Skillshare vs Masterclass [2024 Upd.] Detailed Comparison

Last Updated on May, 2024

Skillshare and Masterclass are excellent e-learning platforms that stand out on their own identity. 

But if you have unanswered questions leading to wonder which platform best suits you, then you need a Skillshare Vs. Masterclass article that will lay out all the details for you to understand which platform can help you achieve your learning goals.

So in this article, I will provide you with all the major plus nitty gritty details, from course variety to pricing to ease of use to pros and cons. I assure you, at the end of this article, you will be able to decide which platform suits you best.

Let’s see who the winner is for you!

Quick Summary

Skillshare and Masterclass are popular online learning platforms offering video classes with varying course content and instructor.

Skillshare is aimed at people with a creative mind space wanting to develop new skills or further their existing skills, while Masterclass suits avid learners wanting to polish their skills or learn new skills/crafts.

Skillshare instructors are of varying expertise levels, while Masterclass instructors are well-known experts, celebrities, and leaders in every field.

Skillshare Vs. Masterclass: Sneak Peek Into the Review

Skillshare vs Masterclass

Skillshare and Masterclass are popular online learning platforms allowing students to learn specific skills at their own pace. Although they are the same from the outside, many key differences make them unique.

The below table outlines a quick sneak peek of each online learning space from an outside view.

SkillshareMasterclass
Course VarietyOffers over 34,000+ courses under 16 base categoriesOffers 180+ online courses across 11 categories
Free Trial1-month free trial allowing users to enjoy free classes7 days free trial
Target AudienceNiche learnersAvid learners
PopularityHas over 8 million user engagementMore popular but lesser student base
Instructor StatusLess known expertsWell known experts and celebrities
Teaching And Learning ApproachImmersive learning through multiple course components that help them apply what they learned.Students get to learn from the real life experiences of famous personality and apply it into the real world through Sessions (hands-on projects)
Course QualityWidely varies because instructors are responsible for course creationProfessional and consistent course quality with world class video lessons
Course difficulty levelCourses are categorized as beginner, intermediate and advanced.All courses are designed to suit students of all levels alike
Course MaterialsSome additinatl reference materials are available PDF workbook, assignments, and practical tasks
Course Length1-3 hours2-4 hours
PriceAffordable- $13.75 per monthExpensive- $15 per month (but value for money)

Now that you know how these online learning platforms differ, let’s dive in deep, starting with a quick brief of each.

Pro tip: To better understand how each platform operates, think of Skillshare and Masterclass as Youtube and Netflix, respectively. YouTube opens its platform for all creators, but Netflix is a closed platform with only in-house contributions to maintain quality standards. But at the end of the day, both platforms get the job done.

Skillshare Vs. Masterclass: Overview

About Skillshare

Skillshare is an online learning platform founded in 2010 in New York by two experts in the digital world, Michael Karnjanaprakorn and Malcolm Ong.

It allows students to learn from experts, creators, professionals, and entrepreneurs through video classes. 

It offers over 34,000+ courses on various topics, including UX design, creative writing, animation, business analytics, acting, cinematography, graphic design, photoshop, web development, personal development, interior design, and more.

Skillshare Logo

Course categories offered by Skillshare are;

  • Advertising
  • Business
  • Design
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Fashion And Style
  • Film And Video
  • Food And Drink
  • Gaming
  • Music
  • Photography
  • Social Media
  • Technology
  • Writing And Publishing

Skillshare is aimed at people with a creative mind space wanting to develop new skills or further their existing skills. Skillshare classes are designed to provide immersive learning through video classes, hands-on projects, and ‘learning paths.’

Skillshare brings the online learning community together through the ‘discussions’ feature, allowing students to learn through a feedback system.

The teaching community of Skillshare has over 8000+ instructors from various backgrounds with different talents and experience levels.

An interesting fact about Skillshare is that anyone passionate about teaching and sharing their knowledge can become an instructor because Skillshare believes everyone is unique and always has something new and different to offer. 

Skillshare offers a reasonable pricing scheme compared to other learning platforms. A Skillshare membership comes with a 1-month free trial allowing students unlimited access to enjoy a month of free courses.

It is suitable for people with creative minds wanting to develop new practical skills or further their existing ones. Through Skillshare, you can indulge your hobbies, accomplish something new and/or discover new interests and hobbies.

To learn more about Skillshare, read my honest review or,

RECOMMENDED LEARNING PLATFORM

About Masterclass

Established in 2015 and owned by Yanka Industries Inc, Masterclass was founded by David Rogier.

The website was launched in 2015 under the name Masterclass, headquartered in San Francisco.

The Masterclass online learning platform features world-renowned experts and celebrity instructors offering over 180+ classes across 11 categories of general interests.

The categories include;

MasterClass Logo
  • Arts and Entertainment
  • Home and lifestyle
  • Music
  • Writing
  • Business
  • Food
  • Design and style
  • Sports and gaming
  • Community and government
  • Wellness
  • Science and technology

Each course at Masterclass is designed to be followed at your own pace featuring a series of video lessons that are of high production quality and a downloadable workbook.

All courses also have hands-on projects such as ‘Sessions’ that keep learning engaging and interactive while allowing the students to apply their knowledge in the real world.

Masterclass keeps updating its library with more new courses. It is known for its exceptional world-class education that maintains an edutainment touch. 

To learn more about MasterClass, read my hands-on review or,

RECOMMENDED LEARNING PLATFORM

Skillshare Vs. Masterclass: Key Takeaways

In the end, what anyone expects to gain from a learning platform is a quality learning experience. Here are some key takeaways that rule the learning experience you get from each platform.

Skillshare Takeaways

Skillshare homepage before signing up

Skillshare teachers are from various backgrounds with varying levels of experience and expertise. This means the quality of teaching can vary widely from average to excellent.

Since anyone can become a Skillshare teacher, you can’t have a set expectation on the teaching standards.

All Skillshare courses include video lessons with projects, resources, transcripts, and the discussions option. But since course creation is up to the Instructor, there is no assurance of the content quality and reliability.

Sometimes course arrangement and video lesson quality can vary, some courses may lack additional resources, etc. This can be confusing to users and can disturb the learning curve.

Every Skillshare class has an engaging and effective learning feature called projects. Projects are like assignments that allow students to test their knowledge of what they have learned from a particular class.

These projects can be submitted for review by the instructors and other fellow learners

Masterclass Takeaways

MasterClass before signing up

The Masterclass platform is a collection of classes taught by renowned experts, celebrities, and leaders in every field. Students learn from their real-life experiences, so the instructor quality is very promising.

All the courses offered are organized and systemically put together in a set structure. Every course also has a downloadable workbook that guides the student’s learning.

The video lessons are A-grade quality on par with cinematic production because the Masterclass courses are exclusively created in-house, adhering to top-quality standards.

Masterclass also has student sessions and exclusive bonus content. Through sessions, students can interact with other learners and receive feedback from trained teaching assistants on their projects.

Skillshare Vs. Masterclass: Courses 

Although both Skillshare and Masterclass classes are a collection of video lessons you can follow at your own pace, the course variety, target audience, and course structure differ. Let’s look at each in detail.

Skillshare Courses

Skillshare courses

Unlike Masterclass, Skillshare has a massive library of over 34,000+ classes across 16 subcategories under Create, Build, and Thrive.

Skillshare is aimed at niche learners with a creative mind space wanting to develop new skills or further their existing skills. It is a treasure trove when it comes to topics revolving around creativity.

Skillshare classes are not structured in a fixed format

Some of these online classes are short and can be finished in as little time as 10 minutes, but some can run long for up to 50 short videos. 

However, most classes have projects and assignments encouraging learning and engagement with the Skillshare community. As additional learning support, following the class videos, you’ll find the below functionalities; 

  • About- Provides an outline of the course chapters and contents
  • Teacher– A description of the teacher
  • Reviews– Past student’s learning experience
  • Discussions– A space to discuss the course with the Instructor and interact with other students
  • Projects And Resources– Allows students to apply what they learn from the course
  • Transcripts– To revisit course sections and take notes when necessary

Skillshare also offers an interesting feature called ‘Learning Paths.’ It is ideal for learners who want to continue learning but don’t want to spend time browsing for the next course.

In learning paths, you will find hand-picked sequential classes to help you achieve your learning goals. A collection of curated classes on the most popular topics will help grow your skill set along a cohesive path.

Here’s a list of most popular Skillshare classes;

Masterclass Courses

MasterClass courses

As I mentioned in the overview, Masterclass offers over 180+ classes across 11 categories of general interests, and more new courses are added every month.

Consisting of over 2500+ lessons across a versatile category, Masterclass suits avid learners who want to polish their skills or learn new skills/crafts. 

Each class in Masterclass is well structured in a set format.

As course material, all the classes at Masterclass, on average, contain approximately 4 hours worth of video content. Each one of these classes is a series of 10-15 video lessons ranging from 10-12 minutes per video.

These videos are on auto-play one after the other, but you can follow them at your own speed in whichever order you wish. 

Every course also comes with a curated workbook that is downloadable in PDF format. These workbooks are uniquely and beautifully created in sync with the Instructor’s style.

With detailed descriptions of lesson chapters, glossary sections, and more, these workbooks provide a thorough insight into the particular class you are taking. 

Plus, the ‘Sessions’ feature encourages students to learn by applying their knowledge and practicing their skills to ensure interactive and impactful learning.

The production quality of Masterclass videos is A-grade. Shot and directed by real filmmaking experts, the setting, lighting, background, sound system, and video editing are outstandingly coordinated to deliver a top-line production.

This adds so much value and makes it much more enjoyable to watch. 

Also, it is easy to find courses on Masterclass because you will be prompted with a questionnaire when you sign up to evaluate your likes and interests. Based on this course, recommendations will be displayed, or you can browse the library to find what you want.

Here’s a list of the most popular masterclass courses for first-time users. These popular courses are rated based on the latest views and engagement;

Skillshare Vs. Masterclass: Instructors

The instructor panel is clearly the ruling factor that decides the success of a learning platform. They are the face of any platform. Only if the instruction quality is high will there be recurrent students.

Masterclass and Skillshare excel due to their expert instructor panel from various fields, but they are from quite different worlds. 

Skillshare Instructors

Although Skillshare tutors are not spotlight celebrities, world-famous leaders, or prestigious public figures, like in Masterclass, they are well-qualified experts with relevant backgrounds and experience from various niches.

Skillshare offers great courses by teachers including Mel Armstrong, Young Guru, Gary Vaynerchuk,Susan Orlean, Peggy Dean, Thomas Frank, Dale McManus, and Cat Coquillette.

Skillshare instructors

Some Skillshare courses are created by partnering with celebrity instructors such as Neil Patrick Harris, Olivia Wilde, and Chris’ Ludacris’ Bridges. You can also find influencers such as Ali Abdaal and Marques Brownlee as instructors.

Skillshare opens its platform for all creatives with a passion for teaching. Even Though this inspires many creative individuals to create and share their knowledge, it also challenges the instruction quality throughout the platform since it is not consistent and standardized.

For those concerned about this instruction quality, you can always use the reviews section of each class or choose classes labeled ‘Skillshare originals’ or ‘Staff picked’ to ensure assured quality.

Masterclass Instructors

It is already well known that Masterclass has gained much popularity and hype due to its panel of world-class celebrities and creative professionals being the instructors.

Although the Masterclass teachers come with well-recognized names, it doesn’t shadow the fact that they are all notable and well-experienced professionals. 

Masterclass allows learners to learn directly from real-life experiences by featuring popular personalities from different creative fields.

MasterClass instructors

What other platform lets you learn from singing from Christina Aguilera herself or writing from Margaret Atwood?

The best thing about Masterclass is that all instructors ensure the class is suitable for beginners without any knowledge of the subject. Yet, advanced learners with prior knowledge can also benefit greatly. 

For example, the Chris Voss Masterclass that teaches the Art of Negotiation is ideal for anyone who wants to learn a few negotiation techniques as a beginner.

But it is also equally great for those who know about negotiation and are looking for more pointers to up their game.

Similarly, even a subject like economics is taught by a well-known and professionally acclaimed economist, Paul Krugman. So there is no question on instruction quality whatsoever. They are EXCEPTIONAL. 

Skillshare Vs. Masterclass: Pricing

Assessing the pricing of Skillshare and Masterclass platforms is important to ensure that your investment will be worth your time and money. Below I have laid out the pricing scheme of each platform to help you understand what you can expect from each platform.

Skillshare Pricing

Skillshare Subscribing page

Skillshare offers only an annual membership plan as a Skillshare premium. The Skillshare Premium membership is priced at $168 per year, averaging $14 monthly. 

The Skillshare premium plan gives you the following;

  • Unlimited access to over 34,000 Skillshare classes.
  • Ad-free content.
  • You can download videos for offline viewing through the Skillshare app.
  • A Premium subscription makes you eligible for discounts on other creative platforms, including SquareSpace and Adobe Creative Cloud.

Skillshare has explored different pricing options, including a free membership option that allows limited access to a small selection of classes and monthly memberships that are no longer available.

Although free memberships no longer exist, Skillshare does offer free unlimited access for 1-month after you sign up for a Skillshare premium membership.

Yes, you will need to input your payment details to access this free trial. On the bright side, you will only be charged for the Premium subscription once the free trial ends.

You can use this free trial to exploit the unlimited access and go through free online courses of interest to decide if Skillshare has what you want.

You can take as many free classes as you want during this free trial, and if you do not wish to continue, you can cancel Skillshare anytime. And if you cancel Skillshare before the free trial ends, you won’t be charged anything.

Pro-tip to score a free Skillshare annual membership: Students with Skillshare subscriptions can refer a friend to get one free month of Skillshare usage.

So if you refer 12 friends, you can score a whole year for free. That’s a good deal for anyone looking to save.

Just like Masterclass, Skillshare also has plans for businesses and Teams. Skillshare teams are suitable for teams of every stage, shape, and size. Although created for teams, it gives users a personalized experience to help develop their creative skills.

The Skillshare Teams package pricings are as below;

  • Starter package (For teams 2-19)- $159 per annum
  • Enterprise Package (For teams 20+)- Custom pricing
  • Revive (For teams of 50+)- Custom pricing

Here’s my complete guide to Skillshare price.

RECOMMENDED LEARNING PLATFORM

Masterclass Pricing

MasterClass Annual Membership Plans

Masterclass offers three tiers of annual membership packages for its users. All three Masterclass memberships allow unlimited access to all classes, including the upcoming and newly launched classes.

The options include;

  • Individual- $15 a month at $180 per year
  • Duo- $20 a month at $240 per year
  • Family- $23 a month at $276 per year

Note: The above annual membership options all include access to mobile and TV apps, videos, and class workbooks. They also come with a 30-day money-back guarantee. 

In the past, Masterclass has explored different pricing options, including monthly subscriptions and single-class purchases. However, the above pricing scheme has been around for some time and seems to be the deal for the long run. 

The Individual membership is ideal for single individuals. Although through this plan, you can gain access to the entire platform, you cannot watch it on multiple devices simultaneously or download classes for offline viewing.

At the same time, the Duo and Family options are suitable for couples and families. They allow simultaneous platform use on multiple devices; 2 devices for Duo and 6 for Family. 

Moreover, the Duo and Family packages also allow users to download video content for offline viewing.

This feature is very helpful to those who want to watch Masterclass content while in commute to work, as it eliminates the worry of wasting cellular data. 

However, you can always upgrade or downgrade your Subscription as you see fit. Start with a sensible plan and adjust it based on your requirements.

Masterclass also has a plan for businesses and teams as ‘Masterclass at Work.’ If an enterprise wants to give access to Masterclass to their team members, you can use this program to get discounts ranging from 3-35% on bulk orders.

After the purchase, the enterprise will have access to an admin portal to manage easy access and distribution.

Read this MasterClass price guide to learn more about this platform’s pricing.

RECOMMENDED LEARNING PLATFORM

Skillshare Vs. Masterclass: User Experience

So far, I have covered all the major aspects of each platform you need to know regarding learning quality. But it is also important to know the level of user-friendliness you can expect from each platform because without the ease of use, what is learning quality, right?

Let’s look at each platform to know how easy it is for you to use effortlessly.

Skillshare User Experience

Skillshare Course video 2

First off, the registration process in Skillshare is pretty simple. You can create an account using an email address and a password.

You can also use your Google, Apple, or Facebook account to sign up. Then you can include your payment details and get started with Skillshare. Voila! That’s it.

Moving on to the backend and design, Skillshare has made it easy for users to browse courses. Since it holds a massive collection of over 35,000+ courses, users can get lost.

Skillshare offers various choice categories and helpful filters to narrow down the search and access the best online courses they have.

The user interface is intuitive and easy to grasp. It follows an organized layout, making it easy to follow and watch the video lessons. 

Masterclass User Experience

Gordon Ramsay MasterClass lesson 3 video playing

Regarding registration, user interface, backend, and design, Masterclass is very similar to Skillshare, except that Masterclass offers a very helpful feature called ‘My notes’ that you can access from the right side of the video display page.

It is like a modern-day notebook where you can take notes on what you are learning while watching the videos. And refer back to remind yourself of what you learned.

Overall, both Skillshare and Masterclass ensure all learners have an enjoyable learning experience by making the platform easy to access and use for anyone.

Skillshare Vs. Masterclass: Pros and Cons

Skillshare Pros & Cons

Pros

Overall it is easy to use
Over 30,000+ course selections
Courses cover a wide variety of categories
Interactive learning: project-based, engaged communities. Curated learning paths
Affordable
Free one-month trial for premium memberships
Discounts and perks for additional product/service purchases
One additional month free if you refer a friend
Skillshare has a mobile app

Cons

No certifications or accreditations
The quality of each course varies
The caliber of instructors vary

Masterclass Pros & Cons

Pros

You get to learn from world-class instructors
A good selection of course library
Easy-to-use platform
High video class production value providing immersive learning
Access to sessions to learn by application and practice
Affordable
Comes with a 30-day refund policy

Cons

No certifications upon completion
No free classes

Skillshare & Masterclass Alternatives

Below are a few Skillshare and Masterclass alternatives that you can consider.

Skillshare Vs. Udemy Vs. Masterclass

Skillshare Vs. Udemy Vs. Masterclass

The Udemy platform is like a bargain store for e-learning. You can find over 200K courses under various sectors, including business, technology, and personal development.

Skillshare, on the other hand, has a collection of over 34000+ courses on creativity-related topics. At the same time, Masterclass offers just over 180+ courses that teach you various practical and life skills like cooking, writing, acting, direction, and more.

On Masterclass, you learn from A-grade instructors, while Skillshare offers courses by expert instructors. But Udemy has classes by various unknown creators, so some may be good, and others may not. 

Udemy offers multiple classes under the same topic for different prices, so you pay per class. But to use Masterclass and Skillshare, you need an annual subscription.

If you want to learn more about Udemy, read our separate review here.

Skillshare Vs. Coursera Vs. Masterclass

Skillshare Vs. Coursera Vs. Masterclass

Unlike any of the above comparisons, Coursera is on another level, offering courses from world-leading universities. So it gives users a more traditional learning experience than the enjoyable video classes from Skillshare and Masterclass.

Coursera courses are designed for professional users to build skills related to their profession. These courses come with certifications and degrees.

Coursera is a fantastic platform to try if you want to learn new skills on a professional level. Plus, they offer many free courses, including acting and writing classes. 

Skillshare Vs. Linkedin Learning Vs. Masterclass

Skillshare Vs. Linkedin Learning Vs. Masterclass

LinkedIn learning focuses on developing skills beneficial for professional and career growth, but Skillshare and Masterclass classes are much more fun and provide an enjoyable learning experience for those who easily get bored. 

LinkedIn Learning is priced at around $240 per annum, which is way more expensive than Skillshare and Masterclass. And they don’t provide value for the investment. 

If you want to learn more about LinkedIn Learning, read our separate review here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, Skillshare offers a 1-month free trial when you create an account and sign up for a premium membership. Payment details are required, but you won’t be charged until the end of the free trial period. You can cancel your Subscription before the end of the trial to avoid being charged.

Yes, Skillshare has an app for Android and iOS devices.

Yes, Skillshare videos can be watched offline. The “download video” option available on all courses allows users to watch the videos they have saved. The saved videos are stored under the “My Classes” feature of the Skillshare app.

Yes, you can try Masterclass for free with a 7-day trial period, which is protected by a 30-day money-back guarantee if you’re not satisfied.

Yes, Masterclass has an app for both Android and iOS.

To cancel your Masterclass Subscription, contact the Masterclass support team at [email protected] and if your purchase is less than 30 days old, you can request a full refund.

Final Verdict: Skillshare Vs. Masterclass- Which One’s Worth it?

Now this is a tough call because choosing a clear-cut winner is not easy.

So my final verdict is both Skillshare and MasterClass are worth it but in their own way. The value you get from each platform reflects the service and justifies the pricing.

But to determine which platform suits you best, you must try it yourself to figure it out. Besides, what’s the hesitation if you can try both Skillshare and Masterclass for free?

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Carlos Eduardo
Author
Carlos Eduardo
Hey there, I’m Carlos Eduardo, the Founder and Author of Scorebeyond. Delving deep into 20+ years of education transformation through innovative e-learning, I’ve poured my expertise into this platform. My enduring legacy continues to drive the path towards a future empowered by knowledge!

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