When you’re looking to find a solid online learning site, even reviews, that should be your guides, can sometimes provide little help. They tell you that “Site X is great!” “Site Y has useful tools!” and “Site Z will help you learn!” but there’s no indication whether site X, Y, or Z is better. You can’t use fifteen different sites at one time—you need to know which one is best.
That’s why we’re here to help. We’re going to compare two online learning sites: Udemy and Pluralsight. But we’re not going to tell that each is good—we’re going to test to see which is better. You’ll be able to easily see how they compare in price, quality, and learning goals. So let’s jump into our review of Udemy versus Pluralsight, and see which one is best for you!
Meet The Sites
The founder of Udemy had a unique start—he grew up in a remote Turkish village, began learning mathematics online, and through that was able to create a better life for himself. Udemy’s motto, “improving lives through learning,” reflects this background. They offer videos on over 3,000 topics, and in 65 languages, so they truly do want to help anyone learn anything.
Udemy’s topics are wide and varied. You can learn anything from Technology, to Watercolors, to Pet Care. Each course is purchased individually, and is made up for short videos and quizzes. Once you complete a course and all the assignments, you can earn a certificate of completion.
PluralSight was founded in 2004 by Aaron Skonnard and Keith Brown to provide training for companies, but by 2007 it transformed into a distance training platform. Their goal is to “help businesses and individuals benchmark expertise across roles, speed up release cycles, and build reliable, secure products.”
While PluralSight is aimed more toward business and individuals within a corporation, it is also for any developer, IT administrator, or coder. They are a subscription-based service, where a monthly payment gives you access to the entire course library. Their courses focus on business and software, and are made up of videos, projects, and discussion boards for learners to use.
Ease Of Use
The first thing to check about a site is its ease of use. After all, if you can’t use it, you won’t. It takes some time to train your brain to learn something—and if there’s hundreds of distracting ads, or ever-cycling-loading-bars, then you won’t be able to focus. How easy are Udemy and PluralSight to use?
Udemy wastes no time in letting you start learning. When you open the site, all of its courses are there for you. You can scroll through the whole library. Finding a course to take is as simple as scrolling through the most popular ones, searching for keywords, or browsing categories. As you browse courses, you can see the rating of each course, which makes it easier to decide which one to take.
However, while the ratings are designed to help you, they can also be deceiving. Udemy asks for the first review about twenty minutes into the course—which is far too short a time to judge the quality of the entire course.
But Udemy does make it easy to find time to learn. All of the lessons are divided into 2-10-minute videos, and are downloadable on their app, so you can learn on the go.
Udemy’s video player is also simple to use. You can adjust the video playback, or read over the transcript. It is easy to skip ahead to future lessons, or go back to older lessons for a refresher.
PluralSight makes it easy to start—they offer a 10-day free trial so you can test out the site without having to commit. When you create an account, you can select topics you’re interested in to get personalized recommendation, or just jump ahead to start browsing.
PluralSight also has unique tools to make your learning easier—you can set personalized goals, and PluralSight will automatically remind you.
Here as well their videos make it easy to learn anywhere anytime. While the courses are large and thorough, they’re split into modules, which are then split into 4-10-minute videos. PluralSight has a built-in place for you to take notes while listening to the video, and downloadable exercise files for you to work alongside the course.
PluralSight also offers learning paths to ease your learning long-term. These paths are made to take you from beginner to expert in a particular topic, whether that’s a coding language, or designing a website.
Conclusion: PluralSight Vs Udemy Ease Of Use
Both Udemy and PluralSight make it easy to start their courses and start learning. However, PluralSight takes the lead here, as its built-in reminders and note-taking spaces continue to make your learning easy as you work through the courses.
Which Has Better Quality?
Quality is the most important part of any site. It may be easy to use, and it may be cheap—but if it’s teaching you the wrong information or poorly-made, then you’re wasting your time. You want to be sure what you are learning is accurate. You want to be able to understand the instructors. Let’s see whether Udemy or PluralSight has better quality.
Udemy is proud of the fact that anyone can learn anything on their site. But that fact can cause issues. To allow for courses on any topic, there’s no vetting process for instructors or courses. Anyone can teach—which means there’s no quality control. Thus certificates from Udemy courses are worth only as much as the paper they are printed on.
There have been reports of poorly-made videos, and barely-understandable audio. Some courses may teach unethical or scamming methods. Not all courses or instructors are this way, and most are attempting to teach you the best way they can. However, even then, their information may be out-of-date, especially if it has to do with technological fields.
Udemy’s rating system was designed to push down those poor courses, and encourage high-quality ones to float to the top. Yet as we mentioned above, reviews can be misleading, and learners may not know when information is incorrect.
PluralSight is marketed towards business—and is partnered with several large ones. Many of their courses are created in partnership with Microsoft, Google, Adobe, and Oracle. All of their courses are reviewed for technical accuracy, and they ensure they have the best instructors.
Pluralsight’s focus on niche topics allow the courses to be more thorough as well. Many of the courses are several hours long, and teach intermediate and advanced knowledge. When you take the course, you can be sure you’re learning what you need to.
Certificates from PluralSight are valuable as well. Though technically you cannot earn any CEU’s from them, you still show you completed a course that is partnered with recognizable industry leaders. Their premium subscription also allows you to complete projects to show what you’ve learned: coding projects, sites you create, or models designed within programs like Maya.
Conclusion: PluralSight Vs Udemy Quality
Here PluralSight shines again. Their connection to organizations like Microsoft, thorough courses, and built-in projects ensures that all of their courses are high quality.
Udemy has a straightforward focus on learning, and so doesn’t offer any special tools for their users.
PluralSight offers exam prep for many certification courses like the PMP, CompTIA, and ISACIT. They also offer two tools that help you assess your learning: Skill IQ and Role IQ. Both of these 5-10-minute tests help you assess what you already know, and help Pluralsight’s AI, IRIS, suggest a personalized learning plan for you to reach your goals. Skill IQ focuses on the skills you still need to learn—that way you won’t need to waste time watching lessons on skills you’ve already mastered. Role IQ test the specific skills that you need to be successful in a particular job role—and shows your progress as you prepare for the career you want.
Conclusion: PluralSight Vs Udemy Tools/Perks
PluralSight is the clear winner here—the tools it offers will help you track your progress and stay motivated to achieve your goals.
Which Is Priced Better?
When it comes down to it, the price tag can be the real decider. It doesn’t matter how easy the site is to use or what special tools it offers—if you can’t afford it, then it’s not for you. Which is cheaper, Udemy or PluralSight?
Udemy’s courses are priced individually, so how much you pay depends on how many courses you take. While many of Udemy’s course have a list price of $100-$250, in reality, almost-constant sales put their price more commonly at $15-$25 per course. This is on the cheaper end of online learning courses.
While there is no option to watch courses for free, Udemy does offer a 30-day money-back guarantee—a useful tool to help lessen the problem of possible low-quality courses.
PluralSight is subscription-based, with two different levels. A Basic Subscription gives you access to all of the courses, along with Skill/Role IQ, for $29 a month. (If you pay all at once, it’s $299 for a year, which saves you 15%). However, you can’t earn certificates or complete projects
Pluralsight’s Premium Subscription only comes in the lump sum of $499 a year. This allows you to earn certificates, complete projects, and also take part in live classes, where you are coding or interacting with the instructor in real time. However, this is a large sum, and a large time commitment.
Conclusion: PluralSight Vs Udemy Prices
Udemy is far cheaper than PluralSight. Pluralsight’s basic subscription costs more, and doesn’t include the possibility to get credit for your work. If you want proof of your learning, you’d have to upgrade to Premium—and $500 all at once is a large chunk of money.
Is Either Better Suited For Different Learners?
All sites aren’t made for all learners. You have a specific goal for your learning. Maybe it’s to further your professional career, or personal development, or just because you’re curious and always wanted to know how to shape pottery. Different sites are made with different learners in mind, so not all of them may work for you.
Udemy is geared toward the curious learner. Its certificates aren’t accredited and won’t do much to boost your resume. However, it is made for those who always wanted to learn how to do a hobby, or want to broaden their understanding.
PluralSight is designed for the professional individual who wants to advance their career. They are focused on certificates, marketable skills, and competence in a technological workforce. Their website is designed with business in mind, and so is geared for the people who work in them. PluralSight isn’t for the grandma who wants to learn knitting—it’s for the professional who wants to learn cybersecurity.
Which Is Better: PluralSight Or Udemy?
If you are taking your learning seriously, then PluralSight is the place for you. Because of its partnership with Google and Adobe, certificates from these courses will add weight to your resume. The built-in reminders and goals will help you to stay on track in your learning, and the learning paths will take your skills to the next level.
However, if you’re not intensely interested in a technology/business career, then PluralSight will likely be a waste of your time and money. It’s far too expensive for the merely curious. If you’re not focused on a professional track, then you’re paying for tools you don’t need. If you are learning just for the joy of learning, then Udemy is a better place for you.