Best Algorithmic Trading Courses

Benzinga Money is a reader-supported publication. We may earn a commission when you click on links in this article. Learn more.

Whether you’re naturally inclined to perform better in the mathematics department or you’re dedicated to working on crafting your skill, algorithmic trading can be learned. Better yet, you don’t have to modify your schedule or enter an intimidating classroom setting to begin algorithmic trading.

Thanks to the slew of online courses available, you can take daily steps to develop and hone your trading skill on your own time. From courses tailored to beginners without any knowledge of linear algebra or coding to those looking to brush up their skills, it’s all a matter of assessing your needs.

Best Algorithmic Trading Courses:

You should be able to find a course that fits any budget, regardless of your skill level or background knowledge. To help you with this, we’ve compiled some of the best algorithmic trading courses you can start today and assessed their validity based on specific criteria we explain below. You’ll also find some tips and tricks on how to track down the best ones for future learning.

Find an Online University

When selecting a course online, you want to pick one that is going to give you the most benefit in terms of real-life application. Among the sea of different options, the best algorithmic trading courses share some common traits. In essence, it boils down to the price, instructor expertise, and course content.

How to Find the Best Price?

Algorithmic trading courses for beginners come at a bargain price. However, this doesn’t mean you should jump at the opportunity and enroll in the cheapest course you can find.

Carefully read the course description to confirm what you are paying for; not all courses offer the same “basics.” You may find that a course is not designed to give you enough operational knowledge to start trading, but rather serves as an overview of the topic. If you are looking to trade upon completion of your class, this is a sign to look elsewhere.

Imparted Skills

By the time you have finished your course, you should have enough skills to get your feet wet in algorithmic trading. This translates to having some knowledge in basic trading principles, software applications, and industry rules and regulations. It is not uncommon to stumble upon a course which offers the secrets for ‘quickly acing the algorithmic trading game.’ Some might even claim that you can earn ‘X amount’ of money by the end. Remember, even the world’s most successful traders lose money.

They just have to make more than they lose over time. Any course that guarantees profits is more likely to be snake oil than real knowledge.   To avoid this pitfall, make sure to read testimonials for the specific course. However, fake or paid testimonials is not uncommon for online products, so beware for any reviews that look over-the-top or feel off. Use your best judgment when evaluating the sincerity of these.

Course Instructors

When you find an algorithmic trading course that has a curriculum you’re happy with, it’s time to check the instructor. Your course won’t do you any good if you have a lousy instructor. Do your homework and perform a quick background check of the instructor’s credentials to ensure he or she is actually an industry expert. And again, take a look at what the other students have to say about the instructor.

Great teachers are more likely to get raving reviews. Note what specifically previous students have liked about the instructor, including whether he or she is reachable for questions during the course. With a tricky topic like algorithmic trading, you will want to be able to contact your instructor during the duration of the class. If you can’t note feasible ways to reach out to him or her before purchasing the class, it may be in your best interest to look at other options.

Based on the points of importance described above, we’ve selected some of the best algorithmic trading classes for beginners to experts. Take into consideration your needs and the position you want to be in post-course as you evaluate your options.

Best Algorithmic Trading Classes for Beginners

Are you new to trading? Consider one of these top level beginner courses.

Algorithmic Trading In Forex: Create Your First Forex Robot!

All Levels • 43 videos • 6.5 hours

1. Algorithmic Trading in Forex – Create Your First Forex Robot

With more than 13,000 enrolled students and 600 reviews, this is one of the most popular courses on Udemy. There are six and a half hours of training videos, three articles, and you are granted lifetime access to the course. This course requires only basic computer fluency.

You’ll also learn about forex algorithmic trading and the basic concepts that come with that specific market. As you progress through the lessons, you will learn how to create, optimize, and test this trading system. In addition, the course touches MQL4 programming.

Get this course

Black Algo Trading: Build Your Trading Robot

All Levels • 248 videos • 13.4 hours

2. Black Algo Trading: Build Your Trading Robot

This Udemy course is designed to arm you with the knowledge needed for algorithmic trading on the Algo platform. It features 13.5 hours of videos and 44 articles.

Plus, you’ll be getting 77 downloadable materials to help you become a successful trader. The only requirements for students is a basic understanding of Excel. The course provides more than just the basics of Trading Robots. In fact, it promises to teach you how to code one in less than an hour, which you can verify in the course reviews. You’ll learn how the markets move and pick up a few C++ and JAVA skills along the way.

Get this course

3. Investopedia Academy – Algorithmic Trading for Beginners

Source: Investopedia.com

The algorithmic trading course from Investopedia is short, to the point, and full of interactive activities to help you start out. You’ll learn the principles behind trading algorithms and find out how to define key data. In addition, this course features Daniel Jassy, one of the most reputable experts in the field.

Outside this course, he has developed various trading analysis software programs. Note that this course is in the upper price range, as you can enroll for $199. However, service members and students might be eligible for a discounted price.

Best for Those with Intermediate Knowledge

Do you have algorithmic trading knowledge but looking to learn more? Try one of these intermediate level courses.

Algorithmic Trading and Stocks Essential Training

1. Algorithmic Trading and Stocks Essential Training

  • Who’s it for? Intermediate
  • Price: On sale

Dr. Michael McDonald guides you through the nuances of algorithmic trading and stocks in this course offered on Lynda. It is primarily designed for people that have some prior knowledge in algorithmic trading. This course teaches you the essentials of stock trading as well as how to apply algorithms to automate trading.

You also get a better understanding of SEC regulations on algorithmic trading during the course. In addition to this, you’ll learn quantity strategies and rules to help your trading activities in the future. With LinkedIn Learning, you get free access to this course for one month.

Get this course

2. Trading Algorithms

Source: Coursera.org
  • Who’s it for? Advanced
  • Price: On sale

Trading Algorithms is one of the most comprehensive courses for intermediate-level students. Of those selected on our list,  this is one of the few courses to delve into trading emerging market stocks. The course is offered through four different modules that cover a variety of topics, from proven trading strategies to how to decipher financial reports. After each module, you need to complete a quiz or two to prove your knowledge.

This is done to ensure that you are ready to move onto the next section and that you’re retaining the information. The entire course takes about seven hours to complete, but as always, the pace is up to you. The instructor is Prasanna Tantri, senior associate director at the Centre for Analytical Finance in India.

Get this course

Python for Financial Analysis and Algorithmic Trading

All Levels • 122 videos • 16.9 hours

3. Python for Financial Analysis and Algorithmic Trading

This Udemy course expects students to come in with a bit more technical knowledge than our other picks. For those who wish to take the next step in their trading journey, students with some prior knowledge in coding, linear algebra, and statistics are encouraged to enroll in this class.

There are more than 120 lectures, 17 hours of video, nine articles, and a few downloadable resources. The course focuses on teaches students how to use NumPy and Matplotlib. You’ll also learn about various financial measures, including volatility, daily and cumulative returns.

Get this course

Best Classes for Advanced Algorithmic Traders

Are you an algorithmic trading expert looking to build more skills? Consider one of these advanced courses.

1. Advanced Trading Algorithms

Source: Coursera.org

Who’s it for? Advanced

Price: On sale

If you are a seasoned trader looking to take your skills to the next level, Coursera’s extensive offerings are proof that there is always more to learn.

This course focuses on emerging markets and is divided into four weekly modules which should take you about eight hours to complete. It takes a deep dive into the differences between and relevancy of solid data and mere data mining.

The course looks to deliver a complete breakdown of how to incorporate frictions and transaction costs into a backtesting algorithm. Along with this, you’ll focus on risk-adjusted returns, Jenson’s Alpha, Sharpe ratio, and Treynor’s Ratio.

Get this course

2. Algorithmic Trading Strategies

Source: experfy.com
  • Who’s it for? Advanced
  • Price: $350

Keeping with the trend of bringing your technical background into the trading world, if you have a degree in Computer Science or Finance, this course could be right up your alley. The six modules and 62 lectures dive into algorithmic trading and quantitative strategies.

At the helm is Nick Firoozye, one of the leading experts in the field with more than 20 years of experience with top moneymakers like Lehman Brothers, Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank, and others. From Firoozye, you will learn how to design profitable algorithmic strategies and avoid the usual perils of the industry.

3. Backtesting: Complete Online Course

Source: quantor.co
  • Who’s it for? Advanced
  • Price: $500

Backtesting is crucial for successful algorithmic trading. This course has a free section that focuses on MATLAB, where you’ll learn how to choose an appropriate platform and make use of array processing strategies. In the premium section, you’ll look at how to backtest, refine a strategy, and find out the proven methods to avoid backtesting bias and pitfalls.

The course is presented by Dr. Ernest P. Chan, who has dedicated his career to advanced computer algorithms. At $500, this is one of the most expensive options but, if it fits your educational needs, could be your best resource for learning about algorithmic trading.

If you’re ready to advance your trading knowledge and practice, selecting a course comes down to identifying your needs. Once you know what skills you’re looking to develop, you can find a class that fits your budget and timeframe in order to advance your understanding. Make sure to note if your class requires prior experience or knowledge, how available the instructor is for questions, and whether the pace is too fast or slow for your schedule. Any of these courses, paired with the best finance book for your needs is a surefire way to move you towards your investing goals.

Hire a Pro: Compare Financial Advisors In Your Area