Khan Academy Review: What’s in it for you!

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Khan Academy Review

Khan Academy is a nonprofit organization that provides individuals with a free source of academic learning. This platform is ad free, and free for both students and teachers.

They have a variety of subjects available, and cover a number of subjects from K-12. This makes it a potentially good option for helping children further their academic knowledge without ever having to pay a cent!

However, how good is Khan Academy? If you want to find out what this platform has to offer, and how it can help you, read on. We will cover everything you need to know here in this article.

Khan Academy Review

Overview of Khan Academy

Founded by Salman Khan in 2008, Khan Academy is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit educational organization.

It was founded with the intention of helping to improve the intellectual capacity and educate high-school, college, and adult individuals around the globe.

To do this, the primary format of education is via videos and completing tests later on. This is done to test the knowledge of the learner, and allows them to constantly improve their knowledge.

There are a number of topics available to study on the Khan Academy learning platform. These include the following:

  • Arts & Humanities
  • Computing
  • Economics
  • Life skills
  • Math: Get ready courses
  • Math: High school & College
  • Math: Pre-K – 8th Grade
  • Reading & Language Arts
  • Science
  • Test prep (ACT, SAT, LSAT, GMAT)

Anyone who uses Khan Academy has three different options in order to access the platform and benefit from its numerous features. These three options are as follows:

  • Learners – learners are able to select their university level or grade and pick the course they wish to study for if it’s on the platform.
  • Teachers – teachers can pick the courses they are planning to teach and use Khan Academy to help track the progress of the students.
  • Parents – parents are able to enrol their children and track their development across several subjects over time.

As Khan Academy is free and immensely popular globally, there are courses available for most, if not all, educational levels. This includes the absolute basics to tertiary education.

However, the primary focus of this platform is for high school students and young adults.

Because of its global reach, there are more than 46 languages available on the platform, and almost 20,000 translations.

Because there is limited internet access in many areas of the world, there is also an offline version for those who need it.

Which Subjects Are Covered By Khan Academy?

Khan Academy Review

Khan Academy has six primary subjects. However, each of these subjects are further broken down into dozens of specific courses.

For example, they have math courses, but these courses are broken down into topics such as algebra, geometry, and so on.

The subjects they offer at Khan Academy are as follows:

  • Math
  • Science
  • Arts and Humanities
  • Economics and Finance
  • Computing
  • Test Prep

This range of subjects covers everything learners could need to be successful in their studies. It also allows parents to learn with their children if they wish, and the platform even helps learners prepare for tests.

To help make the courses more accessible for people around the world, many courses on Khan Academy are in English, French, Spanish, and Brazilian Portuguese.

While more translations are needed, this is a good start, and covers many widely spoken languages.

How Does Khan Academy Work?

Khan Academy has lessons that typically consist of video lessons, some short reading, and various interactive quizzes.

These are usually multiple choice to help students learn. There are also comment threads to further help anyone who is using the learning platform.

After enrolling in a course, you immediately get access to all the materials and video lectures for that course, which are then put in order.

Courses usually have a number of units within them, which have lessons. In those lessons, there are videos, accompanied by the readings and quizzes.

Lessons are put in order to help you work through a topic. They allow you to gain a fundamental understanding of each topic, which you will then need for the next topic.

This may not always be necessary if you already have the skill covered by a particular topic, but for those just learning something, staying in order helps.

It should be noticed that the term “course” is used loosely here, In Khan Academy, the word is simply used to refer to a group of learning materials.

A number of courses on the platform have instructors who monitor it and reply to comments and questions. However, you do not get instructors “assigned” to you to personally help you.

Similarly, there are no classmates or even a timeline to follow for materials. Instead, it’s up to you to work through the material at your own pace.

The Cost Of Khan Academy

As we mentioned previously, Khan Academy is 100% free, and is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit educational organization. It has a mission, which is “to provide a free, world-class education for anyone, anywhere.”

As such, you never have to pay anything to access the courses available on the platform, and you don’t even need to make an account to access what they have available.

With that being said, making an account is always recommended, as this will allow you to track your progress on the courses you work on.

It also allows you to access extra features like having teachers, parents, or tutors accessing your learning history to help you.

This also allows them to assign lots of fun assignments and challenges to the student.

As the learning platform is free, you don’t even have to worry about ads to distract or prevent you from learning.

The whole company is run with the help of donations, and its sole focus is on helping individuals learn as much as they can.

Availability

There are iPhone, iPad, and Android apps that students and teachers can download to help make the courses as accessible as possible.

Not only that, but there are also offline versions of numerous courses available for different parts of the world – particularly those that don’t have the internet for online learning.

Overall, Khan Academy is very accessible and easy to get a hold of in that way.

However, if we were to think of accessibility, there are some issues that may crop up. These are the same issues that other online learning platforms have.

The primary issue here would be that the format of the courses are not suitable for all people and every kind of learning need.

For example, students who are visually impaired may not be able to use Khan Academy and get the full benefit compared to others.

This is a common issue, however, and can be incredibly difficult to work around in some circumstances.

Learning Experience

The learning experience can differ greatly from one course to another. Both the individual who presents the course and the subject matter itself play key roles in the whole learning experience.

However, as the founder, Sal Khan has a number of videos on the site, which inspired him to go further, there is a general baseline for course expectations.

These original videos have set the style and tone for the rest, but they can still vary.

You will notice that many lessons have a virtual background with the instructor talking through the topic.

The instructor will write down key subject notes and information throughout the lesson, but typically will not use something like a PowerPoint.

Overall, the lessons are clear, and have a very friendly tone. However, not all students will be able to work with lessons like this, as everyone’s learning needs are different.

To some, this style of teaching is exactly what they need. To others, this style may be tedious and unpleasant.

Quizzes And Gamification

To help students stay motivated to keep learning, there are various quizzes available to do on Khan Academy.

The platform will also track how much time to spend watching videos, reading different text, and taking quizzes.

Your quiz scores will also be held, and you will be able to try to get better scores as you learn more, motivating you to do better.

Students can also earn badges for reaching different milestones. This simply helps them to have a sense of accomplishment to get them to keep learning and improving.

While there aren’t quizzes for every course, the ones that do have lots of questions to learn and memorize.

If a course only has a short quiz, you have a very good chance of getting entirely different questions the next time you take it – even if it’s later in the day!

Pros And Cons Of Khan Academy

Khan Academy Review

Like everything, there are pros and cons to consider with Khan Academy. These are all things that you should think about and consider while you use the platform.

Pros

  • 100% free without ads to disrupt learning
  • No account is needed to access the information
  • The platform uses a mixture of videos, reading, and quizzes to help students learn
  • They have great test and college prep courses to help students success
  • Language support
  • There are lots of subjects to choose from and learn
  • You can access Khan Academy anywhere at any time
  • The content can be translated into many other languages
  • High quality work and trusted
  • Easy to use and straightforward
  • Students earn points, which encourage them to keep learning
  • Provides math problems for all grade levels
  • Recommended by top universities such as Harvard
  • Students are able to learn at their own pace

Cons

  • Some subjects such as music and foreign languages are missing
  • Typically caters to the educational system in the US, which will not apply to all learners
  • Doesn’t have in-depth classes
  • Not as interactive as some other platforms.
  • No certificates are issued for completing courses
  • There’s only one style of teaching, so it may not be suitable for all student’s needs
  • Disregards the collaborative aspect of education
  • Limited content for adult learners

How Do Others Feel About Khan Academy?

Khan Academy gets a lot of mixed reviews, especially from parents. Some individuals criticize the platform for its whole learning system, while others have issues with content and unanswered questions.

However, there are others who compliment the learning platform and love everything about it. If you want to see more reviews from users, click this link.

Is Khan Academy Suitable for All Learners?

Khan Academy may not be suitable to all learners, as the lessons are formatted in a very particular way.

As such, those with disabilities or different learning needs may not benefit from this platform in the same way that other students might.

Not only that, but because Khan Academy doesn’t go in-depth in courses, it often doesn’t explore questions that many students will have.

Overall, lessons are superficial, and while they cover lots of important and useful topics, they do not answer all questions to get well-rounded knowledge of many aspects.

Because of this, Khan Academy is an excellent platform to use to only aid in the learning you are doing at school.

When used correctly, however, Khan Academy can really help boost knowledge and get students to the level they should be, provided they have the required help along the way.

Should You Use Khan Academy?

Since Khan Academy is totally free, there’s no reason for you not to at least try it. There are no signup fees, hidden fees, or even ads to put you off.

The courses available are all free, and you don’t even need to sign up if you don’t want to.

Final Thoughts

Khan Academy has been around since 2008 and has had plenty of mixed reviews in its time.

However, considering that this learning platform is entirely free, it’s an excellent choice if you want to hone your skills and improve your learning.

You can’t lose anything by trying it, as you don’t even have to sign up to access courses. If you have a child who may benefit from Khan Academy, there is no reason for you not to at least test it out.

Martin Barrett

Martin is the editor in chief as Edwize.org. He has taken more courses than cares to remember. If he’s not watching back to back documentaries he is geeking out in the E-Learning space.