Free Online Courses

Free Courses can change your life.  And your transcript.  Get real, transferable college credit.

Just bookmark this page, cuz nobody has a bigger or better list.

Coursera partners with top universities around the world.  You can watch lectures, learn at your own pace and take tests and even get real college credit for some of the courses. This is my very favorite MOOC (massive online open course) organization.  My most favorite class EVER, as in ever ever, was the one given by Dan Ariely,  A Beginners Guide to Irrational Behavior.

Google Open Online Education is for those who want to create their own MOOC.  An open source solution.  Simple, nice.

NovoEd is Stanford's less known MOOC champion.  And I do mean champion.  Most of the courses are business or entrepreneur oriented.  A few humanities are sprinkled in.  Quality is very high and completion certificates are offered.

Udacity has a great technical/computer science/programming focus. It is free if you just want to watch the videos and follow along.  There is an extra charge if you want a tutor/coach and to receive feedback on your work.  You will actually build real, useable apps and programs in their courses.  Hands on. For reals.  Udacity is in the process of developing something called a nano degree which will  be a six month to one year course preparing you for employment with an industry behemoth that is hungry for skilled labor. founded by MIT and Harvard offers free MOOC (massive open online courses) from MITx, HarvardX, BerkeleyX, UTx and many other universities.  What does the x stand for?  The unknown? A variable?  Let's wait and see how this all pans out?  Universities are experimenting with MOOC's. And this is one of the most daring, formidable experiments out there.  Results known in two or twenty years, perhaps.  For now... enjoy the free courses while you can.  I really am bugged by that x though.

FutureLearn from our cousins across the pond,
comes a MOOC provider hooking you up with great minds from Universities such as U of Leeds, U of Birmingham, U of Bristol, Trinity College Dublin and even the British Museum. (for example)

Mit Open Source
Mit Open Source was one of the first to put free coursework up on the net for the benefit of the entire world and for that - they get glory and esteem.  However, you have to be very dedicated to plow through the documents.  There are a few courses on video, but most are just syllabus plus assignments. There is no feedback.  You are on your own, kid.

Stanford Openedx is the place you want to be if you are interested in becoming part of the discussion about digital education.  They have created something called the Lytics Lab:

Lytics Lab is a catalyst for innovation and collaboration to enhance online learning environments. Engaging in use-driven research and data-driven design, Lytics Lab develops collective knowledge for improving online learning.

Learn Something New! 

Learn New Stuff!

Free Online Course Databases

CourseTalk has real reviews by students and a rating system for free online courses.  You have to sign up to see the reviews, browse the database and join in the discussion.  They also have a wish list which makes it easy to sort out all the courses you want from all of the different providers.  Membership is free.

OEDB is probably one of the places you want to start looking for your perfect free online course.  They have a database of over 10,000 free online courses.  I used the keyword "film" and got back 43 classes. I found 150 free writing classes in this database.

Class-Central is another database site.  It only has 166 courses listed, but it has something OEDB does not have.  A rating system.  With so many free courses to weed through, a rating system is sorely needed.  My own experience has been that regardless of a schools reputation... a free course springing from their vaulted Ivory wires can be excruciatingly boring, annoying or next to useless.  Ratings! Very much Needed.

Learning is Sweet at Any Age

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The Khan Academy offers thousands of free video lectures and is the best place on the internet for free online math, algebra and physics courses. If you need free coursework for yourself or your home schooler - don't miss Khan Academy. All free.

CreativeLive has flipped the pay-as-you-go model allowing you to join classes for free while they are being recorded; you pay for classes that are already in the can.  Their focus is on Photo and Video, Art and Design, Music and Audio, Craft and Maker and finally Money and Life.  Click on the link at the top that says WATCH NOW free.  If you sign up you can ask to be notified of upcoming classes.

FEMA's National Fire Academy has about 30 free online courses, for which continuing education credit is given or you can earn a certificate of completion.  Subjects run the gamut from Calling the Mayday to Emergency Response to Terrorism to Wildland Fire.  This is the real stuff folks.

The Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas of the University of Texas at Austin offers MOOCS related to journalism.

Teach with Technology offers a free course for KODU, a game creation software.

Esri has 93 free courses to help you learn ArcGIS, a GIS mapping platform.  Certification is available, testing costs are extra.

National Association of Insurance Commissioners has a free mini-course (30 minutes of audio) for those who want to get a taste for the insurance industry.

Hillsdale College is giving a free Great Books Course, delving into great literature from the Ancient to the Medieval period.  Explore, Homer, the Bible, the Inferno and more.

I've been addicted to the Teaching Company ever since they started sending out those highly enticing catalogs featuring the BEST college instructors across the nation. Sign up for their newsletter and occasionally get free downloads.  They are giving away 12 free courses right now.  This is a limited time offer, so don't delay.  They offer free audio courses and free video courses.

If you've ever wondered how in the heck to set your camera's white balance (or even what the white balance is) This is a great FREE Course for Digital SLR Photography.

Want to follow in a great writer's footsteps? Start here with a free writing class. has 700 free online courses.

Open Yale Courses - A small selection of audio and video lectures.  Small, but worth a look.

Check out the Open Source Consortium - Educational Institutions around the world offering free online courses - to you.

The Small Business Administration is going to educate you for free.  I'm listing the categories of the courses they have available, but this is by no means the end... it's like a free
MBA in a box...


Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association free course page. Learn about Mountain Flying, Weather, Runway Safety, Propeller and Prop maintenance.

BC Wine Institute offers a 1.5 hour long MOOC on BC Wines.  Vintages, varieties and appellations are discussed by a well known hospitality figure, Kurtis Kolt.  Hey, it's 1.5 hours of pleasure and who doesn't want to know more about award winning Canadian wine?

There are two kinds of free online courses. Free online language courses - and everything else.
You may be interested in awesome online courses page.

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