Free business courses by Ivy League universities

Knowledge in business is power and staying up to date can keep you ahead of the game.

By U2B Staff 

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Today’s workforce is moving online rapidly. To keep up, developing the necessary skills can be done from the comfort of your own home, with knowledge provided by Ivy League universities. 

Ivy League universities are highly selective and extremely hard to get into. An online business course can be cheaper than traditional institutional education, without scrimping on content.

These courses can come in handy for aspiring entrepreneurs looking to learn, or professionals looking to upskill.

According to The Economist, upskilling will become a more urgent demand across corporations. The primary benefit of expanding skill sets and staying equipped with the relevant methods of handling tasks, creating business plans, keeping track of accounts and negotiating effectively. 

“Millennials are demanding upskilling opportunities from their employers and they also expect to be rewarded for their efforts with the ability to grow into new and challenging positions,” says Jennifer Seith, senior vice president, Product Strategy & Innovation at Randstad US.


A majority of the best online courses are available for free, and they offer great value. They often contain the most up-to-date information that has outpaced traditional curriculums.

Here are five online courses on Business by Ivy League Universities:

Business Foundations 

This free course is offered by the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and is designed to help learners develop basic literacy in the language of business. Topics include the fundamentals of marketing, accounting, operations, and finance.

In the final assignment, participants will be able to apply knowledge gained by developing a go-to-market strategy that addresses real business challenges. This course is 100% online and takes about seven months to complete.

Coursera reports that 48% of learners started a new career after completing this specialization.

Financial Markets

Financial markets are present in every country, playing a major role in economic growth. This course offered by Yale University, provides an overview of the ideas, methods, and institutions that permit human society to manage risks and foster enterprise.

It focuses on financially-savvy leadership skills, the practices of today, and analysis of prospects for the future.

Developing Breakthrough Innovations with the Three Box Solution

This course by Dartmouth, via edX, is an introduction to strategy and innovation expert Vijay Govindarajan’s Three Box framework.

The framework is a method and toolkit designed to help organizations appropriately allocate their time and resources to implement transformational business models. This course takes about 4 weeks to complete and is 100% free.

Govindarajan’s clients include: Boeing, Coca-Cola, FedEx, IBM, New York Times, and Sony.


CS50’s Computer Science for Business Professionals

This computer science course is offered by Harvard University for free via edX.  It was designed for managers, product managers, founders, and decision-makers.

This course helps learners who do not have a technical background to make tech-related decisions through lectures on computational thinking, programming languages, internet technologies, web development, technology stacks, and cloud computing.

Introduction to Corporate Finance

The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania offers this course to learners for free, providing a brief introduction to the fundamentals of finance.

It also provides insight on how these fundamentals apply to a wide variety of real-world situations, spanning personal finance, corporate decision-making, and financial intermediation.

This course takes approximately just seven hours to complete on Coursera, with flexible deadlines.