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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Using Python to Access Web Data by University of Michigan

42,398 ratings

About the Course

This course will show how one can treat the Internet as a source of data. We will scrape, parse, and read web data as well as access data using web APIs. We will work with HTML, XML, and JSON data formats in Python. This course will cover Chapters 11-13 of the textbook “Python for Everybody”. To succeed in this course, you should be familiar with the material covered in Chapters 1-10 of the textbook and the first two courses in this specialization. These topics include variables and expressions, conditional execution (loops, branching, and try/except), functions, Python data structures (strings, lists, dictionaries, and tuples), and manipulating files. This course covers Python 3....
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Top reviews


Jun 18, 2020

This course was really interesting and did a good job introducing complicated topics in usefully simplified form. It was a pleasure to listen to the instructor and I got everything I wanted out of it.


Jun 6, 2019

Getting a bit more challenging than the earlier courses in the specialization. The exercises require more struggle, but all the information is there. Another step along the way. Thank you, Dr. Chuck!

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7251 - 7275 of 7,628 Reviews for Using Python to Access Web Data

By Wisdom S

Aug 25, 2020

The prior courses in this specialization are great, however be aware that around week 4 of this course I believe its Assignment 2 using the url to spider links it becomes problematic, and the reason for this is that the outline given to you to solve the problem by the auto-grader is wrong you will waste hours scratching your head as to why your not coming up with the correct sequence.It is only when you go to the forum that you will find out what the correct steps are that your code should follow. Along with working with URLs this course introduces google API Twitter API,XML and json towards the end. My only nitpick with this is that your given one-two assignments with these concepts but there is no assignments to explore and utilize other data on the web its pretty much up to the individual own initiative

By Alexis H

Aug 19, 2020

This is a great course with a fantastic instructor. However, the teaching staff was extremely condescending and impatient. Apparently she expected all of us to do the assignments in the same way, and if a student used a different method and got stuck, she would just tell them to switch to the one method she suggested and provide no helpful feedback on their questions at all. For the assignment in week 5, she posted a step-by-step guide and then replied to almost all questions in the discussion board by telling people to reread the guide or even delete everything & start over to just use her method. As the TA for a beginner's class, she is very discouraging for people who just started learning coding. She definitely made the learning experience a lot worse than it needed to be.

By Dr R B

May 13, 2020

Thanks for the wonderful course. I truly had a great opportunity to learn from a Professor from MIT by sitting in India. The lectures were beautifully presented so that we do not have a feel of how time elapsed. However, compared to the previous 2 courses, this one is a little bit tough to learn. The explanations and slides changing are too fast that it was very difficult to grasp the concept. The Twitter API example and corresponding videos could be avoided since it requires a lots of stuff from the Professors library. Overall, the number of videos in Week 6 could be reduced. Please bring the flow of clarity like in Course 1 and Course 2 in Course 3 also. If possible, please upload a copy of the PPTs at course website.

By Jorge Z

May 1, 2020

Graders/TAs are not very helpful, and condescending at times, which takes a lot away from the learning experience. This didn't only happen to me, but to others as well. I ran into these incidents while going through the different forum postings looking for answers to my questions. Also, I wish more robust programs would be added to the lectures and have the teacher explain them, so that the students can gain more supervised experience with more complex assignments. Other than that, the professor is a great lecturer, always has a simple way of explaining CS concepts and make his lectures easy to follow. One last thing, please improve on the assignments description - the objective is not always clear.

By Cornelia C

May 29, 2020

I enjoyed this course, and the learning materials and instructor is great, but I felt that quite a bit that was covered (like the Twitter URL and API) required me to accept a number of principles/code that seemed to be a lot more complex than my beginner level could really engage with. When the assignments came we were given sample code that was 80-90% usable in our assignments. I did not feel like I was learning as much when I did not have to write my own code but just changed one or two lines...I also did not feel comfortable to attempt my own version as there were so much (given) code that I understood the reasons for but not really how to use it differently myself.

By Arash E

Jun 9, 2020

The course itself is fine. However, if you want to get the most out of it I recommend to take some courses in web page and network design before taking this course. The assignments are pretty much consist of pre-made programs provided by the instructors and students adjust them slightly to pull data from the web and then adding few line of codes from two previous courses in the specialization to loop and iterate to calculate some numbers.If the pre-made programs are not provided I don't think that you are able to write the program from scratch by yourself if you don't have beforehand knowledge and understanding web design

By Michael T

Jan 23, 2018

3/5, great professor lectures and good textbook, but the class is structured in such a way as to rush us through every new concept without lingering to practice or revisit material, and the assignments seemed to be very difficult in comparison to the previous classes. This is especially the case after introducing us to BeautifulSoup -- the difficulty of the assignments ramps up very quickly for people with no programming experience. This class has a fun professor and decent reading material but it may take studying elsewhere to complement your grasp of concepts when completing the class's assignments.

By Julio L

Nov 14, 2017

I liked this course and I am liking the specialization a lot. But I noticed the quality of the courses decreasing. The first courses were perfectly explained and worked and I know what was everything.

In this course there is a lot unsaid, a lot of things in the code that are not explained. And it goes very fast. I understand that at this point the professor might expect us to look at documentation, but he does not explain how that documentation is organized nor where it is. And the documentation is NOT easy reading.

I wish there were some more explanations and more exercises like in the first courses.

By Almudena P S

Apr 27, 2020

I think that this course, in comparison to the previous ones is considerably more difficult. One has to link all that was learned previously in python to these new exercises and I feel like there is a lot of information given in a short time. Also, the assignments are considerably more difficult than the examples provided during the lectures. I think the course would benefit from some additional assignments as well as either additional lectures or directions to further reading and exercises that would facilitate the understanding of the concepts related to using python for accessing web data.

By Soren G

Jun 10, 2018

I continue to like these courses, although I spent way too much time on the assignments. I also think the assignments are poor in terms of teaching. I actually do not know, if my programs were good or not. I just know, I muddled myself through to reach the correct results.The grading of this course was not working properly. I had problems grading my colleagues, and was therefore not getting credit at the time I actually finished it.Coursera has to improve, so such frustrating things do not diminish the actual pleasure and benefit of learning over this platform do not diminish sharply.

By Pun S B L

Jun 4, 2021

This course was great in terms of learning the most practical things, but was a bit lacking in fully explaining all the code. In real situations, I don't expect to have sample code handed to me and in that case I believe that having keywords and imported formats be explained better, at least when we are looking at the code. I had to consult my mate who is knowledgeable in those fields but otherwise I could do all the bits needed by myself. The beautifulsoup chapter was especially frustrating as the documentation for the format is awful and I'm told it's not very common to begin with.

By Boya T

Sep 20, 2020

After taking previous two courses I think everything is going on well and being organized we. But from this course the difficulty increases extremely. I did not have any problem to do assignments in course 1 and 2, but in this course 3 I have to post questions on the forum because I cannot even understand the assignment question, or search even basic concepts on Google. Maybe the teaching staff want us to do assignments independently and they only answer part of my questions on the forum. But as I have problems in doing assignments, I hope they could give me clear explanations.


Jul 4, 2020

The codes are too hard. Maybe this course will benefit from being a whole specialization for full comprehension of the libraries used, such as urllib or BeautifulSoup. The XML task was really hard, especially because of the Geographical code. If anyone sees this, before taking this course, I strongly sugest taking other basic python courses, and if you have taken other python courses; I suggest you to do week 5 and inmediatly week 6, to understand the week 5 task. Other than that, the teacher is great, and other tasks are kinda easy.

By Nemanja P

Dec 3, 2015

Course had pretty good basic information for people not familiar with programming. I would like to have seen more in-depth tasks or project(s) that would require deeper exercise of the topics covered in class. Each assignment boiled down to parsing a file using specific method (reg ex, Beautiful Soup, XML, or json libraries) to do the same task. Requiring people for instance to build additional data types already taught (lists, dictionaries) would have been at least little more challenging.

Overall it is a good basic intro class.

By Nath S

Apr 20, 2019

Very difficult, this is not for beginners, should be intermediate.

They should consider make the course a bit longer so they could explain the topics with more patience and details. I, particularly, needed a lot more explanation about JSON and XML before those assignments.

The mentors of the forum could give more details to answer our doubts, after all, we are beginners!

Maybe a reminder should be repeated every lesson because it is a trouble in every assignment we make: attention to the Python version we are working!

By Angelo F

Jul 2, 2021

I have enrolled in this course because, I´d like to improve my skills on web scraping, but I am disappointed. For those who already are familiar to Python, this course is too basic and do not teach anything new about web scraping. Some videos are repetitive and the bonuses are worthless.

I would rate it two stars, but I think I should have evaluated it better before enrolling. Considering it might be useful for beginners at Python, I rate it three stars, but it should have better videos, materials and evaluations.

By David B

Jun 23, 2020

The topic is an important one I feel but this course is way boring. Despite the instructor being a great teacher, I felt he was just reading slides without going on with a more detailed explanation. There is no engagement with the students other than the forums which are awful for providing good answers despite the fact that they answer fast. No in-video questions, the exercises are too ambiguous or too easy. At the end, I just wanted to finish, get my certificate, and continue with other courses than this one.

By Achal J

Jul 28, 2020

The course is awesome, really awesome but there's one thing, which I didn't really liked, the part of REST API and API what taught at a very fast pace, and the the course should have divulged more into API and how to handle them and use them, I mean there are lots and lot of pubic API's available and we still discuss about paid API's. That really disappointed me.

But still, Dr.Chuck is one of the best educator on Coursera and I would highly recommend this course, but you would need to google a ton of things.

By sankara k

Oct 5, 2018

I feel that some of the videos here were short and fast. JSON could have been dealt in more detail. It would have been nice to have a piece where you write a program only to dump the JS and then use that dump to show how the individual elements can be retrieved, counted etc. It was not intuitive for me to know that print ("Place id", js["results"][0]["place_id"]) would print place_id. I had to dump the JS, look down and see the tree structure and get it.

Twitter API video especially was too fast and short.

By Adryan J M

Sep 20, 2019

The biggest frustration I have with this course is that the examples worked through in the class don't exactly correlate with the assignments we are given. I will understand the lectures for the most part but then end up completely lost during the assignments. I know the point of the course is to struggle and work through problems but the retention is difficult. I have had to seek help through outside resources because I don't feel like the course adequately prepares us for the assignments.

By Susanne E

Jan 2, 2018

This course progresses in large steps. It probably gives a good overview over the topic, how to access web data, but the commands are very specific and it moves on very quickly to the next section without going into much depth. In that sense it is very different from the first two courses which taught the basics at length. It is still a very useful course. I feel like if I ever have to write a program to access web data I at least know what structures there are and which tools to look for.

By 김태림

Feb 14, 2020

contray to precedent two courses, this course was too difficult and unfamiliar. When I had taken other courses, I've been sure that I fully understand what I learned. However, in this course, access web data is completely different to what I learned at prerequisite lectures. It requires me to use unfamiliar library and functions, but explanation about them was not enough. Thus, even though I finished the lecture and passed all assignment, I'm not sure that I understand what i learned.

By Diego R

Aug 9, 2019

Most of the times I really didn't get a solution or an answer every time I did a question in the discussion section. Most of the times the teaching staff answer me with another question or a vague answer. I know that the strategy behind that tipes of answers is to encourage the students to thinks by themselves. But in some cases, it seems very excessive. In any physical class, the teacher will be happy and predisposed to answer and give you a solution to your problem.


Aug 29, 2020

The courses 1 and 2 have been excellent. But in this third it seems it pass from a beginner to a super level. The first week was acceptable but after that it's more and more difficult. The explanations are lacking and I feel I really didn't undernstand the majority of content. Fortunely I finished the course because I'm taking other courses about this issue. I really love the teacher, but I don't know what happened in this course, I don't recommend it.

By Artem M

Jul 22, 2019

In the previous courses all the assignments could be completed just through making a code with the parts that were explained in the videos, but it's slightly another thing in this one. In the second assignment there were included such things as SSL and one cannot make the task right without adding SSL in the code (SSL weren't among the course topics).

Nevertheless, the API part is the only one which I had troubles with, other ones are great as usual.