Stanford Introduces Free “How to Start a Startup” Courses With the Help of Sam Altman


One of the best things happening this fall at Stanford are the free courses about how to start a startup held by some world experts. The class named CS183B will be taught at Standford and is designed to be something like a one-class business course for people who want to start startups.

Videos of the lectures, associated reading materials, and assignments will all be available here. There will be 20 videos, some with a speaker or two and some with a small panel. It’ll be 1,000 minutes of content if you watch it all.

We’ll cover how to come up with ideas and evaluate them, how to get users and grow, how to do sales and marketing, how to hire, how to raise money, company culture, operations and management, business strategy, and more.

You can’t teach everything necessary to succeed in starting a company, but I suspect we can teach a surprising amount. We’ve tried to take some of the best speakers from the past 9 years of Y Combinator dinners and arrange them in a way that will hopefully make sense.

We’re doing this because we believe helping a lot of people be better at starting companies will be good for everyone. It will hopefully be valuable even for people who don’t want to start startups.

Talks like these have really helped Y Combinator founders create their companies. We hope you find it helpful too!

“I believe that around 30% of what it takes to start a startup is generally applicable, which is what we’ll focus on teaching,” Altman explains. “The other 70% is more custom, but that 30% will give people a good start.”

He adds that the original idea for this class came from attendees at private Y Combinator dinners, who asked if there was an archive of talks given at those events. “We didn’t have anything like that, so we’ve invited many of those speakers to be part of this class,” Altman says.

Following along

All lecture videos will be uploaded to this site – after the in-person lectures every Tuesday and Thursday. Hundreds of universities are organizing groups to watch the videos together, as well as peer evaluate the projects. See if your university already has a group, and if not, apply to be a leader. If it does, you’ll be able to sign up for that shortly!

In addition to the mailing list and Facebook group, a discussion forum will be set up specifically for students following along to discuss the contents of the lecture. Join either of the groups to get updated when that is live, as well as when the first lecture video is put online!

You can find more details HERE.

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