Udacity Or Coursera: Which Online Learning Platform Is The Best For Artificial Intelligence And Machine Learning Upskilling?
This is a question that every data science and machine learning enthusiast who is looking to and take up online certification program is grappling with.
Most self-taught data science and machine learning professionals have to tread the self-learning path with a ton of online courses, especially through Coursera and Udacity Nanodegree program. These online certification programs also serve as preparatory material for graduate studies.
While there is no clear consensus on which certification program is better, it all depends on the learner’s specific learning goals as well as their preferred learning modes. Most often, learners resort to course ratings and reviews to determine the effectiveness of the learning program and whether it is worth their time and money. So let’s take a look at each platform and what they have to offer.
Udacity is one of the most popular online learning platforms thanks to its Data Science Nanodegree as well as Introduction to Machine Learning certifications. Since these certifications are created by big tech firms like Amazon, Google, AT&T, Facebook, and Cloudera, Udacity graduates easily land jobs in companies like Verizon, SalesForce, Intuit, Goldman Sachs, and Accenture among others. In 2016, Udacity co-founder Sebastian Thrun pegged the platform as the best for learners seeking to land a job within six months of successful completion of their online certification program. He also declared a 100 percent tuition refund to those did not succeed in finding a job upon graduation.
All Udacity courses come with five to six projects that help in giving learners a hands-on experience. Another important feature of Udacity courses is that they are self-paced and you can complete your course at your pace without much pressure.
Nanodegree Credentials make them attractive to potential employers
The Nanodegree credentials in Artificial Intelligence, Data Science, Computer Vision, Deep Learning, and Data Foundations are offered by major companies like IBM, Nvidia, Amazon, Watson, Google, Affectiva, GitHub, Alteryx, and AT&T among others. Besides equipping learners with industry specific skills, Udacity’s Nanodegree program also offers exclusive employment placements. Their career service team works directly with learners to help them land a job upon successful completion of their online certification program.
Machine Learning Engineer Nanodegree Program
The Data Analyst Nanodegree was one of the first online certification program to be launched by Udacity with the goal of delivering the right skills needed for a data science career. This program also comes with student services and excellent projects.
This Nanodegree program has been touted as a definite job guarantee for eligible learners in the US and trains them in the most in-demand skills like Android and iOS developers, Blockchain developer, at a fraction of the cost of traditional education.
Best Introductory course of Machine Learning
Given that this online certification program has been designed by Artificial Intelligence pioneer and heavyweight Andrew Ng, learners with statistics and programming background can grasp the concepts quite easily. However, the learning curve gets steep 40 percent into the course and that is where most learners get into trouble with programming assignments. Even though the course says there are no prerequisites, a learner with no prior knowledge of math or statistics may struggle with this course, unless they brush up their Linear Algebra.
Steep Learning Curve
One of the most common statements attributed to Coursera’s Machine Learning certification is that it is quite theoretical with a lot of math and requires a deep understanding of probability and linear algebra. It also requires learners to have some basic programming skills, has a deep learning curve, and comes with a load of programming quizzes and assignment. As a matter of fact, you will need to commit four to five hours of learning every week if you hope to finish this program and land your dream job in the Machine Learning field. If you already have a certain level of expertise in the Machine Learning field, then Udacity’s Artificial Learning Nanodegree is highly recommended as the next step to advance your skillset.
Coursera Data Science Program
Coursera’s data science course has been created by Johns Hopkins University. The specialization covers ten modules in data science right from data collection to data cleaning, R programming, and exploratory analysis. One common drawback to this Coursera’s certification is that all its modules are R-based and are ideal for learners who are completely new to data science However, learners with R knowledge and programming background may not find this course quite useful.
Coursera courses are touted as a pathway to employment and are the perfect resource for working professionals hoping to upskill. Since the course’s modules are project-focused, learners have the flexibility to work on a range of projects that add to their portfolio. Coursera has clearly increased the career prospects for most learners.