Monster list of free online college courses
A wide variety of topics are covered.
Just the other day, we were thinking it might be time to brush up on advanced complexity theory. And because we're expanding our vegetable garden, knowing more about soil mechanics might help. (Well, maybe not because we haven't taken the prerequisites.)
And in case we've forgotten about the particular charms and indignities of aging, we can take free courses on that too, courtesy of Johns Hopkins.
If you have knowledge gaps you want to fill, you can do it online -- for free. To help you find a particular topic, UniversitiesandColleges.org is building "The master list of free online college courses." Feel free to let them know of courses that don't yet appear.
We had no idea how engaging these free online courses could be until we checked out a few on this massive list.
For instance, a course available through the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's OpenCourseWare caught our eye -- American Consumer Culture. Two of the books on the reading list can be downloaded for free from Project Gutenberg. Two others, including "Fast Food Nation," are likely available at the local library.
The related reading is intriguing as well, and includes the Museum of the Moving Image's "The Living Room Candidate: Presidential Campaign Commercials 1952-2008." That's right. You can watch hundreds of old political commercials, if you're so inclined. If not, move on to Game Theory, or take French online.
For better or worse, taking free online courses is not the same as enrolling in a class. Your study is self-directed and you won't earn credits toward a degree. But homework and exams are optional.
Costs can be involved but they're optional too. For instance, if we
really had the background to understand the MIT course on advanced
complexity theory (not even close), we could download the lecture notes
for free but we'd also want to acquire the recommended books.
Published June 5, 2009
Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
ABOUT SMART SPENDING
LATEST BLOG POSTS
Nearly half of family caregivers spend more than $5,000 a year, plus caregiving affects their jobs and retirement plans.
- America's most counterfeited products
- Driver survey: Men irked by phone talkers, women by lane cutters
- 5 reasons to take the company buyout (and 5 not to)
- Tired of Fed-watching, saver? Check out these banks instead
- New software targets credit card thieves at gas pumps
- Thinking of holiday shopping? Do a reality check first
VIDEO ON MSN MONEY
BLOGS WE LIKE
MUST-SEE ON MSN
A charcuterie master shares his process for cold-smoking meat at home.
- Jetpacks about to go mainstream
- Weird things covered by home insurance
- Bing: 70 percent of adults report 'digital eye strain'