Harvard Online's Top Courses of 2023

Published December 8, 2023

We’re celebrating 2023 by sharing a list of our most popular courses from this year!

Our top courses from 2023 are as varied and interesting as our vast, global community of learners. From world-famous classics like CS50 and Rhetoric to brand-new courses like Introduction to Data Science with Python and Innovations in Teamwork for Health Care, there’s truly a course for everybody.

This year also introduced our new Harvard Online blog and Learning Paths, which have helped us better serve our worldwide community by offering new ways to learn with us. We’re thankful to our learners for constantly inspiring us to ask the big questions and tackle the tough challenges.

“To Harvard Online I say thanks a lot. It was great fun and an immense privilege to learn from world class intellectuals. Their approach made a lasting impression in my mind.”
—Howard K.


10. Statistics and R

An introduction to basic statistical concepts and R programming skills necessary for analyzing data in the life sciences.


9. Introduction to Data Science with Python

Learn the concepts and techniques that make up the foundation of data science and machine learning.


8. Innovations in Teamwork for Health Care

In this course taught by Amy Edmondson of Harvard Business School and Michaela Kerrissey of the T.H. Chan School of Public Health, you will learn to implement a strategy for organizational teamwork in health care.


7. Entrepreneurship in Emerging Economies

Explore how entrepreneurship and innovation tackle complex social problems in emerging economies.

“Thank you very much for your excellent training approach and content. I use your techniques to generate business ideas when I train future entrepreneurs. It is very rewarding. I am proud to be certified by Harvard.”
—Bamba F.

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6. Managing Happiness

Through cutting-edge survey tools, the best research, and trends in social science, positive psychology, neuroscience, and philosophy, learners unlock the strategies to create a more purposeful life, full of long-lasting enjoyment and satisfaction.

“I feel a lot more in control of my own happiness. I left with an understanding that the things beyond my control can, and will, affect my happiness, but my reactions to these outcomes are more important.”
Renée Onque, CNBC Health and Wellness Reporter


5. Data Science: Machine Learning

Part of our Professional Certificate Program in Data Science, you will learn to build a movie recommendation system and learn the science behind one of the most popular and successful data science techniques.


4. Data Science for Business

Designed for managers, this Harvard Online course provides a hands-on approach for demystifying the data science ecosystem and making you a more conscientious consumer of information.

“Upon successful completion of the course, I added this course to my LinkedIn and resume, and I can say that I have become more popular among HR. In addition, I gained confidence in myself as a specialist.”
- Jeannette V.


3. Exercising Leadership: Foundational Principles

Mobilize people to tackle tough problems and build the capacity to thrive through the dangers of change.


2.  Rhetoric: The Art of Persuasive Writing and Public Speaking

Gain critical communication skills in writing and public speaking with this introduction to American political rhetoric.

“This course made me realize that Rhetoric is a superpower and it helped me use my voice for good”
—Joshua S.


1. CS50: Introduction to Computer Science

An introduction to the intellectual enterprises of computer science and the art of programming.

“This is the BEST course you can ever take. Period.
Take the course.
For your own good.”
- Nathan M.


Honorable Mentions

It’s tough to narrow our course catalog down to a top 10, which is why we wanted to share a few honorable mentions. These are courses that continuously offer high value to our learners throughout the year. 

Data Privacy and Technology

Explore legal and ethical implications of one’s personal data, the risks and rewards of data collection and surveillance, and the needs for policy, advocacy, and privacy monitoring, in this Harvard Online course.

“This course provides a perspective into real-life privacy concerns and changes. I got to see just how crucial it is to guard against the innovation of technology that is non-compliant with data privacy laws.”
—Giscard K.


Fundamentals of Neuroscience

Explore the structure and function of the entire nervous system — from the microscopic inner workings of a single nerve cell to the staggering complexity of the brain in this three-part series.


Health Care Economics

Taught by Harvard Medical School faculty, this course provides insights into the interactions between industries in the US health care sector and teaches what economic forces are shaping health care.

“This is a very well designed course to understand the nuances of the US healthcare system economics. The videos and the guest talks were very helpful to understand the real world examples. The discussion surrounding the RAND experiment was very useful to understand many key concepts. Overall a very good course.”
—Krishna C.

What are your learning goals for 2024? Check out our full catalog of courses here and make sure to follow us on Instagram, LinkedIn, and Facebook to keep up with the latest course news.

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