A Review of the Online Stanford Product Management Course

I recently completed the new online Stanford course Product Management: Transforming Opportunities into Great Products. Before signing up I had a look for reviews, but since the course is fairly new I didn’t find many, so I thought I’d share my insights for others considering the course.

In summary: it’s fairly short, well organised, and covers the basics of product management using a lifecycle framework. The video material is good, but a little basic. The main value comes from the reading materials for each section. Those reading materials are just links to freely available content though (which I’ll provide below), so you have to question if the $675 is really worth it.

For those who are brand new to product management, you’ll find decent value here. For those with experience, I don’t think you’ll find anything new, but the reading material will offer some good reminders on best practices. So in essence, you’re paying $675 for a refresher on good content for each major stage of the product lifecycle.

The course is broken into nine modules, with a final test at the end. The test is 20 multiple choice questions, and if you’ve been paying attention in the course they are pretty straightforward. The modules are:

  • Module 1: Course Introduction
  • Module 2: Overview of the Product Lifecycle
  • Module 3: Understanding the Problem Space
  • Module 4: Designing the Solution
  • Module 5: Launching
  • Module 6: Distribution and Go-To-Market
  • Module 7: Roadmaps
  • Module 8: Build
  • Module 9: Course Conclusion

It follows the flow of this lifecycle process:

Image for post

Each module has pre-reading materials, which is the bulk of the effort involved. After reading those, you then watch the videos which reinforce the key points made in the reading — the videos are fairly short, around 5 minutes or so each.

You get two months of access to the course, which is plenty of time — if you’re a fast reader, you can easily complete a module in an evening, and be done with the entire course in a week or two. It’s a little disappointing that Stanford don’t give you lifetime access to the course materials though.

Here’s a full list of the pre-reading (Modules 1 and 9 don’t have any pre-readings). The articles I found most valuable/interesting are marked with a *.

Module 2

Module 3

Module 4

Module 5

Module 6

Module 7

Module 8

Originally posted on Medium:


Published by

Tim Woods

Product manager (formerly software engineer and marketing manager) with 17 years of experience in the field of innovation management. South Coast of England.

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