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Best Ivy League Online Courses: Find Them Here

There are thousands of available courses online. However, not all of them are worthy of your time and money. If you want to find the best courses, you should consider not only how reliable an online learning platform is but also what university or institution offers courses. That’s the main reason why people are looking for the most recommended Ivy League online courses

The Ivy League was founded back in 1954 as an American collegiate athletic conference. However, this term is now used beyond the sports context. At the moment, the Ivy League has 8 members, including Brown University, Columbia University, Cornell University, Dartmouth College, Harvard University, the University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, and Yale University.

Since the 1960s, these 8 schools have been recognized for social prestige, high education performance and encouraging future careers. These are the main reasons why these universities attract more and more students every year. 

Now, even though only a small percentage of students manage to get into these schools, it won’t stop you from enrolling in the best Ivy League online courses and learning from the very best experts in their field.  

After performing thorough research and analysis I’ve managed to find the TOP 7 Ivy League online courses. Needless to say, all 8 members were considered. Here’s the list of the most recommended courses that I’ll introduce to you today

Before jumping straight to the introduction of every course, there’s one more thing that I’d like to discuss. 

Ivy League Online Courses: Why Study Online? 

A growing number of people are choosing online courses instead of traditional education. However, what are the main reasons for that? 

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First of all, while universities such as Harvard, Yale and other prestigious schools cost (hundreds of) thousands of dollars, online courses are a much cheaper alternative. In fact, some of the most recommended online learning platforms offer completely free courses.

For example, Coursera offers multiple Harvard and Yale courses online without charging anything. The only drawback is that if you want to get a certificate, you’ll need to pay for it

Ivy League online courses: online learning.

Another major advantage of the best Ivy League online courses is that you don’t have to sit in the classroom and, instead, learn at your own pace anywhere you want. That being said, you have no responsibilities and only answer to yourself. 

Even though the majority of the students want to have that campus experience, it’s so much safer to stay at home due to the current pandemic happening in the world.

If the situation will remain the same, high chances are that online education will change traditional learning and an increasing number of students will start looking for the best Ivy League online courses to expand their horizons. 

Now that you’re aware of the main reasons why it’s worth choosing online studies, let’s move on to the best Ivy League online courses, including free options as well as certified programs

Financial Markets

Ivy League online courses: Financial Markets course.

  • School: Yale University
  • Time to complete: ~32 hours
  • Ability to learn for free: YES
  • Certificate: $49 USD 

Financial Markets is one of the numerous and best-evaluated courses offered by Yale. This course can be found on Coursera (just like many other Ivy League online courses). 

Robert Shiller, the instructor of this course, is a Sterling Professor of Economics at Yale University. Multiple reviews show that students are very pleased with how knowledgeable the professor of this course is, especially due to the different perspectives on modern financial economies. 

The Financial Markets course is highly focused on financially-savvy leadership skills. What is more, you’ll be introduced to risk management, financial principles that will allow you to understand the real-world functioning of banking industries, insurance companies, and other similar businesses. 

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Here are the skills that you’ll gain after completing this course: 

  • Financial markets
  • Behavioral finance and economics

If you’re looking for free Ivy League courses this is a great option for you. You can enroll and complete this course completely free. However, if you need a certificate, it will cost you $49. That’s a fair price, don’t you think?

The Science of Well-Being

Ivy League online courses: The Science of Well-Being course.

  • School: Yale University
  • Time to complete: ~19 hours
  • Ability to learn for free: YES
  • Certificate: $49 USD

The Science of Well-Being course is all about happiness and gratitude. Due to the flexible deadlines, you can learn it at your own pace. It should take you about 19 hours to complete this course. That being said, if you want a short course on gratefulness and wellness, this is the one. 

Laurie Santos, the instructor of this course, is a Professor of Psychology and Head of Silliman Residential College at Yale University. If you’ve been watching The Happiness Lab podcast, you should be well aware of this professor.  

The Science of Well-Being course is suitable for both beginners and more advanced learners, it’s one of the most recommended free Ivy League courses. No prior knowledge is required. 

After completing this course, you’ll have a better understanding of:

  • Gratitude
  • Happiness
  • Meditation
  • Savoring

Since Courser allows you to enroll in this course completely free, this is a great opportunity to improve your skillset. In case you’ll want to show a certificate to your current or future employer, it will cost you $49 to get one. 

CS50's Introduction to Computer Science

Ivy League online courses: CS50's course.

  • School: Harvard University
  • Time to complete: ~12 weeks
  • Ability to learn for free: YES
  • Certificate: $90 USD

The CS50's Introduction to Computer Science course is created for both beginners and more advanced learners. The course will be taught by three different instructors: David J. Malan, Doug Lloyd and Brian Yu. They’re all professionals in computer science who are working at Harvard University.

This course aims to teach students how to think algorithmically and solve issues quickly. The topics include but are not limited to data structures, abstraction, algorithms, security, software engineering, web development, etc. 

You will also learn programming languages, including C, Python, SQL, and JavaScript plus CSS and HTML. If you’re aiming to find one of the best Ivy League online certificate programs, this might be a great option. However, in order to be eligible for a certificate, you’ll need to earn a satisfactory score on 9 problem sets as well as a final project. 

Even though the course is self-paced, the assignments will require hard work and dedication to complete it successfully. This course should teach you

  • A good understanding of computer science and programming
  • How to solace programming problems efficiently
  • Introduction to different programming languages
  • etc.

Even though this course lasts about 12 weeks, if you’re looking for some of the most recommended Ivy League online certificate programs, you should take this one into consideration. 

By the way, completing this course is completely free. However, if you want a certificate that you could show to your employer, it will cost you $90

Introduction to Negotiation

Ivy League online courses: Introduction to Negotiation course.

  • School: Yale University
  • Time to complete: ~32 hours
  • Ability to learn for free: YES
  • Certificate: $49 USD

The Introduction to Negotiation course is offered by Yale University. It’s a short one, it should take you about 32 hours to complete, however, it doesn’t mean that you won’t learn the necessary skills.

The course aims to teach you how to become a principled and persuasive negotiator. The reason why this Introduction to Negotiation course is different than multiple others is because you’ll be creating a framework for analyzing and shaping negotiations. 

While using this framework, you’ll be learning how to persuade others by providing reasonable arguments. What is more, it will allow you to see more than just a surface and understand deeper interests. After completing this course, you should have good negotiation skills, know how to give ultimatums, deal with people who have a completely different perspective towards the world, and so much more. 

In general, after completing the Introduction to Negotiation course, you’ll gain such skills

  • Game Theory
  • Negotiation
  • Collaboration
  • Principled Negotiation

This is one of the shorter Ivy League online courses that you can learn at your own pace and get a certificate

The Art of Structural Engineering

Ivy League online courses: The Art of Structural Engineering course.

  • School: Princeton University
  • Time to complete: 6 weeks
  • Ability to learn for free: YES
  • Certificate: $49 USD

If you’re into engineering, this is the course for you. The Art of Structural Engineering course is one of the best Ivy League online certificate programs. It will take you about 6 weeks to complete when learning 2-3 hours per week. 

This course will teach you how to analyze vaults (long-span roofs) from different perspectives: efficiency, economy and elegance. It will be mostly focused on contemporary vaults that were built after the industrial revolution. 

The vaults that will be examined in The Art of Structural Engineering course are created by such well-known engineers and builders as Anton Tedesko, Pier Luigi Nervi, Eduardo Torroja, Rafael Guastavino Félix Candela, and Heinz Isler.

After completing this course, you’ll already know how to

  • Evaluate the efficiency of the structures by using the right formulas
  • Evaluate the structure from the structural art perspective
  • Analyze vaulted forms
  • etc.

Do not hesitate and check out this course immediately! 

Machine Learning: Unsupervised Learning

Ivy League online courses: Machine Learning course.

  • School: Brown University
  • Time to complete: ~1 month
  • Ability to learn for free: YES
  • Certificate: NO

The Machine Learning course that you’ll find on Udacity is offered by Brown University. It’s one of the most popular free Ivy League courses and should take you approximately 1 month to complete. 

This Unsupervised Learning course will teach you how to analyze data and find patterns as well as use different approaches to find structure in unlabeled data. Those approaches include randomized optimization, clustering as well as feature selection and transformation. 

When completing Machine Learning, Udacity offers to choose their Nanodegree Program that’s created for those who want to move towards Web and Web Development, Data Science, Machine Learning, and other similar careers. 

The skills that you’ll gain include

  • Randomized optimization
  • Clustering
  • Feature selection: algorithms, filtering and wrapping, etc. 
  • Feature transformation
  • Information theory

Since this course is evaluated as one of the top Ivy League online courses, it’s definitely recommended for all of you


Ivy League online courses: Gamification course.

  • School: the University of Pennsylvania
  • Time to complete: ~17 hours
  • Ability to learn for free: YES
  • Certificate: $95 USD

Gamification is another one of the free Ivy League courses that are recommended for everyone who wants to understand more about the application of game elements. What is more, you’ll learn how to apply digital game design techniques to non-game problems, including business and social impact

What is more, you’ll be learning the mechanisms of gamification, the reason for its huge potential as well as effective usage. The professor of this course, Kevin Werbach, teaches Legal Studies and Business Ethics at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. 

To generalize, the skills that you’ll be able to add to your portfolio after completing this course include: 

  • Psychology 
  • Marketing
  • Game Design
  • Gamification 

If you’re doing this just for fun and personal improvement, this course won’t cost you anything, however, if you aim to get a certificate that you’ll be able to share with your current or future employers, it will cost you $95. When you think about it, the pricing is quite fair. 


Therefore, if you want to get a promotion or simply a better job offer, these are some of the courses that you should definitely consider! They all can be found on the most recommended online learning platforms, such as Coursera, edX and Udacity

The majority of the best Ivy League online courses won’t cost you anything, so there's no reason why you shouldn’t try it out. Here’s the list for the most recommended courses that we have already discussed: 

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Recent User Reviews

Happiness Lab

love the happiness lab podcast and Laurie Santos!!! It relly takes away the stress for me after a long day

from Hungary to Harvard :D

I'm from Hungary and I still can study computer science in Harvard? Sounds amazing :) wait till my future emloyers see my resume :)

is it for beginners?

Is engineering course suitable for beginners?

most engaging

take my word for it, udacity is the most engaging out of all the platforms.

financial markets

Was very pleasently surprised with "Financial Markets" course! It was very well prepared and structured. Recommend to check it out

are these?

Are any of these similar to nanodegree that udacity offers?


when pandemic started I decided to quit my job and travel to countries with light or no restrictions. so I was unemployed and traveling around the world. Thanks to these e-learning platforms, I was able to grow and educate professionally while traveling on a tight budget, still managed to buy and finish 4 courses.

ML course

But for machine learning course Brown doesn't even provide the certificate... I know I'm not learning for a paper but still would be nice to show womething for my supervisor.

Science of wellbeing

I think science of wellbeing is more for personal growth, don't see where the certificate would be useful really.

a lot of universities

coursera literally hosting every university in the world!


Where can I find the best Ivy League online courses?

The majority of the most reliable online learning platforms, including Coursera, edX and Udacity offer the best Ivy League online courses. 

How do you choose which online course sites to review?

We pick online learning platforms according to their market size, popularity, and, most importantly, our users’ request or general interest to read genuine MOOC reviews about certain online learning platforms.

How much research do you do before writing your e-learning reviews?

Our dedicated MOOC experts carry out research for weeks – only then can they say their evaluations for different aspects are final and complete. Even though it takes a lot of time, this is the only way we can guarantee that all the essential features of online learning platforms are tried and tested, and the verdict is based on real data.

Which aspect is the most important when choosing the best online learning platforms?

It wouldn’t be right to pick just one aspect out of the selection: priorities depend on each individual person, their values, wishes, and goals. A feature that’s important to one person can be utterly irrelevant to the other. Anyhow, all users would agree that good quality of the learning material is a must for online learning platforms.

How is this e-learning review platform different from others?

Every MOOC-reviewing platform is unique and has its own goals and values. Our e-learning reviews are 100% genuine and written after performing a careful analysis. That is the goal that a lot of e-learning review sites lack, so we consider it to be our superpower!