Why I haven't bought Codecademy Pro

I got an email the other day about new Python courses. Python is my favorite (and first) programming language, so I decided to take a look.

The Python 3 course is a Pro-only course. Making this a Pro-only course is not a good idea. Python 2 was originally released in 2000, while Python 3 (a major upgrade) was released in 2008. Because of the consistent updates (we’re at 3.7 now) of Python, it’s not feeling its age in any way. However, Python 2 is now a 10-year old language with updates that are simply bugfixes.

Is it okay to learn a language set in stone? Maybe. People still program in C89, and that’s coming to its 30-year anniversary. But I don’t understand why the features of Python 3 are locked behind a paywall. You can buy a Python 3 book for a month’s worth of Pro and your money would be spent more effectively.

The Minimax course didn’t explicitly say it was a Pro course in the email (which I won’t criticize), but shows another fault of Pro: there’s no taste of the more advanced stuff unless you get your free seven-day trial.

Another problem I have with the Pro courses is that they aren’t cost-effective. Look up “learning pandas python” and you will find many FREE tutorials for learning the pandas library with Python. You save 100% of the money you would have spent buying Pro for a month, no matter which plan you buy.

So what’s the point of this? I don’t care for the “be a Pro if you want to learn more” mentality. I don’t know anything about marketing; maybe it’s just fine. But as someone who needs a lot of convincing to get anything you need to pay for, this is a bit frustrating.
Does the price seem reasonable to you for what you get? What are some Pro subscribers’ and non-subscribers’ thoughts?


Solve this problem before moaning about investing $20 a month into an education facility.


As someone who recently signed up for Pro membership, I feel there is a lot of value for what really amounts to just the cost of a couple cups worth of coffee per month (trust me, not trying to give you a sales pitch here).

What sold me was the access to the learning Paths and the additional projects you get to solidify what you’ve learned. I’m taking the Web Developer path right now and I looked it over thoroughly before subscribing to Pro. I was impressed by how the path was a fully structured curriculum aimed at giving you a specific skillset and the breadth of content and length was similar to what you would get from a community college or trade school certificate program (for significantly cheaper). For example, in my area, a 12 week web developer certificate course at a technical school would require me to attend 3-hr night classes twice a week and would cost me ~$2000 or more - and I don’t even know if they would get into full stack web development in that time (versus just focusing on HTML/CSS).

Additionally, versus a book or YouTube videos, you can’t beat the guided learning structure that Codecademy does really well. My favorite part is how it automatically scans and checks your work as your progress. Yes, you can buy a book and follow that or go through free tutorials on YouTube but I have always found they lacked structure and for me there was always the uncertainty of “is this going to teach me all I need to know?”. I’ve bought books on C+ in the past and have struggled with following along. I’m not saying you can’t find the right resources for free online, but $20/month removes all the guesswork, all the searching and gives you a structured curriculum from trusted instructors.

Again, I’m not trying to give you a hard sell on it and this is just my genuine opinion as a Pro subscriber. Perhaps try some of the free courses first and see if you like it enough. If you look through the Paths, you can also get a sneak peak of what you would have access to with a Pro membership - you can even see all the sections, courses and projects you would get.

I hope this helps. All the best to you!


My goal is to be a full blown software engineer, or a web dveloper at the least. Seeing as I don’t have hours to spend searching for tutorials, or even the time to google “Python tutorial” Codecademy is by far worth paying for due to my time constraints. I did buy a couple of reference book seeing as I sometimes get confused at the syntax.

Also CC offers many courses on many different languages, they also have courses to help you publish websites/history of coding etc. and you get all of that for $20 a month not just one course.

Different things work for different people, my biggest reason is that I dont have hours of time to spend doing this and if I had to spend time searching for lessons or even had to spend time reviewing or cheking my own work I wouldn’t be able to get my other work done.


Wow. Ok, that was intersting. I think that since it costs money to keep up a webpage, they need to do it somehow though I’m not entirely happy about that either.

I hope this helps =)


Thanks for the feedback, everyone. I guess Pro isn’t for everyone, so I didn’t want to ruin their experience, but I felt there were some “flaws” I felt compelled to address. Quotation marks because not everyone feels that way.


Personally, I’m kind of torn between pro/ not pro. I started “pro” less than a week ago mainly for the extra projects you can do. I like the structure it provides through the paths section as well as the content it gives you. I noticed that it follows closely in-line with the courses I was taking through Udacity, but these subjects seem to be filling in the huge blanks I was getting through Udacity. I also like the fact that the courses I’ve been seeing in the website developer path is mostly stuff I would do on a daily basis and not useless information I’m never going to use again.


I think most of the folks always miss the point that a Pro subscription gives you access to real time advisor help available 16 hours a day. It is located at each and every lesson’s bottom right’s chat widget.

You can really chitchat with them if you want. Sometimes I see people here posting questions about a Pro project, which certainly reduce the workload of our advisors :joy:

Code review and 1-on-1 guidance aren’t normally available through books or youtube.


Yeah the entirety of pro is completely worth it. Like lots of people have said, the paths are sooooooooo much better than just learning each language you need individually. Instead of shoving an insane amount of information in your mind at once, paths do a really good job at doing it little by little.

Pro 10/10. Learning on your own from a book or a video is just not the same as the Paths. Worth it.


I have a certification form Duke University via coursera. The only way that I was able to get the syntax was by using CC.


So you think that Pro is worth the money?


The only downside to it IMHO is that there is no certification, Degree, or something you can put on your resume. BUT I have known people whose interviewers have had them show them their CC profile. But I assume that’s rare. CC now teaches Whiteboarding Which is awesome for interviews. That’s another thing that really isn’t taught in most 2-year degree programs or even four-year programs.

I have a friend who got a masters in CS from Harvard and then had to pay 5k to go and take an interview course which discussed whiteboarding a lot. it’s really a valuable skill to have.

I have a very close friend who used CC to learn several years ago and now makes over $35 per hour, with the number of courses available now you may even be able to do even better.

it’s also really important to have many skills, not just one. For example, Most 2 year programs make you decide what kind of Dev you want to be which is good because you get a deeper knowledge of certain languages but you can’t be an all around developer. Heres an example:

These are the languages you learn at a 2-year program where I live (we have on of the top Comunity Colleges)

  • HTML, XHTML, HTML5 * CSS/CSS3 * Web design principles * Mobile site design * Database Fundamentals * Javascript * AngularJS * ASP.NET * PHP * MySQL * Adobe Dreamweaver * Internet Marketing * SEO * Web analytics * WordPress * Joomla * UI/UX

While this is awesome and gives you great knowledge in Web development you still haven’t learned things like Python, Jquery, Bootstrap, Java, Ruby, React, Command line, Git. All things that you CAN LEARN with CC. And those other things like “Internet marketing” and “SEO” you can simply learn with the awesome courses from coursera for a lot cheaper and a lot less time.

BTW, anyone please feel free to message me or to ask for specific courses I recommend. (Most of my information I get is from industry professionals that I am very close friends or family with)


Thanks =)

So the courses here are worth it if you’re willing to pay.


Well there are different things people “want” from a curriculum. The offerings u get free are great. Does pro content offer more… I feel it does…so I am comfortable paying. I didn’t commit right away until I felt like I would see a return on investment. End of day there are lots of freebies out there. The Odin Project being my personal favorite, as its structured but less hand holding.
No one forcing a subscription, but it also lots of content and time here that I can understand the desire to monetize. So as long as it’s not forced and the free content is relevant it fair to me.

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If you can’t get a real university degree from Codecademy pro, then I don’t think they should charge money

I’m not sure what the charge is, so let’s just say twenty bucks. Times twelve, times four to seven years,

>>> a, b = 20 * 12 * 4, 20 * 12 * 7
>>> a, b
(960, 1680)

Given that there is usually a discount for long term, possibly as high as 50 per-cent, that means you could get seven years of Pro access for under a grand.

That wouldn’t pay for textbooks in the first year, let alone the six or more thousand in tuition each year.

How much education and certification should one expect for $120 a year? That is far less than we pay for Netflix, considered a mere out-of-pocket expense for TV on demand with no commercials.

What you suggest is pushing the boundaries on ludicrous, and screams of entitlement. If one could get a degree for 20 bucks a month (or 60 dollars a year) we’d all be sporting them on the walls of our office or den, in droves. Unfortunately that is far from reality.

CC is one way to become immersed in a set of skills that enable us to move forward more confidently, and perhaps earn admission to a college or university in a discipline we’ve proven an aptitude for, or at the very least an internship where we can pick up production environment experience and gain employment from that with a living wage and benefits.

Enabling is the key. CC enables, and we empower. We hold the power, CC provides a vehicle with which to propel ourselves forward, under our own power.