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Review: Are The Great Courses Offers Really Worth The Money?

With the end of the academic year, a lot of students are looking for the best tools to improve their learning experience. Many of them are even willing to spend some money for that purpose, for the great pleasure of teaching platforms like the now famous Great Courses. Although these courses might seem a bit expensive at first sight, you just have to have a look at their positive reviews to let yourself convince by their worth. Let’s review their benefits.

The Great Courses Company, aka The « Netflix Of Learning »

Founded in 1990 by Thomas M. Rollins, former Chief Counsel of the United States Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources, the Teaching Company has been a business model for many. Their platform The Great Courses, often describes as the « Netflix of learning », promotes the concept of lifelong learning, meaning that learning is not journey with an end, but more of a lifelong experience.

Open to students as well as to anyone who would like to keep gathering knowledge anytime in their life, the service proposes courses in almost any field of competence, supported by a great wealth of training materials. What makes these courses so great is that Thomas M. Rollins spend all his money, time and energy in recruiting the best professors and experts in order to gather the best lectures for his platform, most of them being provided in a video format.

Online Courses And Hard Copy Materials For Optimal Learning

Obviously, when offering courses to such an extended learnership, The Great Courses needed diverse supports, which became one of their most important strength. Not only learners can access to an extensive online digital video library, but they are also provided with a great wealth of hard copy training materials such as workbooks, guidebooks, CDs and DVDs. Some other materials are sent by mail in PDF format, so learners can chose to refer to it either on their computer or on a home-printed version.

These diversified supports make learning accessible for anyone, may they be seniors not used to informatics or students addicted to the digital world. For the latter, an app version of The Great Courses is also available.

Is The Price Really Worth The Money?

The main « black spot » of The Great Courses services are their cost, quite expensive in the eyes of a few. But looking at the reviews of the platform, it is no need to say that the cost is really worth the money given the quality of the teachings provided.

Also, in order to attract more learners, the service offers numerous deals for users to save money. For instance, one Black Friday, they offered a 90% discount, free shipping, and $20 discount of the order. Let’s just say that the final price of orders that day did not reach the sky.

Other discounts are punctually available, such as Summer Saving or other sales going up to 85% savings. For instance, the Employee Princing Sale offers a 50% discount to employee learners.

The Great Courses Plus, For Those Who Want To Learn More

Because some people always want to learn more (the core concept of lifelong learning), The Great Courses also launched The Great Courses Plus, which is an extended version of the platform’s services, offering « unlimited video access to the world’s greatest professors ». A month free trial is available in order to make sure the deal accords to the learner’s needs.

Constructive Reviews

For those who would still be sceptical about The Great Courses quality of teaching, here are some constructive reviews from users:

Positive Reviews

« Love these courses. I have lots of courses on old audio cassettes and still use them with a Sony Walkman while I am walking for exercise. Great also for long car rides. Takes too long to convert to mp3. Would turn them in for same courses that I could download to my smart phone. Glad the new courses can be downloaded as an added benefit to buying a course on DVD or CD. That encouraged me to buy two more courses. » Sue W.

« The connection is almost instant and the streaming of video on my Kindle Fire is actually superior to what I get when using my laptop — nearly instant connection, « crisp » visual, good audio, and no « stuttering ». Even better, since my Kindle works with my Bluetooth headphones (unlike my laptop) I can enjoy my courses without disturbing the family. If you enjoy the Great Courses, this is a « must have. » » Thomas M.

Negative Reviews

« I love this app because it allows me to take my courses with me. My only complaint is that, when « mirroring » the lectures from my tablet to my TV, the mirrored lectures do not appear full-screen; instead, the lectures are bounded within a narrow vertical band in the center of the TV screen. » Wayne R.

« Customer service is totally random. Sometimes you’ll get great assistance, some other times it can be quite horrible. Needs to be improved. » Cindy T.

 

Now you just need to give it a try to make your mind about it and develop your best brain! Let us know your thoughts about it, we’d love to hear it.