspective from those who have actually done it and succeeded. Each course comes with 20 lessons and the lessons are bite-sized lasting no more than 10 minutes each. In a lesson you will find a high quality video, workbooks, activities, and assignments to expand your learning. There’s a discussion board that will connect you with other students in the class and the courses are adaptable to any devices so you can work on your computer or off of your phone. Masterclass differs from many other e-learning platforms because users get a unique opportunity to tap into their personal interests and learn from the best. There are several categories users can explore. They include Film and TV, Culinary Arts, Music and Entertainment, Writing, Sports and Game, Business, Photography, Politics and Society, Lifestyle, and Science and Technology. the classes from an accredited And there is no certificate of completion offered once you complete a course. 

3. LinkedIn Learning (Ex Lynda)

Price tag:

a premium subscription which includes access to all the courses starts at $29.99 a month or $299/.88 a year. There is a one month free trial option available as well

Courses Offered:

There are over 16,000 courses available for users to choose from.

It’s no surprise that popular professional social media site LinkedIn has tapped into the world of e-learning. After all, this is the platform many applicants and employers go to in order to find job vacancies and candidates for potential job opportunities. LinkedIn Learning is the revamped version of one of the oldest e-learning sites, Lynda. After LinkedIn acquired Lynda, they revamp the platform to offer their own brand of quality online courses. There are over 16,000 courses available for users to choose from. These courses cover some of the most in-demand skills. They include web development, economics, software programming, and business management. The courses are administered in what are called modules. The modules offer a little bit of information at a time which allows you to move at your own pace and absorb the information in a more meaningful and intentional way. The courses that are offered through Linkedin Learning are not accredited. However, once you complete a course, you can download a LinkedIn certificate that shows your completion of the program. The certificates can make for a nice add on to any resume.

4. Udemy

Price Tag:

Courses range from $9 to $200 

Courses Offered:

There are over 150,000 courses for users to choose from. There is no free trial available. 

If you are looking for a great collection of courses, then Udemy may have what you’re looking for. With courses in the thousands, there’s certainly a course worth looking into, no matter what content area you are interested in. There are a variety of hard skills including writing, computer programming, encoding as well as a range of personal growth skills such as designing, artistry, and even learning how to land a gig as a clown. While the upside of Udemy is that you can literally learn about anything you want, the downside is that unlike other e-learning platforms there is not a flat fee to pay. Rather users pay a fee for each individual course. The fees for each course start as little as $10 but can go up to as high as $200 depending on the course. Courses are also available in other languages including Russian, Japanese, Spanish, and Chinese. While Udemy is not an accredited institution and does not offer credits that will transfer to a traditional learning Institute, you do get a certificate of completion once you finish of course. These certificates can be a great addition to your resume. 

5. Edx.org 

Price Tag:

The Verified Track Course offers classes starting at $50. Some courses can go up to $300. The Audit Track Course is free. There is no free trial with this platform.

Courses Offered:

There are over 2,500 courses for users to take advantage of.

More traditional, academic content can be found through Edx.org. This e-learning platform provides high level college courses for everyday individuals. The company itself was the brainchild of Harvard and MIT and gives everyday individuals the opportunity to learn content that was once inaccessible. Most of the courses on the platform are free however access to the professional education courses requires payment. To take the free courses users need to enroll in the Audit Track. The Audit Track does not offer you a certificate of completion and users will not have their assignments graded. The Verified Track courses do offer graded assignments and a certificate of completion. However, the Verified Track courses also come with deadlines and may require more intentional planning on the part of users. The courses offered cover a range of academic content including English, environmental studies, physics, medicine, education and teacher training, chemistry, architecture, and much more. Lastly, this learning platform is unique in that it offers a Micro Master’s program. For some universities, credit is offered for the completion of this program. The programs will typically cost less than $1,500 and can take up to one year to complete. 

6. Coursera.org 

Price Tag:

There are a variety of different subscriptions offered. Individual courses range from $29 to $99. Specialization courses run from $39 to $79 a month. Professional certificates are $49. Online degree courses can range from $15 to $25,000. There is an audit option that gives you free access as well. There is a 7-Day free trial period for subscriptions.

Courses Offered: 

There are Over 4,300 courses to choose from. 

If you are looking for certification to add to your resume, then Coursera could be a great learning platform for you. The courses offered through this platform are university level with certificate programs available too. Users can look forward to the instruction provided by top-level universities including Princeton, Yale, and Stanford. The audit option is a great way to sample the platform as there are thousands of free courses to explore. For specific skill sets, specialization offers online courses that can take anywhere from four to six months to complete. Professional certificates including specializations will be presented to users after they complete the program requirements and the company or university teaching that course will be the one issuing the certificate. Lastly, there are online degrees for more intentional degree seeking learners. These online degrees are backed by accredited universities and can offer you the opportunity to gain a postgraduate degree at a fraction of the cost of a traditional university. 

While there is no shortage of e-learning platforms to choose from, you should do your due diligence when shopping around for the best. Start by asking yourself what you are interested in learning about, then work backward in finding an e-learning platform that will cater to your needs. 


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