Coursera for Non-profits is a social initiative that helps disadvantaged communities. It empowers non-profit organizations to upgrade and retrain their teams, driving meaningful and positive change in their communities.

Additionally, through its Social Impact Program, Coursera provides underserved communities access to world-class learning, improving their lives and creating a better future for themselves and their families.

In this article, you’ll learn about Coursera for non-profit initiatives, Coursera’s social impact program-eligibility criteria, the registration procedure, and how to keep running a well-educated non-profit organization. 

Let’s commence!

What Is Coursera For Non-Profits?

Coursera for Non-profits is an initiative that aims to help non-profit organizations and governments close the growing skills gap in the global workforce.

It was launched in 2017 to provide a range of online courses, certifications, and degrees in various subjects, focusing on developing leadership and governance skills for non-profit professionals.

This initiative aims to provide access to education for underserved communities, including refugees, students, veterans, women, and girls.

Initial partners spanned seven countries: the United States, Malaysia, Kazakhstan, Egypt, Mongolia, Pakistan, and Singapore, and their training programs for skills in business, programming, English-language communication, and more.

The platform provides a range of benefits for non-profit organizations, including:

  • Access to high-quality online courses and specializations.
  • Customizable learning paths for non-profit professionals.
  • Opportunities for certification and degree programs.
  • Multilingual support, with courses available in over 40 languages.
  • A community of learners and professionals from around the world.

This initiative is a valuable resource for non-profit organizations seeking to enhance their staff’s skills and knowledge. Like Coursera for Non-profit, another helpful resource from Coursera’s basket is its social impact program.

Coursera Social Impact

Coursera’s social impact team works with organizations to identify and address specific social and economic challenges, providing them with the tools and resources they need to drive positive change.

Coursera Social Impact
Source: Coursera Social Impact

The program empowers individuals and communities to develop the skills and knowledge they need to improve their lives and create a better future for themselves and their families.

Coursera’s social impact program has also partnered with organizations such as Oxfam, a global organization working to end poverty and create lasting solutions. 

Through these partnerships, Coursera can amplify its social impact and reach even more people worldwide. 

Notable Coursera Non-Profit Partnerships: 

  • The Institute for Veterans & Military Families at Syracuse University(IVMF) has partnered with Coursera to offer training and certification to 1,200 transitioning service members and military spouses through its Onward to Opportunity program.
  • Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation(MDEC) is using Coursera to train its staff in data science.
  • Coursera is in partnership with SkillsFuture Singapore to offer more than 600 courses.
  • Egypt’s Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center(TIEC), with Coursera’s help, operates the Next Technology Leaders initiative to train thousands of young people in computer science.

Global Social Impact Program

Coursera’s global social impact program is an offshoot of the all-encompassing Coursera Social Impact initiative, which aims to promote worldwide equity and economic opportunity with 140+ partnered countries to assist underserved communities in reaching world-class learning. 

Global Social Impact Program
Source: Coursera Global Social Impact 

The program’s mission is to guide Coursera’s integrated social impact strategy and donate licenses to organizations that help transform life through learning.

Coursera has worked with global nonprofit organizations to offer learners in need access to free, high-quality education that supports their personal development. More than 2,00,000 underserved learners have collectively logged more than 9,00,000 course enrollment.

Partnership Eligibility Criteria

 Coursera partners with organizations with a strong focus on social impact and a proven track record of creating positive change. To partner with Coursera, you must satisfy the following criteria. 

Partnership Eligibility Criteria
Source: Coursera Social Impact

Here are the minimum eligibility requirements to be Coursera’s Social Impact partner: 

  • Must be certified non-profit organizations or international charity equivalent
  • Has dedicated staff to implement and manage the Coursera program
  • Can deploy a minimum of 250 licenses to underserved learners
  • Able to provide wrap-around support and service to learners
  • Target learners population: refugees, underserved students, underserved women & girls, economic mobility for the vulnerable community 

How To Register: Step-by-step Process

Before registering as a Coursera social impact partner, you must review the eligibility criteria to ensure your organization meets the requirements. 

To register to become a Coursera Social Impact Partner, you can follow these steps: 

Step 1: Visit the Coursera Social Impact page by clicking here.

Source: Coursera

Step 2: Click “Get Started” to start the registration process.

Coursera Social Impact page
Source: Coursera

Step 3: You’ll be redirected to the registration page. Scroll down the page, fill out the registration form, and click the submit button.

Click Get Started
Source: Coursera 

Coursera’s team will review your application in about two weeks and select organizations that align with their social impact goals and values.

If your organization is selected, you will be invited to sign a partnership agreement outlining the terms and conditions of the partnership.

Who Can Benefit With A Coursera Non-Profit Partnership

Coursera is deeply committed to positively impacting society, and its non-profit partner program provides access to top-tiered education for individuals and communities in need. 

Here are some potential beneficiaries:

  1. Refugees: Coursera has a specific program, Coursera for Refugees, which aims to provide training resources for 15,000 refugees globally, including 7,500 in the United States. 
  2. Students: Coursera’s non-profit partnership program offers access to high-quality education for students who may not have the financial means to pursue higher education. This can help students gain new skills, increase their employability, and improve their career prospects.
  3. Veterans: Coursera has partnered with Hire Heroes USA to offer veterans and military spouses free courses. Since the partnership began, over 639 clients have taken 3,268 courses, completed 19,874 lessons, and devoted 14,723 hours to acquiring industry-specific knowledge and learning new skills.  
  4. Underserved Communities: Various minority and underprivileged communities have benefitted by accessing education and training programs. This can help them develop a more skilled and competitive workforce, leading to economic growth and development.
  5. Governments: Government entities and departments, such as USO and the US Federal Government, have partnered with Coursera to provide affordable access to curated learning programs and certificates aligned to their communities’ skill development needs. This can help bridge the skill gap and prepare citizens for future jobs.
  6. Non-profit Organizations: Numerous non-profit organizations, such as Àkójọpọ̀, have leveraged Coursera’s platform to modernize their employees, volunteers, and beneficiaries.

Note: Any organization that does not fit those criteria can apply for special Coursera discounts without hampering its cause.

Coursera Pricing And Ways To Save

Coursera offers a variety of learning products, including individual paid courses, Guided Projects, Specializations, Professional Certifications, MasterTrack Certificates, and online Bachelor’s and master’s degrees. 

Coursera’s pricing model varies depending on the type of content and subscription plan you choose. The basic table below depicts different learning products Coursera offers and their costs.

Coursera Learning OptionsNumber of CoursesPriceFree Trial
Individual Courses8,841+Free or Paid version $49 to $79✔️
Guided Projects2,995+$9.99 onwards
Specialization1,050+$49/month onwards✔️
Professional Certificates153$49/month onwards✔️
Master Track Certificates16$2,000 onwards
Degrees63+$9,000 onwards

The above-mentioned pricing structure is for individual products. You can access multiple Coursera products with a single Coursera Plus subscription. 

Coursera Plus Subscription

This Coursera subscription provides limitless access to a massive library of courses, Specializations, and Professional certificates from famous universities and companies.

Coursera Plus Subscription
Source: Coursera Plus

The cost of a Coursera Plus subscription varies depending on your chosen plan.

  • Annual Subscription: Coursera Plus is available as a yearly subscription, with a one-time payment of $399 per year.
  • Monthly Subscription: Coursera Plus is also available as a monthly subscription, with a monthly recurring payment of $59.

Coursera Plus is an excellent option for those looking to take their learning to the next level. However, the subscription can be expensive for some. 

Two Ways You Can Save On Coursera Plus Purchase

Here are two ways to save on Coursera Plus:

A. Coursera Annual Subscription Discount

The Coursera Plus plan covers unlimited access to 90% of the course catalog and costs $59/month. On the other hand, Coursera Plus’ annual subscription is currently priced at $399 per year, which is a significant discount compared to the monthly subscription option.

The following table explains the Coursera Plus discount on annual subscriptions.

Coursera Plus Plan DetailsPrice
Price if paid monthly$708/year
Annual Subscription Price $399/year
Annual Subscription Discount 43%
Savings $309/year

By paying upfront for the yearly plan, you can save up to $309 compared to the monthly plan.

B. Coursera Black Friday- Cyber Monday Deals

Coursera Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals are not active. They are expected to go live in November and December.

During the Black Friday and Cyber Monday sale 2023, Coursera offered a $100 discount on its annual subscription. We can surely expect similar deals in the 2024 Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.

Coursera Black Friday
Source: Black Friday & Cyber Monday Coursera Deals 2023 

Since such deals are only available for a limited time, act quickly to take advantage of these offers when announced.

Coursera Courses For Nonprofit Organizations

Coursera for Non-profit offers a range of courses and specializations. These courses are created to help non-profit professionals develop essential skills, such as program evaluation, leadership, and governance, to improve their organization’s effectiveness. 

Here are the five best online courses for Non-profit organizations available on Coursera:

1. Introduction To The Nonprofit Sector, Nonprofit Organizations, Nonprofit Leadership, And Governance

This course, offered by the University at Buffalo, is designed to help learners understand the unique characteristics of nonprofit organizations, their roles and responsibilities, and the challenges they face in carrying out their mission. 

Introduction to the Nonprofit Sector
Source: Coursera

Coursera’s Introduction to the Non-profit Sector, Non-profit Organizations, Non-profit Leadership and Governance course comprehensively introduces the non-profit sector and its key concepts. 

The course has a student rating of 4.4/5, and you can enroll in it by clicking here.

2. Improving Leadership & Governance In Nonprofit Organizations

The Improving Leadership & Governance in Non-profit Organizations course on Coursera is a specialization consisting of three courses and a Capstone Project designed to help learners develop leadership skills in non-profit organizations and improve their governance effectively.

 Improving Leadership & Governance in Nonprofit Organizations
Source: Coursera

No prior experience or knowledge of non-profit organizations is required to take the course. However, a basic understanding of business and organizational concepts is helpful.

Students have rated this course 4.5/5.

3. How To Create A Program Evaluation For Your Non-Profit

Coursera offers a guided project-based course, ”How to Create a Program Evaluation for Your Non-Profit,” which provides learners with the skills to create a program evaluation plan for their non-profit organization.

Create a Program Evaluation for Your Non-Profit
Source: Coursera

This course was created to help learners understand the importance of program evaluation, use logic models, write SMART goals, and formulate good questions to gather information.

This Guided Project has a student rating of 4.4/5.

4. The Roles And Responsibilities Of Nonprofit Boards Of Directors Within The Governance Process

This course provides a comprehensive overview of the roles and responsibilities of non-profit boards of directors within the governance process. 

The Roles and Responsibilities of Nonprofit
Source: Coursera

The Roles and Responsibilities of Non-profit Boards of Directors within the Governance Process course will assist non-profit organizations improve their governance practices and ensure that their boards are effective in achieving their mission.

You can click here to enroll in this 4.4/5 student-rated course.

5. NGO Startup Analysis With Nonprofit Business Model Canvas

Coursera’s NGO Startup Analysis with Nonprofit Business Model Canvas course is a guided project that helps social entrepreneurs, social investors, and donors understand the operations of a non-governmental organization.

NGO Startup Analysis with Nonprofit
Source: Coursera

This course will equip learners with skills to use the non-profit business model canvas to create, deliver, and capture value for their NGO.

To access this 4.7/5 student-rated Guided Project, click here.

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Conclusion: Non-profits Can Train Their Organization’s Staff With Coursera!

Coursera’s initiative for Non-profits enables non-profit organizations to enhance their teams’ skills and knowledge, ultimately leading to a community transformation. With a huge library of courses, Coursera offers comprehensive learning experiences to these organization’s staff. 

Your institute can collaborate with Coursera by filling out the interest form and creating a Coursera account with the institution’s valid email ID. All these steps are very easy to follow. 

If your institution is not eligible for Coursera for Non-profit initiative, you can consider Coursera discounts to access Coursera to train your staff.

All in all, if you work at a non-profit organization and want to enhance your expertise, you should consider the Coursera for Non-profit initiative. 


What is the best Coursera certification for a non-profit organization?

The Improving Leadership & Governance in Non-profit Organizations Specialization is the most comprehensive and relevant certification for a non-profit organization. This specialization covers various organizations, including effective leadership, governance, and board effectiveness.

Is Coursera a non-profit organization?

While Coursera has partnered with non-profit organizations and governments, it is not a non-profit organization itself.

Can I learn about non-profits by taking online courses on Coursera?

The Coursera catalog has a diverse range of courses and specializations related to non-profits, including fundraising, non-profit law, leadership, governance, and more. You’ll develop the skills and knowledge needed to work effectively in the non-profit sector. 

What topics can I study on Coursera that are related to non-profits?

You can study non-profit-related topics such as business management, finance, and communication.

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