coursera free courses



Coursera is one of the top platforms to learn a skill to start or advance your career. It offers courses and training to help you start or advance a career. The drawback however is that the courses on the platform are behind a paywall. You will need to pay a subscription to access them. This blog post will show you the step-by-step process to get free Courses legally on Coursera.

What Kind of Courses Can I Get For Free?

Coursera is host to 4 types of training materials; these are

  • a Single Course
  • a Specialization
  • a Professional Certificate.
  • a Degree Program

A Specialization and a Professional Certification usually consist of multiple courses that are taught together or as a bundle (a complete package). Many Courses, Specializations, and professional certifications can be accessed for free. The Degree programs on Coursera are not available for free access.

Steps on How to Get Free Courses

You can access many Courses for free by using the Course Audit option. The challenge however is that this option is often hidden in plain sight on the Coursera platform. It is easy to miss. Sometimes the Course Audit button gets moved around on the site. The steps highlighted below will help you find it.

If you do not have an account with Coursera, you can start from step 1 or skip to the appropriate step if you already have an account.

Step 1:

Visit the Coursera site at and sign up for an account.

Step 2 :

Click on the Explore button to select the subject or course of your choice. (Information Technology selected in the screenshot below). Alternatively, you can use the search query to find the course of your choice.

Searching for Courses on Coursera

The search query in this case is for “Data Analysis with Python” and the result is in the next step.

Step 3:

Click on the Enroll for Free button to register for the course.

Coursera Enrollment

The Data Analysis with Python course by IBM is part of a larger certification Program, it will display the other courses in the bundle too, click on the next button to proceed.

Step 4 :

Click on Next

Step 5: Look for the Course Audit Button and Click on it to access the course for free.

Coursera Course Audit.

Note if you do not get this option to audit the course, it means it is not available for you for free. The other option will be to purchase a subscription.

Step 6: Start the course for free.

Start the Course

How to Audit Professional Certification Courses

If you are accessing Professional certifications that consist of multiple courses, the option to audit the course may not be available for the entire course bundle. You will have to audit the individual courses that make up the certification. What you need to do is go to the registration page for each of the courses to audit the course. The steps are the same as those highlighted earlier.

Do I get Coursera Certificates For the Free Courses?

Coursera does not give a Certification for courses you accessed through the free option. You also do not have access to graded exam questions.

How much does Coursera cost?

Coursera course subscriptions are by default not free. It costs a subscription fee of $39- $99 per month (depending on the program). Each course also has a 7-day trial period.

The MasterTrack Certificate program costs range from $2,000-$5,000 while the University certificate prices range from $1,000-$3,000. The payments for such are also flexible depending on the program.

Coursera Financial Aid

Coursera is also committed to assisting persons who may be able to meet the financial obligations of paying for Courses/Certificates. You can fill out an application for Financial Aid at the home page of the Certification/Course that is of interest to you. If approved, you will be given full access to the Course/Certificate and can earn a Cert.

The Financial aid will usually give you access to the training materials for 180 days and you will have to pledge to commit to some Code of Conduct and Honor code.


The Course Audit option in many Coursera courses will allow you to get them for free. You have to navigate the courses individually to look for that audit button as it is obscure. You however do not have access to graded exams and certifications as these are only available via a paid subscription – $39/month (most programs).


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Verified by MonsterInsights