Coding is the language of the future—but how do you learn a language made for machines?
Whether it’s creating a website, an email, or an advanced cybersecurity system, all of these require coding. As more and more things move online, more and more coders will be needed. This opens up an opportunity for you—if you know how to code. But that is a very big if. It can be difficult to start coding, as coding bootcamps can cost $9,000.
But there’s another option. MOOC’s, massive open online courses, allow you to learn anything—including coding. While there’s several different sites that offer coding courses, today we’re going to focus on two of the biggest ones, Udemy and Codecademy, to see which one is better. Let’s go!
Codecademy Vs Udemy: Meet The Sites
Founded in 2011 by Zach Sims and Ryan Bubinski, Codecademy wants to “rethink education from the bottom up.” They started out doing this by offering classes for free, focusing mainly on coding languages, both front end and back end ones.
While the site has now shifted where you have to purchase the majority of their courses (though you can still get started for free here), the focus on coding language remains. They offer courses on 14 different coding languages, and boast over 45 million users.
Codecademy is more text-based. They have a built in IDE (integrated Development Environment), which allows you to follow the tutorials as you read them, and instantly see the output from your coding input. While they still offer free courses, the majority of Codecademy runs on a subscription-based system, where a monthly payment gives you access to all of their courses. At the subscription level, you’ll be able to complete projects such as creating an app or a website, get input from peers and mentors, and earn certificates you can display on your resume.
Udemy seeks to bring learning to the people—helping “anyone learn anything.” They’re well-equipped to do this, with over 3,000 topics, in 65 languages, with over 33 million minutes of video. Udemy offers 2,000 different classes on coding languages, so there’s plenty to pick from.
Each course is purchased individually, and once you pay, you’ll have life-time access to the course. Each course is made up of many 5-10-minute videos, along with quizzes and assignments. If you’re ever stuck, there’s a Q+A section below each video, where you can get input both from other students, and from the instructor. Once you completed all the videos and homework, you’ll receive a certificate that you can display on your resume.
Codecademy Vs Udemy: Ease Of Use
It can be hard to learn a new language—but using the site shouldn’t be. The less energy you have to spend signing up, finding a class, and resuming your studies, the better. That allows you to focus on your studies, and master your coding goals. Which one is simpler to use, Udemy or Codecademy?
Codecademy makes it simple to sign up—you can sign up with almost anything, be it an email, Facebook or Google account, or even a LinkedIn or GritHub profile. Right when you start, Codecademy asks you some questions to set you up for success. You share why you came to Codecademy, the topics you’re interested in, and your learning pace—and Codecademy offers courses tailored to you.
You can instantly see the courses that are recommended for you, or you can browse through the categories to find something you’re interested in.
Codecademy’s IDE (Integrated Development Environment) makes it simple to begin coding—you don’t have to climb the huge learning curve that’s involved with downloading the environments for coding languages—and then doing it again for each different language. Instead, Codecademy allows you to start coding straight from your browser, which makes it easy to begin inputting code and seeing the results immediately.
However, this IDE, while making your learning easier now, can make it harder in the future. It’s a “training wheels problem,” where you go through the motions, but don’t know how to set up the environment yourself. So when you begin working in the real world, you’ll have to learn how to set up the environment on your own.
Codecademy does offer different things that makes continuing learning easier. As you complete each course, you’ll earn badges—which gamifies the learning process, making it easier for you to keep learning. Codecademy also offers a community and mentors, to encourage you as you go.
Udemy wastes no time getting you started. As soon as you create an account with your email, you have the whole library of courses laid out in rows upon rows for you. You can start scrolling, seeing the most popular courses, ones Udemy recommends for you, or ones in certain categories. If you already know what courses you’re interested in, you can search through keywords. Remember, Udemy prices each of their courses individually, so make sure to see what discounts they may offering be here.
Udemy built ratings to help make picking a course easier: you can instantly see how many people have taken a course, and what they thought of it. However, there’s a catch. Udemy asks learners for reviews twenty minutes into a course—which means the learner hasn’t had much time to judge the quality of the course, or to put the principles into practice yet.
But Udemy does make it easy to learn a new coding language in the midst of your other work. Udemy’s app allows you to download all of their courses, so you can watch on the go. Each lesson is also a short 2-10-minute video, so it’s simple to fit them into lunch breaks.
Even the videos themselves are easy to use. You can adjust the speed of the video, faster or slower, or even read over the transcript if you can’t watch the video right then. You also have the option to skip ahead to future lessons, or go back to older lessons for a refresher.
Conclusion: Ease Of Use
While both the sites are equally easy to use, Codecademy edges out in front because it makes picking a course simpler. There are fewer overwhelming choices presented to you, and they don’t have any of the tricky ratings that Udemy struggles with. While Codecademy’s IDE may make it difficult to get adjusted to the real world later, it makes it simple for beginners to start, especially ones who have no experience with coding.
Codecademy Vs Udemy: Which Has Better Quality?
No one wants to buy sub-par courses. No matter what you’re learning, quality is important—but it is even more so when you are learning technology topics. If the information is wrong, your projects will fail—if the information is out-of-date, you’ll be out of a job. Is Codecademy worth the money? Is Udemy reliable? Let’s find out.
While Codecademy is not accredited, it has partnered with some organization like Amazon (creating courses on how to build apps for Alexa) that give its certificates a little bit of weight.
Codecademy offers a wide array of courses—over 14 front and back-end coding languages. However, some have complained that their courses are not very thorough. Career and Skills tracks are designed to counteract this, taking you through several courses and taking your skills to the advanced level. However, it is still a beginner-geared site.
There have been some issues with Codecademy’s site as well. Since the IDE is built into your browser, the site can often lag, unable to load your output quickly, or taking several minutes to move ahead to the next lesson. However, that same IDE makes the site higher-quality, as it allows you to begin learning with no outside tools necessary. There have also been complaints of the Codecademy’s Community not loading.
To allow anyone to learn anything, Udemy allows anyone to teach. This is why there are so many courses, and why you can find courses on almost any coding language—but this also means there is no quality control. This means that certificates from Udemy are not worth much at all.
Some users have reported poorly-made videos, or hard to hear audio. While instructors can go in and update their courses, there’s no way for you to see whether or not they have. You may be learning information that is out-of-date, without even knowing. Even if the information is correct, you still get a piecemeal approach. Courses are individual and separate—so you may take a beginner coding class with one instructor, an intermediate on with a teacher with a different focus, and an expert course where the instructor expects you to know something different.
If you’re careful, you can build yourself a thorough learning process, and find the gems of courses among the rough—but you will have to do your own research and work.
Though Codecademy does suffer from some lagging problems, the quality-control and regular updates to their courses makes them higher quality. Their partnership with Amazon and Google also gives you a head start on coding for some of their products, a great way to get a foot into a career there.
Codecademy Vs Udemy: Special Tools/Perks
Sometimes sites offer special tools to help their users, which takes the learning experience to the next level. What does Udemy and Codecademy have to offer?
Udemy is a very straightforward site, focused simply on the learning videos. The one useful tool they offer is the Q+A function, which allows you to ask and have answered any question below the course videos.
Codecademy has more to offer. The Career and Skills Tracks for their paid subscribers guides learners through several courses, bringing them from beginners to mastery. They also allow you to complete projects with each course, which you can display in your portfolio. You have access to peer review of your projects, as well as mentor support for your learning needs.
Codecademy Vs Udemy: Which Is Priced Better?
“Is it worth the price?” is one of the largest questions on our mind. We’re always looking for a deal—which one is cheaper, which one you can get discounts on. After all, you don’t want to bankrupt yourself starting your learning journey. Which one is cheaper, Udemy or Codecademy?
While Codecademy started off by offering only free courses, and still has many, the majority of their courses are under their Pro Subscription. This subscription costs $19.99/month. With this, you get access to all of their courses, along with the Career and Skills paths, projects, peer reviews, and mentor support. You can still get started with Codecademy for free by clicking here to see for yourself if it’s worth paying the subscription cost.
With Udemy, how much you pay depends on how much you buy—because each course is purchased individually. Though most of their courses are listed at $100-$250, in reality, their almost-constant sales put prices at $15-$25 a course. This is on the cheaper end of online learning sites. Once you purchase a course, you have lifetime access to it. Additionally, you can check out what exclusive deals and discounts Udemy is currently offering here.
Udemy offers a 30-day money-back guarantee—a useful tool to help lessen the problem of possible low-quality courses.
Udemy offers a cheaper price than Codecademy, especially since Udemy is a one-time purchase with lifetime access, while Codecademy has a monthly subscription. However, if you’re planning on taking more than one course a month, then Codecademy will be cheaper for you.
Codecademy Vs Udemy: Is Either Better Suited for Different Learners?
Not all sites are created the same. If you’re just starting with coding, you’ll need something different than someone who has been coding for years and wants to learn the finer points of a certain coding language. Who are these two sites geared towards?
Both Udemy and Codecademy are directed more towards the beginner. While Coursera has certificates that are worth more than Udemy’s, the built in IDE still indicates that this is for people who want to get their feet wet—not those who already are completely adept. Both of these sites are for those who have never learned coding before; or for those who want to learn a new coding language.
Which Is Better: Codecademy Or Udemy?
While both of these sites have a lot to offer, Codecademy is the better site. Codecademy is simpler to use, with its built-in IDE, and the ability to instantly see your output as you code. The peer review and mentors make your learning process more interactive, and though the monthly subscriptions may be a little more than Udemy’s, the tools included make it worth it. If you’re new to coding, and want to learn more, Codecademy is a great place to start.
Already know about coding, and want to take your knowledge and career to another level? Check out our full review of Pluralsight, to take your skills to a professional level!