What are Coursera Specialized Programs?

What are Coursera Specialized Programs? How are they different from MOOCs? What level of study do they have? We resolve these and other concerns.
What are Coursera Specialized Programs?

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Coursera, revolutionized the world of education 9 years ago and especially virtual education, with the first platform of MOOCs or virtual courses with free access and worldwide. Stanford University was behind the project, which was quickly joined by prestigious institutions in the United States. Years later it was opened to allow universities from all over the world to also publish their virtual courses.

Coursera once again takes a step forward in the revolution of MOOC's (Massive Open Online Courses for its acronym in English), with Coursera Specialized Programs.


Coursera's purpose is to offer the highest quality education, taught by the best universities in the world, with free access from literally anywhere on the planet.

Coursera's MOOC courses seek to provide first-rate training on specific topics, covering various interests: from business, through art, design, web programming, entrepreneurship, among many other topics.

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Coursera courses can typically be no longer than 6 weeks in length. In many cases, access to the information will be completely free, however, at the end of the study, students have the possibility of being certified in the course for a price that is ridiculously low, which will normally be around USD $39.

If you take into account that the certifying university of the study, together with Coursera, could perfectly be among the top 100 of the best universities in the world.

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In the specific case of SPECIALIZED PROGRAMS of Coursera, these group different individual MOOCs, with similar or complementary themes, to offer the possibility of acquiring a deeper knowledge of the subject in question. Generally these specialized programs are made up of 4 courses or more.

In the end, by passing the exams corresponding to each course, the student will be able to certify their knowledge with a certificate endorsed by a world-renowned university, sitting in the comfort of their home, anywhere in the country.

How valid are Coursera MOOC studies in Colombia or in other countries?

This is a fundamental aspect when deciding to carry out a study. Until now, the validity of the courses on Coursera and other similar platforms such as Udemy or EdX would not be officially homologated by the Ministry of National Education of Colombia, and this may be a constant in any other country.

In our local case, however, recently the Colombian government, through the ICT Ministry, established a important agreement with the Coursera platform to benefit 150.000 students who would study programming and skills of the fourth industrial revolution on said platform.

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According to the president, the objective of the agreement with Coursera is "to democratize this platform to also achieve our goal of having about 150 students trained in programming and skills of the fourth industrial revolution, by the end of our Government, in August of 2022”. 

From the business field, how would coursera's specialized programs be valued?

It is clear that carrying out a study that allows us to acquire specific knowledge, which can be (in the case of Coursera) formally endorsed by a top university worldwide, is certainly something that will not cease to be well seen by a company when it comes to Study the resumes of job candidates.

The certificates can be shared on our LinkedIn profile and currently this professional social network is one of the most used by recruitment companies or head hunters looking for candidates with proven skills and attitudes for different positions, especially high responsibility, but not necessarily .

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Likewise, the certificate may have a link that can be shared in other formats in which the resume is presented.

Un Specialized Program, would allow students to reinforce knowledge in topics for which they have not considered undertaking a formal postgraduate study, but which could give them a much more comprehensive profile by specializing in other topics that would be complementary.

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If you are already a Coursera user, invite a friend to start a course on the platform. Both of you will get 50% off a short course or the first month of a specialization subscription when your friend makes their first purchase.

Find out how:

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How much study time are involved in coursera's specialized programs?

Coursera's specialized programs generally last approximately 3 months, but could require a dedication time of 7 to 9 months. This is linked, of course, to the level of depth of the study.

Generally, each course of the group of courses that make up a specialized program takes 1 month to complete, with a dedication that can range from 2 or 3 hours per week, to 8 or 10 hours. This variation, which is estimated, is important to take into account to determine the final duration of the course, since these have the particularity that the student advances at their own pace, the hours of dedication could vary, and thus, a specialized program that on the platform its completion is estimated in 3 months, it could be reduced to a month and a half, or one of 5 months, reduced to 3.

In the case of Colombia, although as we have highlighted these studies are not yet recognized by the Ministry of Education, partly because they are of short duration, it is feasible to consider that in terms of time, they would be comparable to a diploma. On the other hand, it really is a privilege to take a virtual course like those offered by Coursera, whose instructor or instructors (a specialized program may have 2, 4, or up to 6 instructors) are full-time teachers from prestigious institutions, with studies at the graduate level. Ph.D.s, deans, master's directors of face-to-face programs that can cost tens of thousands of dollars.


In Latin America, and at different renowned universities at the regional level and in their respective countries, they offer various specialized courses and programs on the Coursera platform.

In Colombia, the Universidad de Los Andes, currently the only university in the country present on Coursera, even offers, in a practically revolutionary way for the region, a Online Master in Software Engineering, which consists of 18 courses and lasts approximately 3 years. But it is not the only one. Universities such as the University of Pennsylvania, the Arizona State University, the University of Illinois, or the University of London, among many others, offer studies on Coursera at the bachelor's or master's level, with values ​​that compared to face-to-face studies (on campus) could have a reduction of up to 60% on its value, being exactly the same diploma.

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Global education is taking platforms like Coursera very seriously and beginning to adapt to how knowledge is imparted in the digital age.

Free 7-day trial on specialized programs

Coursera recently launched the ability to take a free trial for 7 days to start the study of a specialization, which will allow you to explore the specialization on Coursera, to access all the courses that make up the specialized program as well as all its resources or content, evaluate their quality as well as that of their instructors.



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