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Learner Reviews & Feedback for A Life of Happiness and Fulfillment by Indian School of Business

5,809 ratings

About the Course

What are the determinants of a happy and fulfilling life? This is surely one of life’s biggest questions, and a question that has interested many of our ancestors. Buddha famously gave up his kingdom in search of happiness. Several Greek philosophers (from Aristotle to Epicurus and Plato to Socrates) had their own views on what it takes to be happy. And of course, we all have our own theories about happiness too. How valid are our theories? Until recently, if you wished for an answer to this question, you would've been forced to base it on discussions with spiritual leaders. Or, if you were lucky, you could've based it on late-night (and perhaps intoxicant-fueled) conversations with friends and family. Happily, all that has changed now. Over the past decade-and-a-half, scientists have gotten into the act big time. We now have a pretty good idea of what it takes to lead a happy and fulfilling life. This course, based on the award-winning class offered both at the Indian School of Business and at the McCombs School of Business at The University of Texas at Austin, developed by Prof. Raj Raghunathan (aka "Dr. Happy-smarts") draws content from a variety of fields, including psychology, neuroscience, and behavioral decision theory to offer a tested and practical recipe for leading a life of happiness and fulfillment. Although not mandatory, reading Prof. Raj's forthcoming book, titled If you're so smart, why aren't you happy? can help you review and assimilate the material covered in this book at your leisure. For Coursera learners alone, the hardcover version of the book is available for a deep discount of 50%, plus shipping and handling. You can order the hardcover for 50% off by writing to Aaron at: Please mention that you are a student of the "coursera happiness course" in your email. The course will feature guest appearances by several well-known thought leaders, including: - Dan Ariely (author of Predictably Irrational and, soon to be released, Irrationally Yours), - Ed Diener (“Dr. Happiness”), - Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (author of Flow), By taking this course, you will discover the answers to questions such as: - Why aren’t the smart-and-the-successful as happy as they could—or should—be - What are the “7 Deadly Happiness Sins” that even the smart and the successful commit?, and - What are the “7 Habits of the Highly Happy” and how can you implement them in your life? By the end of the course, I expect students who have been diligent with the lectures and exercises to not just gain a deeper understanding of the science of happiness, but to also be significantly happier....

Top reviews


Apr 23, 2018

Excellent course, Professor Raj is great. I found it very helpful to see what types of personality traits I have that may contribute to my happiness level and possible approaches to dealing with them.


May 23, 2021

This course is a joy! I cannot recommend it highly enough. Practical advice based on long-term research, interviews with worldwide experts on the topics discussed, and a fabulous professor. So great!

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1 - 25 of 2,037 Reviews for A Life of Happiness and Fulfillment

By Camila P

Jan 17, 2018

There was no need to show the video of the baby monkeys, even with the warning... why? Was it really necessary?? Really there was no other way of explaining or other examples that could be used? Totally killed my happiness and the will to finish this course. It does not make sense at all to show so much suffering, especially of babies (no matter what species), in a course to help us be happier. When I started this course, I thought it was supposed to help me ne happy, not sad or depressed, but guess I was wrong :( Don't take this course if you care about animals or are sensitive towards cruelty and suffering. Please put a warning in the beginning of the course: this course contains scenes of animal experiments.

By Mariko M

Feb 2, 2016

Prof Raj is a charismatic and engaging professor. Although at first glance, the content may seem theoretically heavy and dull, he teaches in an entertaining way without jargon, and with lots of anecdotes and metaphors, making it easy to follow, and most of all, fun to learn. I would definitely recommend this course for you!


Each module and the entirety of the course is structured very comprehensively. The lectures incorporate various professors who are experts in their field via video conference, telephone, and quotes. Lecture videos (though sometimes long) have lots of embedded quizzes and relevant external videos. Just like taking a course at university, supplemental (yet an optional) reading list is provided for those who wish to explore further.


Prof Raj definitely knows what he is talking about and the videos are easy to follow. There are only a few videos where the audio isn't the best, but transcripts can be downloaded on Coursera, and a clean-format of the transcription can be found on the Facebook page. The animations, lighting, audio, in general are all great.


The discussion forum is very active. With at least three mentors active during the duration of the course, and at least one responding to a post within a business day, you won't feel like you're taking the course alone.


Although it states that time commitment is 2-3 hours a week, it will most likely take more than that. The total number of minutes spent on watching all lecture videos (for that week) averages to a little over 2 hours. If you're like me and want to take notes or take a break while studying or re-watch a lecture, you'll need more time. Plus on top of that, there are quizzes and assignments. (You can save time by not submitting assignments via the ISB website.) I would allocate minimum 3 hours a week for this course and maximum 5. Bare this in mind for those who are working or studying full-time or are taking other MOOC courses. - Enjoy the course!

By Galina T

Dec 18, 2017

Всем привет! Курс отличается от прочих на Курсере и подачей и ожиданиями. Здесь я действительно контролировала сама себя и радовалась за сокурсников. Курс о счастье, о научно доказанных исследованиях и просто ощущениях как жить лучше. Не правильнее, а именно лучше для себя. Я рекомендую новым ученикам отнестись серьезно к занятиям, записывать все, обязательно дойти до конца.

Курс запущен 2015 году и в Америке в школе MBA он признан лучшим курсом года. Все здесь становятся семьей, профессор даже отвечал мне на электронные письма :) .Это самая позитивная дисциплина о научном исследовании счастья, доказательствах, нейропластичности, привычках, "грехах" на пути к счастью. Это и жертвование своим счастьем ради чего-то другого (эффект "золотой рыбки", когда мы просим сразу что-то материальное, вместо просьбы быть счастливым), черезмерный контроль, недоверие к другим, потребность во внимании, в чувстве компетентности и мастерстве, погоня за превосходством над другими, недоверие к жизни ("стакан всегда наполовину пуст") и игнорирование внутреннего источника счастья - осознанности.

Начали мы с четкого определения счастья для себя и теста для замера уровня счастья. Конечно, оказалось потом, что мое определение описывает уровни демократичной свободы по философии. Учили и положительные стороны: эффективный альтруизм, практики умного доверия, создание ситуаций, в которых проще принять правильные решения, сосредоточенность, самосострадание.Наш профессор записывал интервью с кучей настоящих мастодонтов-профессоров исследователей психологии и эмоций людей. Это и создатель "Потока" Михай Чиксентмихай, и Ричард Девидсон (его книгу я сейчас и читаю) и Голдсмит. Последний сказал очень важную фразу в конце курса."Почему мы не делаем что-то ради своего счастья? Я веду много тренингов для руководителей, через год кто-то из них придерживается полученных знаний и инструментов, а кто-то нет.И я понял, что нам часто мешает одна мысль. Всего одна. Вот она:"Сейчас я слишком занят".

By Lucinda S

Jan 24, 2017

This course is a joy! I cannot recommend it highly enough. Practical advice based on long-term research, interviews with worldwide experts on the topics discussed, and a fabulous professor. So great!

By Chris R

Apr 23, 2018

Excellent course, Professor Raj is great. I found it very helpful to see what types of personality traits I have that may contribute to my happiness level and possible approaches to dealing with them.

By Elizabeth M

Oct 26, 2015

ridiculous , unscientific 'self-helpie", far below of even talk-show standards. It gives bad reputation to any business school that endorses such "course".


By Himanshu M

Mar 29, 2020

i really like this course because it helps me in mental and emotional level now i am happy and make other person happy and leads there life to happiness this is all because of this course.


By Peter V

Feb 27, 2017

A disorganized mess. Got no acknowledgement that i was turning in assignments. My peer-review assignment for week 1 was done the first week was never peered, reviewed, or peer-reviewed. Completed three weeks, all assignments exactly as instructed. God only knows if anything has been received or credited. I hate myself for getting suckered into this awful thing. Bye Coursera.

By Virat M

Jul 19, 2016

What a fantastic course! I stumbled upon this through an email from Prof Barbara Oakley who had recommended this highly. Prof Raj Raghunathan and team have done a super job in putting together a fun, thought provoking and a potentially life changing course. I must admit that I took this course with great trepidation because I am an Atheist and felt that there would be a lot of religious discussion and woo-woo as part of the subject matter. I was certainly mistaken as this was not the case. The emphasis through the course was on recent research and geared to convince rather than philosophical and airy. For a person like me this approached proved to be convincing and clear. I have personally benefitted tremendously and have certainly evangelised it to anyone I meet and will continue to do so.

Highly highly highly recommended by me!

By Rishabh S

Sep 10, 2018

Good course content and explained everything is simple language. Hoping that will be benefited by the course. Thanks to Prof Raj and Team

By Veda A

Jan 4, 2019

I did not enjoy this course at all. Absolutely a waste of time. Did not learn anything from it.

By Michael N R

Jun 12, 2016

Too much peer and dealing with others--not making me happy at all

By Grzegorz K

Apr 19, 2020

Unprofessional course with very much questionable statements from the presenter. Even though Raj has a PhD he presents data that is not backing his statements in any way. A lot of BS (aka bad science) in this material. Too much of this for any academic work...even for MOOC.

By Sergiu

Feb 21, 2017

This course is based on personal anecdotes and not facts. Many of the examples provided have been proven to be farces and/or practical jokes.

By M D

Aug 28, 2017

The laughter track and lame jokes gotta go. Prof Raj is no Seinfeld, and he should stick to what he knows best, and not try stand up comedy.

By Narine

Dec 5, 2015

Lecture uses "you know" so much, that I couldn't hear enything else.

By Prashant B

Sep 30, 2016

I enjoyed doing this course very much. The amount of research, references included in the study material makes it credible and easy to relate to. The assignment and exercises are also very helpful.

By Ana K G M

Jan 28, 2019

I loved this course, it has changed my everyday life in so many ways I feel very gratefull. Thank you very very much.

By Nisarga G

Jan 6, 2019

A course, which provides an excellent and practical tips and approaches to improve your happiness and fulfillment.

By pilar e

Nov 30, 2018

A rigorous, complete and entertaining course

By Vinod M

Jan 2, 2019

So far enjoying and learning new things

By Olga L

Feb 14, 2019

very unusual to see how scientific happiness can be.

Good advises and points to think of, especially all different kinds of surveys and experiments.


Jan 30, 2019

motivational course. i like it

By dhruv g

Jan 17, 2019

peer grading is too unpredictable

By Jiayi W (

Oct 4, 2018

Life changer!