Shaw Academy Review [2021]: Is Shaw Academy A Scam Or Legit?

is shaw academy a scam

Hi, I'm Simon and welcome to my Shaw Academy review where we'll be taking a closer look at the training, the support and the pricing so you can decide whether this online learning platform is legit and worth signing up to or not.

I must confess: I am a serious self-development addict!

Whether it's listening to audiobooks on leadership or attending property conferences, I'm a huge believer in investing the time and effort into educating and improving yourself.

And the beauty of the online world is that learning is no longer limited to the classroom. Whatever you want to learn, you can! In your own time and at your own pace, wherever you are.

Sure, you can learn a heck of a lot on YouTube, but sometimes you just can't beat a step-by-step, well-structured training course where you can track your progress and get the sense of accomplishment when you're done.

So what about Shaw Academy? Is it a scam you should stay away from or a legit learning platform that's worth joining?

Let's take a look.

Table Of Contents

Shaw Academy Review (Quick Overview)

shaw academy logo


Created by: James Egan & Adrian Murphy

Founded in: 2015

Free trial: 7 days

Regular price: $45/month (plus additional admin fees)

If you haven't got time to read this review in full, here's the bite-size version:

They offer a variety of comprehensive training modules packed with live classes, videos and tutorials. The whole system is set up to give you a flexible way of learning that fits around your schedule and they give you the option of receiving a diploma certificate on completion.

Right now they have around 50 courses on offer but they are adding new courses regularly.

I think they definitely need to make their pricing structure a heck of a lot clearer so people are not caught off guard. While their qualifications are not widely recognised, this is a legitimate online platform that can definitely help you reach your learning goals.

Read the comments from our readers below and Shaw Academy turns out to be a scam site that constantly pushes you to pay out for higher-priced upgrades and continues to take money out of your account even after you've cancelled your subscription.

Check out these alternatives for better, more legit options.

Rating: 70/100 5/100

Recommended: Yes No, please see the comments

What Is

Shaw Academy is an online training platform that was founded by Dublin-based James Egan & Adrian Murphy in 2013. They have one clear mission statement:

“To deliver great education, accessibly and affordably to everyone”

They also have over 800,000 followers on their Facebook page and boast over 4 million graduates so far.

Here's a quick overview video I think you'll find helpful:

The Training

With a mission to equip the world with skills, they offer 42 courses organised into 10 different categories:

  • Photography (8 courses)
  • Finance (4 courses)
  • Health and Wellness (4 courses)
  • Marketing (5 courses)
  • Technology (7 courses)
  • Design (4 courses)
  • Beauty (1 course)
  • Music (2 courses)
  • Business (5 courses)
  • Language (1 course)

They're updating their courses so they're always current and adding new courses all the time. Whether you want to learn how to develop an app, trade on the stock market, improve your Photoshop skills or learn how to play the guitar, you can develop your skills here.


Each course comes with live webinars with Q&A sessions, interactive quizzes, video walkthroughs and optional assignments.

I really like the training area layout. It's easy to find your way around and it looks great.

training area

The number of modules and lessons will differ from course to course. Either you can work your way through the training at your own pace and develop your skills in your chosen area, or you can pay an additional fee to take the formal assessment.

Shaw Academy is accredited by the CPD Certification Service which unfortunately is not very well known or recognised. This may be a turn off for some.

what you get with the shaw academy

The Support

Support could be better. If you have any issues you're told to email

Support is available to paying premium members only.

The Pricing

I'll be honest – it's not easy to get a handle on exactly how much the training costs but after a failed attempt at contacting customer support (I'll explain below) and a lot of digging around in the fine print, I think I've finally got to the bottom of it.

They have a 7 day free trial offer with one free 4 week course included, after that here's a breakdown of the prices:

  • $45 per month per course (can unsubscribe at any time)
  • To take the final assignment – $49
  • To get a hard copy of your certificate – $59

On top of that, they have a monthly premium membership which is either $22, $32 or $39 per month.

shaw academy prices and membership

Who is Shaw Academy For?

If you're looking to earn a widely recognised qualification like a Master's or Bachelor's degree then this training platform is not for you. Check out these alternatives instead.

Shaw Academy is ideal for people looking to acquire or develop their practical skills in a certain area.

Perhaps you've got to a certain level as a software developer watching random videos on YouTube but now you want to go to the next level. The Shaw Academy training will give you a well-defined, focused and structured learning program to follow.

The end result?

You acquire practical, ‘sellable' skills and become an expert in your chosen field which can open an infinite number of doors for you going forward.

The Pros And Cons Of Shaw Academy

The Pros

1. High-Quality Easily-Digestable Training

The training courses are excellent. Rather than just listening to someone speak or watching them do something, it's clear the trainers have gone to extra effort to make the lessons as interactive and practical as possible.

The modules are broken down into bitesize chunks and you can choose the dates you attend the live classes so it works with your schedule.

2. 7 Day Free Trial

The free trial period gives you the opportunity to take your first course completely risk-free so you can browse the training area and see if it's a good fit.

The Cons

1. They Need To Be More Upfront About Their Prices

Rather than displaying their full prices clearly, I had to dig around in the lengthy FAQ's section to find how much it cost. Even after reading the full terms and conditions, I wasn't sure.

It seems I wasn't the only one confused either…

As you'll see here when we look at members' feedback in a second, nearly all of the complaints are around billing issues – either they claim they were charged for something they were unaware of or didn't realise they had to cancel their membership before the free trial period to avoid paying the monthly membership.

2. Support Seems Somewhat Lacking

It seems like the billing department could do with a customer service course refresher.

Whenever issues arise (especially around billing), you need to be sure you can get help and support when you need it most. Sadly, the second biggest complaint from members is that they are either completely ignored or get a, let's say ‘less than helpful' response from support staff.

In researching and writing this review I was looking for confirmation of Shaw Academy's pricing structure. The website recommended I contact the support team if I had any queries… so I did! And it bounced back!

All I got was this automated email saying I could only contact support if I upgraded my account!

shaw academy support

What does this say about their level of support?

Shaw Academy Reviews: What Others Say

reviews and complaints

Shaw Academy have a 4 out 5 star rating on out of a total of 1,905 reviews.

The vast majority of members are clearly very happy with the online training program with 85% rating the site ‘Excellent' or ‘Great'.

shaw academy reviews

And it seems that you're assigned a personal learning advisor when you upgrade to the premium membership so you can get the support you need…

review of shaw academy on trustpilot

Here's a positive review from another satisfied learner who has been a member now for a couple of years and even signed up to the lifetime membership:

On the flip side, some people accuse Shaw Academy of being a scam because they say their credit cards have been charged the monthly fee without their authorisation.

Here's a complaint from the Better Business Bureau review site that confirms the need for clarification on membership costs:

billing problems complaint

Is Shaw Academy A Scam Or Legit?

My biggest bone of contention is the (intentional?) lack of clarity surrounding the course and administration fees…

It really can break trust and as we've seen, can cause people to call them a scam after being charged unexpectedly.

Sure, legally you can say they should've read the terms and conditions but we know in reality very few people do.

Shaw Academy would help their members and themselves by doing the right thing and displaying their prices clearly and prominently so people know exactly what they're getting into.

Aside from that, the training is very well thought through and put together and they actually offer a great value option for learners looking to develop their skills in a particular area, at their own pace and in their own time.

The 7-day free trial gives you the opportunity to browse the courses and test out the whole platform with no money down so you can decide whether or not this is right for you.

In my opinion Shaw Academy, though certainly not perfect, is a legit training platform that offers a high-quality education at great rates.

Update June 2020: Shaw Academy is now being investigated by Trustpilot following a huge surge of complaints and refund requests.

3 Better Shaw Academy Alternatives

1. Udemy – 100,000's Of Courses have over 100,000 video courses on almost any topic you can think of. Seriously. From accounting to game design, pet grooming to poker – they've got it all!

2. Open University – Get A Recognised Degree

Pioneers of online learning, have a whole range of qualifications, from certificates and diplomas to Honours degrees and postgraduate qualifications.

If a formal qualification with flexible learning is what you're after, this is the one for you.

3. Wealthy Affiliate – Learn How To Build An Online Business has been helping aspiring entrepreneurs achieve online success since 2006. Their step-by-step video training walks you through exactly how to build an income-generating business from scratch.

They have a free Starter membership so you can test drive the platform with no credit card details required and their Premium membership is just $49/month and you can cancel anytime.

Check out my full Wealthy Affiliate review to find out more.

Share Your Experiences With Us

I hope you've found this review of Shaw Academy helpful. I'd be really interested to hear from former or current members on this one.

Scroll down and share your experiences with us!


  1. Liz 03/09/2021
  2. Lauren 02/24/2021
  3. Andrew Green 02/23/2021
  4. Teemu 02/21/2021
    • Simon Crowe 02/21/2021
    • Lauren 02/24/2021
  5. DW 02/05/2021
    • Yuki Gotsubo 02/07/2021
    • Veedeeyak 02/11/2021
      • li 02/17/2021
  6. Maria 01/20/2021
    • Simon Crowe 02/01/2021
  7. William Luhr 01/17/2021
  8. SYED ALI MUHAMMAD 01/13/2021
  9. Mario Rossi 12/30/2020
    • Mario Rossi 12/30/2020
    • Mariah Pappan 02/19/2021
  10. Shaw Academy Give My Money Back!!! 12/09/2020
    • Yuki Gotsubo 02/07/2021
  11. Elena Carlena 12/08/2020
    • Simon Crowe 12/08/2020
      • Mbali Mthembu 12/25/2020
    • Natasha 01/26/2021
  12. Barco van Rhijn 12/05/2020
    • Simon Crowe 12/05/2020
  13. AnnaY 12/02/2020
  14. Ashlee Hoelck 11/24/2020
    • Maria Bommarito 12/13/2020
    • stacey hawley 12/31/2020
      • Irene Fuaso 02/27/2021
  15. Cindy 11/20/2020
  16. Ugnė Bulotaitė 10/27/2020
  17. Rafal 10/05/2020
  18. Violeta Dobre 09/06/2020
    • Simon Crowe 09/06/2020
      • Caroline Gayton 09/29/2020
  19. Hector Bernasconi 08/27/2020
    • Haley 03/04/2021
  20. Cecilia 08/22/2020
  21. Matt 08/13/2020
    • Glenda Bolyn 09/23/2020
  22. Alex Braatz 06/30/2020
    • Simon Crowe 07/01/2020
      • Precious Molefe 11/11/2020
  23. Anne Hagan 06/30/2020
  24. Jaedie 06/23/2020
    • Simon Crowe 06/23/2020
  25. SHIMONA 06/15/2020
    • Simon Crowe 06/15/2020
  26. Yaz 06/14/2020
    • Robyn-Leigh 08/28/2020
  27. Kevin 06/04/2020
    • Simon Crowe 06/04/2020
  28. Theola 05/28/2020
  29. Sarah 05/24/2020
    • Simon Crowe 05/24/2020
  30. Bex 05/19/2020
  31. Mo 05/09/2020
    • Simon Crowe 05/09/2020
  32. John Che 05/08/2020
  33. Jo 05/06/2020
  34. Dare 05/04/2020
    • Simon Crowe 05/04/2020
    • RV 05/07/2020
    • Dare 07/08/2020
      • Simon Crowe 07/17/2020
  35. Hubert Gainsford 05/02/2020
    • Hayley 05/20/2020
  36. PJ 05/01/2020
  37. Mo 04/29/2020
  38. Fiona Hines 04/27/2020
    • Fiona Hines 04/27/2020
      • Lianne 06/10/2020
  39. MaryWe 2020 04/27/2020
    • Chantelle 05/28/2020
  40. Nadia 04/24/2020
  41. MFlynn 04/23/2020
  42. Jack 04/22/2020
  43. Petr 04/21/2020
  44. Brian 04/16/2020
    • Brian 04/16/2020
      • Simon Crowe 04/16/2020
        • Brian 04/16/2020
  45. Kim 04/15/2020
    • Simon Crowe 04/15/2020
  46. Laura SHONE 04/14/2020
  47. Diogo 04/14/2020
  48. CK 04/10/2020
    • Simon Crowe 04/11/2020
  49. Regan Brunetti 04/09/2020
  50. Fauve fitosova 04/07/2020
    • Simon Crowe 04/08/2020
  51. Josh 04/07/2020
    • Simon Crowe 04/07/2020
      • EDWINA BULLOCK 04/26/2020
  52. Jamie 04/04/2020
  53. Iona Mackenzie 04/02/2020
  54. Philip Balcombe 04/01/2020
    • Michael McCarroll 04/02/2020
  55. Jordan Veenstra 03/31/2020
    • Anna 03/31/2020
      • Philip Balcombe 04/01/2020
    • Sean Chen 04/02/2020
    • Chantezette Bridget Colloty de Winnaar 04/07/2020
  56. Orly 03/30/2020
    • Simon Crowe 03/30/2020
    • Cat 03/30/2020
  57. Marisa Beeton 03/18/2020
  58. Fred Rosenbaum 03/07/2020
    • Cat 03/30/2020
  59. Matic 02/29/2020
  60. Christian Steele 12/22/2019
  61. JERIL JOSE 12/16/2019
    • Simon Crowe 12/16/2019
  62. Alisha Bheriyani 10/30/2019
    • Jeril 12/16/2019
  63. Selina 06/19/2019
    • Simon Crowe 06/19/2019
    • Abe 03/04/2020
  64. Lorraine Jones 06/02/2019
    • Mariana 06/12/2019
      • Lorraine Jones 06/12/2019
        • Maria 09/11/2019
  65. MG 05/21/2019
    • Simon Crowe 05/21/2019
  66. Alaski Mohican 05/20/2019
  67. Joan W 05/10/2019
  68. Olesia 05/01/2019
    • Simon Crowe 05/01/2019
      • Olesia 05/01/2019
  69. James de Stadler 02/14/2019
    • Simon Crowe 02/14/2019
    • Natasha 11/07/2019
  70. Triumphant Life TV 02/02/2019
    • Simon Crowe 02/01/2019
  71. Sandra ehinomen 01/18/2019
  72. Dave Sweney 01/18/2019
    • Simon Crowe 01/18/2019
  73. Zayn Hiew 01/18/2019
    • Simon Crowe 01/18/2019
  74. Michele 01/18/2019
  75. Nick L. 01/18/2019
  76. AV 2001 01/18/2019

Leave a Reply



Here's how you do it the right way.