Best Teaching Courses 

by Charlie Saville

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Teaching is a profession that can change lives. We’ve all had that teacher who taught us something that changed us forever.

But is it possible to learn how to teach online? And if so, what is the best way of going about it? I’ve spent some time researching, testing and sampling teaching courses online, and I’m here to share the very best with you

Alongside describing the best online teaching courses, I’ll also go over the cost, how long it takes to become a teacher, a guide on what to look out for in your teaching course and more.

As an aside, none of these courses are professional qualifications. The pathway to becoming a fully qualified teacher will vary by country. These options are for anyone in the world with the slightest interest in teaching, as well as professional teachers who want to learn about specific topics. 

So, let's get started.  

What is the best online teaching course?

These are our top teaching course recommendations:

  1. Teaching and learning in the diverse classroom (edX) 
  2. Foundations of teaching for learning: Being a teacher (Coursera)
  3. Teaching with Google Classroom (Udemy)
  4. Excellence in online teaching (Coursera) 
  5. Become a teacher (LinkedIn Learning) 
  6. Strategies for online teaching and learning (edX)
  7. Reasonable teaching: The 13×4 to master the art of teaching (Udemy) 
  8. Online education: The foundations of online teaching (Udemy)
  9. Creating an inclusive classroom: Approaches to supporting learners with SEND in computing (Raspberry Pi)
  10. Online teaching: Using Zoom to connect with learners (Coursera) 
  11. Teach English online: Find students and start teaching now (Udemy)
  12. USC Rossier Master of Arts in teaching online (edX)  

How I decided

I chose my top pick, Teaching and learning in the diverse classroom (edX), for a couple of reasons. 

Firstly, with 5 weeks of teaching, this course is easily the longest and most comprehensive on the list. The focus on a diverse classroom gives a broad subject grounded in a specific direction, whilst also being applicable to all aspiring teachers. 

edX partners with some of the leading universities in the world for their content. This course is offered by Cornell, one of the best Universities in the US. 

The vast majority of content on edX can be accessed through Free Audit Tracks. To receive a certificate you purchase the course.

Cousera also offers a very comprehensive introduction to teaching with Foundations of teaching for learning: Being a teacher. Like edX, you can take this course for free and upgrade to receive a certificate if you want one. 

I’ve tried to make this a varied list in terms of both the courses offered and the sites that provide them. If you’re already a teacher, or you’re just generally interested in using new technology in the classroom, there are loads of options. 

Teaching with Google Classroom from Udemy and Online teaching: Using Zoom to connect with learners from Coursera both focus on teaching using resources that came into focus during the pandemic and are here to stay. 

Best teaching course reviews

1. Teaching and learning in the diverse classroom (edX)

edX teaching in the diverse classroom course

Platform: edX | Teachers: Matthew L. Ouellett and Melina Ivanchikova | Course length: 5 weeks with 2-4 hours per week (recommended)  

To kick off our list we have, in my opinion, the best online education course on the internet. And there are a couple of reasons for this. 

Firstly, this course is by far one of the most comprehensive education courses. It provides a broad overview of instructors, students, curriculum and other key aspects of teaching, all grounded in teaching for a diverse classroom, which, let's face it, is every classroom. 

That alone would make the course worth it. But edX is also unique in that it partners with top universities across the world to offer its classes. This option is no exception, offered in partnership with Cornell, one of America's top universities. 

Your instructors are at the top of the game in the field of education, including Matthew Ouellett, the Executive Director for the Center of Teaching Innovation and Melina Ivanchikova, Associate Director of Inclusive Teaching at the same center. 

To top it all off, this course is available for free. Meaning you can access all of the content without paying anything (unless you want the certificate). This is useful if you feel you haven’t enjoyed the course, which, based on all the info I’ve described, would be very surprising!

You will learn: 

  • Using a framework for inclusive course design 
  • Reflecting on the implications of instructors’ social identities 
  • Reflecting on the implications of student’s social identities 
  • Identify evidence-based pedagogical strategies 
  • Increase your confidence to facilitate inclusivity 
  • Assess your curriculum for historic exclusion 

Pros: 

  • Led by highly qualified instructors from a world-class university 
  • Very comprehensive, with hours of content you can get through at your own pace 
  • Applicable for teachers of a wide range of classrooms 
  • Focuses on concepts, like self-reflection, which are rare but very important 
  • Covers key aspects of teaching, such as curriculum, students etc. in a unique way 
  • Offers direct strategies and tips as well as more philosophical insight 
  • The paid audit track offers a certificate of completion 
  • Available for free 

Cons: 

  • Need to enroll at a certain time  
  • You need to pay if you want a certificate

Best for: Both beginner and experienced teachers who want insight on how to ensure they’re managing a diverse classroom as best as they can 

Overall: We all learn in very different ways, so by nature every classroom is a diverse classroom. That’s what makes this course so important. It would be helpful for teachers, old and new, from all different backgrounds because it offers strategies and insight into challenges all teachers have to face. The lessons dig into the more philosophical insight into education, whilst also offering practical strategies for changing your curriculum. To top it all off, it's led by top educators from a world-leading university and is available for free. 

2. Foundations of teaching for learning: Being a teacher (Coursera)

Coursera teaching and learning course

Platform: Coursera | Teachers: Prof Dennis Francis and Prof John MacBeath | Course length: 11 hours 

At the number two spot, we have Coursera. This site is very similar to edX in several key ways. Firstly, both partner with leading universities and educational institutions to create their courses. The course can be taken for free, though you have to pay for a certificate. 

And, finally, both sites have top quality courses. This teaching class is no exception. Each lesson focuses in detail on the specific skills required for being a teacher. Overall, it provides a very strong foundation in the profession. 

The course is offered in partnership with the Commonwealth Education Trust, a London-based charity focused on providing resources to teachers across the world. 

You will learn: 

  • What it means to be a teacher 
  • How can teachers improve through models of continuous development 
  • The philosophy of education 
  • The differing identities and motivations of teachers 
  • Strategies for managing classrooms 
  • Understanding the way different students respond 
  • How to communicate 
  • The importance of teaching 
  • The difference between Asking and Telling teaching styles 
  • Differences in social identities 
  • How do you learn best?

Pros: 

  • Led by two professors with a wealth of experiences and understanding 
  • Rare insight into what it means to be a teacher
  • Combines philosophical questions with actual strategies 
  • Takes teaching seriously and focuses on how teaching has impacted the world 
  • Very comprehensive with 11 hours of video 
  • Includes additional readings and quizzes 
  • Gets you to really reflect on your own understanding and experience of teaching 
  • Content can be taken free (without certification)

Cons: 

  • Some complaints about the audio quality 

Best for: Newbies who want a broad and philosophical introduction to teaching and teachers who want a chance to reflect on their experiences 

Overall: Teaching is a universal activity that many of us take for granted. At school, most of us are told to just obey the teacher and teacher’s themselves tend to just follow whatever is on the curriculum. So this course is a really welcome and refreshing insight into what it actually means to be a teacher. It allows you to reflect on what teaching means to you and why you’re interested in it, whilst also offering more practical strategies for the classroom. Led by two professors from top universities, the quality of this one is very high. 

3. Teaching with Google Classroom (Udemy)

Teaching with google classroom

Platform: Udemy | Teachers: Nathan Nagele | Course length: 4.5 hours

Accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic, the use of technology for teaching has never been more prominent. Google Classrooms has become a particularly efficient, popular and helpful tool for teachers around the world. 

This course aims to get you equipped with everything you need to know about using Google Classrooms. It can be used by both existing teachers who want to incorporate the tech in their teaching or non-teachers who want to learn how it's used. 

The class is offered by Udemy, which sells all of its courses individually. Classes are also often on sale, meaning that you can often purchase a course for cheaper than the original price. With over 3,000 students and a 4.5-star rating, this is one of the site's most popular and well-received teaching courses. 

You will learn: 

  • An introduction to Google Classroom 
  • Google Classroom updates 
  • Setting up your class 
  • Managing your class 
  • Teaching with Google Classroom 
  • Grading 
  • Student view 
  • New online educators 
  • Answering your questions
  • Archived/outdated lessons  

Pros: 

  • Accessible to everyone; both existing and aspiring teachers can gain something 
  • Gives real insight into the benefits of technology for the day-to-day classroom 
  • Led by an instructor with real experience and interest in educational technology 
  • Well structured, gradually introducing each key concept 
  • Up to date, which is essential yet somewhat rare among similar courses 
  • Breaks down the content in an easily digestible way 

Cons: 

  • Sometimes the presentation and delivery are a little too fast  

Best for: Existing teachers who are required to use Google Classroom in their day-to-day job, as well as anyone interested in the uses of technology for teaching 

Overall: Technology is changing how we teach and there is no going back. Google Classroom is one of the most popular educational tools among educators, so getting a good grounding in it is essential. With its well-structured, easy-to-follow lessons and an instructor with a clear passion for EdTech, this class does just that and is an ideal introduction for both teachers using Google Classroom and anyone interested in what it does. 

4. Excellence in online teaching (Coursera) 

how to teach online course

Platform: Coursera | Teachers: Paul Huckett, Dr Olysha Magruder and Michael J. Reese | Course length: 11 hours 

Our fourth spot on the list is offered by Coursera, again. However, this course focuses on a specific type of teaching for the modern world.  

Whereas the number three option focuses on using a specific technology to help with teaching, some educators, both experienced and aspiring, might find that they need a broader overview of how to get ahead in online teaching. 

That’s what this course is all about. Led by a top educational team from John Hopkins University, this course is ideal for anyone who wants to equip themselves with the skills required for teaching in the new age. 

You will learn:

  • Foundations for facilitating online learning 
  • Being inclusive with online teaching 
  • The Universal Design for Learning (UDL) 
  • Effective technologies for online teaching 
  • How to apply technology for your specific course 
  • Engaging a sense of community online 
  • Professional and personal development in the teaching practice 

Pros: 

  • Offers insight into the direction that teaching is going 
  • Taught by instructors with academic credentials in teaching and learning 
  • Collaborate with a leading US university 
  • Provides skills that will stay with you as you progress in your career 
  • Demonstrates how broad principles can be applied to specific situations 
  • Combination of resources, including videos, readings and quizzes 
  • Free, unless you want the shareable certificate

Cons: 

  • Need to select the paid option if you want the certificate 

Best for: Teachers who want to prepare themselves for the changing world of online education 

Overall: As technology develops, online teaching will become more and more common. So teachers will increasingly need to think about how they can use technology to enhance their student’s learning. This course offers a brilliant foundation for teachers who want to understand how technology can help all of their tasks, whether it's keeping a class engaged with the curriculum or fostering a sense of community. To top it all off, the course is led by academics from a leading university and the content is free (without certification). 

5. Become a teacher (LinkedIn Learning) 

become a teacher LinkedIn Learning

Platform: LinkedIn Learning | Teachers: Dr Monica Clem | Course length: 35 minutes 

LinkedIn and teaching may not seem to go hand-in-hand, but there are a couple of reasons why the world’s biggest professional network can be a great place to learn how to teach. 

Firstly, teaching is a profession like any other. And LinkedIn is uniquely positioned to offer insight into the professional world of a teacher. 

This also goes both ways, as the world of business also requires teachers in order to share information and educate students about the corporate world. You don’t get LinkedIn Learning without teachers. 

This course has over 14,000 students and a 4.7-star rating, making it one of LinkedIn Learning’s most popular and well-received teaching courses. 

You will learn: 

  • How to figure out if teaching is right for you 
  • Transferable skills for the classroom 
  • Pathways to teaching: certification and undergraduate qualifications 
  • Finding a teaching job 
  • The perfect resume 
  • Acing the interview 
  • Continuing education to advance your career 

Pros: 

  • Very brief, providing the ideal overview 
  • Aimed at total outsiders to the profession who want to know if it’s right for them 
  • Focuses on the professional pathways to becoming a teacher 
  • Offers unique guidance on whether teaching is right for you 
  • Also provides practical advice for a teaching career 
  • Includes a project and certificate of completion 
  • Very clearly explained 

Cons: 

  • Very brief 
  • Could go offer more insight into what's required in the classroom itself  

Best for: Outsiders to the teaching industry who want to know how to get started 

Overall: Whereas other courses on this list focus on more general insights into teaching, this course looks specifically into teaching as a profession. You’ll get top information on how to train as a teacher, tips for interviewing well and finding a job and more philosophical advice on how to figure out whether or not teaching is right for you. If you are considering becoming a teacher professionally, check this class out. 

6. Strategies for online teaching and learning (edX)

Strategies for online teaching

Platform: edX | Teachers: Donata Bonassisa | Course length: 3 weeks with 5 to 7 hours per weeks

Like Coursera, edX has its own course in online teaching, which goes to show just how popular and in-demand the skill has become. 

This course is offered in collaboration with the University of British Columbia, one of Canada’s best universities. 

Your instructor will be Donata Bonassisa, who has over 25 years of experience teaching at primary, secondary and adult levels and has developed several distance learning courses. 

And don’t forget, with edX, the content is available for free. 

You will learn: 

  • Delivering online education content 
  • Using established distance learning principles
  • Learning best practices for teaching online 
  • Conducting appropriate assessments 
  • Taking into account different learner demographics 
  • Tips for supporting students online 
  • Fostering an inclusive and interactive learning environment 

Pros: 

  • Led by a very experienced structure in education generally and distanced learning specifically 
  • Teaches an increasingly in-demand skill in the teaching world 
  • Covers a lot of content and is applicable to a range of educators 
  • Taught by a world-class university with leading pedagogical insight 
  • Paid audit includes a certificate of completion
  • Illuminated with examples and case studies 
  • Content available for free 

Cons: 

  •  Need to enroll at a certain time  

Best for:  Teachers who find they are having to grapple with online learning and are struggling 

Overall: As online and distance learning becomes an increasing practice, courses like this are becoming more and more necessary. Like Coursera’s Excellence in online teaching, this class will take you through the essentials of educating online, providing direct insight through examples and case studies. Led by an instructor from a top university, with experience in primary and secondary education, and distance learning specifically, this course is available for free, so it is well worth checking out if you’re interested.   

7. Reasonable teaching: The 13×4 to master the art of teaching (Udemy) 

master the art of teaching Udemy

Platform: Udemy | Teachers: Tom Cassidy, Brian Sykes, Sam Brown and Bill Aronson | Course length: 3 hours 

At number 7, we find a course from Udemy. Don’t forget, Udemy courses are sold separately and are often on sale, so you can access them for cheaper than the initial price. 

This course suggests that there are 9 key characteristics of exceptional teaching. They argue that each skill requires one week of focus, so it takes 9 weeks to cover them all. Once they’re all covered, they suggest you repeat the cycle 4 times, hence the 9×4 rule. 

With over 9,000 students and a 4.7-star rating, this course is led by instructors each with a range of experiences that means they offer a unique insight. 

You will learn: 

  • The importance of the 9×4 rule 
  • Planning 
  • Clarity of structure 
  • Managing students well 
  • Outcomes must be achievement 
  • Structure must be appropriate 
  • Content must be engaging 
  • Manage resources well 
  • Outcomes must be authentic 

Pros: 

  • Offers very clear, direct tips 
  • Takes broad advice and applies it specifically to teaching 
  • Range of different instructors meaning each offers unique insight 
  • Provides a different approach to teaching 
  • Very actionable 
  • Clear instruction 
  • Provides tools that can be used directly in the classroom 

Cons: 

  • Combination of instructors might be distracting 
  • Some might be skeptical about the idea of concrete ‘rules’ when teaching is so diverse   

Best for: Anyone who prefers to learn through direct, actionable advice 

Overall: This course stands out because of the range of backgrounds its instructors come from, which keeps things very interesting. It’s also refreshing to have a course offering direct and actionable advice that teachers can go on and use directly in the classroom. Whereas a lot of the courses on this list are more theoretical, if you're a practical type of teacher, this might be the course for you. 

8. Online education: The foundations of online teaching (Coursera)

foundations of online teaching coursera

Platform: Coursera | Teachers: Professor Iain Hay, Jada Bennett and Billy Bruce | Course length: 21 hours 

At number 8, we have another entry for Coursera, and again the focus is on online teaching. 

This course is offered in partnership with Macquarie University, one of Australia’s top university institutions. Although teaching has traditionally been a profession shaped by national governments, online education means borders between countries matter less and less. 

As a result, you shouldn’t take a course based on whether it's offered by an Australian or an American University, but based on whether you feel the content is right for you. 

This course is led by Professor Iain Hay, Director of Professional Learning and Engagement at the Macquarie School of Education, and his team. 

You will learn:

  • The evolution of online learning and where it’s going 
  • The key concept of transactional distance 
  • The Critical Community of Inquiry Model 
  • The types of presence that shape a teacher’s interactions 
  • Practical tips to prevent cognitive overload 
  • Creating a welcoming online environment 
  • How to create a learning community online 
  • What’s expected to happen next in online education 

Pros: 

  • Grounded in academic concepts 
  • Provides insight into what's next for teaching 
  • Partnered with one of Australia’s top universities 
  • Taught by academics who really know their stuff 
  • Provides practical tips and tricks for success in online teaching 
  • Includes a plethora of resources, including readings and quizzes 
  • Available for free (without certification)

Cons: 

  • Could be more specific with the strategies and tips 
  • Quite academic, which might be overwhelming for newer and aspiring teachers  

Best for: Professional teachers who want a strong grounding in the history, direction and uses of online learning 

Overall: Teaching might seem like something that has been around forever, but the way we think of the profession now has been the product of academics, policymakers and teachers thinking hard about the best way to educate students. The teachers of today have the opportunity to do the same with online learning, and this course provides a strong foundation in the key concepts of online teaching, including its history, strategies current teachers can use and its trajectory. If you're interested in the academic concepts behind education, this is a great place to start. 

9. Creating an inclusive classroom: Approaches to supporting learners with SEND in computing (Raspberry Pi)

inclusive classroom course

Platform: Raspberry Pi | Teachers: Raspberry Pi | Course length: 2 weeks with 2 hours per week (recommended) 

At the 9th spot on the list, we find Raspberry Pi, an e-learning site devoted to offering insight into computing and technology. 

Unlike a lot of e-learning sites, Raspberry Pi has its own section devoted to teaching. They clearly recognize the value of online learning in the world of the future, so they’re a great place to learn about education. 

This course has over 12,000 enrolled and a 4.7-star rating, making it a very acclaimed course. It is ideal for teachers working with SEND (special educational needs and disabilities) pupils. 

You will learn:

  • An outline of areas of need 
  • Barriers for learners with SEND 
  • General classroom approaches 
  • Specific approaches in programming 
  • How to make programming accessible 
  • The benefits of sensory outputs 
  • Using physical computing devices 

Pros: 

  • Very comprehensive 
  • Focuses on a specific group of students often ignored 
  • Shows how you can use technology to help people in specific ways
  • The option for both a subscription to Raspberry Pi and buying the course as a one-off, depending on your preferences 
  • High-quality production value on video lessons 
  • Includes CPD certification 

Cons: 

  • Focuses mainly on computing teachers, whereas lots of SEND teachers could benefit from using technology 

Best for: Teachers of computing in primary and secondary school settings 

Overall: A big theme of this list is how technology is impacting education. In fact all of these courses are examples of technology impacting education. But what sets this course apart is its focus on a specific group of often-ignored learners and how technology can assist with their education. This is one of the more advanced courses on the list, ideal for secondary and primary school teachers. 

10. Online teaching: Using Zoom to connect with learners (Coursera)

using zoom to teach

Platform: Udemy | Teachers: Professor Iain Hay, Jada Bennett and Billy Bruce | Course length: 17 hours 

This pick is another offering from Coursera, also taught by Professor Iain Hay and his team at Macquarie University. 

Like the previous course, this class is all about using technology in education, however, here the specific focus is on Zoom. 

Again, throughout the pandemic, Zoom became a primary mechanism for learning. Although in-person teaching has become the norm again, Zoom is still an important tool for schools across the world, so it's well worth learning a few tricks for both new and experienced teachers. 

You will learn:

  • How Zoom works 
  • Zoom resources 
  • Creating a safe and supportive space in Zoom 
  • Using settings to create a virtual classroom 
  • Zoom fatigue 
  • Increasing interaction 
  • Building confidence 
  • Facilitating learner engagement and collaboration 
  • Designing a lesson plan for Zoom 

Pros: 

  • Takes a deep dive into a specific technology used by teachers across the world 
  • Provides you with a range of skills and strategies for when they are most appropriate 
  • Led by an experienced educational team 
  • Taught in collaboration with a leading university 
  • Engaging instruction 
  • Well organized, each lesson building on the last 
  • Available for free (with a fee for certification)

Cons: 

  • Subject matter is a little light in terms of getting a whole course out of it  

Best for: Any kind of teacher who uses Zoom in their work 

Overall: We all remember how difficult the pandemic was, especially when it came to engaging students with their education. But Zoom can be an amazing resource for education, as this course demonstrates. Its real strength lies in the fact that the instructors provide you with a range of tips, and they tell you when they are most appropriate. This is added to by all of the other benefits of Coursera, including quality instruction, partnership with leading universities and free content. 

11. Teach English online: Find students and start teaching now (Udemy) 

Teach English online

Platform: Udemy | Teachers: Charles Cornelius | Course length: 6 hours 

I want to make this a diverse list and show you that there are so many different options when it comes to learning how to teach. So far, we’ve looked at courses that provide broad insights into teaching, classes on specific technologies and lessons on how the two come together. 

However, for the penultimate spot on the list, I’ve decided to include a course on teaching a specific subject. As the world becomes more connected, learning new languages has become of interest to more and more people, and English is one of the most popular. 

This course is one of the most popular teaching courses on Udemy, with over 9,000 students, led by an instructor with 20 years of experience and over 85,000 students on Udemy. 

You will learn: 

  • An English teacher’s essential toolkit 
  • The content of your lessons 
  • How to find students 
  • Getting paid 
  • Where to work from 
  • Teaching speaking 
  • How to teach listening 
  • Teaching reading and writing 
  • Spelling and grammar 
  • Vocabulary and pronunciation 
  • Examination preparation 

Pros: 

  • Covers each aspect of English comprehensively 
  • Led by an experienced English teacher and teacher-trainer 
  • Focus on online teaching, where there isn’t as much guidance for English specifically
  • Insight into both the actual practice of teaching as well as career elements, like finding students 
  • Demonstrates the benefits of online teaching 
  • Very accessible, with insights for beginners and English teachers who want to transition to online 

Cons: 

  • Aimed more at beginner teachers, which may disappoint existing English teachers who want to transition online 
  • Focus only on English (other courses do exist for other subjects) 

Best for: Beginner English teachers looking to crossover to the online space 

Overall: As we near the end of the list, I’ve decided to focus on a course in a specific subject. As the world becomes more and more connected, languages, and especially English, are a skill that more and more people want to learn. So, if you’re interested in teaching them, now is a great time to start. And this course, with its comprehensive overview, experienced instructor and expert advice will provide you with a great foundation. 

12. USC Rossier Master of Arts in teaching online (edX)

Platform: edX | Teachers: USC Clinical Faculty | Course length: 3 terms 

Finally, to round off our list, I’ve included a Masters from the University of Southern California. This is just to show you the scope of opportunities out there when it comes to learning how to be a teacher online. 

Unlike the other courses on this list, a Masters requires your explicit time and commitment, although it is possible to take some Masters courses part-time. A Masters is a very high level qualification, so the cost and time is a big investment, but prepares you very well for the future. 

This programme is designed for K-12 teachers who want to take their work a step further. You’ll need a Bachelor's Degree to be eligible for this course. 

You will learn: 

  • Curriculum and pedagogy in urban schools 
  • Contexts for educational agency 
  • Access and equity in education 
  • Integrated language development across the curriculum 
  • Fieldwork insight into professional teachers 
  • Developing your own pedagogical knowledge and style 

Pros: 

  • Offered by a top university 
  • Available online, so can be learnt anywhere in the world 
  • Collaborate with leading faculty and likeminded students 
  • Includes an essential practical element 
  • Grounds you with core theories, developing your intellectual understanding 
  • Prepares you well for the profession 

Cons: 

  • A big commitment 
  • US-centric 

Best for: K-12 teachers who want to improve their professional work in urban schools and communities 

Overall: Rounding off our list, I’ve opted to also mention a Masters. Offered through edX. This MAT is taught by the University of Southern California. It combines both theories of pedagogy with fieldwork that will allow you to develop your identity as a teacher. A Masters goes a lot deeper in terms of the content than any other type of course on this list, and this is reflected in the cost and time commitments. However, if you want to take your teaching that one step further, it is definitely worth considering. 

What are the advantages of taking an online teaching course?

students learning to teach

It used to be the case that in order to learn how to teach you had to go to a specific training college. 

However, the technology we have today means you can learn how to teach online. This includes: 

  • Access to top instructors from all around the world 
  • You can learn when you like and fit everything around your schedule 
  • You can combine different platforms with in-person teaching to achieve your personal goals
  • There’s access to endless additional materials
  • The skill will stay with you for life 
  • Other skills like confidence, understanding and engagement will improve 
  • Learning a new skill is great for engaging the brain 
  • Sets you up well for a career in an in-demand profession 

Buyers guide: what to look out for

teaching courses criteria

With so many choices, it can be hard to know what to look out for when selecting the best teaching course for you.

So here’s a helpful buyers guide to look out for: 

  • Positive reviews and feedback from both users and sites like Learnopoly 
  • Positive feedback from teachers and the education community 
  • The credentials of the instructor 
  • How long the course is and what each lesson will teach you 
  • Any additional materials 
  • What kind of teaching (a specific subject, online teaching etc.) does the course focus on 
  • How many people are enrolled 
  • Is there any free trial or refund available? 

How much does it cost?

Courses on this list range from being free to costing $39.99 per month. The USC Masters costs around $60k which is a lot cheaper than an in-person masters. 

There are a couple of differences in how the courses on this list are priced. 

For example, some sites, like LinkedIn Learning, offer subscription services, where you pay a monthly fee for access to all of the content on their site. This is a good option if a couple of courses from the site are of interest to you. 

Others on this list sell their courses individually. This is a better option if you think that you're only interested in one specific class, especially as, for sites like Udemy, they are often on sale. 

Finally, there are the free options, including edX and Coursera. These require payment if you wish to access the certification. However, the content itself is available for free, which is of course remarkable. 

How long does it take to learn how to teach?

Courses on this list range from 35 minutes to 5 weeks. The masters is 3 terms.

There are a couple of factors that will also impact how long it takes to learn how to teach. For example, lots of these courses have additional resources which will really add to your learning but which you consume at your own pace. 

Also, you might want to account for personal practice. Like any new skill, teaching requires practice in order to truly embed whatever you’ve learnt in your course. So, whether it's one-on-one or in the classroom, these experiences will also contribute to your learning. 

Conclusion

So, there you have it, my top twelve picks for the best teaching course online. 

My number one pick is Teaching and learning in the diverse classroom, offered by edX. 

This site is unique because it offers courses in a range of disciplines from some of the top universities and educational institutions in the world, such as Harvard and Cambridge. 

And yet, astoundingly, you can also audit the content for free, though you will need to if you want a certificate.  

We are all unique in how we learn, so any classroom is a diverse classroom. As a result, this class offers a comprehensive overview of an essential topic for all teachers. And, as it's free, there are no financial risks if you don’t like it. 

Coursera, like edX, offers courses from leading universities without charging a fee for the content. 

Cousera’s Foundations of teaching for learning: Being a teacher is another great overview of teaching. If you're looking for a course on how technology is changing teaching then check out Excellence in online teaching

In order to keep this list broad, I’ve also included classes aimed at existing teachers. I recommend Teaching with Google Classroom from Udemy, Creating an inclusive classroom: Approaches to supporting learners with SEND in computing from Raspberry Pi and Online teaching: Using Zoom to connect with learners by Coursera.  

Related article: Best instructional design courses, Quizlet review

Teaching Courses Frequently asked questions

How much does an online teaching course cost?

Courses on this list range from being free to costing $39.99 per month. The USC Masters costs $59,836, though these are subject to change. 

How long do online teaching courses take?

Courses on this list range from 35 minutes to 5 weeks

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