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There are a lot of elearning communities out there that you can choose from, and Udemy and Udacity are among the top choices for many. However, choosing the right one is not always easy.
You may be asking yourself, What are their prices?, How do Udemy vs Udacity courses compare?, Which one will help me grow professionally?
To answer all these questions and help you out choosing the best platform for your goals, I’ve created this in-depth comparison of Udemy and Udacity.
Let’s get into it!
Table of Content
Udemy Vs Udacity Summary
Udemy is best known for its broad selection of courses, covering more than 210,000+ categories and dozens of subcategories from Python, Development, to Design to Music and much more. In contrast, Udacity has an established reputation for its high-quality 97 Nanodegree programs, which are co-created in collaboration, with the world’s most innovative tech companies and therefore taught by industry leaders. Udemy offers a small pool of its courses for free, which is an ideal place to get started before purchasing an individual course starting at $19.99 and can go up to $199.99. On top of that, it offers the Personal Plan starting at $16.58 USD per month, which comes with a 7-day free trial and unlimited access to 8,000+ courses. Like Udemy, Udacity offers a bunch of its beginner courses for free to give learners a taste of its Nanodegree programs. Udacity’s subscription plans gives learners full access to the platform, personalized project reviews and project certificates. Its individual plan costs $249 per user/per month or $2,390 per user/per year. It offers 3 different plans for Business, the Team Plan costing $2,390 per user/per year, Team Pro costs $3,830 per user/per year and the Enterprise Plan is Custom priced. A 7-day refund policy is avalible in case you changed your mind.
Round 1: Which One Is More Popular?
Popularity is not really a category that should make us choose one provider over the other, as sometimes popular products or services aren’t always the best choice ‘Anyone remembers the Facebook phone?’. Exactly, but saying that it’s still a good way to assess the market and compare the platforms against each other, there’s one clear winner: Udemy.
Google Trends Udemy vs Udacity
Udemy was founded in 2010, and it’s the biggest online learning community out there. It currently offers 204,000+ courses on a wide variety of categories from Business to Lifestyle, Music and much more. It has a growing community of 54 million+ learners and its courses are available in 75 languages.
Udacity however, was founded in 2011 when two Stanford instructors decided to offer one of its subjects for free to the world. Since then, this privately-owned platform has grown: 12 million users have enrolled, it employs more than 300 people, and over 100,000 students graduated from one of its programs.
We kick things off with Udemy taking the lead at 1-0.
Round 2: Ease-of-Use & Interface
I don’t know for you, but for me having an easy to use interface and a platform that makes my life easy is a great plus. So let me tell you which one is the most straightforward.
Registering at Udemy is dead simple, add your email, password and name and you are good to go – you’ll have to check (and confirm) the email confirmation Udemy will send you.
Udemy account registration process
The registration process at Udacity is similar, you’ll need to type your name, last name, email address password and set your birthday. However, it also gives you the option to register using your Facebook or your Gmail account if you prefer.
Backend & Design
After you register with Udemy and browse around its platform, you’ll notice that the interface is well-structured and easy to follow. It’s really helpful that you can create your own Categories to manage different courses about the same topic (e.g. to keep together Photoshop courses in a workspace or your photography ones in another one).
Using the course interface is also easy and pleasant. They have one of the best video players I’ve seen, you can change the video speed, enable subtitles, set the quality or even take notes at certain moments of the video (see screenshot below).
Adding a note to a lesson with Udemy
The way lessons are organized and presented in the right-hand menu is very useful (see screenshot above). It’s possible for you to tick and untick each one to track your course progress.
You can use Udemy from any modern internet browser on your desktop or laptop, or use the app for Apple or Android apps available for free.
Udacity also has a very easy-to-use system, however, it doesn’t come with a system to create lists of courses and categorize them but since it doesn’t have as many courses you probably won’t need this feature.
Udacity video structure
However, Udacity has a clever way to structure the lessons. First of all, you’ll have a brief text introduction about the lesson, the resources can be found on the left-hand-side menu, and there is a summary with the concepts too.
It seems to use the YouTube video player to play the videos, and that’s good news because it’s an advanced player that will let you change the playback speed, manage your subtitles or even decide on the video quality.
At the moment of writing this Udacity vs Udemy comparison, there aren’t any mobile apps available for Udacity as they are working on a new experience for the mobile environment.
After only two rounds the score is left with a point each at 1-1
Round 3: Udemy vs Udacity Courses
It’s difficult to say who’s got the best courses around, but let’s try to answer a couple of questions, so you know whether to choose Udacity or Udemy.
With so many courses and programs available, it’s challenging to find which one you should use. But some elearning communities make it easier than others to find the relevant information.
Udemy has a vast collection of courses, and it does a good job of categorizing them into 13 main sections (and dozens of subsections). Udemy has one of the most advanced filtering systems I’ve seen. You can filter out courses by Ratings, Video Duration, Topic, Subcategory, Level, Language, Price, Features and Subtitles.
Udemy course filters
It’s also very straightforward to read reviews from previous course students, the classic star system grading courses from 0 to 5. Each course has a video introduction that will let you know more about the course structure and the instructor.
Udacity’s catalogue isn’t as extensive as Udemy’s, still, there are 7 main categories for their 40 something available programs. Udacity filters aren’t as advanced, you can narrow down your search by topic, free vs paid, course duration, level, and skills that you need to learn – probably it doesn’t need as many filters as the offer is a bit more limited.
Finding reviews for Udacity’s programs on the website is a bit more difficult, as they are located on the course landing page. Sadly, several of the courses are too new to have reviews, so it feels a bit more challenging to find out what past students think of its courses and programs.
Each Udacity program has a video with an overall presentation of the program and feedback from already graduated students. However, it feels a bit more like an ad. It’s very easy to find the course information and a detailed overview of the course syllabus. There is also a section about the course instructors for each program.
At this moment, Udacity has about 40 programs and around 200 free courses, of course, this can’t be compared with the 150,000 (11,000 for free) Udemy courses. Be aware that the approach of these two platforms are different, as Udacity creates its own content (Udemy doesn’t).
Become a Data Scientist – This Nanodegree program will give you real-world data science experience to build your portfolio and advance your data science career. A 4-month program with a 4.7 out of 5 rating from past students.
Become a Data Analyst – In this Nanodegree program you will use Python, SQL, and statistics to uncover insights and create data-driven solutions. A 4-month program with a 4.6 out of 5 rating from past students.
Business Analytics– In this Nanodegree program you will gain foundational data skills applicable to any industry. It’s a 3-month program with a 4.7 out of 5 rating from past students.
Become a Digital Marketer – In this Nanodegree program you will gain real-world experience to run live campaigns as you learn from top experts in the field. It’s a 3-month program with a 4.7 out of 5 rating from past students.
Round 4: Free Courses At Udemy & Udacity
Finding the best free courses isn’t always easy. It definitely depends on what exactly it is that you are looking. If you are looking for quality over quantity then that is something entirely different. Let’s find out exactly what Udemy and Udacity offer.
The right answer to this question really depends on what you are looking for. Udemy used to be the platform that offered the biggest pool of free courses, but as of the beginning of 2020 they made a change to its free courses to help learners distinguish the value of both free and paid courses. Currently, Udemy offers 500+ free courses that have a simplified learning experience compared to the paid courses. For example, free courses do not offer a certificate of completion or course features like the Q&A.
Udemy Free Courses
A free course is still a great way to try out the Udemy platform and the instructor teaching the course and whether you want to invest more time and money into the course, instructor and Udemy.
Udacity offers just over 200 courses on its platform, but this is to be expected as Udacity doesn’t have as many courses as Udemy.
Udemy supports many languages (75) and as you can see in the image below it even has a filter to let you find courses by language. Among others, you’ll find content in English, Portuguese, Spanish, German and much more.
Udemy Language Filter
Even if Udacity’s backend can be set up in several languages (English, Spanish, German, Japanese, Portuguese, etc), the reality is that I wasn’t able to find any courses in different languages than English.
Round 6: Udemy Vs Udacity Certificates & Career Advice
If you are considering Udemy or Udacity for their completion certificates, let me tell you that neither offers official (accredited) certificates.
With Udemy you’ll be able to earn a completion certificate once you’ve completed a course, however, it (most likely) won’t be taken too seriously by potential employers since Udemy lacks formal tests or proper project grading.
Udemy certificate example
Udacity also offers unaccredited completion certificates. However, its certificates are most likely to be valued by the industry because Udacity partners with big companies to put together programs (e.g. Mercedes, Google or Nvidia), and Udacity Nanodegrees are harder to pass (take months of constant work) than an average Udemy course.
Udacity’s career advice
On top of that, Udacity also offers career advising, coaching and help writing a CV, this can be a great help for some to professionally move forward.
You can be the most hard-working student, but you won’t be able to reach your maximum potential unless you have a great teacher and a good classroom environment to rely on.
At Udemy, pretty much everyone that matches its formal course requirement (and is willing to work very hard on creating a course) can become an instructor. But of course, you’ll need to prove some knowledge and your course will need to pass a quality assessment.
It’s possible to interact with the instructor of the course and other students, but to be honest, the engagement isn’t the best and it really varies from course to course.
Udacity is very different. To become an instructor you’ll need to be able to prove that you have a lot of professional experience in your field. Additionally, Udacity curates its own content partnering with big organizations such as Amazon, Uber or Google – you can imagine that the average Joe isn’t behind its courses.
At Udacity you’ll be able to interact with other students and the course mentors, who are there to help you with any question you may have. I can’t of course vouch for every program mentor and student at Udacity, but I have the feeling that their community is more active.
And Udacity is back in the game, the score is now 3-4.
Round 8: Is Udemy Or Udacity’s Support Better
I have to say I am a big fan of Udemy’s support system, it has pretty much a help article for any possible question you may have about its platform. Support articles are also generally very transparent, or at least that’s my impression (e.g. pricing, certificates, etc.).
On the other hand, chatting to a support agent at Udemy isn’t that easy, or at least I’ve failed at finding the right contact page. You can email for help at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Udacity’s support system is similar, well organized and easy to navigate. It also provided help articles about any question I had about its elearning community.
Contacting the support team at Udacity is much simpler. You only need to head over its help section and click on the help chatbot button, after you type in your question, you’ll be able to reach out to a (human) support agent for help – it may take longer to get an answer if you are a free user.
Many businesses and organizations like to offer their employees a source to keep on learning and develop their professional skills. Udemy and Udacity aren’t an exception.
Udemy has a plan company-focused, it provides access to employees to over 130,000 Udemy courses for $360 per year (minimum of 5 users required). There is the Enterprise plan that will give users access to content in other languages (Spanish, French, German, Portuguese and Japanese), create custom content and set career paths – expect these plans to be super expensive.
Udemy for business plans
Udacity also offers a plan for Enterprises where you get an account manager, customization of Udacity programs to your business’ needs and personal on-boarding. I have no clue how much it all is, but I bet it’s more expensive than Udemy’s solution.
Ultimately, what makes the final decision on choosing an elearning platform, is how much the course or program is? For some of us, purchasing an individual course is favored over subscribing to a monthly or annual subscription plan.
Desktop, iOS & Android
Individual Courses: $19.00 to $199.99 a course
Personal Plan: $168 per month
Individual Plan: $249 per month OR $2,390 per year
Business Plans: Team – $2,390 per year, Team Pro – $3,830 per year, Enterprise – Custom Priced
Udemy offers the option to pay individually for each course(courses cost between $12.99 to $199.99) and gives you lifetime access. Or if you prefer a subscription plan, which gives you full access to the platform, then the Personal Plan costs $168 per month.
Since September 2023, Udacity changed its pricing model, offering only subscription plans to individuals and businesses. The individual plan gives users access to the whole platform which you can choose to pay for monthly or annually. The 3 different business plans a priced per year, per user. This new offering works out significantly cheaper than its previously priced Nanodegree programs.
That leaves are final score at 5-5 which means we have a draw on our hands.
Bonus Round: Udemy & Udacity Alternatives
It maybe the case that neither Udemy nor Udacity are right for you. So, I put together some alternative online learning platforms to consider as you might find what you are looking for with those alternate options.
For those learners looking to get an accredited certificate, Coursera may be a good option as it partners with secondary educational institutions like Stanford, The Imperial College of London or Duke University.
Coursera is a good alternative to Udemy and Udacity
You can join for free most Coursera courses, however, if you are looking to get a certificate, you will need to pay for the course (or program). There are different types of elearning programs available: individual courses (cost $29 to $100), Specializations (cost is $39 to $89 a month), Coursera yearly subscriptions ($399) and complete degrees (starting at $15,000).
For anyone looking for engaging classes taught by celebrities and VIPs on a variety of topics, MasterClass may be the right option for you. Fancy learning basketball from Stephen Curry, songwriting from Alicia Keys or middle eastern cooking from Yotam Ottolenghi.
MasterClass is a good alternative to Udemy and Udacity
You can sign up for one of MasterClasses memberships which will give you access to its catalog of thousands of video lessons across 11 categories from celebrity and VIP instructors. All its memberships are billed annually starting with the Individual plan costing $180 a year(working out at $15 a month) If you do decide within the first 30 days that MasterClass isn’t for you, you can request a refund.
Datacamp is an online platform that specializes in topics like data science and analytics. You can learn data skills at your own pace, from non-coding essentials to data science and machine learning. It offers courses that are taught by expert instructors from Datacamp and top institutions.
Datacamp is an alternative to Udemy and Udacity
It offers a variety of subscription plans, from a Basic free plan to a Premium paid plan which can be billed for monthly or yearly. The platform offers a couple of team and business plans for smaller teams and bigger organizations.
If you want a cheaper alternative to both Udacity and Udemy that works under a subscription model, you can check Skillshare. This elearning platform for creatives and entrepreneurs has over 34+ courses with its paid plan.
Skillshare a cheaper alternative to Udemy and Udacity
Be aware that Skillshare doesn’t issue completion certificates, but some of its courses are created by top industry professionals and big companies like MailChimp, Google or Moz.
Hopefully, after reading this detailed Udacity vs Udemy comparison has cleared most or some of your questions about each of the online learning platforms. I have highlighted below the strengths and weaknesses of each platform to give you a good overview to takeaway with you after reading this article.
Affordable: Udemy courses are really affordable and start as little as $11.99 and go up to $199.99.
Free Courses: Udemy is offering close to 600 free courses on a selection of topics from WordPress to Investing, Goal Setting and more.
Refund Policy: It’s generous refund policy of 30 days means if you change your mind in the first month you’ll get a full refund
Wide Selection: With more than 213K+ courses on 13 categories and dozens of sub categories, Udemy is the biggest online learning platform on the market.
Non-Accredited Certificates: Udemy does offer a certificate when you successfully complete a course, but it won’t be accredited by an external partner (e.g. University or Organization).
Lack of Quality: The quality of some of its courses may not be to the highest standard because anyone can teach at Udemy. So, it’s important you research your teacher and the course before committing.
When you successfully complete a paid Udemy course, you’ll receive a certificate of completion. This certificate is just an acknowledgment of completing the course. It isn’t an accredited or validated certificate as Udemy isn’t partnered with an external University or Institution, but it is a recognition of you completing a course and future employers may appreciate it.
Please leave a comment below if you have any questions, and I’ll do my best to help you out.
09/23/23 – Udemy vs Udacity Pricing Updated
08/07/23 – Udemy vs Udacity Summary Updated
07/03/23 – Udacity Pros Updated
29/05/23 – Udemy Vs Udacity Summary
02/05/23 – FAQ: Are Udemy certificates valid?
30/03/23 – Datacamp Alternative
01/03/23 – Udemy vs Udacity Pros & Cons
02/09/22 – Which is the most popular Udemy vs Udacity?
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.