Machine learning (ML) is one of the most important types of advanced technology. Though it is a comparatively new field, companies continue to seek out students with these advanced skills, including in areas such as artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, and deep learning.
The best machine learning courses provide high-quality, up-to-date content with flexible learning options for both beginners and advanced learners.
Best Online Machine Learning Courses of 2021
- Best Overall: Stanford Machine Learning
- Best for Beginners: Machine Learning A-Z: Hands-On Python & R In Data Science
- Best for Advanced Students: Purdue University Post Graduate Program in AI and Machine Learning
- Best for Certification: Intro to Machine Learning With PyTorch
- Best for Natural Language Processing: Hands On Natural Language Processing Using Python
- Best Free Course: fast.ai
Best Overall : Stanford Machine Learning
Stanford Machine Learning is a comprehensive course that provides access to case studies and has solid positive testimonials from previous users. Created by an industry professional, and with a free trial option, it's a good choice for anyone looking to learn machine learning.
Highly rated program
Taught by a university professor
Content not as in-depth
Additional courses required for deeper knowledge
Created by Coursera co-founder and Stanford University professor, Andrew Ng, the Stanford Machine Learning course is one of the most sought-after machine learning courses on Coursera, with over 4.1 million satisfied students.
The course offers clear, concise information that even beginners to machine learning can utilize. It includes content such as parametric and non-parametric algorithms, best practices in using machine learning, and logistic regression. The course takes an estimated 60 hours to complete. It's completed fully online and, upon completion, users receive a certificate.
At $79, Stanford Machine Learning is also one of the most comprehensive programs for the price. A seven-day free trial helps students review the course before buying it. However, this course isn't quite as comprehensive as some others, and many students may need to take additional courses to gain more insight and a deeper dive into the material.
Best for Beginners : Machine Learning A-Z : Hands-On Python & R In Data Science
Machine Learning A-Z is a comprehensive program that offers an easy-to-use format ideal for the new student in the field. Students work at their own pace to learn material without the need for any foundation courses.
Not as comprehensive as others
May be too basic for some students
Udemy's Machine Learning A-Z Hands-On Python & R In Data Science was designed by data scientists and offers step-by-step instruction for beginners. It includes 45 sections of content spanning over 44 hours and allows students to learn at their own pace, making it ideal for those with no industry skills and busy schedules.
The program includes a range of topics for Python including building machine learning models, reinforcement learning, natural language processing (NLP), deep learning, and analysis. Students also learn data processing and regression skills. The format is easy to use with short lectures requiring just a click to move from one to the other.
This course is affordable at just $94.99. While it does not include all programming languages or advanced topics in Python, it creates a solid foundation for getting started, making it ideal for beginners.
Best for Advanced Students : Purdue University Post Graduate Program in AI and Machine Learning
This post-graduate degree from Purdue University offers a combination of advanced artificial intelligence and machine learning, allowing students to earn AI and ML certifications in a bootcamp-style format.
Taught in collaboration with IBM
Offers career services
Longer time frame to finish
Purdue University's Post Graduate Program in AI and Machine Learning offered through the Simplilearn platform was created in collaboration with IBM and aims to provide students with quality, up-to-date information.
This advanced program requires a solid background in machine learning, and although it is more expensive than some competitors at $5,250, it's a full 12-month program that offers a high level of skills and training. The program also includes interactive learning coupled with global practitioners providing live sessions and labs. Course work includes topics such as natural language processing, deep learning, reinforcement learning, and speech recognition.
Students who complete the program earn a joint Purdue-Simplilearn certificate giving students access to Simplilearn's career services. This includes interview support, access to employers, and resume-building tools.
Best for Certification : Intro to Machine Learning With PyTorch
The Intro to Machine Learning with PyTorch allows students with some experience to gain industry knowledge and certification in Python.
Offers student services
The Intro to Machine Learning with PyTorch program offers certification for Python, enabling those with a basic level of experience to obtain industry recognition. It takes about three months to complete the program if students can achieve 10 hours of study per week.
The program was created with Kaggle and AWS, allowing students to gain insight from industry leaders in Python and machine learning as a whole. Intermediate skills in Python are a prerequisite for this program. Students will learn deep and unsupervised learning after completing lessons in supervised learning. The projects are real-world-based, meaning they allow students to learn what's being used in the industry now.
The program costs $1,017 and includes some additional benefits including career services (interview and resume support services) along with a technical mentor support service to enable students to get hands-on help when needed. There's also a community forum to help students connect with other students.
Best for Natural Language Processing : Hands On Natural Language Processing Using Python
This program, created by Next Edge Coding, offers a comprehensive look at hands-on natural language processing and is a top entry-level program for the foundational skills to use these tools in industry applications.
Not as comprehensive as other courses
The Next Edge Coding: Hands On Natural Language Processing (NLP) Using Python is a self-paced program requiring just 10.5 hours of study. Students work through the program to learn entry-level knowledge on this sought-after program. Students have to meet specific requirements including having basic programming experience in any language and having knowledge of Matrix operations.
Next Edge Coding teaches just natural language processing, which may mean students need additional courses to complete their machine learning experience. The program teaches most concepts related to NLP and implementation. It also teaches students to create a personal spam filter or sentiment predictor.
At under $95, Next Edge Coding is affordable and includes 11 sections of study in a completely project-based format. At the end of the course, students will be able to build an article summarizer and text classifier, among other tools.
Best Free Course : fast.ai
For those looking to learn basic programming language skills, the Practical Deep Learning for Coders course from fast.ai might be the right fit, as it offers quality content at a good price.
Not as comprehensive as other courses
Practical Deep Learning for Coders teaches a range of topics for Python users without the price tag. The program, from fast.ai and PyTorch, teaches fundamentals of machine learning as they may apply to image generation, robotics, and natural language processing. This program provides a good quality of education and doesn't take long to complete—just seven weeks.
Topics include tabular data, collaborative filtering, computer vision with image classification, and natural language processing, among others. Students will learn techniques through hands-on practice and skills development.
The program is not as comprehensive as others but provides a solid foundation of entry-level skills. Though it is not as interactive, the free course allows students to learn independently.
The best course for affordable, comprehensive education in machine learning is the Stanford Machine Learning program. With a comprehensive level of education in several programming languages, this program delivers results for students who are new to the field or looking for intermediate education in a range of topics. As one of the most recognized machine learning programs, it offers a wide range of resources for students in the field.
Compare the Best Online Machine Learning Courses
|Stanford Machine Learning
|Andrew Ng||Octave and MATLAB||$79||60 hours|
|Machine Learning A-Z: Hands-On Python & R In Data Science
Best for Beginners
|Kiril Edemenko||Python||$94.99||44 hours|
|Purdue University Post Graduate Program in AI and Machine Learning
Best for Advanced Students
|Intro to Machine Learning With PyTorch
Best for Certification
|Cezanne Camacho||Python||$1,017||3 months|
|Hands On Natural Language Processing Using Python
Best for Natural Language Processing
|Next Edge Coding||Python||$94.99||10.5 hours|
Best Free Course
|fast.ai||PyTorch and fast.ai||Free||7 weeks|
How to Choose the Best Online Machine Learning Course
First, determine the important programming languages and topics for the goals you have, such as learning for a specific industry or application. Also, consider the program format. Self-paced programs and courses are ideal for students who can keep themselves on track.
Most students should also consider price, time investment, and the instructors behind each course. Programs led by industry leaders are often teaching the most modern and up-to-date content that job applicants need.
Types of Online Machine Learning Courses
Some examples of learning types include:
- Learning problems: Supervised, unsupervised, and reinforcement learning
- Hybrid learning problems: Semi-supervised, self-supervised, and multi-instance learning
- Learning techniques: Ensemble, active, online, transfer, and multi-task learning
- Statistical inference: Inductive, deductive, and transductive learning
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What Do You Learn in an Online Machine Learning Course?
Machine learning may include supervised, unsupervised, and other types of machine learning. It often includes logistic regression and regularization, linear regression, and classification, among other topics. Students will learn how to apply machine learning to various applications, including robotics and artificial intelligence applications.
How Much Does an Online Machine Learning Course Cost?
The cost of machine learning courses is based on the amount of information included, the format, and the platform used. Free programs exist, but often with limited overall information and a less interactive format. Programs providing a degree may cost as much as $5,200 or more. Many programs are under $100, while more thorough programs reach $1,000 or more.
Can an Online Machine Learning Course Help Me Get a Job?
Obtaining a degree in machine learning may allow students to take advantage of career services and other college-level support. Most of the machine learning programs and courses are not available in that format, though. Many are available as single courses taken in a self-paced manner. This may help students get a job or enhance current job skills in areas of advancing tech in their current field.
Certifications, when available, may help students prove their skills in various programming languages and key topics important to companies in the industry. Some programs also offer basic career services and access to employers looking to hire those with these skills.
To complete this list of online machine learning courses, we looked at over 20 program options, including those offered as single courses and degree options. We included topics such as artificial intelligence machine learning, deep learning, applied machine learning, and numerous others to determine which programs offer the most extensive information.
We also looked at the cost, length of the program, and the programming languages taught in the process. The best programs for machine learning included those with extensive content and an up-to-date format.