12 Best WordPress Themes for Online Courses to Boost the eLearning Experience
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Looking for the best WordPress themes for online courses? With online learning becoming increasingly mainstream, more and more people are starting to build online courses to share with others. If you're an expert in your field, an online course can even be a great way to bring in some extra money.
WordPress is a great platform for building an online education business because it's versatile and easy to use (don't miss our comparison of WordPress premium vs business). The only thing you'll want to be mindful of is choosing a learning management system (LMS) theme to ensure you have the functionalities you need to run courses.
The thing to remember is that not all WordPress themes were created equal. You can choose an LMS WordPress theme or opt for a WordPress theme compatible with an LMS plugin. This way, you can build a fully functional educational website that allows for student-related features and managing courses.
In a rush?
Thanks to its multifunctionality and easy integration with the LMS plugin LearnDash, Astra is our go-to best WordPress theme for online courses.
A multi-purpose online course theme, Astra is one you might already be familiar with. They offer a variety of starter templates for online courses which means you can get started building your courses right away.
Their templates are fully customizable, so you can tweak whatever bits you need to make sure it matches your brand and appeals to your niche. Astra also offers customizable header options and multiple header layouts.
Plus, Astra has SEO-optimized code that will benefit your SERPs and help you reach more people. Pair that with WooCommerce integration for a conversion-friendly sales page, and selling courses couldn't be easier.
Touted as the most popular education theme on ThemeForest, Eduma has everything you need to launch the best online course. If you're in a rush, the theme comes with over 20 full demos available to install with just one click.
In addition, the theme is compatible with all the key plugins you need for success. To turn your WordPress theme into an LMS solution, Eduma integrates with LearnPress. The premium version of this plugin comes with the purchase.
You can also enable BuddyPress and/or bbPress to build online communities around your courses, and if you're looking to sell online courses and take payment, you can use WooCommerce.
Lastly, Eduma includes WPBakery page builder with the purchase and is also compatible with both Elementor and Site Origin.
Eduma is a great option for just about anyone looking to build their WordPress online education website. It's SEO and mobile friendly, frequently updated, and supports multiple languages.
Built to work exclusively with the WordPress LMS plugin LearnDash, BuddyBoss has all the LMS features you could dream of.
It's a purpose-built education theme for online courses but also brings in extra elements for students to benefit from. BuddyBoss allows for personalized member profiles, discussion forums, and opportunities for users to engage with your brand. It's a great way to elevate the educational website experience into something more social.
Another stand-out with BuddyBoss is how easily you can monetize your page. There are lots of different options for payment, from selling online courses individually to offering access to multiple courses based on a monthly fee.
Finally, BuddyBoss makes it easy to convert your online course content into a mobile app for easy access and learning on the go.
WPLMS (WordPress Learning Management System) is its own e-learning plugin/online learning theme combined.
It comes loaded with BuddyPress, an integrated paid membership pro plugin that handles all your membership functionality. Having a separate plugin for your memberships makes it easy to migrate your members with just a few clicks if you ever move to a different WordPress theme for online courses.
WPLMS also comes with complete WooCommerce compatibility, so you can easily monetize your page by offering paid courses or recurring subscriptions.
That said, where WPLMS really shines is when you are looking to run multiple courses online. It's a fantastic theme if all you're looking for is an easy way to launch a simple online course, but as a multipurpose e-learning theme, it's perfect for large-scale projects.
As far as e-learning themes go, Educavo offers a lot of versatility simply because it works with multiple different LMS plugins. You'll find pre-built templates that work with Tutor LMS, LearnDash, and LearnPress, along with other top WordPress plugins.
Though the theme is designed to be easily customizable with no coding skills required, those with a little bit of know-how will be pleased to find it is well-documented and clean-coded, making it easy to make changes from the back end if that's your preference.
In addition, Educavo works particularly well for those looking to launch a language school or courses in multiple languages. Educavo has full support for multilingual plugins and RTL languages.
With multiple header layouts, Slider Revolution, and one-click install—Academia is an easy WordPress e-learning theme to launch your next online course.
The online course builder is straightforward and walks you through everything you need to know regarding course management.
You'll also find Academia works with popular page builders like Visual Composer that allow you to drag and drop elements onto the page.
Academia does come with pre-built templates for educational websites to help get you started but those that appreciate being able to customize their pages to match their branding will be happy with the powerful theme options panel.
Academia is marketed towards education centers, businesses, and academies. However, it is still perfectly suitable for launching a simple online course marketplace where you can offer a few free or paid courses online.
Another LMS WordPress theme to consider is Guru.
Easily create quizzes, run online tutorials, sell educational materials, track course progress, and more with Guru. This online learning theme is built with practicality and ease in mind.
Guru is fully compatible with Sensei, which makes it easy to track course analytics, giving you an overview of the content, grades, and registered students. It's one of the reasons why Guru is valued for being both student and instructor friendly.
The theme offers a comprehensive dashboard for instructors to easily grade quizzes and see course content.
Another feature offered by this multipurpose theme is the events page which makes it easy to plan and manage online events. And Guru supports multiple languages with WPML integration.
All in all, Guru is a great option if you're looking to launch a WordPress online education platform with multiple course offerings and different instructors.
8. Clever Course
Another fantastic theme to consider is Clever Course. First off, Clever Course is integrated with a variety of different payment options, including PayPal and Stripe. This means it's easy for students to pay for courses and instructors to receive their payments.
Setting up an online course is super simple, thanks to their intuitive course builder. This includes being able to create quizzes and monitor student progress. Students also have the opportunity to rate each course upon completion.
The built-in page builder offers in-depth customization and practically unlimited layouts, making it a good WordPress theme for those equally focused on design and course content.
This WordPress theme is best suited for schools or universities offering online courses, but that doesn't mean it wouldn't work for anyone looking to have multiple course offerings.
Those looking for a standout option to create courses need look no further than Turitor. Compatible with LMS plugins LearnDash, TutorLMS, and LearnPress, Turitor comes with a range of templates already ready to go so you can launch the best online course quickly.
Turitor is an especially strong option for those looking to include video calls with their courses and host sessions for their classes, as you can integrate seamlessly with Zoom. You can further foster community by also enabling BuddyPress, which allows for member profiles, user groups, messaging, and more.
When it comes to layout and design, you have the option of six different header layouts and your choice of page builder including Elementor.
Turitor is a strong contender for anyone looking for an education theme, thanks to its comprehensiveness.
10. Coaching WP
Developed by the team behind LearnPress, aptly named Coaching, is the best WordPress theme for launching life and business coaching courses online.
Focusing heavily on UX/UI design, Coaching prioritizes helping mentors, therapists, and coaches build their brand. To this end, they feature dynamic page designs and pre-built templates making this the perfect WordPress theme for niche courses.
Coaching can be used with LearnPress LMS to elevate this from a simple WordPress theme to a full LMS theme. Additionally, monetization and payments can be handled through WooCommerce. The theme also includes Revolution Slider plugin and Fancy Events.
Another option for people especially invested in having an events calendar is Skillfully. This theme has a fully integrated events tool perfect for promoting online workshops and classes. With the free events calendar and WooCommerce, you can also promote and sell tickets to special events.
The theme is built around Sensei 1.9 and is therefore not compatible with the latest version. In addition, Sensei is not included when you purchase Skillfully; you'll have to buy it separately. Likewise, if you want to take advantage of Skillfully's compatibility with Restrict Content Pro to manage online course access.
eLumine is another great WordPress theme for online courses. It offers personalized student profiles, mobile-friendly features, and interactive teaching tools.
It's developed by the same team behind LearnDash (check out our LearnDash review here) and therefore is fully compatible with the LMS plugin. It'll also work with WooCommerce, Elementor, BuddyPress, and bbPress, so you're pretty covered when it comes to plugins.
The newest update has brought superfast page-load times, making this one of the best WordPress themes in terms of page speed.
Ready to start making money from online courses? Check out our guide on How to Build an Online Course!
Theme Features to Consider for Online Courses
When you're considering different online course themes, there are a few standout features to keep in mind to find the perfect WordPress theme for your online course website:
- Mobile app conversion/compatibility: Some WordPress themes are great for mobile responsiveness. Some will even let you convert your website and course offerings into a complete mobile app available for both Apple and Android. This increases the number of platforms users can access your courses and means you have a wider audience.
- WordPress LMS plugins compatibility: As mentioned, the best online course themes are the ones that work well with at least one LMS plugin. This is important for specific aspects of running and managing an online course website.
- Monetization method: there are lots of different ways to monetize a website. Even if you don't want to sell online courses, you should consider other ways to monetize your page, like advertising. If you do want to sell courses, make sure your WordPress theme offers something like WooCommerce integration to make the payment process seamless for users.
Another way to bring money in is to check out this list of the best education affiliate programs to enroll in.
- Page builder integration: Also worth considering is how much time you can save with certain page builders like the WPBakery page builder or Elementor page builder. They are great for making your website look professional and appealing without needing to know anything about coding or spending too much time on it. Opt for WordPress themes that will work with whichever page builder you prefer.
What Are the Best WordPress Themes for Online Courses?
Due to its versatility and complete integration with the LMS plugin, LearnDash, Astra is definitely one of the best WordPress themes for online courses.
However, choosing the right education WordPress theme will ultimately depend on your budget, your niche, and the features that you are most concerned with. The key to successful online course websites is that they are well-marketed and appeal to their niche.
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