Free Online Education

Flicker photo by Extra Ketchup

Flicker photo by Extra Ketchup

By Mark Edwards

A new nontraditional method of education has emerged through free online education websites.  While education costs are steadily rising, these websites serve as a method to overcome the financial barrier that prevents many people from receiving an effective education.  The lessons are presented in a variety of formats such as: online videos, audio recordings, blackboard illustrations, and many more.  Here is a list of some of these websites:

Khan’s Academy ( – uses Yahoo Doodle images on a blackboard in combination with a voiceover to teach over 4,000 micro lessons.  Subjects include: mathematics, history, healthcare, medicine, finance, physics, chemistry, biology, astronomy, economics, cosmology, and organic chemistry, American civics, art history, macroeconomics, microeconomics, and computer science.

Open Yale Courses ( – is a project of Yale University to share full video and course materials from its undergraduate courses.  All lectures were recorded in the Yale College classroom and are available in video, audio, and text transcript formats.

U.C. Berkeley ( – is a database of video of undergraduate lectures recorded by professors of U.C. Berkeley.

MIT OpenCourseWare ( – is an initiative of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to put all of the educational materials from its undergraduate- and graduate-level courses online, partly free and openly available to anyone, anywhere. MIT OpenCourseWare (OCW) is a large-scale, web-based publication of MIT course materials.

Wikiversity ( – is a collaborative learning community in which the internet community creates and edits the lessons.

Coursera – ( – offers courses from various universities around the county.  Courses include engineering, humanities, medicine, biology, social sciences, mathematics, business, computer science, and other areas.

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