Thanks to technology, you don’t require admission to an Ivy League institution to obtain a work-class degree. All you need is an online learning platform that offers the course you interested in reading.

The internet has several online learning platforms that provide accredited courses and certificates. These are all available at a fraction of the fees that your traditional education institutions charge — therefore making the ideal choice for several individuals, both young and world. Career advancement and knowledge acquisitions don’t have to cost a fortune. More students seek an alternative for formal education to escape dream-killing student loans.

Below are five top-rated online learning platforms that offer access to several credible academic programs for free.

Top 5 Online Learning Websites

The online education portals below provide many professionals and students with numerous online programs with the opportunity for life-long learning. You’ll find that some of the courses charge a fee while many others are free.


At Coursera, you’ll find over 35 million learners, 250 specializations, 2700 courses, 150 university partners, and several degrees. Also, apart from the thousands of free courses, other essential courses charge a fee between $29 – $99. If you intend to obtain a degree or acquire specialization knowledge, you’ll have to pay a little higher than other paid courses. World-acclaimed experts teach the online learning courses at Coursera with teaching experience from reputable universities around the world. 

Mostly, course materials on this online learning website comprise pre-recorded lectures. Some of these are videos others are audio podcasts from instructor’s podcast channels. Besides, you’ll find forums for community decisions of course topics and course work that are peer-reviewed or graded.

Note: Coursera awards students a course certificate for each course completed. This is optional for free classes since you have to pay a small amount for your certification.

Examples of free courses: IBM Data Science and Content Marketing strategy (UC Davis)

Khan Academy

Khan Academy is the only non-profit learning platform on this list. It was founded by tech giants like Google, Reed Hastings, Jon, and Ann Doerr, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The mission of this website is to “to provide free, world-class education for anyone, anywhere.” As such, it is doesn’t charge teachers or students any fee for using the platform.

 Among the different courses offered by Khan’s online learning website, you’ll find courses from kindergarten up to the tertiary level. Some popular courses include History, Mathematics, Science, SAT®, and English grammar.



Udemy is a world-renowned online learning hub. It boasts over 100,000 courses and supports 50 different languages. The site registered over 30 million learners and about 42 teachers. In all, Udemy’s learning videos amount to some 22 million minutes of playback time. One distinguishing characteristic of Udemy is its support for curated content from party content creators and experts that aren’t directly affiliated to any universities or colleges.

Examples of free courses: Introduction to Machine Learning

In summary

Whether you need to brush-up your current knowledge or acquire an additional skill, you can find the content and support you need to get you through the process on any one of these online learning platforms. The courses offered by these online learning websites can help you earn a certificate, acquire valuable insight in a field, or broaden your existing knowledge of an old topic.