Table of contents
Written by:
Martin Barrett
Last Updated:
Does edX Offer Free Certificates

Can I Get edX Certificate For Free?

edX is a fantastic option for those of you who want to learn more about a particular field that you’re passionate about and dedicated to.

You’ll be able to set your own pace for your online learning platform and complete the course in your own time, which while convenient also means that you’ll need to be disciplined. 

And once you’ve completed the course, you’ll have learned tons of practical skills relevant to your industry as well as vital expertise that will make you well-suited for your dream role.

Along the way, you’ll also pick up tons of necessary skills that can relate to any workplace such as time management, working independently, and much more. 

But here’s the catch. None of that will ever really matter to your future employer if you don’t have a verified certificate to prove that you passed the course.

Of course, you’ll have still taken value from the online course but if you also want to add value to your resume, then those verified certificates are pretty important. 

So, what exactly is the deal with edX certificates? What are they? Are they free? and can I get eDX certificate for free? If not, how much are they? All very important questions. Keep reading for the equally important answers. 

What Does It Cost To Take A Course?

Can I Get edX Certificate For Free

Let’s take a minute just to discuss free courses before we move on to certificates.

You’ll be happy to learn that with a few exceptions (Professional Education, Data Science, Computer Science Courses, Boot Camps, Instructor Paced Courses, and Executive Education courses) all of the free eDX courses are free to enroll using the free audit track.

This means that you can learn all about your given topic with no upfront costs whatsoever. Pretty great right? 

With the free audit track, you’ll have access to all course readings and lectures, you can complete practice assignments if they feature in the course, and you can even participate in any of the course discussion forums. 

Doing so is pretty easy too. All you need to do is look for the free option on the course introduction page and click enroll. 

What Types Of Certificates Does edX Offer?

Before we go any further into the pricing of professional certificates, let’s take a little look at what certificates are actually on offer. 

Currently, edX offers two types of certificates:

  1. Single Course – Certificates can be awarded for a singular course of your choosing. 
  2. Program Certificates – Certificates can be awarded for programs that are a series of several courses. 

It’s probably worth mentioning as well that not every course offers certificates, so you’ll want to double-check before you start the course. Also, archived courses do not award completion certificates either. 

  • Diverse courses
  • Flexible access
  • Certificates/degrees
Try Now
We earn a small commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Are These Certificates Free? 

Sadly, no, certificates from edX are not available for free. While you can audit pretty much any of the courses for free, if you want to earn that certificate at the end of the course, you’ll need to pay a fee.

This is because certificates are only awarded to passing students who have registered in the paid certificate track. 

Keep in mind, though, that even after paying for the certificate, you are still saving quite a lot of money when you compare it to enrolling in universities like Harvard University level courses and a self-paced course.

You won’t have to pay for the actual education, just a lump sum to prove that you have passed the course. All in all, it’s still a pretty great offer. 

Are The Certificates Affordable?

Yes! These certificates are actually pretty affordable. The overall price is not fixed so it’ll differ from course to course, but generally speaking, you can expect to pay anywhere from as little as $20 to as much as $300. 

Again, as I mentioned above, while for some this may sound quite expensive, compared to in-person courses, and many other best eDX online courses, it is a comparatively low cost.

Many other free online courses will also charge fees for the free course itself as well as the certificate so opting for edX could actually save you quite a bit of money in the long run. 

Plus, these certifications can be quite eye-catching to future employers and it very well could be the difference between you getting the call back for an interview or not.

They really can have an influence on your future. 

Can You Get Financial Assistance With Certificates?

While $300 may, in comparison to other options, seem like a relatively cheap option, for some this can still be quite a struggle.

edX understands the importance of education and that those who are financially struggling still deserve access to such services that can help them progress in their careers. 

This is why financial assistance is offered to those where paying full price for the certificate would cause economic hardship. And the financial aid provided offers a generous 90% reduction in certification costs. 

Some courses, such as Professional Education, MicroMasters, and Bootcamps however, do not qualify for financial aid, so you’ll want to double-check that the course you are applying for qualifies. 

If you’d like to learn more about applying for financial assistance you can do so here.  

Why Are edX Certificates So Affordable?

Does edX Offer Free Certificates?

There’s no denying that when it comes to educational courses, edX makes theirs super affordable and accessible to as many different people as possible.

The certificates really don’t cost a lot and for those that struggle with the pricing, there are options for up to 90% off. But why? 

Well, it all really boils down to their core beliefs and values. edX is a non-profit organization that has a goal to democratize higher education.

Essentially edX wants to increase access to high-quality education regardless of your circumstances. And a brand that wants to be this inclusive can’t really provide courses that limit those with financial struggles. 

Just take a look at their value statement for example: 

‘ACCA’s core values are opportunity, diversity, innovation, integrity, and accountability […] Our values are aligned to the needs of employers and we work to open up the profession to people of all backgrounds.’

edX makes their courses affordable not because they are of lower quality or standard – that couldn’t be further from the truth.

But because they want anyone regardless of their life journey to be able to pursue their passions. 

  • Diverse courses
  • Flexible access
  • Certificates/degrees
Try Now
We earn a small commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Final Thoughts

Unfortunately, if you want to proudly own a certificate that proves that you excelled in your edX course, you’ll need to pay for the privilege.

Luckily, this fee is really not all that expensive and there are fantastic financial aid options available for those who need them. 

If you’re looking to simply learn a little more about something that you have an interest in, then by all means opt for the audit track which is completely free.

You’ll gain access to all the important parts of the course, and you’ll learn a ton along the way. 

However, if you’re looking to get your foot in the door of your chosen or preferred field, then you’ll want to upgrade to the certification track.

Gaining certification in your chosen field can be really helpful when it comes to applying for jobs. You’ll be able to prove that you have all the relevant skills and knowledge to perform the role at a high standard. 

So, really, it’s all about picking the right option for you.

Online learning has become incredibly popular in recent years, and there are a number of different platforms that are responsible...
Bringing high-quality, reasonably priced (sometimes free!) education to the masses, edX has completely altered the online learning landscape, and long...
With so many online education providers to choose from, you may be wondering… which ones are legitimate? Can I trust...
Education will always be important, even if you can’t attend university and lectures in person. That’s why online options are...
Before you enroll in a course to further your career, you’re probably going to want to check that it’ll actually...