The Open Courseware Movement Offers Free Education Online - gHacks Tech News

The Open Courseware Movement Offers Free Education Online

Not everyone takes a college class just for the credit toward their degree, there are actually a lot of people who love taking classes just to learn something new, because they are bored, or because they wish to prepare themselves a little better for future classes. Among these people there are those with no money to put toward school, who don't have a car, or want to take a class at 1 AM. Whatever the reason, the Open CourseWare Movement has helped thousands of people who are interested in taking classes online take them for free. Because of the Open CourseWare Movement, students can take classes online without enrolling to a school or paying anything. Those wishing to take a class can do so immediately without waiting to hear back from some advisor or waiting for the bursar's office to approve a payment.

The Open CourseWare Movement allows students to find courses online that fit their needs. Because of the large amount of schools currently serving free online classes, students can choose from literally thousands of courses. These aren't just your every day, run of the mill colleges either! Universities such as MIT, Yale, and Stanford are among those that offer free courses online. Even colleges and universities in different countries such as Japan, Israel, and Spain are participating in the program. Because of this, many courses are offered in languages other than English.

For a college to qualify for the Open CourseWare program, they must offer at least 10 courses free online. The courses must contain everything a student needs, including the reading material (students who use this don't have to pay for books) for it to be a part of the program. Whether it's a class taken for fun or to learn something new, it's a good idea for students to look for classes from universities known particularly for that course or major. This helps ensure that the student will get the best education they can. Different courses are taught in different ways. Many courses have video lectures, just audio, or just course transcripts. It's important for those looking to take a class through the Open CourseWare program to look for classes that fit their needs such as a video class for those who learn better visually than by reading.

The goal of the Open CourseWare Movement is to get as many colleges and universities to participate as possible so that more people are given the chance to learn online. There are many ways that those who've benefited from the Open CourseWare Movement can help such as donating, passing on the word, or just taking a course to better themselves. It is usually a good idea to open a search engine and search for "open courseware" to find universities and colleges that offer these free courses.


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  1. Anonymous said on June 29, 2009 at 6:16 pm

    Wow that’s awesome!

  2. Jojo said on June 29, 2009 at 10:14 pm

    The problem I have with online course like this is that there is no interaction. You try to pick up the essence/facts that are related to the subject but if there isn’t anyone to discuss the subject with, you lose a lot of value.

    1. Martin said on June 29, 2009 at 10:43 pm

      JoJo I agree that it is vital to be able to interact with other students or teachers on the subject. It is however still better to have the courses available at all :)

  3. Saurabh said on July 1, 2009 at 3:43 pm

    Check this link . Puts it all in one place.

  4. Roman ShaRP said on July 5, 2009 at 9:14 pm

    The problem I have with online course like this is that there is no interaction. You try to pick up the essence/facts that are related to the subject but if there isn’t anyone to discuss the subject with, you lose a lot of value.

    Books are your best friends for education ;) On many subjects.

    For some subjects you can find a forum to ask your questions on it.

    And there are online services with accent on social communication and interaction – for example, LiveMocha languages learning sites.

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