Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Did you Know? Free Online Courses

The Internet was designed to share knowledge and information across the world. With a simple web search, you can find out what year we landed on the moon, look up the meaning of exigency, or even find out what happened last week on your favorite TV show.

But did you know that you can learn about more complicated things online like computer science, calculus, physics, and more? There are several places online where you can take entire courses on topics like these for free! Here are three of our favorites:

Khan Academy started out as an online tool for learning math with tons of videos teaching math concepts from basic addition all the way to trigonometry. But in recent years they added new courses on science, economics, humanities, and even a great introduction to computer programming.

Their math instruction lets you explore math topics using their knowledge map, a visual guide that show you how each math concept is interconnected. If you are having trouble with a concept you can take a look at the map and see what perquisite concepts you should master first, allowing you to take a step back if needed.

Schools have started integrating material from Khan Academy into their curriculum but anyone can access all of their content for free!

iTunes U is a free portal that Apple provides to K–12 schools, colleges, and universities where they can post materials and lectures for their students and the great thing is anyone can access them. In order to access iTunes U you must either load the free iTunes U app on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch or load iTunes on your Mac or PC.

On iTunes you will find entire courses that can include video lectures, slides, PDFs, documents, and more. Want to learn how to make program your own App? Stanford University has their entire iPad and iPhone Development course for free including their introduction to programming course Programming Methodology. Check out MIT’s K–12 Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math video series. And much, much, more.

Coursera offers open online courses from over 80 universities and educational organizations. Classes include topics such as math, business, computer science, biology, and more. Signing up for a class gives you access to lecture videos and quizzes to check your knowledge. Some classes also allow you to submit homework and in some cases will award you a certificate of completion but it may require a fee.

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