Have you ever wanted to learn more about a particular subject but your school didn't offer any courses on it? Look no further than the internet! There are tons of websites offering free educational material for the curious student. Here are five sites to get your learning on at no cost:
1. Coursera (www.coursera.org)
Coursera partners with the top colleges and universities around the world to provide free online classes for anyone with internet access. These courses are organized in a way that mimics an actual class which means there are quizzes, lectures, and the occasional assignment. A couple of the classes offered include: University of Toronto’s Intro to Psychology, Duke University’s Medical Neuroscience and Stanford University’s Cryptography I. All you need to do is create an account and then start adding your desired courses!
2. HowStuffWorks (www.howstuffworks.com)
Divided into topics such as entertainment, culture, science and more, HowStuffWorks explains how things function (the title of the site is quite straightforward!) with articles and videos. If you’ve ever wondered about how Play-Doh modeling compound works or how to perform intermediate yo-yo tricks, HowStuffWorks is the website for you. Here are a few other articles you can find on the website: “10 Awesome New Inventions You'll Never Hear About,” “How Silly String Works” and “How Juggling Works.”
3. iTunes University (www.apple.com/education/itunes-u)
University professors from prestigious institutions such as MIT and Yale University wanted to make their lectures and course lessons accessible to people worldwide. Fortunately, iTunes University helped with this learning initiative by providing free downloads of courses, lectures and books. Moreover, the website states, “From the iTunes U app, students can play video or audio lectures and take notes that are synchronized with the lecture. They can read books and view presentations. See a list of all the assignments for the course and check them off as they’re completed.” That makes life so much easier!
4. Harvard Open Courses (www.extension.harvard.edu/open-learning-initiative)
If you’ve ever yearned to learn course material from Harvard but lacked the means to enroll at the school, you’re in luck! Harvard Open Courses website says, “Videos for the following free Harvard courses are made available by the Harvard Extension School’s Open Learning Initiative. Featuring Harvard faculty, the noncredit courses are open to the public. You do not need to register to view the lecture videos.” In case you want to receive credit, the Harvard Extension school offers over 600 evening and online courses at a “reasonable tuition rate.”
5. YouTube EDU (www.youtube.com/education)
YouTube is the go-to website for entertaining, heartwarming and silly videos, but who knew it would also have educational videos as well? Similar to the other websites listed above, YouTube EDU also offers video lectures about a variety of subjects such as business, mathematics and engineering. These lectures are presented by professors from renowned universities and colleges like UC Berkeley and Dartmouth. Additionally, the “Lifelong Learning” section of YouTube EDU features videos from NASAtelevision, GoogleDevelopers and TEDtalksDirector.