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Is Udemy a Scam? No, But There Is Scam Potential

By Kyle / July 17, 2017

Whether you are looking to take a class or earn money teaching a class, Udemy is one of the biggest and most popular online learning environments around. There classes are legitimate for the most part but if you are wondering is Udemy a scam or not then keep on reading.

In this short review I’ll be going over how Udemy works, some of its downsides, and ultimately whether or not I think it is worth it or not.

UdemyUdemy Review

  • Website: udemy.com
  • Cost: Free to hundreds of dollars per course
  • Legit?: Yes


Udemy is an online learning platform that offers around 60,000 courses that range from web development, to social media marketing, to nutrition, and everything in between. There are even common academic classes offered in chemistry, math, humanities, and so on.

Many of their courses are offered for free but they can cost you hundreds of bucks potentially, which is still much cheaper than if you were to go the traditional college route.

If you have ever heard of SkillShare then you have a good idea of what Udemy is like.

The Way It Works

The reason there are so many courses offered and Udemy is so large is because anyone can become an instructor there and create courses around their particular skill.

For example: If you work as a social media marketing professional you probably have what it takes to create a course and teach people the ways of social media marketing. And if you have been doing graphic design all your life then you could probably set up a course on that.

Udemy is not only a great place for people that are looking to learn but its also a great place for freelancers that want to make money teaching a skill.

Teaching as an Instructor

Becoming a teacher is very easy but actually getting your courses published is not.

Udemy has guidelines that you must follow for your course to be published. They will also look it over and make sure that it is a legitimate course before they allow it on their platform. There are also requirements for how long your course needs to be and what type of materials it must include. The minimum length requirement is at least 5 courses long and 30 minutes of video content.

Anyone is welcome to register as a teacher and create a course but you are not guaranteed that your course will pass their requirements. If you know what you are teaching and are serious about teaching then this should be no problem, I just don’t want people to think they can throw together some crappy course and make money off of it.

Learning as a Student

Signing up to be a student is very simple and only requires your name, email, and a password.

After you sign up it is very easy to look for and take courses. You can go through a bunch of categories which will then lead to a bunch more subcategories or you can just search for a particular course in the search bar.

You will be able to see some basic details about the courses after searching, such as the title, creator, and price… But when you click on a course that you are interested in you will get to see pretty much all you need to see in order to decide whether or not its the course you want to take.

You will be given a list of points that you will learn throughout the course, what all it includes, the curriculum, and as well as ratings from past students and a background on the instructor.

Here is an example of a course that I took a screenshot of…

Possible Scam?

The only way that I can think of that someone would call Udemy a scam is from hosting scam courses on their platform.

As I mentioned above, anyone can submit a course to be published on Udemy. Many of the instructors on this site have no degree in what they teach. They are more or less freelancers that have a skill and decided to market that skill by teaching it to others.

Because their platform is open to anyone who wants to submit a course it is possible that there would be scam courses posted on it that are rips offs. This is absolutely possible but I would consider it highly unlikely.

The safeguard process that Udemy has in place to make sure courses that are submitted are legit is pretty good as far as I cant tell. They make sure your courses contain good materials and are set up properly.

The courses are all set up decent and contain adequate material, but one of the main problems here is that Udemy doesn’t really check the correctness of the material. For example, if someone publishes a Graphic Design course its not like Udemy has a bunch of graphic design professionals that look at it and make sure it is accurate and truthful.

This can be a problem because some courses can contain untrue and/or misleading information that could actually harm students taking the course.

But the solution to this is easy. To avoid this all you have to do is look into the instructors that teach the courses and read reviews of them to make sure they are any good.

Who I Recommend Udemy For

Ok, first off, Udemy is definitely not a scam in my opinion although there is the potential that there could be scam programs on their site. And I do recommend Udemy but only to a specific group of people.

The people that I think are best suited for Udemy courses are those that are self-driven and are good at problem solving. The reason I say this is because you aren’t going to have an instructor holding your hand. The material is already there and it is up to you to go through it and push yourself. You also won’t be able to get the help that you can in a physical classroom so you need to be a good problem solver on your own.

Additionally the people that are looking to take courses at Udemy should be doing it to learn a real skill or gain real knowledge, not just for proof that they took a course. Many of the courses do award a certificate upon completion but these don’t really hold much weight when you go to get a job.

So are udemy classes worth it? All in all I would say yes if you are the right person and if you get the right course. Its not a bad platform and many people really like it because it can save you lots of money compared to college courses, although they aren’t quite as good usually.

I was actually even looking into taking a course recently on Udemy. I make a living working online and there are lot of online business courses that are offered on the platform.

And by the way, if you are looking to make money as an instructor on Udemy you might want to check out how I make money online before you do that. You can read a post Here that I wrote about what I do, how it all works, and how others can do the same. Basically what I do is online marketing where you can make money in any area of knowledge or expertise with your own site.

–> You can learn more about what I do here

Questions, comments, concerns??? Leave them below and I’ll get back to you soon 🙂

About the author


My name is Kyle and I am the owner of Earn Beast. I created this website to explore the various ways of earning and mainly focus on teaching others how they can make money online. To learn how I make a full-time income online, Click Here

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