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Course Report

The 100 Most Popular Free Online Courses (2023 Edition)

Using Class Central data and enrollments numbers to find the 100 most popular online courses of the year.

Most Popular Courses (2023 Edition)

More than a decade has passed since a few Stanford professors decided to offer their courses online for free. These later became known as MOOCs, for Massive Open Online Courses, and 2012 became the “Year of the MOOC.”

Since then, the online course offering has continued to grow, to the point that it can be hard to navigate at times. In this article, I’ve leveraged Class Central‘s database of over 100,000 courses, as well as course enrollment numbers, to build a list of the 100 most-popular online courses of the year.


I built this list following a well-defined methodology:

First, I went through the Class Central database and made a list of all the courses that were offered for the first time ever in 2022. This represented around 2600 courses.

Then, I wrote scrapers to collect enrollment numbers across four major online course platforms: Coursera, edX, FutureLearn, and Swayam. These platforms show how many students are enrolled in each of their courses.

Finally, I sorted the courses according to their enrollment number and truncated the list to keep only the 100 most-popular courses.

Combined, the platforms considered accrued over 4M enrollments for courses launched in 2022. The 100 most-popular courses account for about half of them.

Interestingly, about 25% of the courses were created by Google, and about 15% by Meta and by IBM. Tech companies are well-represented in this year’s list.

More Courses

If you don’t find what you need in the course list below, browse Class Central‘s catalog of over 100K courses or visit our thematic collections:

You can find all our free certificate articles here.

The Most Popular Free Online Courses (2023 Edition)

Foundations of Digital Marketing and E-commerce
Google via Coursera
This course will equip you with the skills you need to apply to entry-level roles in digital marketing and e-commerce.

Introduction to Data Analytics
IBM via Coursera
This course presents a gentle introduction into the concepts of data analysis, the role of a Data Analyst, and the tools that are used to perform daily functions.

Data Visualization with Python
IBM via Coursera
“A picture is worth a thousand words”. We are all familiar with this expression. Data visualization plays an essential role in the representation of both small and large-scale data.

Supervised Machine Learning: Regression and Classification
DeepLearning.AI via Coursera
In the first course of the Machine Learning Specialization, you will build machine learning models in Python using popular machine learning libraries NumPy and scikit-learn.

Leading Teams: Developing as a Leader
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign via Coursera
In this course, you will be challenged to develop as a leader. You will explore the concept of leadership, assess required competencies for today’s leaders, learn how you can make effective and ethical decisions.

Introduction to Front-End Development
Meta via Coursera
You will learn about the day-to-day responsibilities of a web developer and get a general understanding of the core and underlying technologies that power the internet.

Software Defined Networking
The University of Chicago via Coursera
In this course, you will learn about software defined networking and how it is changing the way communications networks are managed, maintained, and secured.

Advanced Learning Algorithms
DeepLearning.AI via Coursera
In the second course of the Machine Learning Specialization, you will build and train a neural network with TensorFlow to perform multi-class classification.

Leading Teams: Building Effective Team Cultures
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign via Coursera
In this foundational course, you will immerse yourself in the idea of building effective team cultures. You will explore different facets of team culture that are at the root of effective teams.

Work Smarter with Microsoft Excel
Microsoft via Coursera
This course is intended for learners with some experience using Microsoft Windows, who are seeking to build presentation skills with Microsoft Excel.

Unsupervised Learning, Recommenders, Reinforcement Learning
DeepLearning.AI via Coursera
In the third course of the Machine Learning Specialization, you will use unsupervised learning techniques for unsupervised learning: including clustering and anomaly detection.

Introducción a la Contabilidad Financiera
IESE Business School via Coursera
A menudo, nos referimos a la contabilidad financiera como «el lenguaje de los negocios», es decir, el lenguaje que los directivos utilizan para transmitir información financiera y económica sobre su empresa.

Aspectos básicos: Datos, datos, en todas partes
Google via Coursera
Este es el primer curso del certificado de Google Data Analytics. En estos cursos obtendrás las habilidades que necesitas para aplicar a los trabajos de analista de datos de nivel introductorio.

Programming with JavaScript
Meta via Coursera
JavaScript is the programming language that powers the modern web. In this course, you will learn the basic concepts of web development with JavaScript.

From Likes to Leads: Interact with Customers Online
Google via Coursera
In this course, you’ll explore social media platforms and identify which platform is the most appropriate for specific business needs.

Fundamentos de la gestión de proyectos
Google via Coursera
En este curso, descubrirás la terminología fundamental de la gestión de proyectos y adquirirás una comprensión más profunda del papel y las responsabilidades de un gerente de proyectos.
★★★★★ (1 rating)

Version Control
Meta via Coursera
Learn how modern software developers collaborate across the world without messing up each other’s code. You’ll understand the different version control systems and how to create an effective software development workflow.

Think Outside the Inbox: Email Marketing
Google via Coursera
This course will explore how to execute a successful email marketing campaign. Email marketing is one of the oldest and most proven digital marketing channels.

COVID Vaccine Ambassador Training: How to Talk to Parents
Johns Hopkins University via Coursera
This training course prepares parents of school-age children, PTAs, community members, and school staff to be Vaccine Ambassadors and promote vaccine acceptance in their communities.
★★★★★ ( 2 ratings)

What is the Metaverse?
Meta via Coursera
In this free course from the experts at Meta, you’ll learn what the metaverse is, what it means for our world today and into the future, and the opportunities it presents for both professionals and businesses.

Assess for Success: Marketing Analytics and Measurement
Google via Coursera
Explore marketing analytics practices and tools. You’ll create media plans and set performance goals. You’ll learn how to measure, manage, and analyze data from marketing campaigns using Google Analytics and Google Ads.

Work Smarter with Microsoft Word
Microsoft via Coursera
This course is intended for learners with some experience using Microsoft Windows, who are seeking to build presentation skills with Microsoft Word.

IA para todos
DeepLearning.AI via Coursera
La IA no es solo para ingenieros. Si desea que su organización esté mejor preparada en el uso de la IA, este es el curso que todos deberían hacer, especialmente sus colegas no técnicos.

Training and Practicing in English Public Speaking
Shanghai Jiao Tong University via Coursera
Professor Zhang is Central South University’s top training coach in English speaking and interpreting contests and has engaged in teaching and research on English speaking for more than ten years.

Make the Sale: Build, Launch, and Manage E-commerce Stores
Google via Coursera
This course explores how businesses and individuals sell products online, including using popular platforms like Shopify. You’ll go through the process of creating a mock e-commerce store.

Aspectos básicos del diseño de la experiencia del usuario
Google via Coursera
Aspectos básicos del diseño de la experiencia del usuario (UX) es el primero de una serie de siete cursos mediante los cuales podrás acceder a las habilidades de diseño de UX.

Managing Happiness
Harvard University via edX
Managing Happiness encourages you to explore the science of happiness, allowing you to find your truest self.

Arabic for non-Arabic Speakers
Qatar University via edX
This course offers the basics for starting essential conversations in Arabic via engaging videos that feature native Arabic speakers and numerous interactive learning activities.

Satisfaction Guaranteed: Develop Customer Loyalty Online
Google via Coursera
In this course, you’ll explore strategies for building customer loyalty in e-commerce. You’ll also explore specific tools to develop and maintain client relationships.

HTML and CSS in depth
Meta via Coursera
Get acquainted with JSX and learn about the core concepts and components of React.

React Basics
Meta via Coursera
In this course, you will explore the fundamental concepts that underpin the React framework and learn the basic skills required to build a simple, fast, and scalable web application.

Edward Jenner: 0 – An Introduction to Personal Development
NHS England via FutureLearn
Learn how to maximise your learning experience and make time in a busy schedule for personal development.

The Structured Query Language (SQL)
University of Colorado Boulder via Coursera
In this course you will learn all about the Structured Query Language (“SQL”.) We will review the origins of the language and its conceptual foundations.

Getting Started with Git and GitHub
IBM via Coursera
Collaboration and social coding are crucial parts of contemporary Software Engineering practices and the DevOps culture. In this course, you’ll be introduced to collaborative version control and popular Git platforms.
★★★★★ (1 rating)

Fundamentos: dados, dados, em todos os lugares
Google via Coursera
Organizações de todos os tipos precisam de analistas de dados para ajudá-las a melhorar os processos, identificar oportunidades e tendências, lançar novos produtos e tomar decisões conscientes.

Emotional Intelligence: Cultivating Immensely Human Interactions
University of Michigan via Coursera
This course is a multi-media exploration into important intra- and interpersonal skills required for Emotional Intelligence.

Introduction to Hardware and Operating Systems
IBM via Coursera
Organizations need workers who can help others with computer hardware, software, and connectivity issues. Additionally, IT support roles are often a stepping stone to grow into higher-paying IT careers.

HOPE: What Makes Us Human
Tel Aviv University via edX
HOPE is an open invitation to become better at being human, to realize our humanity. Join HOPE to discover what it means to be us and live up to it!

Applied Accelerated Artificial Intelligence
NPTEL via Swayam
This course will cover the fundamentals of the compute capabilities and the system software required for implementing artificial intelligence (AI) based solutions on industrial use cases.

Visualizing the Living Body: Diagnostic Imaging
Yale University via Coursera
This course teaches learners the underlying principles behind conventional radiography, computerized axial tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and ultrasound.
★★★★★ ( 1 rating)

Infectious Disease Transmission Models for Decision-Makers
Johns Hopkins University via Coursera
During the COVID-19 pandemic, both the promise and perils of using infectious disease transmission models to make public health policy decisions became clearer than ever.

Introduction to Android Mobile Application Development
Meta via Coursera
Want to become a mobile developer? We’ll introduce you to this career path and give you a high-level overview of programming and the tools needed to develop Android applications.

Programming in Python
Dibrugarh University via Swayam
This course covers two aspects of programming i.e. solving the problem using different techniques like algorithm, flowchart and decision table and then writing the programs using Python .
★★★★★ ( 1 rating)

Innovar tu enseñanza con design thinking
Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México via Coursera
¿Quieres conocer nuevas formas de enseñar y no sabes por dónde empezar?

Fundamentos do design da experiência do usuário (UX)
Google via Coursera
Fundamentos de design de experiência do usuário (UX) é o primeiro de uma série de sete cursos para equipar você com as habilidades necessárias para se candidatar a vagas iniciantes em design de experiência do usuário.

Work Smarter with Microsoft PowerPoint
Microsoft via Coursera
This course is intended for learners with some experience using Microsoft Windows, who are seeking to build presentation skills with Microsoft PowerPoint.

English Grammar for Employability
AICTE via Swayam
English for Employability is a practical approach to English grammar. Therefore, the course will benefit the students of almost all disciplines as well as the trainers and teachers of English literature & language.
★★★★★ (1 rating)

Principles of UX/UI Design
Meta via Coursera
Learn the fundamentals of User Experience (UX) research and design. Become immersed in the UX process of identifying problems and iterating and testing designs to find appropriate solutions.

Fundamentos do gerenciamento de projetos
Google via Coursera
Este curso é o primeiro de uma série de seis, que vão dar a você as habilidades necessárias para aplicar a funções de nível introdutório em gerenciamento de projetos.

The Psychology of Emotions: An Introduction to Embodied Cognition
University of Cambridge via edX
This fascinating introduction to the cognitive psychology of emotions explores how, when we see others’ emotions, not only the mind, but also the body is engaged in the recognition.

Formula preguntas para tomar decisiones basadas en datos
Google via Coursera
El material te ayudará a aprender cómo hacer preguntas efectivas para tomar decisiones basadas en datos, al tiempo que te conectas con las necesidades de los interesados.

Introduction to iOS Mobile Application Development
Meta via Coursera
Learn about iOS development by learning about the OS and the development platform. Discover how to set up and prepare a local environment. Get acquainted with the Swift playground and write code in Swift.

People, Technology and the Future of Mobility
University of Michigan via Coursera
This course provides a lay-person’s introduction to some of the major technological innovations currently underway in the mobility space.

Advanced React
Meta via Coursera
You’ll examine different types of React components, learn various characteristics and when to use them. You’ll start working with hooks, effects and other functional components.

Principles of Management
Johns Hopkins University via Coursera
Team leads, managers, and entrepreneurs must juggle team citizenship and leadership, ethics, strategy, and projects with their work in their area of expertise.

Introduction to Technical Support
IBM via Coursera
Gain the daily work skills and knowledge you’ll need for IT Technical Support career success.

Coding Interview Preparation
Meta via Coursera
This course will help prepare you for the unique aspects of a coding job interview, with approaches to problem solving, computer science foundations and soft skills needed to land the job.

Dasar-dasar Analitik Data: Data, Data di Mana-mana
Google via Coursera
Ini adalah materi pertama dalam program Sertifikasi Data Analitik Google. Materi ini akan membekali Anda dengan keterampilan yang Anda butuhkan untuk melamar kerja sebagai analis data tingkat pemula.

Data-Driven Decisions with Power BI
Knowledge Accelerators via Coursera
New Power BI users will begin the course by gaining a conceptual understanding of the Power BI desktop application and the Power BI service.

Introduction to Databases for Back-End Development
Meta via Coursera
Back-end developers write applications that end-users use to interact with databases. Some common tasks that end-users carry out using these applications include storing, searching, extracting and manipulating data.

5G for Everyone
Qualcomm via Coursera
Take the next step in your career by gaining a greater understanding of 5G technology and how it is changing the way we operate both personally and professionally.

Introduction to Mobile Development
Meta via Coursera
You will learn about the day-to-day responsibilities of web and mobile developers and get a general understanding of the core and underlying technologies that power the internet.

Medical Terminology I
Rice University via Coursera
This course will discuss the importance of learning medical language as well as introduce basic word parts and concepts applied in medical terminology.

The Nature of Genius
Yale University via Coursera
In this course, Professors Craig Wright will begin by giving you his definition and prerequisites for true genius and challenge you to come up with your own.

Energy and Thermodynamics
Harvard University via edX
Learn the fundamentals of chemistry and energy, from the types of energy to atomic mass and matter to enthalpy and thermodynamics.

Introduction to Cybersecurity Essentials
IBM via Coursera
Today’s data-driven and globally connected world data often flows freely between users, organizations, and businesses. Data has real value, and cyber criminals recognize this fact.

Cybersecurity for Managers
Campus BBVA via Coursera
En el mundo empresarial, los managers suelen ser el principal objetivo de un ciberataque, ya que tienen acceso a información confidencial, a cuentas o a transacciones económicas.

Public Speaking
Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee via Swayam
Speaking has since ages been an innate human quality. In a contemporary globalized world, effective public speaking has become crucial both at individual and organizational levels.

Preparar datos para la exploración
Google via Coursera
En estos cursos obtendrás las habilidades necesarias para solicitar empleos de analista de datos de nivel introductorio.

Finance of Mergers and Acquisitions: Valuation and Pricing
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign via Coursera
This course teaches how to value and price M&A deals and to choose the optimal financing mix for an M&A deal.

Microsoft Power Platform Fundamentals
Microsoft via Coursera
You will create simple Power Apps, connect data with Microsoft Dataverse, build a Power BI Dashboard, automate a process with Power Automate, and build a chatbot with Power Virtual Agents.
★★★★☆ (1 rating)

Containerized Applications on AWS
Amazon Web Services via Coursera
This course introduces you to container technologies and how they can be used to modernize your applications, as well as exploring how different AWS services can be used to manage and orchestrate those containers.

Marketing digital para E-commerce
Universidad de Palermo via Coursera
El curso de Digital Marketing for E-commerce te permitirá conocer las claves principales para desarrollar una estrategia de marketing digital aplicada a tu proyecto online.

Introduction to Networking and Storage
IBM via Coursera
This course enables you to develop the skills to diagnose and repair basic networking and security problems and is your first step to passing the CompTIA Network+ exam.

Python and Pandas for Data Engineering
Duke University via Coursera
In this first course of the Python, Bash and SQL Essentials for Data Engineering Specialization, you will learn how to set up a version-controlled Python working environment which can utilize third party libraries.

Introduction to Comparative Indo-European Linguistics
Leiden University via Coursera
Build your knowledge of Indo-European languages, how they changed through time, and how to reconstruct ancient languages.

Introducción a SQL y bases de datos relacionales
Universitat Politècnica de València via edX
Conoce las bases de datos relaciones y aprende SQL, el lenguaje estándar usado en el software empresarial que te permitirá consultarlas y extraer de ellas la información que necesites.
★★★★★ (5 ratings)

Fundamentals of Entrepreneurial Finance: What Every Entrepreneur Should Know
Massachusetts Institute of Technology via edX
A course for innovation-driven entrepreneurs who would benefit from significantly increasing their financial literacy, so that their business has a better chance to survive and scale.

Electrocardiogram – Interpretation and application in clinical practice
NPTEL via Swayam
In this training module, we are going to walk you all through the basics of ECG, techniques on recording and also about the interpretation of ECG in many clinical scenarios with more practical illustrations.

Russian Invasion of Ukraine Teach-Out
University of Michigan via Coursera
The armed conflict in Ukraine first started in the beginning of 2014, when Russia invaded and annexed the Ukrainian region of Crimea.

Django Web Framework
Meta via Coursera
In this course, you will use the Django web framework to build, secure and administer a web server.

Cyber Security Fundamentals
University of London International Programmes via Coursera
This course is intended to provide a general introduction to key concepts in cyber security. It is aimed at anyone with a good general knowledge of information and communications technology.
★★★★★ (1 rating)

Introduction to Machine Learning: Supervised Learning
University of Colorado Boulder via Coursera
In this course, you’ll be learning various supervised ML algorithms and prediction tasks applied to different data. You’ll learn when to use which model and why, and how to improve the model performances.

Personality Development and Communication Skills
Savitribai Phule Pune University via Swayam
This course is mainly focused on: clarity and understanding the concept of personality; stages and process of forming a personality; factors affecting the personality; and characteristics of an effective personality.

Machine Learning Introduction for Everyone
IBM via Coursera
This three-module course introduces machine learning and data science for everyone with a foundational understanding of machine learning models.

Introduction to Software, Programming, and Databases
IBM via Coursera
This course aims to help you understand more about the types of software and how to manage software from an information technology (IT) perspective.

Introduction to Risk Management
University of California, Irvine via Coursera
In this course, you will learn about risk assessment techniques and how to implement a number of strategies that will ensure the protection of assets.

National Academy of Sports Medicine Nutrition Essentials
National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) via Coursera
By successfully completing this program, you will have the knowledge and abilities to leverage nutrition education to increase your client’s success, reduce turnover, and maximize adherence.

Introduction to Blockchain
IBM via edX
Discover why blockchain is such a disruptive force across business, government and society. In this course, you will learn how to design smart contracts, bitcoin wallets, fabricode, chain SDKs, and more.

Basic Instructional Methods
NITTTR via Swayam
This course on Basic Instructional Methods will prepare the participants (means teachers or potential teachers) to understand the issues related to general principles, pedagogy and strategies to facilitate learning.

Exploring Inclusive Pedagogies
British Council via FutureLearn
Ensure you’re meeting every learner’s needs, including those most at risk of exclusion, by developing inclusive teaching skills.

Investment Banking: Financial Analysis and Valuation
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign via Coursera
This course will provide students the key building blocks required for a career in investment banking, valuation, and other corporate-finance focused fields.

Data Analyst Career Guide and Interview Preparation
IBM via Coursera
This course is designed to prepare you to enter the job market as a data analyst. It provides guidance about the regular functions and tasks of data analysts and their place in the data ecosystem.

Introduction to Software Engineering
IBM via Coursera
If you are curious to learn more about the field of software engineering, this course is for you. Software Engineers are in great demand and now is a great time to learn more about this exciting career path.

(ISC)² via Coursera
You will learn how to protect information in order to ensure its integrity, confidentiality, authenticity, and non-repudiation.

Why Smart Executives Fail: Common Mistakes & Warning Signs
Dartmouth College via Coursera
There’s so much to learn from what goes wrong. In this course, Professor Sydney Finkelstein will teach you why leaders make mistakes, and what you can do to avoid making those same mistakes yourself.
★★★★★ (1 rating)

Let’s Read! Learning Japanese through Science & Technology-1
University of Tokyo via Coursera
This course focuses on improving Japanese reading comprehension through vocabulary and expressions retention, with a theme of Science and Engineering research at the University of Tokyo.

Introduction to Test Driven Development (TDD)
IBM via Coursera
This course introduces fundamentals of why automated testing is important, how TDD makes you think about the requirements first and how TDD can improve your code and save you time.

Suparn Patra Profile Image

Suparn Patra

Suparn developed an interest in MOOCs through a project he worked on during his MSc in Artificial Intelligence. He joined Class Central as a Full Stack Engineer.

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