This article is about building knowledge and skills in the areas of entrepreneurship and it presents selected 25 free online entrepreneurship courses suitable for individuals from diverse backgrounds and at different stages of the entrepreneurship journey. Whether you are active entrepreneurs or thinking to start your enterprise, you will find the courses helpful.

You will also find it very useful if you are keen to learn entrepreneurship but are not able to attend classes in business these online courses will help you to get familiar with the entrepreneurship environment and entrepreneurship process.

You will find these courses useful even if you are still struggling internally whether entrepreneurship is something for you or not. As it is often said that the secret of change is to focus all your energy not on fighting the old but on building the new Millman (2006), you will find a lot of insights and motivation to test your ideas and develop strengths to execute them.

A brief description on each of these courses is presented below. Before you jump to any of the courses, you may want to go through the course details in order to see which ones best suit you in terms of your interest, time available.


1. Technology Entrepreneurship: Lab to Market

This is an introductory course developed in collaboration with the Laboratory for Innovation Science at Harvard and the University of California San Diego and content includes problem-solving and systematic innovation, matching needs and seeds, generating business and operating models, determining readiness and market fit, and financing your venture.

This is a self-paced course with 2-4 hours engagement that can be completed in five weeks. Technology is top requirement for universities, government organizations, and big corporate houses or small private companies. Billions of dollars are invested in technology enterprise every year and a range of opportunities are available.


2. Starting a Business: Vision and Opportunity

Developing a vision and identifying opportunities to support the vision is extremely important in doing nay thing, entrepreneurship development is not an exception. So, this course offers you insights and knowledge for developing vision and identifying opportunities.

This is one of the six courses in series. If you would like to start a successful business and would like to do it appropriately from the very beginning, this course will be very helpful to develop a clear vision and turn your vision into reality. The course is in collaboration between the future learn and the University of Leeds. It is a 2 week-long course with 2 hours of engagement on weekly basis.


3. Starting a Business: people and network

Entrepreneurship is not only about knowledge and skill; it is equally about people and networks to deliver the knowledge and skills you have. This course prepares you for developing a team and widening network in order to grow your enterprise. This course is useful for aspiring entrepreneurs who have already got some ideas or have an active sideline business. The course focuses on developing formal and informal business networks.

You will learn about the importance of teamwork, team development, identifying the right people and networks, and exploring strategies and opportunities for developing your networks. This is the second course in the series of six being offered by Future Learn in collaboration with the University of Leeds. It is a 2 week-long course with 2 hours of engagement on a weekly basis.


4. Starting a Business: Business Process

This course is part of the fourth in the starting business series in Future Learn delivered in collaboration between Future Learn and the University of Leeds. It offers insights on business processes and information, challenges a business faces when managing growth. It also provides knowledge and skills to identify business processes in a business plan. The course prepares you to investigate where your business is going to operate. It is a 2 week-long course with 2 hours of engagement on a weekly basis.

It prepares you well to grow as a successful entrepreneur by enabling you to understand the right process in your context. This course is very useful for the aspiring as well as active entrepreneurs with multiple projects already under implementation for maximum efficiency and achieves the big ambition by improving productivity.


5. Entrepreneurship: From Business Idea to Action

This is another very useful four-week course on entrepreneurship being offered by Future Learn. The course focuses on planning, developing, promoting, and building a successful package. As the name of the course suggests, it is very helpful for aspiring entrepreneurs who have business ideas but looking forward to implementing them in near future. The course content enables participants to better understand and assess the strengths of the idea and contextualize it based on market demand.

Four-hour study time is expected every week and the case study approach is followed and the opportunity to pitch your business is also incorporated in the course. The course is being offered multiple times of the year.


6. Innovating in a Digital World

This is a four-week course available on Coursera. The course is free and a minimal fee can be upgraded for the certificate. The course content is beautifully designed and easy to follow. It offers very useful insights on creating value in the digital world and promoting entrepreneurship.

The course offers very interesting and motivating insights that entrepreneurship context has changed so much, and it is much more important to execute ideas than having ideas. This course provides very useful knowledge and insights for the individuals who are looking for some kind of digital initiatives for their enterprise.

In post-Covid era of business and human interaction largely dependent on digital technology, this course may be an excellent fit and offers the skills that are in top demand.


7. Creativity & Entrepreneurship

Are you very much interested in entrepreneurship but not sure if this is the right choice for your life, this is the course you may want to attend to tap into your inner creativity and how you can best use it for your career? The course is presented by the Berklee Institute for Creative Entrepreneurship.

The course relies on the fundamental assumption that everyone has inner potential for the business enterprise, it is the interest, learning and trying out the entrepreneurship ideas in real life that show the success of the enterprise on an individual. The course is very motivating for the individuals who might have some challenges or may not have realized the entrepreneurship potential within themselves. As it beautifully connects creativity with the concept of entrepreneurship.


8. Entrepreneurship Specialization

This is a complete package of five different online courses. All of these courses can be accessed free in Coursera. The course is being offered in partnership between Coursera and Wharton’s Entrepreneurship Specialization. The series of five courses cover different aspects of the business from conception, design, and organization to the execution and management of new enterprises. If you are interested to start your journey of entrepreneurship from the scratch, these courses can be an excellent help and offer interesting insights and useful information to identify, launch, grow, your business.


Coursera - Entrepreneurship Specialization


The course also covers financing your business and aspects of profitability. It takes around 6 months to cover all the series, but you do not have to take all courses, you can choose the course topic of your choice among the different packages being offered based on your needs, interest and time availability.


9. Financial Globalization, Capital Flows, and the Global Financial Cycle

This is a very short but very useful course offered by the Asian Development Bank. It basically focuses on financial globalization and capital flows and global financial cycles. There are five units and all of them are focused on different aspects of financial globalization. The course is very short, but this is very unique and offers very different perspectives. This is useful for the entrepreneurs who would like to dream high get well prepared for the journey of entrepreneurship with bigger ambition and understanding of global context and market.


10 Key Elements of Entrepreneurial Success

This is another great course on entrepreneurship and provides excellent insights into key elements of entrepreneurial success. It features Harvard Business School professor William Sahlman and it is designed to teach the investment and financing decisions.

You can also find the other useful courses in Alison Free Online Entrepreneurship Courses which are focused on other skills such as leadership, communication, decision-making and being a team player. This is a short course of 1.5 to 3 hours long.


11. User Innovation: A Pathway to Entrepreneurship

The course is available on the Edx platform it is another great programme for highly motivated entrepreneurs. It has three different packages included and all three focused on different but complementary aspects the first one on the pathways, the second on understanding customers and the third one is customizing business ideas as per the market demands.

User Innovation: A Pathway to Entrepreneurship

Entrepreneurship 101: Who is your Customer?

Entrepreneurship 102: What can you do for your Customer?

Although it is worth exploring all the courses in the order as they are sequenced, you can also pick one that you are keen to explore.


11. Identifying Entrepreneurial Opportunities

This course by the University System of Maryland, University of Maryland, College Park is available in the Edx platform. It provides fundamentals of the entrepreneurship process and strategies that help individuals to develop entrepreneurship skills.

This is a self-paced course, 4 weeks with 2-3 hours weekly efforts. The course consists of four modules 1: Introduction to Startup Entrepreneurship and Corporate Innovation, 2: Thinking Entrepreneurially, 3: Seeing Entrepreneurially, and 4: Acting Entrepreneurially.

In this course, you will learn to develop skills for identifying and analyzing entrepreneurial ideas and fostering them in practice. It provides value in understanding innovation and identifying opportunities.


13. How to Build a Startup

Do you already have a rough idea of a business model for a startup and you would like to work on this thought to fully develop it into a business, this course provides very good insights for you. This is a free course with approximately a one-month duration. The course focuses on testing the business idea with the massive customer unmet needs, in order to develop and grow a suitable business model.


14. Developing Innovative Ideas for New Companies: The First Step in Entrepreneurship

This course by the University of Maryland is available on Coursera for free. The course is primarily targeted at aspiring and active entrepreneurs. This is helpful to develop great entrepreneurship ideas for companies. The course content focuses on identifying and analyzing entrepreneurial opportunities, entrepreneurial mindset, improving entrepreneurship processes such as strategic decision-making, innovative business models.  It takes approximately 8 hours to complete and you can use your flexible schedule to complete it.

The main focus of the course is to rapidly develop and test ideas. The strategies used for testing ideas basically rely on the marketplace feedback and therefore it is very useful in a market-driven economy context. By early recognizing the market demand context the entrepreneurs can save big investments and prevent crises in growing their business.


15. Entrepreneurial Opportunities

This course by the Innovation Centre at the University of AdelaideX and is delivered through Edx. It is targeted to the individuals who have got a business idea and offers guiding principles of the entrepreneurial process. If you are looking for practical tools and tips based on grounded theory to make a decision on the entrepreneurial opportunity you are planning to consider, this course is very useful. Practical tools to evaluate entrepreneurial opportunities based on the research of the characteristics of exceptional opportunities. You can also upgrade for a verified certificate with a small amount of fee. It is a 5 week-long course with 2-3 hours engagement on weekly basis.


16. Thinking & Acting like an Entrepreneur

This course by RWTH Aachen University a leading technical university in Europe is useful to find and assess your ideas. The course starts with some basics of entrepreneurship such as what is needed to be a successful entrepreneur, how can one gain the skills in entrepreneurship, and provides useful strategies to turn ideas into action and accomplish success. If you are looking for developing entrepreneurship skills and aspire for some leading positions in the sector, it will be worth exploring this course.   It is a 6 week-long course with 6-8 hours engagement on weekly basis.


17. Entrepreneurship in Emerging Economies

This course is offered by Harvard University, taught by Harvard Business School professor Tarun Khanna. It focuses on an inter-disciplinary approach to understanding and solving complex social problems. The course is focused on individuals and what can individuals do to contribute towards solving complex social problems and built on.

If you are looking for opportunities to develop an awareness of the opportunities in fast-growing emerging markets. A conceptual framework to assess such opportunities and turn the social problems into entrepreneurship solutions, this is one of the best course available for free online. It is a 6 week-long course with 3-5 hours engagement on a weekly basis.


18. Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship in the Family Business

The course offered by the Center for Entrepreneurial Families and EGADE Business School provides opportunities for entrepreneurs who are engaged in a family business or interested to expand family business initiatives. The course helps to understand family business practices better and develop understanding to distinguish entrepreneurship from innovation and implement the entrepreneurship trends in your business endeavor. This is a 7 week-long course and it requires 7-8 hours weekly commitment and seems a bit more intensive than many other courses available online free.


19. Becoming an Entrepreneur

The course on becoming offered by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology focuses on the business skills and startup mindset that are fundamental to become an entrepreneur. As long as you are interested in entrepreneurship you can fully benefit from the course, no previous business or entrepreneurship experience needed is required. In this course, you will learn to overcome the top myths of entrepreneurship, defining goals, market research and designing and implementing your business. This is a 6 week-long course with 1 to 3 hours of weekly commitment. The course is very useful for beginners.


20. Entrepreneurship 103: Show Me the Money

The course is offered by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and it guides individuals in creating a profitable business. If you are looking for a leadership career in entrepreneurship this course will provide very useful information. It consists of the contents on designing a business model, pricing, sales process; customer acquisition and value of your customer. The course is taught by Bill Aulet, Managing Director of the Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship and Erdin Beshimov, Senior Director of MIT BootCampus.

This is a bit long course compared to many other courses and requires 2-4 hours weekly effort for 10. But the content is very useful and weekly requirements are less intensive.


21.  DO Your Venture: Entrepreneurship for Everyone

This is a 6 week-long course with weekly efforts of 3-4 hours. In this hands-on, action-oriented course you will learn to identify, evaluate and test entrepreneurial opportunities available. The course focuses on a systematic and scientific approach that involves an iterative process. The course contents include integrating a strong action philosophy in developing entrepreneurial ideas, paths of successful entrepreneurs, launching a venture, customer feedback. The course is practical and useful for aspiring and active entrepreneurs. This is a ten-week long course with the requirement of 2-4 hours every week.


22.  Enabling Entrepreneurs to Shape a Better World

This is another great course not only focusses on entrepreneurship but also on how entrepreneurship can contribute to them to solve the world’s biggest problems. If you have a passion to contribute to positive change in the world and want to do it through enterprise, this is the best-fit course for you. It provides the tools and insights to unlock the entrepreneur’s potential within yourself. In addition, the course connects participants with other like-minded people to build a community of people from diverse backgrounds and perspectives. In this course, you will have exposure to the life experiences of successful entrepreneurs, learning about the value chain, be familiar with the design thinking method, social innovation, and learn how to apply it.

This is a bit intensive compared to many other courses and requires 4-6 hours weekly effort for 7 weeks but the content is worth trying.


23. New Venture Finance: Startup Funding for Entrepreneurs

This course is suitable for both aspiring as well as active entrepreneurs. This is more focused on securing funding for the company. This provides some great insights and skills for developing investor pitches. The contents are organized around the topics like raising outside capital, identifying fundraising options getting close to the entrepreneurs, and so on.

The key topics you can explore in this course include raising outside capital, kind of investors, fundraising options, etc. which are extremely important for an entrepreneur. It takes approximately 20 hours to complete this course.


24. Free Startup Courses and Tutorials: Business, Marketing, Entrepreneurship, Home Business

Are you looking for courses and learning opportunities that do not have rigorous course requirements and structured assessments? Free Startup Courses and Tutorials will be an excellent choice for you. There are many learning videos and other learning materials, that you can watch and learn at your own pace and get excellent insight in the area of business, marketing, entrepreneurship and home business. You can choose to take some structured courses available on the same platform as well which involve some fee.

Some of the topic included in it are an overview of business foundation, starting your own business, the concept of business development, etc. you can explore a wider range of topics and choose the on that is more needed for you without having to go through any formal assessment and assignment requirements.


25.  BUS101: Introduction to Business

This course provides extensive reading materials, exercise and research assignments that will be helpful to get an in-depth understanding of entrepreneurship. The course is very critical and offers great insights to individuals to see what the most successful entrepreneurs have in common and reflect on their own personal qualities which may resemble many of the similarities.

The course offers a good understanding of the business discourse, and multicultural aspects of markets and business so that you can develop knowledge and skills to compete in the global market. If you have great ambition and dream high in your entrepreneurship career, this course will better fit your needs and aspiration.

As in his best-seller, Kiyosaki and Lechter (1998) has said, ‘Everyone wants to go to Heaven, but no one wants to die’ many people want to develop enterprise but very few people have energy and motivation nor the same. You can make decisions and commitment to be among those few today and try some of the courses of your interest and needs.

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Anthony Cornell

Anthony Cornell is a freelance technology journalist. He reviews educational software and writes in-depth online course reviews from popular e-learning platforms. You can reach Anthony at anthony@learnacourseonline.com

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