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Course Hero: Study Aid or Cheating?

Not sure what to think of Course Hero? Learn about our online platform created to help college students like you graduate, confident and prepared.

What is it?

Course Hero is an online learning platform that offers users access to more than 30 million course-specific study resources. Contributed by our community of students and educators, these practice problems, study guides, videos, and class notes help you get unstuck if you need help with your coursework. You can post study materials like lecture notes and lab reports and access similar materials from other students studying the same subjects at your school and schools around the country. Read Course Hero reviews from our users.

Study resources for the courses you’re actually taking—whenever you need them.

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How does Course Hero work?

Start by signing up for a free account. You’ll be able to access all of the site’s features in one of two ways:

  1. By posting materials. For every 10 documents you upload to the site, you’ll get 5 free unlocks, which means you can access and download 5 documents free of charge.
  2. By paying a monthly, biannual, or annual subscription fee. Here’s a detailed pricing breakdown.

Creating an account will allow you to see what kind of information is available on the site, either through free unlocks or as a member. If you see study materials posted that you think would be helpful to you, you can choose either to upload your own study documents to redeem unlocks, or become a subscriber to access the materials. By featuring documents shared by students in similar courses, we hope to encourage information exchange and facilitate deeper learning.

What Course Hero claims to offer students and faculty

Course Hero created an online repository for sharing study resources in order to supplement in-class learning. If you miss a class or lecture, for instance, you’ll be able to access notes without having to track down a classmate (which can be difficult for a number of reasons).

Even if you made it to every lecture and completed every homework assignment, you might find that for some classes, the material isn’t presented or explained in a way that matches your learning style. And maybe you’re still struggling to understand it. Using Course Hero, you’ll be able to review class materials taught and explained in a variety of ways, some of which might make more sense to you.

Faculty can use Course Hero to find teaching resources; discover new, innovative practices; and gain recognition among peers for a job well done! Members of our educator community post lecture slides, assessments, and syllabi so instructors can collaborate and learn from one another. We also host a nationwide, professional network of verified college instructors who can connect with those teaching similar courses or facing similar challenges. We feature innovative lessons with new pedagogical tactics and insights in our Best Lessons series, in which we profile educators whose lessons resonate with students.


While Course Hero provides a wealth of information and resources to support both students and teachers, the question we keep hearing is: “Is Course Hero cheating?”

Our website addresses these claims, but, for the record, the answer is an unequivocal no. Course Hero doesn’t give out answers but rather provides study tools to supplement course materials. Students are only permitted to upload documents they own the copyright to, meaning notes, labs, and study guides that they created themselves. If a professor finds their copyrighted information on Course Hero, they can report it to Course Hero and we will remove it.

Course Hero’s services allow students to do, virtually, exactly what they’d do in a library study group: share class notes, lecture printouts, or any other study materials—all agreed-upon ways to study and collaborate on schoolwork. We trust students to use Course Hero for its intended purpose and follow their school’s policies on when and how to use study aids.

Another question we hear: “Can I ‘get caught’ using Course Hero?” First of all, no. But let’s pick that question apart a little bit. Course Hero is a legal, legitimate study aid. It’s kind of like asking, can you get caught studying with a group of classmates in the library?!

And Course Hero isn’t a scam. We deliver the services we advertise, and we offer ways to use the services (through uploads for free unlocks) without requiring any credit card information. If you’d rather pay for full access, the pricing structure is clearly laid out here.

Additionally, Course Hero protects users’ privacy. Uploaded documents are posted anonymously, so neither professors nor schools can track who is using the site. Basically, no one will know if you naturally excel in chemistry or if you relied on Course Hero’s study guides to fully grasp atomic structure.

What it boils down to

If we do say so ourselves, we think we’ve created an innovative product. We look forward to future growth, expanding both our library of resources as well as our user base. We think Course Hero is a valuable educational tool to supplement college classroom materials. So, “Is Course Hero worth it?” In terms of both monetary and educational value, we say yes.

Some reasons to trust Course Hero as an educational resource:

  • Course Hero is legit: It’s a trusted learning tool that provides the service it advertises. And it’s reliable. For the last 13 years, Course Hero has worked to bring high-quality study aids to students.
  • Course Hero is safe: Your financial and personal information are protected, so you can upload and access documents anonymously.
  • Course Hero is worth it: With a library of more than 30 million educational documents, Course Hero is a valuable study tool for college students looking to better understand complex subject material and deepen their learning experience. Additionally, with a low entry point of 10 uploaded documents, every student who wants to can sample the product, without financial commitment, to see its value for themselves.

What Is Course Hero?

Course Hero is an online learning platform where you can access course-specific study resources contributed by a community of students and educators.

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