Course Couch is like a Wollongong community noticeboard connecting people for education

Picture: Louise Kennerley
Picture: Louise Kennerley

Self-confessed “nerd” Shaun Bettridge has just resigned from a lucrative job in forensic technology at KPMG to focus on a website he’s developed with two mates.

Course Couch is similar to Air Tasker, but is for education, and links people who want to learn from others willing to teach them.

The website  – developed by Mr Bettridge, 28, and his friends Hans-Albert Maritz, 26, and Dev Banerjee, 33 – will be based in Wollongong and launched in August.

It is like a home for the bits of paper you see on noticeboards spruiking guitar lessons or yoga classes, connecting people face-to-face rather than glued to a screen watching a YouTube tutorial.

“We’re trying to get it offline and get people chatting and hanging out,” said Mr Bettridge.

“There’s so much you can’t learn online. Say you want to do surfing, you can watch a video and then try it yourself but there’s no-one … to tell you your stance is wrong.”

So far pre-registrations show people are willing to teach cooking, fire twirling, hip-hop dance, sports coaching, 3D printing and drone flying.

People wanting to learn can either buy blocks of someone’s time or enrol in a workshop offered. 

Thee self-confessed "nerds" - Shaun Bettridge, 28,  Dev Banerjee, 33 and Hans-Albert Maritz, 26. Picture: Supplied

Thee self-confessed "nerds" - Shaun Bettridge, 28, Dev Banerjee, 33 and Hans-Albert Maritz, 26. Picture: Supplied

It comes amidst the rise of “the side hustle”, a trend which has exploded among millennials, whereby people cash in on a hobby or other interest as a way of fulfilment outside of their nine to five job.

Recent research found 80 per cent of Australians were wanting to do it, while one in four were already making an extra buck on the side.

The 2016 NBN Side Hustle report calls it "a trend taking the nation by storm" with photography a popular area for a hustle, as are food and drink related blogs and businesses.

Fashion, beauty and technology were also hobbies that people have turned into side hustles, with the help of vending platforms like ebay and etsy, or one-off job websites. will launch in August but people passionate to teach can pre-register now.


  • 71% of those surveyed want to pursue passion projects
  • 69% want to give their life further meaning and purpose
  • 56% want a side hustle because they’re sick of their work routine
  • 46% no longer feel challenged in their current job
  • *Source: 2016 NBN Side Hustle reoprt

*Source: 2016 NBN Side Hustle report

This story New Wollongong-based website connects community for learning first appeared on Illawarra Mercury.