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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Origins - Formation of the Universe, Solar System, Earth and Life by University of Copenhagen

627 ratings

About the Course

The Origins course tracks the origin of all things – from the Big Bang to the origin of the Solar System and the Earth. The course follows the evolution of life on our planet through deep geological time to present life forms....

Top reviews


Dec 11, 2020

Excellent course. To appreciate it even more, download the videos and watch on a big 65" TV screen: amazing experience and in the end, you get to meet Darwin. A huge thank you to all the instructors.


Aug 26, 2020

I,Adike Shambhuprasad learnt a lot in thiscoursera course. From formation of Universe,Solar system to origin of life and extinction of many species is very interesting.Thanks to all faculty members.

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1 - 25 of 177 Reviews for Origins - Formation of the Universe, Solar System, Earth and Life

By Mandy B

Aug 13, 2016

This class' information was very mistaken when it failed to mention that you would need background in the subjects being covered to take this course. The teachers, while it is clear that they are very knowledgeable in their fields, fill their lectures with unnecessary jargon. I'm not sure if they are primarily researchers who aren't used to teaching or if they are only used to teaching students who are far advanced enough that the vocabulary of those fields are second nature to them. As someone who was taking this class without that advantage, I was quickly lost among all the jargon, to the point where I just had to stop. I'm hoping the find something else that is truly an overview meant for someone without a science background.

By Horacio S

Mar 26, 2017

Too long, too diversified, too much usage of technical terms; heterogenous content.

By Abdallah N

Dec 11, 2020

Excellent course. To appreciate it even more, download the videos and watch on a big 65" TV screen: amazing experience and in the end, you get to meet Darwin. A huge thank you to all the instructors.

By Ana M

Nov 6, 2020

Great course for intermediate or beginner with prior experience, with some advanced concepts included. Presented in an easy to understand and follow format, most of the information is picked up easily with visual presentations and little supplementary reading, but, for the person who absorbs information in text there is enough information provided this way as well...The lectures are great, a couple of the lecturers have accents which can be difficult to understand if you are not that way inclined, but there are real time transcripts which are adequate, the player can be stopped, paused, rewind, read-out-loud etc, and a section for easy note-taking also. Not my preferred method of learning as I cant ask the lecturer any questions (typical of lectures I've attended in person anyway) and there is no tutorial classes-but the discussion board and recommended reading plus using my brain, doing extra research for more details etc does suffice. The other thing I'm not sure if I like or not, is the nature of the examination. I love the questions embedded in the lectures, this is a fantastic way to reinforce information recall etc, but to not be able to present reasoning for an answer is very frustrating, and with up-dated information and differences in wording or grammar styles between countries as well as the various cultures of learning , this can be a little annoying, but not enough to ruin my thorough enjoyment of the course.

By Julien P

Mar 5, 2017

Es un curso excelente con especialistas en todos los temas abordados y con el apoyo de sus investigaciones y de las colecciones y exhibiciones del Museo de Historia Natural de Dinamarca. Desde el la formación del sistema solar hasta la biodiversidad actual aprendí mucho sobre los procesos tectonicos, físicos, químicos y biológicos que han impulsado la evolución de nuestro planeta y de la vida que alberga. Gran iniciativa, y un gran equipo para realizar este proyecto, mis felicidades.


Jul 27, 2020

En general me pareció un excelente curso que me permitió actualizarme en datos, conceptos y teorías de la astronomía, geología, paleontología, botánica, zoología y sistemática, por lo menos. El enfoque del curso me permite comprender mejor la vida en nuestro planeta. Muchas gracias, saludos.

By David E C

Dec 28, 2020

Congratulations to all the presenters.........even the odd pronounciations were fun and, merely, accentuated how good everyone's English was - Thanks for such an interesting & wide-ranging course..

By Mohsin R N

Aug 29, 2018

The course help me discover answers to so many questions I had in mind and discover so many more. It made me realize how little I know about life itself and how precious life on earth is.

By Ricardo V

Dec 26, 2015

The course content is very very good and not superficial as some courses we see around here. I liked very much how the order of subjects where build. However, if you allow me to give a *constructive* criticism, please let me say that the strategy chosen to ask lectures to read from previous written scripts, instead of letting them present more naturally, was a bad one. I understand that in order to make the legends/captions available, the lecturers kinda read from scripts their talks and this was very bad. It would be much better next time if you allow each speaker give the talk naturally as they want, with no reading, and then latter produce the subtitles. The lecturers are reseachers and not ACTORS so the final result of reading word by word what they were saying compromised a lot the final quality of their talks. Please don't get me wrong, I just trying to be constructive giving back somehow the time and effort spent by you guys to prepare such nice course.

By Philip M

Apr 12, 2016

This was an interesting and enjoyable course. The content was wide and varied. On the whole the lectures were well supported by videos and associated charts and tables..

However, I found that one or two of the lecturers', though they tried gamely, were a little unfamiliar with English. I fully understand that almost all of these people do not have English as a first (or second) language and admire their competence. If the transcripts had been corrected so that they more accurately reflected what the speaker was trying to say rather than what was actually said, I feel that would be a help. In spite of this, I would recommend this course to my friends and family.

By Jayne M

Sep 1, 2020

The scope of this course is extremely ambitious and much of it is very interesting. Unfortunately it is also very technical and some lecturers found it hard to make the technicalities accessible to a layperson such as myself. I did finish it, however and am certainly better informed about our origins than I was before I started.


Jul 25, 2020

Excellent course! This is covering a HUGE amount of science, so the brushes used are obviously very broad, but I would really love to have the option of taking a full degree using this as a general guideline, perhaps studying four of the topics each year, and going into much greater depth. All of the tutors seem to be well grounded in their topics, and although some reviewers have complained about the technical language, it is up to the student to pause the video, and check the word's meaning - it only takes a moment to look up the meanings on-line! I felt that this course could make a great introduction to students considering a science degree course . Obviously it is not as demanding as any degree would be, but it would give a taste of so many topics, and an idea of the necessary self discipline that is often absent from school based study. Another study "group" for UK students may be post GCSE, as it might lead to a science based student selecting a Physical or Biological preference for A Levels. This really is a great course for those looking to broaden their scientific knowledge, or those looking to identify the field of science that they would like to concentrate upon in the future.

By John E

Dec 26, 2017

Excellent course with a wide range of instructors from different specializations covering multiple topics which pertain to the study of our origins and the way things are observed today.

I only wished that the assessments were a bit more difficult for I fear that I may not retain a lot of the information I've learnt, and I would have liked more explanation of why certain answers were correct and others wrong.

Most of the instructors were amazing, presenting the information in detail and in a way that drove me to want to learn more (only with one exception whom you're sure to notice, there are complaints on the forums). One highlight would probably be when Darwin himself shows up for the final week to finish it off :P.

By Antonia T B

Aug 19, 2018

A fascinating course with excellent professors. I loved it. There are some lectures that are a bit difficult, with too many technical words and a bit slow, but overall the course is excellent. There is a fantastic Mentor who answers all the questions and helps the students, so that's really great. This course covers 13.8 Billion years of history: it starts with the Origins of the Universe and ends with the evolution of the hominids, until today's biodiversity. I was in Copenhagen last month and visited with my kids the fantastic Museum of Natural History and the botanical garden. I learnt a lot with this course. Thanks a lot and many greetings from Spain / Antonia

By Simon C

Feb 21, 2016

I did this course last year, and consider it to be among the very best I have seen. It is great to have such a diverse group of lecturers, everyone of whom know that material very well; they are great presenters also.

If I had been asked, before I took the course, about summarizing 4 billion years in 10 weeks (400 million years per week), I'd have said it was impossible. These guys actually did it, and they did it well!

I like the overlap between lectures, as each lecturer had their own style, and sometimes a topic was covered from two different perspectives, which reinforced my knowledge.

I'm only sorry that I can't give this course more than 5 stars!

By Victoria C L

Sep 21, 2017

This class is so excellent on s o many levels!! The story encompasses the creation of the universe and drills down to planets, the earth, early life, diversity of all forms of animal and plants. The cast includes so many profs and researchers, all experts in their field. With only one exception, excellent preso skills. Good use of props in general. But the breadth of the science covered is truly mind boggling. I have a grad degree in some of this stuff and could not find any disputes except some interpretations. What an excellent, excellent course. I am spreading the word in my own classes and on social media. Bravo, Brava u of Copenhagen.

By Stephen C

Feb 22, 2016

I thoroughly enjoyed the course learning a lot in a sort of retired auditor role. 4.8 instead of 5 stars only because in covering such a broad topic it often felt like a catalog of successive eras and life forms without delving into the mechanisms of evolution. e.g., insects and flowering plants are wildly successful and diverse, but I wanted to explore what it is about their morphology, reproduction and codependent relationship that made this so. Next course!

Thank you all for a fascinating look into soooo many things !! :)


By Shane O

Apr 27, 2016

Excellent. Very comprehensive course that has relevance to academic research scientists and those with less scientific training. This is accessible for those with busy schedules and encourages and provides information for further reading on the topics. A very good historical overview but critically with up-to-date recent research developments. The graphics, visualizations, animations and on-site demonstrations work very well. I highly recommend.

By pra

Jul 2, 2020

It has been a wonderful learning experience with all the professors at University of Copenhagen. I am indebted and Grateful to all of them. The course outline has been very real with clear video lectures and quiz at regular intervals. The format of the quiz has made the course exciting. The content is also very relevant. All this has made me come back to college and feel happy. Thank You. Namaste from India!!

By Jacqui A

May 16, 2020

Loved this course although because of deafness found some things difficult to understand because of some lecturers' accents. So much of it was new ground outside my comfort zone, and covered topics I have never done before. And it made me think.

I have taken this course during the strict Covid-19 lock-down for older people here in Australia, and it has probably saved my sanity!!!

Thank you.

By Julio C M S

May 17, 2019

I am very satisfied with this course. It is very well structured with very interesting topics. The professors are competent , providing important information in a correlated manner. Now the next step is to have an opportunity to visit the Museum of Natural History of University of Copenhagen. Thanks all the team to prepare and make this course available for the world community.

By Bilal b

Apr 8, 2020

The course was very useful in concepts of origin ,formation of universe , solar system ,earth and life .

besides this its assignments ,video lactures and topic wise quiz's were also nice .

but after my completion of this course i found my certificate with signatures , i hope the coursera community will solve this error as soon as possible.


with cheers

Bilal Ahmad Bhat

By Pedro C D L C

Feb 24, 2021

Extraordinary course!! It is great to have such as high-quality information in a friendly and free of charge format. To everyone one who is taking a career in Biology or any other related Natural sciences, this course will help to get along with those ideas you will see at university. Highly recommended, even if you just want to be curious about the origins of life.

By Maureen O

Sep 12, 2022

I've done a number of online courses but this course is up there in the top two, if not the top. I love it that those presenting the course are experts in the field, and that the science isn't annoyingly dumbed down. Massively interesting and also highly relevant considering our modern issues with declining biodiversity.

By Philip J F ( P

Nov 12, 2022

I personally was very engaged by this course and the instructors. Since travelling to the Burgess Shae in Youo Park, British Columbia, CANADA in late 80's this area of study has been of interest. The intersection of different disciplines made this course very stimulating.