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How do FutureLearn courses work?

Written by Pat Bowden last updated on June 08th, 2018

FutureLearn is an online education provider that offers online courses, popularly known as “MOOCs” or Massive Open Online Courses, from top universities in the UK and around the world. Currently, FutureLearn boasts an active catalog of 725 online courses created by these partner institutions.


FutureLearn courses consist of pre-recorded video lectures and readings that you can work through on a weekly schedule or when it's convenient for you. They also have student discussions on every page of the course. Some have online practice quizzes, homework or assignments. Official tests or exams are only available for students who pay for certification.


Most FutureLearn courses are free to access for a limited time (course length plus two weeks). If you want unlimited access or access to tests and exams and earn a course Certificate, you will need to pay.


FutureLearn also offers a micro-credential known as Programs which are made up of two to ten courses in a specific field. Some programs finish with a final assessment.


Some FutureLearn courses are available on a paid-only basis. These are generally specialist courses for professionals already working in the field who want further education in specific topics.


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