Maybe you’ve decided to learn a new skill or earn an advanced professional degree. Or maybe you’re just thinking about switching career paths and trying to explore different courses to see what catches your interest.
The good news is that you no longer have to travel miles away or give up your source of income to enroll in an institution and complete your desired course.
You can advance your skills and knowledge base from wherever you are with online learning platforms like DataCamp or Coursera. These platforms allow you to learn at your own pace and are much cheaper than traditional brick-and-mortar learning institutions.
Since Coursera and DataCamp are two of the best online learning providers available today, it can be confusing to decide which platform is right for you.
In this post, I’ll be providing an in-depth review of both platforms to see how they measure up in different areas. I’ll be taking a look at their various features and core differences.
By the end, you’ll be able to tell which e-learning website between the two is the better option for you.
We live in a world where data is all around us and more abundant than ever before. And in that data, there’s a wealth of information and insights just waiting to be extracted.
The future and all of its promises belong to those who can tap into that data and make good use of it. DataCamp understands this, which is why it’s on a mission to make data skills available to everyone.
The virtual learning platform was founded by Jonathan Cornelissen, Dieter De Mesmaeker, and Martijn Threuwissen in 2013. Ever since, it has focused on providing opportunities for people to learn a wide array of skills from programming to data science.
DataCamp offers a number of courses that aim to teach you a new skill or improve your existing skills so you can compete more effectively in the professional world. It provides online courses targeting both specific knowledge areas and comprehensive career tracks.
The latter option is designed to prepare you for a job in a given career path from start to finish. But regardless of the option you choose, you’re pretty much guaranteed high-quality education and skill development with DataCamp.
With over 80 million learners across the globe, Coursera is easily one of the largest online learning platforms available today. It was founded by two Stanford professors, Daphne Koller and Andrew Ng in 2012.
Since then, the platform has been providing world-class education at an affordable rate for individuals and organizations. Coursera offers various learning opportunities from job-relevant certificates to guided projects, degree programs, and course specializations.
No matter where you are or who you are, you can take advantage of Coursera’s offerings to transform your personal and professional life. The platform partners with hundreds of highly-ranked learning institutions and companies to provide you with a flexible, first-rate learning experience.
Coursera’s ultimate goal is to eliminate barriers to good education for everyone and to drive progress by empowering people to reimagine what’s possible.
If you’re looking to acquire in-demand career skills and experience that can place you in a better position in the global marketplace, Coursera has a host of programs to help you achieve that.
You can earn recognized credentials in various fields from the comfort of your home without accumulating a ton of debt along the way. Learning happens on your own schedule and at a reasonable price.
The last thing you want is a learning platform that’s difficult to navigate because it’ll negatively impact the experience. It’ll also make it harder for you to acquire the knowledge you seek.
This is why ease of use is a major factor to mull over when selecting an e-learning site. So how do DataCamp and Coursera compare on this front?
DataCamp is fun and extremely easy to use both in terms of navigation and user-friendliness. It features a simplistic and sleek design that makes finding anything you’re looking for a walk in the park.
Whether you want to browse through the course lists, find out more about DataCamp’s pricing, or check out the “about” section, the entire interface is designed to be intuitive and beginner-friendly.
Like its counterpart, Coursera also scores very highly when it comes to how easy the platform is to use. The user interface and experience leave nothing to be desired.
After signing up, it’ll take you only a few moments to get your bearings and figure out how to navigate from one point to the other. Every button and feature is perfectly placed so they’re easy to locate and identify at all times.
Both platforms offer excellent, user-centric designs that make navigation and learning a breeze. So it’s a draw for this category.
What kinds of courses can you find on both platforms and who are those courses targeted at?
Let’s find out.
Coursera proudly markets its partnership with universities, colleges, and organizations that allow it to offer diverse learning opportunities to its users. It has a wide array of areas of specializations that you can choose from.
Although Coursera is more commonly known for its certificates, it also offers a variety of advanced educational degrees from accredited institutions. You can earn university and college credits or take certified courses and specializations to boost your skill level.
The platform offers a range of courses from beginner to advanced level including bachelor’s and master’s degrees.
DataCamp’s curriculum is targeted towards people who want to learn data science and other programming-related fields online.
It combines flexible learning with hands-on projects and accessible learning materials for persons and businesses looking to improve their performance.
The platform focuses more on engaging students at the beginner level. Each course or specialization is designed to be completed in a short amount of time.
To help you decide which courses to select, DataCamp offers a career and skill track based on different areas of interest.
Coursera wins this category. DataCamp is more of a niche learning platform, while Coursera offers a broader curriculum. This makes it a better choice for both people who are looking to learn some basics or advance their knowledge to a higher degree.
Depending on what you’re looking for, you might prefer DataCamp’s course catalog to Coursera’s.
Here’s how they both compare in this area.
DataCamp currently offers over 350 courses and more than a dozen career tracks and 50 skill tracks.
Courses consist of individual lectures and project exercises that you can take. As previously mentioned, the courses on DataCamp are mostly centered around data science and programming.
Some of the course topics the platform offers include:
- Introduction to Machine Learning
- Python Data Science Toolbox
- Intermediate R
- Introduction to SQL
Skill tracks offer a curated series of courses to help you master a particular skill. Examples of skill tracks available on DataCamp include:
- Applied Finance
- Statistics Fundamentals
- Marketing Analytics
- Data visualization
Similar to skill tracks, career tracks are specifically designed to help you launch a career in a specific field such as:
- Data Analyst
- Machine Learning Scientist
- Python Programmer
To help you get started, DataCamp provides a free assessment test to gauge your skill level. It then recommends which courses to start with based on what you want to learn and how to progress from there.
With over 3,000 courses, specializations, guided projects, professional certificates, and degrees to choose from, Coursera’s offerings are very diverse. The scope of its courses spans various fields of study such as:
- Information Technology
- Arts and Humanities
- Physical Science and Engineering
- Math and Logic
- Social Sciences
- Language Learning
- And more
Coursera also offers degrees for Bachelor’s and Master’s programs that are well-recognized by established institutions. You’ll need to complete application processes and pay tuition in time to qualify for an online degree then spend a few years completing the program.
On the other hand, specializations take a few months to complete, while courses can be completed in a matter of hours or days depending on your learning speed.
Coursera has an edge over DataCamp because it has a wider range of courses and degrees to choose from, especially if you’re interested in non-STEM fields.
Before you enroll in any course, it’s important to know the credentials of the people who’ll be teaching you. The more established the instructor is, the greater the confidence you’ll have in the education you’re receiving.
All the instructors on Coursera are professional educators from renowned universities. They have a wealth of experience to offer both as teachers and skilled workers in the field they’re providing lessons on.
You can easily view the bio for the instructors teaching a specific course on Coursera. You’ll also be able to see what universities, colleges, and organizations they’re affiliated with.
The degrees they’ve earned, their level of experience with the subject matter, and other credentials are also included in each instructor’s bio.
The instructors on Coursera are touted as subject matter experts who come from various organizations and universities. The platform has profiles for all of its tutors featuring a brief bio with details about the instructor’s background.
However, some of the bios can be a bit vague. Rather than seeing a list or summary of the instructor’s industry experience and degrees, you might just find a title showing their occupation and the name of the place where they work.
Coursera is the clear winner here because it has established instructors and professors with proven credentials on its payroll. You can be confident that you’re being taught by actual experts and that the education you’re getting is top-notch.
DataCamp provides very little information about its tutors which can leave you questioning the quality of instruction you’ll be getting if you sign up for a course.
Taking a course is always a nice idea. But what’s even better is having some sort of certificate to show for your troubles at the end of the day. Here’s what both platforms offer in this regard.
DataCamp doesn’t offer a professional license, degree, or certificate after you complete a course, skill track, or career track. However, it does provide a statement of accomplishment for each course that you complete.
You also earn a statement of accomplishment after the completion of a skill or career track. Once you finish the prescribed coursework and your projects get verified, you can download your statement for no extra charge.
This statement of accomplishment can be added to your resume, CV, or professional profile on platforms like LinkedIn.
If you need to grow your career by learning online, Coursera offers you a vast library of accredited programs. After completing the course, specialization, or advanced program, Coursera will award you real degrees and verified certificates that are widely recognized.
To make things even better, Coursera’s certifications come with the name of the institution-Cambridge, Oxford, Yale, etc-that provided the course. This kind of thing can have additional pull when added to your portfolio or resume.
If your motivation for taking a class online is to earn a recognized certificate or accredited degree to boost your educational and professional standing, Coursera is a better choice than DataCamp.
Your budget is going to play a key role in deciding which learning platform you use. So let’s take a look at Coursera and DataCamp subscription plans and prices.
Although Coursera allows you to explore hundreds of courses for free, you won’t be able to submit projects or participate in peer-graded assignments. You also won’t be able to take any tests or receive a certification for the completed course unless you select the paid option.
For guided projects, Coursera’s subscription plan starts at $9.99 per project. Specializations and professional certificate courses have a starting cost of $39 per month.
MasterTrack Certificates—university-issued credits and certificates—start at $2,000, and Bachelor’s/Master’s degrees have a starting cost of $9,000.
You can also take advantage of Coursera’s free trial to learn more about a course or specialization before deciding whether you want to pay to access the full coursework.
In addition, Coursera offers “Coursera Plus,” an all-encompassing plan that gives you unrestricted access to most of the projects and courses available on the platform. It costs $59/month or $399/year.
For teams, Coursera for Business offers custom pricing options for enterprises and a $399/year plan for small teams.
For up-to-date information about the prices of its offerings, feel free to consult Coursera’s pricing page.
The prices for DataCamp courses vary depending on whether you opt for a personal or business plan. Under the personal plan, subscription prices are divided into three categories: free, standard, and premium.
The Free plan gives you access to the first chapter of all courses, skill assessments, three practice challenges, and seven projects. To progress beyond that, you’ll need to cough up money for a paid plan.
With the Standard Plan, you get access to all DataCamp courses, career tracks, skill tracks, live code alongs, unlimited practice challenges, and more. It’s priced at $12.42/month billed annually, while the Premium plan costs $33.25/ month billed annually.
There are two available subscription options under the Business plan. The first is the Professional tier which costs $25/month for a minimum of two users.
The second option is called Enterprise and you can either pay per user or per hour of learning depending on the scale of your organization and your particular needs. Feel free to check out DataCamp’s pricing page for updated pricing information.
I have to give the win to DataCamp when it comes to price because it’s more affordable than Coursera. Also, DataCamp’s pricing structure is more transparent.
Do either or both platforms offer access to courses and learning materials offline and on a range of devices? Let’s find out.
You can use DataCamp on your computer as well as your smartphone, so you can take your learning with you anywhere. You’ll find the same courses, tutorial videos, and other materials that you need across all your devices.
You just need to sign in to access DataCamp on your mobile, laptop, or tablet. However, the platform doesn’t allow offline access, so you’ll need to have a network connection at all times to use it.
Like DataCamp, Coursera is also available on mobile, Linux, MacOS, and Windows operating systems. You can either download the appropriate app or simply sign in to your Coursera account from your browser and do your learning from there.
If you want, you can download your coursework and learning materials on your device, so you can easily access them offline whenever you like.
Although both platforms have dedicated mobile and PC apps, Coursera wins this round because it provides offline accessibility.
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You don’t want your learning to be interrupted due to one issue or the other. And if you do experience problems along your learning journey, you need to be able to troubleshoot easily.
The level of support offered by your chosen online learning platform can determine how easy it’ll be to resolve any issues you encounter and, ultimately, could impact your learning experience.
Coursera has a dedicated support team that’s eager to help you hit your goals and advance your skills with the platform. All you have to do is reach out to them with your issue, and they’ll take it from there.
The Coursera website also has a help center that can be accessed by clicking on the “Help Center” tab. You’ll then be taken to a repository where you can find articles and guides showing you how to solve any problems with your Coursera account and app.
When you click on the “Your DataCamp Account” or “Help Center” tab on the website, you’ll be directed to the support page window. Here you can find detailed information on a wide range of issues and how to resolve them.
You can also contact DataCamp’s support team for help if need be.
Both platforms offer comprehensive and quality support to their users. Contacting the customer service staff is an easy and pleasant experience on both DataCamp and Coursera, so they both share the win in this category.
- Both platforms offer great content and are easy to use.
- Coursera and DataCamp are compatible with different devices.
- Both provide interactive learning experiences with video materials, test projects, graded assignments, and peer discussion boards.
- DataCamp and Coursera use skilled and experienced professionals to teach various courses.
- They both offer free plans where you can explore a course and see if it’s right for you before paying for it.
- Coursera offers recognized certificates and accredited degrees upon completion of a course, while DataCamp offers a statement of accomplishment.
- DataCamp is a niche educational platform that mainly focuses on STEM-related courses. Coursera on the other hand caters to diverse fields of study.
- Coursera is more transparent about the credentials of its instructors.
- DataCamp only offers courses, skills, and career specializations, while Coursera also offers advanced degrees.
- Coursera allows monthly billing, while DataCamp’s plans are billed annually.
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- It provides in-depth, from-the-basics training for those looking to get into data science.
- It conducts skill assessment tests to see where you stand before recommending the right courses for you.
- Has a transparent pricing structure.
- It runs code in your browser so no additional downloads or app installation is needed.
- It’s pretty affordable.
- The free content is very restrictive.
- It doesn’t offer any other content beyond data science and programming courses.
- It provides diverse learning opportunities across different fields.
- It offers accredited certificates and degrees from acclaimed universities and colleges.
- It allows you to audit the courses you want to take.
- It employs professors and teachers with strong academic backgrounds and work experience.
- It offers courses in multiple languages including English, Russian, French, and Spanish.
- The pricing is a bit steep compared to DataCamp.
- The free plan doesn’t give you access to full courses.
As you can see, choosing either DataCamp or Coursera would be a good investment because both platforms do an amazing job of helping you gain new knowledge.
However, when it comes down to it, Coursera is the better platform because it has more diverse course options and an excellent team of instructors. It also offers recognized certificates and accredited degrees upon course completion.