Using the macOS desktop app

Tags: Skills

The Skills macOS desktop app allows you to watch video courses, download content for offline viewing, and access many of the same Skills features found in the web browser and iOS app. Check out our downloads page (opens in new tab) to download the macOS desktop app.

Who can use this?

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Before you begin downloading and viewing courses with the macOS desktop app, please ensure the following:


Click Search at the top of the left-hand menu to search the Skills library. After searching for a keyword, click the tabs below the search bar to filter your results for video courses, paths, or authors.

On the left-hand menu, click Browse to discover new releases, recommended content, conferences, and paths relating to popular skills.

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Downloading and removing courses

With an active Skills subscription or license, you can download up to 30 courses per device for offline viewing on the desktop app if your device has the available download space. There are two ways to download courses for offline viewing: within the app or from a browser.

In the app

  1. Find a course you want to download from the Home page, Browse, or Search in the left-hand menu.
  2. Click a course to view the course details page.
  3. Download the content you want to view offline.
    1. To download the full course, click Download.
    2. To download individual modules within the course, go to the Contents tab, click the ••• options menu to the right of the module, and click Download.

Tip: To download a course directly from search results, click the ••• options menu to the right of the course, then click Download.

From a browser

Important: The desktop app is required to view courses offline. You must be logged in to Skills on your browser to use this method to download courses.

  1. Go to the course details page of the course you want to download.
  2. Click Download Course beneath the course description to begin downloading the course to the app. If you haven’t downloaded the desktop app yet, you’ll be prompted to do so here.
  3. If your browser displays a pop-up asking your permission to open the desktop app, click Open Pluralsight. The app will open and your course will begin downloading.

Removing courses

Note: If you watch a downloaded course on the desktop app without an Internet connection, you must reopen the app once your device is connected to the Internet to sync your course progress with your account. Do this before removing a downloaded course to ensure your progress is recorded.

From the Downloads page

  1. Click Downloads in the left-hand menu.
  2. Click Edit in the top-right corner.
  3. Click the red minus sign to the left of the course or module you want to remove.
  4. Click Delete to the right of the course or module. Or, to remove all downloaded content at once, click Remove all and then click Delete.

From the course details page

  1. Find the course in the desktop app.
  2. On the course details page, click Downloaded.
  3. Click Remove download.
  4. Click Remove download again to confirm your choice.

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Watching video courses

To watch a course, go to the course details page and click the play button on the course thumbnail. Click a particular module or clip within the Contents tab to skip to that part of the course.

The video player in the desktop app includes closed captions where available, options to adjust the playback speed, and 10-second back or forward interval skips. If a learning check is available, you’ll see the option to Take a learning check beneath the course description.

You can also enable picture-in-picture, which places the video player on top of all your other windows and continues playing the course in the corner of your screen even if the desktop app is minimized. Once you’ve started playing a course or clip, click the pop-out button in the lower right corner of the video player to enable picture-in-picture. Click the pop-in button to put the player back in the app window.

Note: Auto-play is enabled by default in the desktop app and cannot be changed.

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Viewing your profile

To view your profile, click View profile next to your avatar in the bottom left corner of the app. From your profile, view:

  • Your personal info
  • Your interests
  • Your Stack up scores
  • Your badges and trophy case
  • Skill IQs you’ve taken
  • Completed courses
  • Any authors you’ve followed

View your profile in the browser to edit your profile details and set privacy controls.

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Managing channels

To view all your channels, click Channels in the left-hand menu or scroll down to the Channels carousel on the Home page of the app. If you’re part of a team plan, you’ll also see company-wide channels on the Channels page.

You can add to or remove content from channels you have permission to edit, and create, leave, or delete channels within the desktop app. Learn more about the different roles in channels.

Adding content to a channel

  1. Find the course or path you want to add to a channel.
    1. If you're adding a course, click Add to channel on the course details page to see a list of channels you have permission to edit.
    2. If you're adding a path, click the ••• options menu in the top right corner of the path page and click Add to channel to see a list of channels you have permission to edit.
  2. Click an existing channel to add the content.

Creating a new channel

  1. Find a course or path you want to add to your new channel and click Add to channel (see step 1 above).
  2. Click the + to create a new channel.
  3. Add a name and a description if desired, then click Save.
  4. Continue to browse the app for more content to add to your new channel.

The new channel will appear in the list of editable channels. Edit the channel’s name or description at any time from the ••• options menu of the channel.

Removing a course from a channel

  1. Open the channel.
  2. Click the ••• options menu in the top right corner and click Edit channel content.
  3. Click the red minus sign to the left of the course you want to remove, then click Remove.
  4. Click Done to confirm and finalize the deletion.

Note: You can add paths to channels on the desktop app, but you’ll need to log in to Skills on the browser to remove a path from a channel.

Deleting or leaving a channel

  1. Click the ••• options menu in the top right corner of the channel page.
  2. Click Delete or Leave channel.

Visit our channels articles to learn more about channels.

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Managing bookmarks

There are two ways to bookmark a course:

  • From a list of courses, click the ••• options menu to the right of the course and click Bookmark.
  • From the course details page, click Bookmark above the channel description.

You can unbookmark courses in the same ways.

Tip: To bookmark individual modules within a course, go to the Contents tab of the course details page, click the ••• options menu next to the module, and click Bookmark.

To view all your bookmarked courses and modules, click Bookmarks in the left-hand menu. For more about bookmarks, see our bookmarks article.

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Playing Stack up

Stack up lets you test your skills by competing with your fellow Skills learners. Choose your topic, answer as many questions correctly as you can, and see how you stack up on weekly and all-time leaderboards.

To play Stack up on the desktop app, click Choose your topic on the Stack up banner on the Home page or your profile. Visit our Stack up article to learn how to play.

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Setting learning reminders

When you set a learning reminder on the desktop app, you’ll receive desktop notifications reminding you to watch video courses and continue towards your goals.

To set a learning reminder:

  1. Click Settings in the left-hand menu.
  2. Click Reminder to learn.
  3. Toggle Reminder to learn notification to On. If your notification settings are disabled in the desktop app, you’ll be prompted to turn them on.
  4. From here, you can decide what time of day to send yourself a notification and customize your daily notification schedule.

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If you need help, please contact Pluralsight Support.