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MasterClass Review: Is It Worth It?

Catherine Cooke

6 December, 2022

MasterClass

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MasterClass is a stand-out online learning platform, due to the famous faces teaching its online classes. It offers 180+ classes from 150+ celebrity and VIP instructors, who want to share with you their knowledge, passion and experience. So if you like the idea of learning basketball from Stephen Curry, songwriting from Alicia Keys or how to cook from Gordon Ramsay then MasterClass is a platform you should consider.

MasterClass is currently offering a 2-FOR-1 on its membership plans. Once purchasing an individual plan for $180, and you will get access to a free MasterClass membership that you can share with a friend or loved one. If you are interested in this offer sign up here.

This San Francisco online learning platform was founded in 2014 by David Rogier. The platform currently offers 2500+ video lessons across 11 categories. Each class is an average of 20 lessons and each lesson is around 10 minutes long.

If you don’t have time to read our detailed review, then please check out of video below to give you a summary of what MasterClass is all about.

Some of you may still be asking yourself ‘If MasterClass is more than just flashy names and superb videos?’. What you probably want to know is ‘Will you actually learn a real skill after taking one of its classes?’

Stick around to find out more in this detailed MasterClass review.

Affordable

Even though MasterClass is billed annually, when you break down the price month to month it’s fairly affordable for the number of classes you can access.

Well Produced

After watching 10 seconds of the first video, you’ll realize that MasterClass videos have been very nicely put together. They have a very engaging cinematic aura.

Top VIP Instructors

Of course, a big selling point of MasterClass is getting to learn a skill from 150+ worldwide-recognized celebrity. You have Chris Voss Teaching the Art of Negotiation and Brandon McMillian Teaches Dog Training and many more famous faces, teaching you their craft.

Generous Refund Policy

After you purchase your MasterClass membership account, you’ll have 30 days to request a refund, not bad at all.

Engaging

MasterClass 180+ classes and 2500+ video lessons are for anyone, you don’t need any prior knowledge. They are engaging and easy to watch.

No Free Classes or Trials

Sadly, there aren’t any free courses or trials with MasterClass, so you won’t be able to check any course before you pay for a membership.

No Certificates

Sadly, you won’t receive a completion certificate when you successfully complete a class with MasterClass.

Lacking Reviews

There are some reviews from past members on the homepage. But nothing detailed or about specific classes. So, you are left without a comprehensive account of a previous learner’s experience.

MasterClass Review Verdict

MasterClass is an online platform that offers 180+ classes from 11 top categories, including photography, cooking, writing, acting, music, sports and more. Its classes are taught by 150+ celebrities and VIPs that have a wealth of knowledge and experience and ready to share it. Every class has been designed to be accessible for people with little to no experience. Its video classes are well produced and have a cinematic feel, making learning with MasterClass highly engaging. It launches new classes regularly where you can learn practical skills and ignite new passions. It works on a subscription model that is billed annually and also has plans for teams and Businesses.

Who Is MasterClass For?

It is hard to pinpoint: Who exactly MasterClass is right for?

The MasterClass platform appeals to anyone who is an enthusiast in a particular topic like photography or learning to cook restaurant-inspired dishes at home. Its classes are designed for learners with little to no experience as well as learners who have experience in the chosen category. What really gives MasterClass an edge are its famous faces teaching its classes. You can have Anna Wintour teaching creativity and leadership and Brandon McMillan teaching dog training, this makes MasterClass a pretty unique online learning platform.

What's included in a MasterClass membership

What’s in every MasterClass membership?

If you are anything like me and learn best from engaging and bite sized video lessons (no longer than 10 minutes each) then its video lessons will have you hooked. Its classes are really well produced and a pleasure to watch. You can read later in detail about My Experience of a MasterClass to give you a better idea of what to expect.

 

Which classes are right for me?

If you are a little lost on where to start, I would suggest clicking on My Categories and then selecting one or more of the options of What brings you to MasterClass today? You will then have the option to pick the categories you are most interested in and can click submit my picks. Finally, your custom result will show all the recommended classes based on your category selection. This should help to point you in the right direction for getting started with MasterClass.

Remember, though, if you have the intention to fulfil an educational goal or even receive a certificate, then Udacity or Coursera would be a better fit.

MasterClass At Work

Like most other online learning platforms, MasterClass doesn’t only offer its classes for individual learners, it has plans for teams and businesses or more commonly known as MasterClass At Work. You can invest in your team or business by contacting sales to choose the plan for your business.

MasterClass at Work

You will fill in your company information choosing the number of annual memberships (between 5-1000 seats), name of your company or organization, location and email address (see image below). The group rates discount (5-35%) when you purchase of 5+ annual memberships.

MasterClass Organization Application

MasterClass Organization Form

 

MasterClass claims to do the following for your organization and employees, like driving business outcomes (see image below). All I want to add here is it’s important to consider the type of organization you are part of and if you really feel it would benefit from the MasterClass catalogue. It may even be worth asking for a free demo to try it out.

MasterClass at work employees

In short, organizations choose MasterClass At Work;

  • Stream anytime, anywhere, at your pace
  • Get inspired, 10 minutes at a time
  • An immersive learning experience
  • Learn from the world’s best
  • 150+ Instructors across a variety of categories
  • Unlimited access with your annual membership

How Much Is A MasterClass Membership?

MasterClass works on 3 different subscription models giving you access to the catalog of 180+ classes across 11 categories taught by the world’s best on cooking, leadership, photography, writing and much more.

MasterClass Get Started

When you land on MasterClass you just need to add your email and click ‘GET STARTED’ (see image above). You will then get taken to choosing an annual MasterClass membership.

Masterclass Annual Membership

  • Individual: $15/month ($180 when billed annually)
  • Duo: $20/month ($240 when billed annually)
  • Family: $23/month ($276 when billed annually)

Each of these plans are billed annually, the price difference between them isn’t much. But the main distinction is the Duo and the Family plans allow you to download for offline viewing and ability to use numerous devices at the same time on the MasterClass platform.

MasterClass Free Sneak Peek

When you land on the MasterClass homepage and scroll down you will see ‘Get a free Sneak Peek’ (see image below). Keep your eyes peeled as you may miss it. From there you can watch various video lessons from instructors like Anna Wintour and Chris Voss to give you a teaser of their MasterClass and what to expect.

MasterClass Sneak Peek

MasterClass Free Sneak Peek

If you do decide that MasterClass isn’t for, then you are entitled to a refund within 30 days of registering. All you will need to do is send an email to support@masterclass.com, and you will be given a full refund. So if you aren’t sure if MasterClass is the platform for you, then consider the first month like a free trial which has the option of being refunded if it isn’t right for you.

If you don’t want to continue with MasterClass, you can cancel your membership renewal through your account page. All you need to do is follow the prompts on the Settings page and your membership will not renew for the following year. If you are interested in checking out another platform offering a similar priced subscription plan, check out our comparison article on Skillshare Vs MasterClass.

Guest Pass

When you subscribe to a MasterClass membership, you will be entitled to Guest Passes which you can share with friends or loved ones. In my case, I felt pretty lucky and was given 3 to share. Each Guest Pass comes with a 14-day free trial to the platform. Your friend or loved one will need to add their debit/credit card details to activate the pass and if they decide not to continue they will have to cancel before the 14-day free access ends, so they won’t be charged.

MasterClass Guest Pass

Gift a Membership

MasterClass offers the option of gifting an annual membership to a colleague, friend or loved one. If you have someone in your life that enjoys online learning and would enjoy exploring the classes taught by VIP instructors, then why not gift them something memorable.

MasterClass Give the gift

MasterClass Give Annual Membership

You can add an optional gift message which will be sent via email either immediately or on a chosen date. Just like a regular membership a 30-day money-back is guaranteed. If the recipient has not yet redeemed the gift membership, then you can reach out to the member support team and your gift will be refunded.

MasterClass Grants

The MasterClass Grants Program is designed to help give back to communities in need. It provides MasterClass annual memberships to accredited organizations. Once you submit an application, the team will evaluate it and notify you via email if you have been selected for a grant.

MasterClass Grants Application

MasterClass Grants Program

> Apply for a MasterClass Grant here

How To Open A MasterClass Account?

MasterClass makes it very easy to open an account with them. I thought it would still be helpful for you to follow a step by step.

MasterClass Get Started

Register with MasterClass

  1. Visit MasterClass.com and enter your email address and click GET STARTED (see image above)
  2. Then you will choose a membership plan
  3. Next you will then be directed to add your card information (see image below)
  4. Finally, Click PLACE SECURE ORDER

MasterClass Secure Order

That’s it, it’s that easy. You will now be up and running and ready to start browsing the classes at MasterClass and start enjoying this exciting and engaging platform.

How to Cancel a MasterClass Membership?

If you decide that you don’t want to continue your MasterClass membership you can cancel your auto-renewal at any time within your account settings. By following these 3 easy steps, you can cancel your membership:

  1. Log into your account through www.masterclass.com
  2. Once logged in, click on your Profile Menu in the top-right corner and click on settings.
  3. Scroll down on account settings and click the Cancel Membership button under the membership section of the page.

You will then be guided through the steps to cancel your automatic renewal membership. Once you have successfully completed these steps your account will not renew at the end of your current subscription period.

You will continue to have access until the renewal date, once you reach that date your membership will be automatically cancelled, and you’ll no longer have access.

What Classes Can I Find On MasterClass?

MasterClass offers 11 categories with the following: Food, Design & Style, Arts & Entertainment, Music, Business, Sports & Gaming, Writing, Science & Tech, Home & Lifestyle, Community & Government and Wellness. With those 11 categories MasterClass offers 180+ classes from its VIP and celebrity instructors that each you can download and watch offline.

MasterClass Categories

Some categories and video classes are more popular than others. For example, Design & Style with classes from Anna Wintour and Annie Leibovitz are at the top of the list. Then you have some popular Food classes from Gordon Ramsay and Thomas Keller. Home & Lifestyle is another popular category with classes from Brandon McMillian and Ron Finley. But in general, there is something for everyone and the fact that’s its video classes are bite-sized makes it engaging and an easy watch.

MasterClass Categories

MasterClass offers a helpful selector where you can choose a particular category like Food, Writing, Business and more. This helps you view the classes on a particular topic and removing ones that you aren’t interested in.

MasterClass filters

Masterclass classes are made up of 10 to 20 video lessons, and each lesson is approximately 10 minutes long. Every month new classes are added as well as categories.

MasterClass Filters

The MasterClass filter allows you to narrow down your search results, where you can select a particular Format from Classes, Playlists and Sessions. You also have the option to select from My Content which includes In Progress, Completed and On My List.

MasterClass Filters

New classes

MasterClass does a pretty good job of keeping its content current and fresh, with new classes being added every month. They like to give you a sneak peek of upcoming classes and the instructors teaching them, which is exciting.

MasterClass Coming Soon

MasterClass New classes added every month

Other MasterClasses To Consider

In case you aren’t convinced by one of the most popular MasterClasses listed above you may want to consider exploring one of the classes listed below which may pique your interest.

Food

Masterclass Yotam Ottolenghi
Yotam Ottolenghi Teaches Modern Middle Eastern Cooking – Yotam Ottolenghi creates dishes that layer color and flavor for maximum impact. He teaches you simple steps for making and mixing Middle Eastern-inspired recipes like generous platters, mezze and brunch spreads to homemade condiments and delicious vegetables. This class is 5 hours 41 minutes in total and made up of 26 video lessons.

Gordon Ramsay Teaches Cooking I – The seven-star Michelin chef takes you into his home kitchen to learn everything from kitchen setup and buying the freshest ingredients to constructing unforgettable dishes. This class is 3 hours 54 minutes in total and made up of 20 video lessons.

Massimo Bottura Teaches Modern Italian Cooking – Massimo Bottura is the chef of the three-Michelin-star Osterua Francescana, treats his world-renowed restaurant as a laboratory of ideas. He shares how he transforms classic, regional Italian recipes into exciting modern dishes. This class is 3 hours 46 minutes in total and made up of 14 video lessons.

Art

MasterClass Annie Leibovitz

Jimmy Chin Teaches Adventure Photography – Jimmy Chin has built his career taking photos at the top of the world, he is taking you on location to teach you techniques for capturing breathtaking shots. This class is 4 hours 10 minutes in total and made up of 20 video lessons.

Bobbi Brown Teaches Makeup and Beauty – Bobbi Brown’s shares her expertise in step-by-step tutorials, using models with a range of skin tones. You’ll learn how to choose the right foundation, do a smoky eye and statement lip, and take your look from day to night. This class is 3 hours 48 minutes in total and made up of 19 video lessons.

David Lynch Teaches Creativity and Film – David Lynch introduced mainstream audiences to art-house films. You will learn how he catches ideas, translates them into a narrative and moves beyond formulaic storytelling. This class is 2 hours 52 minutes in total and made up of 13 video lessons.

Jeff Koons Teaches Art and Creativity – Jeff Koons invites you to a thought-provoking conversation and the history, purpose, and pleasures of art. You will learn how to color, scale, form, and texture can help you express ideas and communicate with others. This class is 2 hours 8 minutes in total and made up of 13 video lessons.

Music

MasterClass Alicia Keys

Alicia Keys Teaches Songwriting and Producing – Alicia Keys is one of the world’s most beloved  singer-songwriter winning 15 Grammy Awards and more than 40 million albums sold. She invites you to her studio to share her process for creating music built from authentic emotion. This class is 3 hours 22 minutes in total and made up of 19 video lessons.

Timbaland Teaches Producing and Beatmaking – Grammy-winning music producer Timbaland takes you behind the boards to teach you his process for creating iconic tracks. You will learn how to collaborate with vocalists, layer new tracks, and create hooks that stick. This class is 3 hours 2 minutes in total and made up of 15 video lessons.

Business

MasterClass Bob Iger

Bob Iger Teaches Business Strategy and Leadership – Bob Iger is the former Disney CEO and has worked in the media industry for 45 years. He teaches you how to evolve your business and career, learn strategies for expanding a brand and leading with integrity. This class is 2 hours 11 minutes in total and made up of 13 video lessons.

Diane von Furstenberg Teaches Building a Fashion Brand – Diane von Furstenberg built one of the world’s most iconic and enduring fashion brands. In her first online fashion design class, she teaches you how to build a brand. This class is 3 hours 7 minutes in total and made up of 17 video lessons.

Bob Iger Teaches Business Strategy and Leadership – Bob Iger is the former Disney CEO and has worked in the media industry for 45 years. He teaches you how to evolve your business and career, learn strategies for expanding a brand and leading with integrity. This class is 2 hours 11 minutes in total and made up of 13 video lessons.

Diane von Furstenberg Teaches Building a Fashion Brand – Diane von Furstenberg built one of the world’s most iconic and enduring fashion brands. In her first online fashion design class, she teaches you how to build a brand. This class is 3 hours 7 minutes in total and made up of 17 video lessons.

Sports & Gaming

MasterClass Stephen Curry

Stephen Curry Teaches Shooting, Ball-Handling, and Scoring – Stephen Curry teaches the shooting, ball-handling, and scoring techniques that have made him a two-time MVP. He is teaching everything he’s learned, from perfect shooting mechanics to on-court concepts and basketball drills. This class is 3 hours 41 minutes in total and made up of 17 video lessons.

Will Wright Teaches Game Design and Theory – Will Wright the mind behind SimCity and The Sims will teach you the art and science of game design. Will teaches you how to create games that empower players and unleash their imagination. You’ll develop a tool set for understanding player psychology, as well as learn Will’s approach to generating and pitching ideas. This class is 4 hours 16 minutes in total and made up of 21 video lessons.

Writing

MasterClass Issa Rae

Issa Rae Teaches Creating Outside the Lines – Issa Rae the Emmy-nominated star and creator of the award-winning HBO series insecure. Issa shows you here signature do-it-yourself ethos, humor, and voice to offer writers and creators of all types the motivation and tools they will need. This class is 2 hours 17 minutes in total and made up of 14 video lessons.

David Sedaris Teaches Storytelling and Humor – David Sedaris has essays in The New Yorker, bestselling books like Calypso, tours and reading on NPR. David teaches you the art of personal storytelling, you will learn how to craft attention grabbing openings, satisfying endings and meaning from the mundane. This class is 3 hours 23 minutes in total and made up of 14 video lessons.

Science & Tech

Matthew Walker Teaches the Science of Better Sleep MasterClass

Matthew Walker is a professor of neuroscience and psychology at UC Berkeley and an expert on sleep. In his MasterClass, he will enlighten you on the science behind sleep, and teach you how to increase the quality and quantity of your sleep. Matthew will teach you on how to prevent sleep debt, navigate the effects of alcohol and caffeine and improve your health. His MasterClass is made up of 15 video lessons totaling 3 hours and 12 minutes.

Chris Hadfield is a former commander of the International Space Station Chris Hadfield who teaches you the science of space exploration. In this MasterClass Chris teaches you about the science of space travel, life as an astronaut, and how flying in space will forever change the way you think about living on Earth. The MasterClass consists of 29 video lessons making up 7 hours and 47 minutes of content.

Home & Lifestyle

MasterClass Jon Kabat Zinn

Jon Kabat-Zinn is a pioneer of the Western mindfulness movement, he has spent more than 40 years studying, teaching and advocating the benefits of mindfulness. Jon shares his expert tips and guidance on mindfulness practices, ways to reduce stress and how to soothe your thoughts with meditation and movement. His MasterClas is made up of 20 video lessons totaling 6 hours and 30 minutes of content.

Brandon McMillan Teaches Dog Training – Brandon McMillian is an expert dog trainer and dedicated to building relationships between humans and animals. Brandon shares his simple, effective training system to help you develop trust and control with your dog. This class is 2 hours 58 minutes in total and made up of 15 video lessons.

Community & Government

MasterClass Doris Kearns Goodwin

Doris Kearns Goodwin Teaches U.S. Presidential History and Leadership –  Doris Kearns Goodwin has studied American presidents for more than 50 years. Doris will teach you leadership through the lens of U.S presidential history and shares practical wisdom and a template for honing leadership skills. This class is 2 hours 56 minutes in total and made up of 15 video lessons.

Dr Jane Goodall Teaches Conservation – Dr Jane Goodall teaches how you can conserve the environment, by letting nature win if we give her a chance. She also shares her research on the behavioral patterns of chimpanzees and what they taught her about conservation. This class is 5 hours 19 minutes in total and made up of 29 video lessons.

Wellness

MasterClass RuPaul

RuPaul Teaches U.S. Self-Expression and Authenticity –  RuPaul has transformed drag subculture into a mainstream phenomenon. Now the Emmy-winning host and performer is sharing an intimate look at his personal journey to self-realization. This class is 2 hours 1 minute in total and made up of 16 video lessons.

Emily Morse Teaches Sex and Communication – Emily Morse is the host of the long-running podcast Sex With Emily where she has made it her mission to normalize the conversation. Emily helps you learn how to identify what you want, communicate your desires, and discover new sexual adventures. This class is 1 hour 53 minutes in total and made up of 7 video lessons.

My MasterClass Experience

The time has come for me to share with you my experience of taking a MasterClass myself. As I am a bit of a novice in the kitchen and always looking for new recipes and inspiration. I thought the MasterClass by Yotam Ottolenghi: Teaches Modern Middle Eastern Cooking would be a great place to start.

My initial feelings are that I am impressed with the layout of the MasterClass and how intuitive it all feels. Thought has definitely been put into making the experience very user-friendly.

Video Lessons

Its video lessons are listed on the right side, making it straightforward to follow and easy to find (see image below). You are free to pick and choose which video classes you watch in whatever order, but obviously the lessons do have a natural flow in the order given. For example, in this case, you have the Mezze Spread: Muhamara as video lesson 2 and Thoughts on Hosting as video lesson 15.

MasterClass Yotam Ottolenghi video lessons

MasterClass Yotam Ottolenghi: Teaches Modern Middle Eastern Cooking Lessons

The video lessons are highly engaging and well produced, that it feels more like a Netflix cooking show. I enjoyed watching every lesson and left feeling very inspired. Something that is important to consider is that most of the celebrities and VIP instructors are very used to being in front of camera and have had years of experience captivating and motivating their audience. When you leave a MasterClass you feel pretty pumped and definitely wanting more.

My Notes

As you move through the video lessons, you can write notes on points you want to remember or words of wisdom that you don’t want to forget from the VIP instructors (in this case Yotam Ottonlenghi is full of them, but maybe I biased as I love his cooking). The notes section is broken up into each lesson, so you can make notes about each specific lessons. It’s a nice feature to have and acts like a modern-day notebook. I’m not sure how much you would honestly use it, but having it doesn’t hurt.

MasterClass Lesson Notes

MasterClass Yotam Ottolenghi: Teaches Modern Middle Eastern Cooking My Notes

Workbook

The downloadable workbook that comes with every MasterClass is available in a PDF format. In this case, it is a cookbook with all the recipes and ingredients shared throughout the MasterClass. I must add it is really beautifully designed and put together and a really great take away resource to refresh your memory on the MasterClass.

 

MasterClass workbook PDF

MasterClass Downloadable Workbook


Discuss with members

MasterClass Discuss with members

If you are looking to connect with other members of the MasterClass community, then this is the place to do so. At the bottom of each MasterClass video page is the option to JOIN THE DISCUSSION (see image above). The community is a place to ask questions, share thoughts and get feedback about the video lessons you have watched. A simple filter is in place where you can choose between the category, title of topic and what I consider the most useful filter LATEST and TOP (see image below) to follow all the discussion points. You can freely start your own New Topic.

MasterClass community Yotam Ottolenghi

MasterClass Community

On average, there is around 3-4 discussion topics a month with most classes. A member of the MasterClass Team seems to always be around to help or resolve users questions. In terms of members connecting with other members, there is some sense of community and conversation, but nothing extraordinary. There is some conversation about sharing recipes and asking where cooking equipment is from. But if you are expecting a reply from Yotam Ottolenghi himself, then that won’t be happening, instead you have to make do with the MasterClass team or your fellow members 🙂

To summarize

Before concluding all the reasons, you should take a MasterClass. It would only be fair to highlight areas that are lacking and expectations you may have from an online learning class or course. MasterClass won’t be able to offer you a certificate or any sort of formal accreditation, Coursera or edX are better suited for this. Neither are there any quizzes, coursework nor deadlines, Skillshare or Udacity would be your best fit in that case. Finally, if you’re looking for a wider variety of categories and topics, then Udemy and LinkedIn Learning are the go-to platforms for quantity.

You will love MasterClass for:

  • It’s highly engaging video lessons
  • Well Produced and beautifully shot videography
  • Option to watch the video lessons when it suits you
  • Downloadable Workbook
  • To discuss thoughts and ask questions to the community
  • The year membership gives you plenty of time to enjoy the full platform of classes

> You can check out Yotam Ottonlenghi: Teaches Modern Middle Eastern Cooking here 

MasterClass Sessions

MasterClass has introduced a whole new way of learning, Sessions is a new hands-on format by MasterClass, where you can learn alongside the world’s best by working on projects and activities as part of a structured curriculum in just 30 days. You will actively participate in the sessions by sharing your work with an engaged community and get feedback from trained Teaching Assistants.

Christina Aguilera Sessions

MasterClass Christina Aguilera Sessions

Some of the current available sessions include ‘Create 8 award-worthy bakes with Joanne Chang’ and ‘Perfect 12 negotiation tactics with Chris Voss’. The best part about Sessions is that they are included within your MasterClass subscription.

Sessions Bake Like a Pro Joanne Chang

Sessions – Bake Like a Pro – Joanne Chang

You can take your baking to the next level by learning from Joanne Chang on how to make 8 bakery-ready recipes. You will learn the foundations of making cakes, cookies, pies and brioche. Not only that, but you will learn alongside a community of learners and after 30 days you will have learned techniques to take your baking to the next level.

What's The Best Way To Watch MasterClass?

MasterClass is a platform, you can watch and enjoy its classes from any of the following devices;

  • Laptop & Desktop
  • iPhone & Andriod
  • Amazon Fire TV & Apple TV
  • Tablet

There is no best way of watching MasterClass as its streaming and syncing on each device really is seamless. What I would say is that its best you enjoy its classes on the device which you are most enjoying.

Personally, when I took Yotam Ottolenghi’s Middle Eastern Cooking Class I used my laptop as I liked following the cooking classes on a good-sized screen whilst following along in my kitchen. It really does depend on which class you are taking, as some film or acting MasterClasses maybe best on a bigger screen.

And if you are on the go, then the MasterClass app works flawlessly on your phone or tablet, so you enjoy classes whilst on the move or even at home if that’s your preferred device.

So to sum up, there is no perfect way to watch a MasterClass. You have to consider which class you are taking and where you want to be watching it.

The MasterClass App

As I mentioned before, the MasterClass App is an excellent way to enjoy a MasterClass whilst on the go. It’s available for both iOS and Android users who enjoy learning on their commute with the function of audio only and offline viewing mirroring a podcast style experience.

The MasterClass App

When I took the MasterClasses myself I didn’t use the App for learning as I preferred to watch classes via my  laptop in a quiet space at home. But if you enjoy learning on the go or for a passive learning experience the App is ideal.

> You can check out the MasterClass App here

7 Tips To Find The Perfect MasterClass Course

Browse the categories

MasterClass makes it easy for you to browse its collection of great courses, its 180+ classes are organized into 11 categories. You can find classes on the following categories Food, Design & Style, Arts & Entertainment, Music, Business, Sports & Gaming, Writing, Science & Tech, Home & Lifestyle, Community & Government and Wellness.

MasterClass Categories

MasterClass Categories

When you land on the homepage, you can pick any of the topics you are interested in, and MasterClass will show you all the classes in that category and will interest you. It’s a really nice filter and a quick way to find what you are looking for (see image below).

MasterClass classes for you

Video Preview

You will be able to watch a video preview for each MasterClass, that are around 2 minutes long. It will give you a taste of what to expect from the class and the instructor. I must say, its class preview are more like movie trailers than a course introduction and definitely will have you hooked.

MasterClass Serena Williams class preview

MasterClass video preview

Remember though that the purpose of the video preview is to get you hooked and wanting to by a MasterClass membership. So, really try to make a well-rounded decision if MasterClass is right for you.

MasterClass Live

This is the closet thing that MasterClass offers to free classes and trials, MasterClass Live. It’s a place where you watch MasterClasses instructors sharing their knowledge and giving you a feel of how they would be as an instructor. If you do miss the scheduled live recording, then you can always catch up in your own time on previous live recordings.

MasterClass Live

MasterClass Articles

MasterClass offers articles to read for free to all users. Its articles are written posts about MasterClasses related categories like Food, Design & Style, Business, Wellness and more. Some of the articles are written by MasterClasses VIP instructors like ‘How to Make Pureed & Mashed Potatoes With Thomas Keller’ and other articles are written by the Masterclasses staff like ‘Basketball 101: 8 Ways to Improve Your Basketball Skills’

MasterClass Articles

MasterClass Articles


All of the articles are related to one of the classes that MasterClass offers, which is a nice way to introduce a topic to a new user and  potential interest in joining a class.

Celebrity & VIP Instructors

MasterClass video lessons are taught by celebrities and VIPs. Many of its instructors are celebrities and world-renowned experts like Gordon Ramsey and Serena Williams.

Masterclass Instructors

MasterClass instructors

If you want to learn from a well recognized expert, then MasterClass really has a highly attractive pool of instructors teaching its classes. If you are a big fan of one of its instructors, then it is definitely worth checking out a class or two.

New classes

Every month, MasterClass updates its catalogue of classes by adding new classes. This keeps its content fresh and new and means there is always something for its members to be excited about.

MasterClass new classes every month

MasterClass New Classes added every month

Refund your annual subscription

As it is hard to know before buying an annual MasterClass membership if it’s right for you. As there are no free class or trials or even many reviews from previous students. It’s hard to know whether it will be the online platform for you. So, thankfully there is a 30-day satisfaction guarantee. It means you can be rest assured that if it’s not the best option for you, you’ll always have 30-days to get a refund.

MasterClass 30 day satisfaction guarantee

MasterClass 30-day satisfaction guarantee  

In my experience it was really easy and hassle-free, all I need to do was submit a request here, and I was contacted pretty instantly by support. Then I received the refund back in my account in 5 days. They do tell you that it can take between 5-10 Business days for the funds to be deposited back in your account.

CriteriaComment
Ease of use

MasterClass is easy to use, as it’s well-structured and the user experience is smooth.

Opening an account is also straightforward: use your own email or your Facebook or Google account to access MasterClass.

Convenience

There isn’t a set date where courses start, so you can learn at your own pace.

With their iOS app, you’ll be able to download lessons to watch them offline. Strangely, this option isn’t available for Android or desktop users.

Available platforms

You can enjoy MasterClass on your desktop and Apple and Android mobile devices. Android and iOS users have rated the apps with great feedback (4.8 and 4.9 respectably).

It’s also possible to watch the lessons on your smart TV. Since the courses are beautifully produced, you may want to enjoy them on a larger screen.

Official certifications:

MasterClass won’t offer you any completion certificate. Check educational communities like Coursera or edX if you need one.

Categories

MasterClass is currently offering 11 categories with a variety of classes. It includes the following:

Food (16 classes), Design & Style (7 classes), Arts & Entertainment (29 classes), Music (15 classes), Business (8 classes), Sports & Gaming (10 classes), Writing (18 classes), Science & Tech (3 classes), Home & Lifestyle (2 classes), Community & Government (3 classes) and Wellness (8 classes).

Free courses

MasterClass doesn’t offer free courses.

If free courses is what you are looking for, then check out this review for Udemy on what free courses you can’t miss out on.

Content quality

MasterClass creates its own content, and they produce the courses amazingly. However, the content itself is normally nothing groundbreaking. In my opinion classes are more of a TED talk than a proper course.

Languages

The courses are only available in English, with subtitles available. Some courses (about 5) do offer subtitles in Spanish and German.

Instructors

Of course, the instructors (or Celebrities) are a major selling point of MasterClass, they are big figures in their industry.

However, there’s not a teacher-student exchange, it’s more like a seminar from a VIP. Also, in my experience there’s barely any follow up on the questions students may have.

Course requirements

There aren’t any formal requirements for the courses, anyone can join.

Course structure

MasterClass normally offers courses that are 20 lessons long and each lesson is about 10 minutes.

Each course has a video-presentation that you can watch before enrolling. It’s also possible to watch a lesson sample, but you won’t find on the course page much information about it or a syllabus.

Quizzes & tests

MasterClass courses don’t have quizzes that you can complete to assess your progress. There aren’t either any mandatory assignments, but every course will have some sort of optional interactive resource for you to complete.

There is a PDF workbook you can follow to get more juice out of each lesson as it summarizes it’s key learnings.

Payments & refunds

Use PayPal or a credit card (MasterCard, Visa, AmEx or Discovery) to purchase from MasterClass.

A 30-day refund policy is available if you decide within the first month that MasterClass isn’t for you. All you need to do is submit a request here and a member of the MasterClass support team will get in touch. It may take between 5-10 days for the funds to be deposited back into your account.

Support

MasterClass claims to have an around the clock support team, 7 days a week. You can reach them via email. You may have to wait to hear back from them.

MasterClass’ knowledge base is complete and easy to use. Most of the time it answered my questions about MasterClass.

Overall rating

MasterClass is a great platform if you are looking for inspirational videos with very famous professionals. Its video content is highly engaging and will leave you motivated and wanting more. On the other hand, if you are looking for more of an educational and professional learning experience, it may be worth checking out Coursera or Udacity.

Will MasterClass Help Me With My Career?

I doubt any employer will give you a raise or a new position because you’ve watched a MasterClass course.

Do you imagine reaching out to Warner Bros asking for the lead role on its next Batman or Superman movie on the grounds that you watch Samuel L. Jackson 5 hours acting course?

That won’t happen, will it?

But you may pick a couple of good tips from Samuel’s course that may give you a confidence boost, or listening to Samuel’s old stories may motivate you to pursue your acting career.

Is MasterClass Legit?

Totally, MasterClass is a legit company and it does what it says. They won’t scam you. However, as I said during this MasterClass review, its approach is a bit different and far from MOOC (Massive open online course) institutions such as edX, Udemy or Coursera.

If you are a big fan of one of the instructors, and you would like to hear her or his stories, and get a couple of tips on how they perform their craft, you’ll be happy with MasterClass. I do want to be honest and real here, if you are expecting to take a MasterClass to be ready for a new career, you’re going to be disappointed.

MasterClass Chris Hadfield Teaches Space Exploration

MasterClass Chris Hadfield Teaches Space Exploration

Let’s take the MasterClass by Chris Hadfield, former commander of the International Space Station, as an example. Once completing his 8 hour MasterClass you won’t be qualified as an astronaut, but what you will have is some knowledge on space travel and an insight into first-hand experience as life as an astronaut.

Last Thoughts: Is MasterClass Worth It?

My feelings towards MasterClass is mainly positive. Let me explain myself further:

I really appreciate the power of having top instructors (Celebrities & VIPs) to grab someone’s attention, in fact, some of their stories can be very motivational. Also, the course production (the video lessons) is top, it really is one of the best out there for online learning platforms. Some filmmakers may even like their movies to look as good. Plus, the MasterClass annual membership isn’t that expensive considering the number of great courses it offers.

On the other hand, I do think that MasterClass courses won’t teach anyone a skill from zero, they feel more like a seminar with a VIP. On top of that, finding information and feedback from other students is lacking.

If you do decide that an online learning platform offering top educational courses with a focus on career is more up your street, then platforms like, Coursera, edX  or Udacity may be a better fit.

Please, leave a comment below if you have any questions, and I’ll do my best to help you out.

Review Updates:

06/12/22 – Who is MasterClass for? Updated

02/12/22 – MasterClass Filters

30/11/22 – Added FAQ (Second Free Membership)

27/11/22 – MasterClass Gift

25/11/22 – How to Cancel a MasterClass membership

24/11/22 – Added FAQ

23/11/22 – MasterClass 2-FOR-1 Cyber Monday Offer

21/11/22 – MasterClass categories

18/11/22 – Gift membership 30-day money-back guarantee

16/11/22 – MasterClass Free Sneak Peek

15/11/22 – MasterClass 2-FOR-1 offer

28/10/22 – MasterClass classes

21/10/22 – Added FAQ

19/10/22 – Who is MasterClass for?

17/10/22 – Added a PRO to review

07/10/22 – Added FAQ

26/09/22 – MasterClass Try out some of our classes

23/09/22 – Added Thomas Keller MasterClass

11/09/22 – Added Ron Finley MasterClass

08/09/22 – Added Neil Gaiman MasterClass

06/09/22 – Added Annie Leibovitz Photography MasterClass

01/09/22 – Popular MasterClass classes

25/08/22 – MasterClass Guest Passes

17/08/22 – General Update

10/08/22 – What’s in every MasterClass membership?

04/08/22 – General Update

25/07/22 – General Update

19/07/22 – Added FAQ

10/07/22 – Most Popular MasterClasses

07/07/22 – Most Popular MasterClasses

30/06/22 – The MasterClass App

09/06/22 – MasterClass up to 35% promo bar

11/05/22 – Updated MasterClass Verdict

09/05/22 – Updated MasterClass up to 35% promo bar

04/05/22 – MasterClass up to 35% promo bar

04/01/22 – MasterClass Sessions Updated

22/03/22 – MasterClass Sessions

16/03/22 – What’s The Best Way To Watch MasterClass?

10/03/22 – MasterClass Promo

12/02/22 – MasterClass At Work

03/01/22 – MasterClass pricing

23/01/22 – MasterClass today

24/12/21 – MasterClass 2-FOR-1 offer

22/11/21 – Skillshare Vs MasterClass Article

28/10/21 – Who is MasterClass for?

24/10/21 – What Classes Can I find on MasterClass?

20/10/21 – MasterClass in detail

05/10/21 – MasterClass Articles

16/09/21 – MasterClass Grants Application

13/09/21 – MasterClass for Business

30/08/21 – MasterClass 30-Day Refund

28/08/21 – MasterClass Last Thoughts

15/08/21 – MasterClass Video

11/08/21 – My MasterClass Experience

05/08/21 – MasterClass Pricing

04/08/21 – MasterClass Verdict

24/07/21 – MasterClass for Businesses

07/07/21 – MasterClass Pricing, Verdict & Classes at MasterClass

Catherine Cooke

Hey. I am Catherine and I have been working as a freelancer for many years now. In 2005, I graduated from a BA honours in Art & Design from BCU and then went onto complete a Master’s Degree in Teaching from UEL. The skills I gained from learning and teaching have led me to create Upskillwise, a place for learners like myself to find the best possible resources and courses to train and upskill themselves, either personally or professionally. If you have a question, please feel free to ask me anything or leave me a comment.

Alternatives

Udemy: You won’t find celebrities teaching at Udemy, and the video courses may be sloppier produced, but when it comes to content, you can be assured that some of its courses are going to be more practical and effective than MasterClasses’ – they actually will teach you something.

Skillshare: Most instructors are normal people, however, Skillshare has some (almost) celebrities teaching courses, and the course quality is actually very high. For example, you can watch an SEO course from Rand Fishkin – probably the most famous SEO expert out there.

Coursera: If you are after a platform that offers more formal education (e.g. accredited completion certificates) and has better-structured courses and educational goals in place, Coursera (or edX) may be what you are looking for.

FAQ

How much does MasterClass cost?

MasterClasses offers 3 annual memberships starting with the Individual plan for $180 a year ($15/month) then there is the Duo for $240 a year ($20/month) and finally the Family subscription for $276 a year ($23/month). All MasterClass memberships give you unlimited access to its catalog of 150+ classes from 11 categories which you can watch from your computer, TV, phone or tablet.

Can you get MasterClass for free?

Sadly no, MasterClass doesn’t offer a free trial, but it does offer a 30-day money-back guarantee. If you do decide within the first month that MasterClass isn’t for you, you can submit a refund request here.

Which is the highest rated MasterClass?

The most popular and highest rated MasterClass among users is the Anna Wintour Teaching Creativity and Leadership. Anna Wintour teaches you how to lead with vision and creativity and gives unprecedented access to her world. The MasterClass is 2 hours 36 minutes and comprises of 12 video lessons.

Where can I watch MasterClass?

With MasterClass, you can learn anytime and anywhere. You can learn using your smartphone, computer, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and Roku streaming media players. You also have the option to download your favorite lessons and can watch on the plan or listen during your commute in audio-only mode.

Is MasterClass easy to cancel?

The short answer is Yes! In your account settings you can click on the ‘Cancel Membership’ button which you’ll find under the membership section of the page. From there you will be guided through the steps to cancel your automatic renewal.

Can I send MasterClass as a gift?

Yes, absolutely you can gift a MasterClass membership to a loved one. There are multiple ways to give your MasterClass electronic gift card membership either immediately or select a special date.

How do I get the second free membership?

When you purchase a membership you will automatically get a free annual membership to share with the one you purchased. Then you can send your gift to your loved one, and they will get unlimited access to MasterClass for 1 year.

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marilyn
marilyn
15 days ago

Thanks, for the nice articles

Michael
Michael
22 days ago

Really loved it! Thank you so much, keep up the work!

Kevin S Lester
Kevin S Lester
1 month ago

Fantastic! Really pleased with the inquiry service and outcomes; very thorough, educational, and extraordinarily helpful.

Natalia
Natalia
3 months ago

I do not recommend! And terrible support that doesn’t answer emails.

Lisa
Lisa
6 months ago

For the food classes how are we informed about the food we would need for each lesson?

Pippa
Pippa
10 months ago

So not impressed with Masterclass find the fact that if you gift master class the FIRST thing whoever you gift to is asked for are their card details. Im sorry that’s so grim. TO avoid any embarrassment i won’t be buying it again for anyone.

Rose Thrush
Rose Thrush
11 months ago

CAUTION! if you go for the 2 for one membership. When mine was auto renewed, I cancelled and that was hassle free. However, the gift membership was also auto renewed and both were billed to my account. I’m still working on getting the gift membership refunded. They said that they could only refund the gift membership if the recipient requested it. (WHAT??). It’s my credit card!!

Zero
Zero
8 months ago

I’m not gonna lie I haven’t bought it yet but this response is the most common I see on peoples issues wether it’s billing genuine issues or feedback on the product itself… and if I’m being honest it looks a lot like a big middle finger from an outsiders perspective and makes you look as if your best interests were never with the customer an more with there wallet. When your customer gives you feedback shouldn’t be you nearly disregarding there experience and redirecting to other people learning from it due to your lack of willingness to see there’s a… Read more »

Linda Kay
Linda Kay
11 months ago

I’m looking for a gift for my 15 year old granddaughter who is into drama and acting. I was looking at the Natalie Portman Master Course. Is this something that would be appropriate for a 15 year old???

Barb
Barb
11 months ago

Thinking my 88 year old mom would enjoy this – she’s online – but has typing issue – do you have to make /use a password ?

vered peretz
vered peretz
1 year ago

I’m sorry, after reading everything about MasterClass, I’m still puzzled: Does each course have a cost or is it all under the yearly membership? And if there is a fee to register to each MasterClass after registering for the year…why is it completely hidden from their website and from anyone advertising, reviewing, or criticizing it?

Andrea bechard
Andrea bechard
1 year ago

I feel like this is a scam, all the classes are free on YouTube. Looked like it was $15 per month but they charge you for a full year so there is no way to cancel if you don’t like it.

Lisa V.
Lisa V.
1 year ago

Hi, I looked at your site to see if anyone else felt the way I did. So far, most of the classes I’ve listened to are really lectures but no instruction or steps to follow. It starts to seem like a sort of: here’s what I did kind of lecture. I have started dozens and quit out of boredom. I loved Billy Collins, though, and I went through the poetry workshop twice. It was varied, not just him talking about his own journey, and it gave the listener assignments to complete. The Dog Trainer, Brandon MacMillan was also full of… Read more »

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