Evolving Our Marketplace Pricing

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As Udemy continues to grow, it’s important that we evolve our marketplace to foster the best possible place for students and instructors to achieve their learning and teaching goals. In April, we modified our course prices and promotions. Since making that change four months ago, we’ve learned that students and instructors value more flexible pricing and course promotions.

Starting August 22, we’re expanding the range of list prices and bringing back our popular fixed price, site-wide deals. This expanded price range of $20 – $200 allows us to continue to build a more diverse, dynamic marketplace for students and instructors.

Udemy is one of the largest global marketplaces for learning and teaching online, with over 40,000 courses taught by more than 20,000 instructors. This flexible pricing reinforces our commitment to making learning accessible to the greatest number of students and rewards instructors who share their expertise with the world.

As always, once you have purchased a course, and keep your account in good standing, you are able to learn at your own pace, and have lifetime access to the course material.

For any questions or to contact our Support team, please consult our FAQs. We’re excited to continue to evolve as the best possible place for anyone in the world to learn, achieve, and succeed.

Gregory Boutte
VP of Content

Updating our Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Instructor Terms

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Udemy has grown significantly over the last several years because of your commitment to learning and teaching through our global marketplace. To better serve our growing community, we’re updating our Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Instructor Terms, making them clearer and easier to understand.

We encourage you to carefully review the new Terms. Some of the key updates we’ve made include:

  • Easier to understand: We’ve reorganized and rewritten most of our policies to make them clearer and easier to understand.
  • Clarity on dispute resolution: The updated dispute resolution section explains how to best handle disputes with Udemy.
  • A more comprehensive Privacy Policy: Our revamped Privacy Policy provides more detail on the information we collect and how we use it. As always, we do not (and will not) sell your data.
  • Updated Notification Period: We’re updating how we notify you about material changes to our Terms so we can better communicate with you.

The old and new versions of the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy can be found at Udemy.com/terms through August 19, 2016. We encourage you to review these terms on your own.

These Terms are effective immediately for first-time users on or after August 2, 2016. Existing users will be asked to agree to these updated Terms no later than August 19, 2016, at which time the Terms will become effective for them as well.

Adopting the new Udemy Terms will help us stay focused on building a great learning marketplace to help you achieve your learning and teaching goals. Thank you for being a member of our community! If you have any questions, please refer to our FAQs, where you can also contact a member of our support team.

Be the first to master iOS 10

iphone in handIt’s a big day at Udemy for iPhone app developers, as we unveil new iOS 10 courses hot off the presses.

Apple released the most recent public beta of iOS 10 just last week, not long after the developer beta was unveiled at WWDC in June. As always, Udemy’s top instructors have been quick to respond so students don’t have to wait to continue learning about the freshest technology on the market. If you need proof that students accomplish amazing things with the skills they learn on Udemy, read the story of Nick Di Vona, who took Mark Price’s iOS 9 course and saw his very first app reach #2 internationally in the App Store.

Mark and fellow instructor Rob Percival, among others, are both offering brand-spankin’ new iOS 10 courses starting today, so go check ‘em out! 

Putting the science in Udemy’s learning platform

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Jess drops some science at Udemy LIVE

By Jessica Ashraf, Teaching and Learning Specialist, Udemy

People come to Udemy to learn something, and we want their time on our site to be worthwhile and rewarding. It takes a lot more to ensure a good learning experience than simply offering courses, however, and this is where learning science comes in. We’ll be spending some time on the Udemy blog exploring the field of learning science and the role it plays in our marketplace.

Introduction to learning science
Learning science, simply put, is the study of how people learn, and it informs how learning environments are designed. It draws upon research from fields like educational psychology, cognitive science, computer science, and anthropology. What distinguishes learning science from these related fields is its focus and approach.

Learning science seeks to bridge the gap between research and practical application. Learning scientists develop theories and frameworks about learning from which they can devise strategies and implement them in learning environments. Most of this research is conducted in real-life settings, unlike other disciplines where research happens in very controlled, unnatural settings. Not surprisingly, new technologies and online learning models are a major focus in the world of learning science these days.

Applying science to the student experience
Learning effectively on your own is actually quite hard. You have to make a lot of conscious and sometimes nonintuitive decisions before you even get started, and countless potential distractions and barriers can get in the way of your progress. For example, you may believe that rewatching a video is good for absorbing its content, but “recalling” is actually more effective, though it’s also more difficult.

First, you have to decide you want to learn something. Then you need to figure out which course to take and focus your attention there, somehow blocking out Facebook, YouTube, or whatever else you’ve got open in other browser tabs. You’ll also have to discipline yourself to complete exercises presented by the instructor and to stay engaged over the duration of the course.

Given the size of our marketplace (11 million students and counting), Udemy caters to a vast audience of learners, and we can’t control for all their distractions and personal environments. Many people taking courses on Udemy describe themselves as motivated, self-directed learners—the type who are naturally inclined to push through any interruptions in their quest for knowledge. Nonetheless, we have built Udemy to be a distraction-free, easy-to-use platform that’s engaging, rewarding, and conducive to learning for all sorts of students. We do our own user research and testing to determine the best online content, tools, and interfaces for learning.

Learning science @Udemy
Learning scientists are constantly developing new strategies for how people can learn best in our quickly evolving, technology-driven world, and we’re following the latest thinking to see how we can apply those concepts to Udemy. We tap into the science of learning for everything from product development and strategy planning to creating training resources and offering individual support to instructors. I may have “learning scientist” in my title, but everyone else here cares deeply about offering the best possible learning experience to Udemy students too. We all read up on best practices for online teaching and learning and gather cross-functional groups to share ideas.

If you’ve read this far, you’re probably a little passionate about learning too! Stay tuned for future blog posts where we’ll dig deeper into learning science and discuss how insights from learning science research are put to use at Udemy.

July Hidden Gems

Hidden GemsDQ and Caroline have come up with some real winners for this month’s batch of gems. We’ve got tips for caring for a new baby or for a furry friend, being a dynamic speaker or a well-behaved dinner guest, and more!

 

Money Origami Gifts Origami
What we liked: In his younger days, instructor Mari G was featured on Disney Channel Asia for his precocious talent and love of the traditional Japanese art of origami. Here, he offers step-by-step guides to using paper currency to create a variety of objects, from butterflies to guitars to dresses. Making an origami turtle has never been easier!

Cat Pumping and Making DIY Toyscat pumping
What we liked: We hadn’t heard of cat-pumping before, but we’re going to start practicing with our felines ASAP (whether they like it or not!). In this course, cat fancier Will Caraway shares tips and tricks for keeping your cat happy and entertained. Go on a journey to learn how to build your own cat toys and give your pet a purr-fect massage.

Public Speaking Done Differentspeaking
What we liked: Whatever you’re expecting from a course on public speaking, forget it. This is by far one of the most inventive courses we’ve seen on any topic. Instructor Nathan Robertson blends fun and role-playing with solid, practical advice to help students channel their own personality into becoming a better speaker. The section on finding your style is a must-watch.

Guide to Pregnancy and Healthy Babiesparenting
What we liked: Extremely high-quality video production and varied camera shots make this course extra-engaging. Kate Slagh is a board-certified physician’s assistant whose goal is to help new or expecting parents (or anyone helping care for a new bundle of joy) build confidence in their childcare skills.

Everyday Dining Etiquetteetiquette
What we liked: Going to a dinner party but not sure where to leave your napkin when you get up from the table or properly place your salad knife when you’re done using it? Well, the salad knife goes on the upper-right-hand corner of your plate, but you’ll have to take this course for the napkin answer and many more everyday dining etiquette tips. Image and etiquette expert Kimberly Law will help you make a good impression and display manners that are sure to get you invited back.

Online learning could help more people achieve—if they knew about it

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Sometimes it’s easy for us in Silicon Valley to get stuck in the echo chamber and assume our Bay Area lifestyle and attitudes are consistent with the rest of the world. We are early adopters of bleeding-edge technologies, we reject the status quo, and we constantly seek out better ways of doing things, whether that’s using a ride-share service or wearing a computer on our faces. It’s good to step back and remind ourselves that most people don’t live this way.

Online learning is another one of those things that feels pervasive in our world but is, in fact, still in its earliest infancy. For motivated lifelong learners, going online to take courses and pursue self-directed learning is just another way the internet is an integral part of our lives. Indeed, the variety of educational resources has never been greater. And yet, most people are unfamiliar with the options available to them or haven’t (yet) recognized their value.

In my mind, that one challenge overshadows the rest. A lack of awareness is holding modern education back.

In fact, those people who could benefit most from online and digital education platforms are the most unfamiliar with them. Instead, it’s those who are already highly educated who are gravitating to new education platforms to bolster their existing skill sets. Moreover, the awareness problem affects the U.S. disproportionately compared to the rest of the world.

Consider India, where there will be 142 million students in the higher ed age range in 2030. They can’t build enough schools to accommodate the coming wave, and the internet is the most obvious solution for getting these people the skills training they need. At the same time, Indians are acutely aware of and concerned about the rise of automation and what it could mean for their employability, with 91% of Indian survey respondents believing their skills will become obsolete in the next five years. Udemy sees the strongest demand in areas with young populations and growing technical economies like India. Nearly one million students in India are enrolled in courses on our platform–a figure that’s more than doubled from last year.

But for most folks in the U.S., traditional institutions of higher ed still reign supreme, even as tuitions rise to historic highs and the return on investment becomes less certain. Colleges and universities are regarded as mandatory routes to career success, though many employers still find new grads to be underprepared for the professional world and many in-demand skills like graphic design and coding can be learned via online courses just as effectively. For-profit universities, in the news for sudden bankruptcies and high-profile lawsuits, have given Americans a negative perception of higher ed alternatives available to working adults. Online learning is often unfairly lumped in with that group.

Raising awareness of today’s digital learning tools will take much more than sharing information and signing people up for classes. The real issue is getting people to accept that all of us need to continue our education beyond high school and even college. I experienced my own dose of reality a few years ago when I did my first broadcast interview and realized afterwards how much better I would’ve done if I’d been media-trained. Today’s workplace is evolving so quickly, you’ll get a wake-up call like that too, if you haven’t already, but you’re probably not about to drop your career and go back to school.

This is why there’s been so much talk urging individuals to embrace a growth mindset and develop into lifelong learners. Companies and organizations can help during the hiring process by looking at what job candidates know and can do—not where or how they learned it—and offering online skills training that’s more like choosing from Netflix’s online entertainment library and less like corporate drudgery. The goal is to create an environment that motivates employees and individuals to want to better themselves and then offer the resources to help them get there.

Online learning isn’t going away; it’s only getting bigger. But we in edtech can’t be the only ones touting its benefits. More voices—from college advisors to industry leaders to education policymakers—need to speak up about the larger issue of how today’s workers can stay marketable and grow their skills and the multitude of online resources available to them. We’re drawing closer to a future in which every individual has equal access to grow skills and enrich their lives, but we still have a long way to go.

#WhatToChangeNow

Is teaching the new feather in your professional cap?

Credit: Nicholas Kristof

Credit: Nicholas Kristof

At some point, publishing a book became the must-have accomplishment for business people to include in their professional profiles. Along those lines, I’ve been noticing something interesting happening in the Udemy marketplace. We’ve been seeing more and more professionals turning to online teaching as a way to build their personal brands, extend their influence, and foster a more dynamic, multidirectional dialog with their followers.

Not only is teaching online a great way to demonstrate expertise, it’s perhaps the most effective way to share that expertise with a virtually limitless global audience that’s checking in from smartphones while on the go or from living rooms, offices, commuter trains, etc. And that, in turn, is a huge benefit to would-be students, who wouldn’t otherwise have access to these high-quality experts.

Nowadays, when influencers want to broadcast a message, they can’t skip delivering it as on-demand video. Simply put, most consumers cite video as the format they prefer over reading text, and they have unprecedented control over the viewing experience too. We’ve all gotten used to consuming entertainment on our own terms, at our own pace, on our own schedules. Forget the TV listings; you can watch any episode of any show whenever you want.

Professional content creators of all stripes have to meet those same consumer expectations of freedom and flexibility. Books are still plenty popular, but they’re just one ingredient in the media mix people are feeding on. That’s why more non-teachers are recognizing the power of online courses to help their audiences absorb information and apply what they’ve learned. With video-based courses, their expertise is available whenever people want it, and it’s easy for students to engage in relevant discussions with the expert and with each other.

A slew of well-known influencers have signed on to create courses on Udemy, including entrepreneur and marketing maven Seth Godin, bestselling authorElizabeth Gilbert, and New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof. What they have in common is a desire to serve their expertise to as many people as possible. We actually asked Nick Kristof and his wife/co-instructor Sheryl WuDunn to tell us why they felt an online course made sense for sharing their messages about global opportunity and empowering women. They had already published books and made TV documentaries on these topics, “But frankly, not everyone reads books: Picking up a 300-page book is a significant barrier, while watching videos may be a little easier and friendlier.” Essentially, given the multitude of ways people find and consume information today, Nick and Sheryl recognized the need to deliver content in many different formats to satisfy them; in other words, the decision to publish a course was driven by their audience’s needs.

This evolution from books to courses isn’t just something for people who already have a highly visible public persona either. There are Udemy instructors who’ve adapted self-published e-book content for their video courses and vice-versa after finding that the two formats worked well in tandem. I talked to one student who came to Udemy to learn about creating and hosting a webinar and decided to create an online course instead so people anywhere could access it indefinitely. Another instructor told us she’s been getting more speaking engagements since her online courses started gaining attention, demonstrating how these efforts reinforce each other and contribute to overall results.

In other words, for many professionals, especially freelancers, consultants, entrepreneurs, and the self-employed, teaching online is one of the best ways to build out an audience and serve more “customers” without being hindered by time, geography, or logistical restrictions. While additional income is great, for many of these folks, there are other benefits worth having, like connecting with students in far-flung locations and being able to “teach” a course on demand whenever people are ready to learn, no matter the time of day or night.

We know the internet is democratizing access to education for students, but it’s also opening more doors for subject-matter experts who want to distribute their content more widely. It ends up being a win-win, as instructors stretch their muscles in new directions to strengthen their professional profiles, and students have more opportunities than ever to learn from the best.

This article originally appeared on The Huffington Post.

Going offline to grow online

twenty20_9658c492-a9be-42b2-8133-59030b7ad4d3Online learning is bringing education to people all over the world who might not otherwise have access. Moreover, the internet gives them the freedom to pursue online learning the same way they now consume other types of digital content — on demand anytime, anywhere. On the flip side, the internet makes it possible for subject-matter experts on virtually any topic to share their knowledge 24/7 with a virtually limitless global audience.

People, especially working adults, appreciate being able to control their own learning experience. When you’ve already got a busy life at the office and at home, being able to go at your own pace and stick to your own schedule is a pretty big deal. Combining flexible, self-directed learning with a vast network of subject experts is what’s allowed Udemy to build a global community of millions of students and thousands of instructors. And it’s why we firmly believe the future of education is online.

And yet…

There’s undeniable power in sitting in the physical presence of someone and having a real-time conversation. You can read their body language and have the sort of free-flowing conversation that yields surprising discoveries. It’s easier to have group interactions when everyone can see each other; there are fewer inadvertent interruptions and awkward VoIP delays. It’s just plain exciting when you finally get to meet in person someone you’ve only spoken to over the phone or video.

So, perhaps it’s not surprising that an online marketplace would host an in-person event, with attendees coming from as far as Romania and Australia and as nearby as right here in San Francisco. Udemy instructors are largely working solo when they create their courses. That could be a lonely experience if they didn’t also feel they’re part of a bigger community of like-minded individuals who share their sense of purpose. They’ve built a strong online community –through our private Facebook groups, for example–but it speaks volumes that so many instructors would travel far distances to spend time together. It’s going to be really cool just to look around the room and see the size and impact of Udemy’s place in the online learning movement.

Learning and teaching are both very personal and decidedly human activities. Gathering in-person will facilitate richer, more organic discussions among our instructors as they explore ways of creating better courses and meeting student needs more effectively. And, of course, it’s a golden opportunity for Udemy to reward our valuable instructors, celebrate their achievements, and find out how we can support them in reaching their goals too.

What else are we looking forward to?

  • Forming deeper connections — We expect to partner with our instructors for years, so it’s critical we maintain positive, productive relationships that help us understand their needs. On the flip side, instructors will better understand how to work with us to implement their ideas.
  • Focused attention — There’s nothing like a live event for capturing an audience’s full attention and eliminating competing distractions.
  • Unfettered communication — Let’s face it. Not everyone is comfortable speaking up in online group/video chats or conference calls, and not every topic lends itself to email. It’s a lot easier to open up to someone you’re sitting right next to.
  • No time zone differences — With instructors in almost 200 different countries around the globe, challenges of time and space can definitely get in the way of efficient communications.

Yes, the internet has no equal when it comes to opening up opportunity for people and giving them new ways to gain knowledge and learn skills. But there will always be value in gathering, communicating, and collaborating in person too.

Stay tuned for more about Udemy LIVE before, during, and after the event!

Udemy instructors rock!

The excitement is really building around here, as the dates of Udemy LIVE draw ever closer (it’s June 24-26, FYI). On the off chance you haven’t heard about Udemy LIVE yet, it will be our first-ever, in-person instructor event and will feature workshops, special speakers, and activities to motivate and challenge attendees but also help them form deeper connections to each other and to Udemy. We’ve welcomed many individual instructors to our office before, but this is going to be a special opportunity for serious group face time.

To give you a taste of how awesome, hardworking, and accomplished Udemy instructors are, check out recent stories we’ve written about a few of them (not all of whom can make the trek to SF for Udemy LIVE, unfortunately). These are people who love sharing their expertise and helping others reach their goals — whether that’s building a personal brand on social media, mastering spreadsheets, learning a language, or becoming a better artist or performer.

Dragos ProfileDragoş Ștefănescu Dragoş started from square one in his quest to become a successful Udemy instructor–from determining what to make his course about to figuring out the technical side of creating a course. Today, he has 15 courses  and is teaching 14,000 students the ins and outs of office productivity tools, personal branding, and social media.

 

13040984_1125959600781664_8470079545771742557_oKristen Palana & Jacqui Seidel This dynamic duo shows how teaching on Udemy can be fun and social while also empowering instructors to pursue their passion projects and touch lives around the world. Kristen and Jacqui were each doing well with their respective courses when they hit it off in a Udemy Facebook group and decided to collaborate on courses and e-books.

BillyWBilly Wigley Billy lives, sleeps, and breathes Microsoft Excel, and he has transformed the most skeptical students into the biggest fans. How do you make learning spreadsheets entertaining and engaging? Billy has an irresistible personality combined with a well-developed sense of empathy, enabling him to understand why most of us expect Excel training to be an onerous grind–and how it can actually be enjoyable.

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Sally Apokedak Sally has used Udemy to learn how to grow her business as a literary agent and find supplemental freelance gigs at the same time she’s offering courses teaching others how to make progress with their writing. In addition to the direct rewards of being a Udemy instructor, her presence in the marketplace has brought her new speaking opportunities and has attracted attendees to her appearances.

Unearth these hidden gems on Udemy

Hidden GemsMany people associate Udemy with courses on tech, business, and professional development, and it’s true those are popular categories, but they hardly represent the full breadth of courses you can find in our marketplace. Spend some time digging through our library, and we guarantee you’ll come across some unexpected offerings on more obscure topics. While these courses may not attract the following of a Python programming course, each has an instructor who was passionate and committed enough to create a course and share their knowledge with the world.

With that in mind, we bring you Udemy’s Hidden Gems, a recurring blog feature where we’ll introduce you to courses from the deeper reaches of our marketplace. They’re the kinds of courses that might inspire you to start a new hobby or just give you something new and quirky to spark conversation at a dinner party.

To kick us off, DQ and Caroline from our quality team have assembled this first batch of hidden gems and tell us why these courses deserve their moment in the spotlight.

As a follow-up to Women’s History Month, here are some new engaging and creative courses by female Udemy instructors that combine great content with outstanding production values.

Screen Shot 2016-04-14 at 3.17.53 PMThe Secret to a Bird- and Butterfly-Filled Backyard
What we liked: With her enthusiasm and colorful presentation style, landscape designer Linda Kelso will convince anyone with a backyard to make their thumb a little greener. This course steps students through how to cultivate a thriving ecosystem of helpful birds and insects to protect your home and garden.

Wedding Guide: Planning and Saving Money on Your Wedding Day
What we liked: Planning a wedding is a massive ordeal. The instructor of this course has years of experience in the wedding business as videographer and presents her content with crystal-like clarity, taking students through common pitfalls and decisions better than your best friend or bridesmaids ever could!

Calligraphy for Beginners: Creating Strong LinesScreen Shot 2016-04-14 at 3.17.36 PM
What we liked: Anyone who enjoys the feeling of putting pen to paper will love this project-based introduction to the Pilot Parallel Pen. Instructor Alice Young has an infectious personality and is a calligrapher and designer with a decade of experience working for multinational ad agencies.

Periscope: How to Improve Your Scopes and Grow Followers
What we liked: Vickie Maris goes beyond the basics of Periscope broadcasting to share insightful tips for building your brand and influence. Through the screen, you can feel that Vickie really wants you to succeed, which may be all the motivation you need to become a Periscope superstar.

Drone Masterclass: Your Complete Guide to DJI Drones 
What we liked: The video quality for this course is amazing! Kate Kay is a professional photographer who is using her skills to immerse students in the world of drones. The course is very comprehensive and breaks down all of the things you’ll need to get outside and fly your drone for the first time.

And here are a few more gems we just had to include too!

Screen Shot 2016-04-14 at 3.20.43 PMDrumming for Beginners – Simple Way to Learn How to Drum
What we liked: Hugh Edwards is just so excited to teach new students how to drum. He makes the learning process very approachable by giving students a variety of options for how they can practice — including using  pots and pans you have in your home! 

Screen Shot 2016-04-14 at 3.17.24 PMCooking Class – 12 Brunch Sandwich Maker Recipes From Japan
What we liked: This cooking class does such a great job of walking students step by step through every unique sandwich recipe. We love the time-lapse video and camera angle, which gives students a unique view of the instructor at work in the kitchen.

Ultra Memory Masterclass – Improve Your Memory Today
What we liked: Awesome tips and hacks on how to improve memory in all aspects of your daily life. Bob Kittell does such a thorough job of walking students through every example, you’ll really feel like you can apply the skills you learn  immediately.