With so many families stranded at home with kids of all ages, I thought this very comprehensive listing of free educational resources might help. This list is LONG(!) so make a cup of tea and start shopping this fun and educational treasure trove. I have cobbled this together over several months from posts on Quora.com where I am very active as a DIY educator-advisor.
There are fun, educational links for littles, and great suggestions for middle and high schoolers, too, Plenty for the adult learner, also.
And what a great opportunity this is for a student to master a new skill through Edx or one of the many, many MOOCS. Have fun with this!
Free Educational Resources
- Brainpop: It is fun, playful, covers wide range of topics like STEM, Arts and Music, Language and also includes localization for major world languages. Mobile friendly.
- Logicroots: For sunshine Math. It provides FREE worksheets & games that are bright and colorful, backed by stories and are an excellent Math tool for quick revision and reiteration of Math classes.
- kutasoftware: Highly recommend this for no-nonsense non-wordy Math.
- Khan academy: for a strictly visual Math learning treat.
- Cheatography.com: This one is a collection of some 3k odd cheat sheets and quick references in 25 languages for everything from linux to programming!
- StudyBlue: It is I guess one of the largest crowdsourced study library, with over 400 million flashcards, notes and study guides from students. You can also prepare and share study materials, search for recommended study content from classmates, track progress, set reminders, and create custom quizzes.
- schoolyourself: Very friendly for self-learners and homeschoolers.
- Talktyper: Save crazy amount of time while making notes with this speech to text dictation resource.
- Instructables: This cool web-based documentation system has everything from cooking to 3D printing. Must have for all the project work!
- Dragonbox: Practice school-grade Math with one to get your basics right.
- Powermylearning: It is a different take on Math as it helps teachers team up with families and colleagues to unleash students’ potential.
- Studentrate: It gives heavy discount to students on absolutely everything you need in student life from books to gizmos to scholarships!
- Codeacademy: Learn to code interactively for free. Build up your resume with this programming teaching website.
- Edx: A great website for free online courses to earn certificates and advance your career.
Free Video History Classes
The Civil War and Reconstruction Era, 1845-1877 – YaleUndergraduate Level. Students need no previous history knowledgeThis course follows the historical events and lasting effects of the Civil War.27 lessons – 50 minutes each
The History and Practice of Human Rights – UC BerkeleyUndergraduate Level. Students need some background in international relationsThis course documents the history and evolution of human rights.28 lessons – 1 hour and 15 minutes each
Holocaust in Film and Literature – UCLAUndergraduate Level. Students need no background in historyThis course follows the historical events of the Holocaust and creates context for understand genocides throughout history.18 lessons – 1 hour each
Epidemics in Western Society Since 1600 – YaleUndergraduate Level. Students need some background in history.This course delves into epidemic diseases and focuses on particular outbreaks, including the plague and HIV/AIDS, and their effect on societal development26 lessons – 50 minutes each
New Testament History and Literature – YaleUndergraduate Level. Students need no background in history or in biblical studiesThis course studies the New Testament as a series of historical documents.26 lessons – 50 minutes each
Free Video Chemistry Classes
Chemistry – Khan AcademyUndergraduate Level. Students with little to no chemistry backgroundThis course covers topics from a first year of college chemistry course.104 lessons – 15 minutes each
Organic Chemsitry – YaleUndergraduate Level. Students with one year of basic chemistryThis course introduces the theory, history, researcg and practical foundations behind organic chemistry.30 lessons – 45 minutes each
Principles of Chemical ScienceUndergraduate Level. Students should have a little background in chemistry.This course is an introduction to the chemistry behind molecules, structure and chemical principles.36 lessons – 45 minutes each
Introductory Quantum Mechanics – MITGraduate Level. Students must have completed organic chemistryThis course introduces time-dependent quantum mechanics and focuses on how to apply mathematical and chemical tools to phase problems.4 lessons – 1.5 hours each
Organic Spectroscopy – UC IrvineGraduate Level. Students who have the equivalent of a bachelor’s degree in chemistry or related fieldThis course examines modern processes in evaluating the structure of molecules.28 lessons – 1 hour each
Free Video Political Science Classes
Introduction to Political Philosophy – YaleUndergraduate level. Students should have background in philosophy.This course examines the origins and foundations of political philosophy through a study of western political foundations, constitutional government and democracy.24 lessons – 45 minutes each
Politics, Strategy, and Game Theory – UCLAUndergraduate Level. Students must know Algebra.This course introduces game theory and its uses in examining and explaining political actions and outcomes.19 lessons – 1 hour each
Geography of US Presidential Elections – StanfordUndergraduate Level. No prerequisites.This course examines political geography, historic voting patterns and the red state vs. blue state model to evaluate geography’s affect on electoral outcomes.5 lessons – 1 hour 45 minutes each
Conceptual Foundations of International Politics – ColumbiaGraduate Level. Students need a background in political theory and philosophy.This course uses theories, concepts and resources to understand and explain international relations and events.10 lessons – 50 minutes each
Free Video Art History Classes
Introduction to Visual Thinking – UC BerkeleyUndergraduate Level. Students with little knowledge of art history.This course introduces visual thought and examines how to view pieces critically.13 lessons – 40 minutes each
Art Historical Methodologies – Saylor InstituteUndergraduate Level. Students who already have a background in art history.This course includes a brief history of art and explores the methodologies of art historians.10 lessons – 5 minutes each
1700-1800: Age of Enlightenment – SmartHistoryUndergraduate Level.Students should have completed introductory art courses.This course examines the importance of and techniques used in 14 pieces of art from the 18th century.14 lessons – 5 minutes each
Roman Architecture – YaleUndergraduate Level. Students who have completed introductory art history classes.This course explores Roman architecture and the development of Roman cities.23 lessons – 1 hour each
Duolingo is the most popular language education platform worldwide. It’s free, gamified and the curriculum is completely science-based and proven to work. You can learn on the go, from anywhere, and dedicate a few minutes at a time. A few facts below! It is also being used increasingly by teachers, schools and departments of education (Duolingo | for schools).
- It’s the #1 downloaded app in the Education category on both iTunes and Google Play worldwide
- 100 million users!
- Selected by Apple as “iPhone App of the Year” and by “Google as Best of the Best for Android”, 2 years in a row
- Unlike other online education platforms, Duolingo is a completely digital experience meaning it requires constant interaction and is native to computers / mobile platforms.
- Lessons are bite-sized so you can learn a language in 5 minutes at a time, whenever you’re in line or waiting for someone, with no excuses!
- It’s 100% free. Our mission: free language education for the world
- Duolingo uses machine learning technologies to create a completely personalized experience for each user
- Luis von Ahn, co-founder and CEO of Duolingo, is a MacArthur fellow, Carnegie Mellon University professor, and the inventor of CAPTCHA
Coursera | Online Courses From Top Universities. Join for Free is a website that partners with universities and organizations around the world. This brings a wide variety of topics and perspectives to one searchable database. Coursera is a powerful tool for free online education, and includes courses from many top universities, museums and trusts. This gives the site an extremely wide range of in-depth courses. Coursera is extremely useful if you’re looking to study many different topics, or want courses from different schools and groups.
Partnering with many post secondary schools, Khan Academy offers a useable, well organized interface. Also curating many courses from around the web, Khan Academy offers impressive depth on many different subjects. Among the more well known educational sites, Khan Academy is also incredibly useable, which may make it easier to keep learning goals.
If you are struggling to find exactly the material you are looking for, try Open Culture’s listing of free online education courses. The page highlights 1000 lectures, videos and podcasts from universities around the world. The site features a lot of material found only on universities private sites, all in easy to browse categories. This means you can find hundreds of university courses, without having to visit and search each university’s own site. Open Culture’s list features courses from England, Australia, Wales and many state universities around the United States. A very helpful resource for finding many courses in one area of study.
Udemy’s free courses are similar in concept to Coursera’s but additionally allows users to build custom courses from lessons. Working with many top professors and schools, the site mixes the customizable platform of other sites with a heavy emphasis on top quality content. This is another site however, that mixes free and paid content.
Another site with courses from many different schools is Academic Earth. Much like the three sites above, Academic Earth brings together top notch courses from many different sources, and focuses on offering a wide variety of subjects. Academic Earth lists courses by subject and school, so it might be easier to find what you’re looking for.
Another great option for free online education is edX. Also bringing together courses from many different schools, the site has impressive, quality information for everyone. edX covers a great range of topics.
Unlike the previous sites on this list, Alison is a free education site offering certification in some areas. Alison offers courses mainly in business, technology, and health, but also includes language learning courses. A great option if users need certification for their learning, Alison also offers school curriculum courses.
A very convenient place for free online education is iTunesU, because it integrates seamlessly with your iPod, or any app-ready Apple mobile device. On iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch, users download the iTunesU app. Desktop users can access iTunesU on the upper right hand corner of the iTunes Store. iTunesU is also convenient because the store is categorized much like iTunes. Users can search learning materials in many different ways, including genre and topic. However, courses are often a mix of free podcasts or videos, and paid content. ITunesU does include courses on a pretty wide scope of topics, but does not integrate with Android, Google or Windows mobile devices.
Your hub for all the online offerings from Stanford University, Stanford Online offers self-paced and session based courses. While Coursera features some courses from Stanford, many classes are only available via other hosts. Some courses require iTunes, but most are completed in your web browser. Stanford Online is a great site for high quality courses, though the topics are somewhat limited compared to sites partnered with more than one school.
Like Stanford Online, Harvard Extension features free online education courses from Harvard only. This is another excellent source for top notch course material, though the course variety is less rich than multi-school sites. Additionally, Harvard Extension allows you to search for courses by professional certificate. This makes it much easier if your online education goal includes certification.
Open Yale Courses echoes Harvard Extension and Stanford Online, in that it offers only courses from Yale. While the site is similarly limited to topics taught at the school, Open Yale Courses offers a lot of videos of actual campus lectures. The availability of videos makes the site a great option if you’re looking for quality courses, but learn better by watching than by reading.
Much like the other schools on this list, UC Berkeley has a variety of free online education options. The school has slightly fewer courses than the schools above, but includes some supplementary lectures, webcasts and RSS Feeds, making it easy to keep up with the topics you choose.
Similarly, MIT offers a variety of free courses. The school has a comparable number of courses to the schools above, plus includes very in-depth course materials on the subjects available. MIT also offers free RSS feeds, a convenient way to continue learning.
Carnegie Mellon’s free online education site is comparable with the other school’s on this list, however, Open Learning Initiative also covers a smaller range of topics. But for the topics that are covered impressive, in-depth material is available.
Codecademy is a website dedicated specifically to teaching coding. Where other coding sites follow an example/practice session workflow, Codecademy includes a live practice window. This means you can practice coding while still viewing the lesson material. The courses at Codecademy are well written and easy to follow and the website is organized very nicely. Codecademy features a centralized dashboard where you can monitor your progress, plus organizes lessons into complete modules. This lets you learn an entire language without needing to pick the next course manually.
The podcast page on the University of London website is another great source for free education. While the courses are limited to podcasts, the site features podcasts from it’s own campus, as well as eleven universities in and around London. This gives learners a wide base of topics and lectures, but still ensures in-depth material.
Similar to the University of London, the University of Oxford features many different podcasts. Most are public lecture series or lectures from visiting professors, with several different recordings available. The advantage to this particular site is that podcasts are organized into series, making it easy to subscribe to multiple lectures on one topic. Another good site for thoroughly in-depth lectures.
For the more casual learner, the BBC offers a wide variety of podcasts on many different topics. Most podcasts are updated weekly, and focus on everything from finance, to sports, to current events. Through the World Service line of podcasts, there are also many in different languages. The focus of these podcasts are less in-depth and theory based, which may be more accessible to the average person.
Another great destination for more general learning is TED-Ed. From the same people that brought you the all encompassing, motivational web series, comes a site chocked full of educational videos. Most include impressive animation, and all are ten minutes long or less. Not only is TED-Ed an excellent site for the curious, it also includes supplemental materials and quizzes on the videos. This makes the site extremely useful in formal education settings, as well as in entertaining ways to brush up on new discoveries and topics.
LessonPaths is another great tool for those looking for a more usable and convenient way to access learning material. On this site, users create link playlists of their favorite learning materials from other sites. Users then rank these collections, making it easy to find many different high quality, accessible sources on a given topic.
Another impressive free online education site offering ease of use and convenience is Memrise. Available both on desktop and as an app, Memrise is a particularly powerful tool if you are studying a language. The site encompasses many other topics as well, though some of the course material is user generated content. Part of what makes Memrise special is their integration of games into the learning materials, mixing learning with entertainment.
The kids site for National Geographic is another site that makes free online education applicable for younger users. For those looking for kid friendly education, a large variety of games, puzzles, videos and photos keeps kids interested on this site. National Geographic Kids doesn’t organize learning into courses, making materials available by topic and medium instead. This makes National Geographic Kids a good option for those looking for a more casual learning environment.
Fun Brain is another good option for kids who want to learn online, but focuses on games and fun puzzles. Particularly focused on math and reading, Fun Brain’s game based approach can be valuable if the child in question struggles to pay attention. Fun Brain offers rewards and challenges as well, and is another site aimed at a casual learning experience for kids K-8.
Similar to the sites for kids free online education is Whyville a destination for preteen online learning. The site includes a variety of social features, with a focus on learning materials geared for young teens. Whyville also mixes in educational games, to make the site a well rounded option for kids too old for simple games, but too young for heavy reading based material.
Free Video Economics Classes
Microeconomics and Macroeconomics – Khan AcademyUndergraduate Level. Students do not need any background in economics.This course examines a wide range of topics traditionally covered in a first year economics course.96 lessons – 10 minutes each
Financial Theory – YaleUndergraduate Level. Students need background in economicsThis course evaluates the dominating efficient markets theory and its relations to the financial crisis of 2007-2009.26 lessons – 1 hour and 15 minutes each
Game Theory – YaleUndergraduate Level. Students need some background in economicsThis course introduces players and how their goals, strategies and potential pay-offs affect their predicted behavior.24 lessons – 1 hour each
Principles of Microeconomic – MITUndergraduate Level. Students need no background in economicsThis course teaches the fundamental concepts, theories and principles of supply and demand, behavior of individuals and firms and how these theories apply to current economic events.35 lessons – 35 minutes each
Free Video Computer Science Classes
Introduction to Computer Programming – StanfordUndergraduate Level. Students do not need any previous knowledge of computer science.This course is an introduction to programming fundamentals, computer applications and computer testing.28 lessons – 50 minutes each
Building Dynamic Websites – HarvardUndergraduate Level. Students need background in HTML and website development.This course focuses on programming, input/output and the computer language PHP.13 lessons – 1 hour and 45 minutes each
Analysis of Algorithms – MITUndergraduate Level. Students should have a significant background in programming and discrete mathematics including probabilityThis course focuses on the design and understanding of algorithms, data and computer programming methodology.23 lessons – 1 hour and 20 minutes each
Operating Systems and Systems Programming – BerkeleyUndergraduate Level. Students need no background in computer science.This course introduces system programming, subsystems, processes and other computer structure development.23 lessons – 1 hour and 20 minutes each
Understanding Computers and the Internet – HarvardUndergraduate Level. Students need no background in computer science.This course explains the functioning capacity of the computer, both hardware and software, and explores how the internet works and functions.14 lessons – 1 hour and 40 minutes each
Free Video Physics Classes
hPhysics I: Classical Mechanics – MITUndergraduate Level. Students need no background in physicsThis course introduces basic concepts of physics including Newton’s laws, fluid mechanics and astronomical events.35 lessons – 50 minutes each
Physics II: Electricity and Magnetism – MITUndergradaute Level. Students should know the fundamental principles of physics.This course covers electromagnetism and applies these concepts to help understand lightning, pacemakers and other electrical devices.36 lessons – 50 minutes each
Physics III: Vibrations and Waves – MITUndergraduate Level. Students should know basic physics and electromagnetic principles.This course focuses on mechanical vibrations and waves then applies these principles to understanding objects and phenomena including musical instruments and black holes.23 lessons – 1 hour and 15 minutes each
Modern Theoretical Physics – StanfordUndergraduate Level. Students need some background in physicsThis course explores the basics of quantum mechanics, Bell’s theorem and entanglement.17 lessons – 1 hour and 30 minutes each
Physics – Kahn AcacdmeyUndergraduate Level. Students need to know algebra and some trigonometry.This course covers a wide variety of physics topics from Newton’s Laws to Energy to Circuits.164 lessons – 10 minutes each
Free Video Psychology Classes
Introduction to Psychology – YaleUndergraduate Level. Students need no background in Psychology.This course introduces the study of the human mind and focuses on the five branches of psychology: neuroscience, developmental, cognitive, social and clinical.20 lessons – 50 minutes each
Communication and Conflict in Couples and Families – UCLAUndergraduate Level. Students should have some background in social psychology.This course focuses on relationships and how they affect and mold martial and family disputes.17 lessons – 50 minutes each
Neuroscience Lab – UCLAUndergraduate Level. Students need background in neuroscience.This course uses a laboratory environment to further explore how the brain works and functions in various species.7 lessons – 40 minutes each
Free Video Literature Classes
The American Novel Since 1945 – YaleUndergraduate Level. Students need no background in literary theory.This course explores literary pieces written from 1945 until the present. Students are asked to analyze the themes, questions and styles found in various works.26 lessons – 50 minutes each
Introduction to Literary Theory – YaleUndergraduate Level. Students need no background in literature or literary theory.This course introduces definitions of theory and uses various methods to analyze the evolution of literature.26 lessons – 50 minutes each
The Poetry of John Milton – YaleUndergraduate Level. Students need some background in English and fundamental literary history.This course studies Milton’s poetry, focusing on Milton’s historical landscape, his language, prose and influence.24 lessons – 50 minutes each
Dante in Translation – YaleUndergraduate Level. Students need some background in literary genres and theory.This course focuses on Dante’s role in literary history and his poem’s place in literature as a divine comedy.24 lessons – 1 hour and 15 minutes each
Free Video Biology Classes
Life, Concepts and Issues – UCLAUndergraduate Level. Students do not need any background in Biology.This course introduces a variety of biology topics, including genetics, evolution, ecology and physiology and asks students to explore how these topics are discussed and represented in our society.19 lessons – 1 hour each
Introduction to Oceanography – UCLAUndergraduate Level. Students need background in algebra, high-school level chemistry, physics and biology.This course discusses broad topics surrounding oceans, including their function, geography and ecology.27 lessons – 45 minutes each
Human Behavior Biology – StanfordUndergraduate Level. Students need background in biology.This course focuses how human biology and the brain influence each other while exploring human physiology, social behavior and thought.25 lessons – 1 hour and 30 minutes each
General Human Anatomy – UCBerkeleyUndergraduate Level. Students need no background in biology.This course studies the structure, function and evolution of the human body from the molecule up to the nervous system.39 lessons – 50 minutes each
General Biology I – UCBerkeleyUndergraduate Level. Students need no background in Biology.This course covers fundamental topics in biology including the structure of molecules, cell organization, metabolism, enzymes and DNA.19 lessons – 50 minutes each
General Biology II – UCBerkeleyUndergraduate Level. Students need background in the fundamentals of Biology.This course builds upon the basics of biology and covers topics including ferns, tissues, roots, plant growth and sexual selection.23 lessons – 50 minutes each
Free Video Mathematics Classes
Analytic Geometry and Calculus – UCBerkeleyUndergraduate Level. Students need background in algebra.Students explore functions, their application, exponentiation and the quadratic formula.39 lessons – 45 minutes each
Analytic Geometry and Calculus II – UCBerkeleyUndergraduate Level. Students need background in algebra and introductory calculus.This course expands students’ knowledge of functions and focuses on second, third and fourth derivatives and their use in understanding functions.26 lessons – 1 hour and 15 minutes each
Multivariable Calculus – MITUndergraduate Level. Students need a strong background in calculus.This course focuses on vectors, matrices, integrals and derivatives.35 lessons – 40 minutes length
Single Variable Calculus – MITUndergraduate Level. Students need background in algebra.This course introduces the definition of derivatives, their importance and focuses on the integration and application of functions.39 lessons – 50 minutes each
Free Video Philosophy Classes
The Nature of Mind – UC BerkeleyStudents should have some background in philosophy.This course explores the definition of the mind, how the mind works, consciousness, personal identity and intelligent behavior.36 lessons – 50 minutes each
Theory of Meaning – UC BerkeleyStudents need no background in philosophy.This course explores the meaning of language, identity, human senses and other topics related to learning.44 lessons – 50 minutes each
Justice – HarvardStudents need no background in philosophy.This course explores the question: what is the right thing to do? The course will examine how this question relates to moral reasoning and the differences between right and wrong.12 lessons – 55 minutes each
Death – YaleStudents need some background in philosophical theory.This course focuses on the philosophical questions surrounding death. The course will address both the metaphysical, the nature of death, and value theory of death attempting to answer the question: is death bad?26 lessons – 50 minutes each
Free Video Engineering Classes
Introduction to Chemical Engineering – StanfordStudents should have a solid background in mathematics.This course explores the principles of chemical engineering by using case studies including examining machines built to filter blood, high fructose corn syrup and medicinal dosages.20 lessons – 50 minutes each
Genetic Engineering and Society – UCLAStudents need background in engineering and mathematics.This course explores the historical and scientific influences on the study of genetic engineering and how this field has influenced medicine, law, agriculture and society.34 lessons – 1 hour each
Frontiers of Biomedical Engineering – YaleStudents need no background in engineering.This course introduces the foundations and applications of biomedical engineering. Additionally, this course explores the advancements and technologies made possible by biomedical engineering including chest x-rays, PET scans and operating rooms.25 lessons – 50 minutes each
Performance Engineering of Software Systems – MITStudents need a background in mathematics and engineering.This course focuses on how to manipulate computers to perform as efficiently as possible.23 lessons – 1 hour each
Source: Page on degreedirectory.org
And still MORE:
GooruLearning– videos, lessons
- OER Commons– lessons, exercises
- CommonSenseMedia– lessons, reviews
- Mangahigh– math games
- CK-12– digital textbooks
- BetterLesson– lesson plans
- Lessonopoly– lesson plans
- MentorMob– curated content
- LiveBinder– curated content
- 19pencils– curated content
- DIY– how-to articles
- MakeUseOf– how-to articles
- Instructables– how-to articles
- YouTube Education– videos
- YouTube Teachers– videos
- YouTube for Schools– videos
If you are looking for a math learning website, this can easily be your go to website for kids upto 5th grade. While you can refer to their interactive blogs that offer multiple tips, tricks and ideas to make fun interesting for your kids, it also offers some highly engaging board games, and storytelling math worksheets for regular practice.
Visual medium is attractive to all ages and Khan Academy knows exactly how to use it to their advantage. It’s one of the most popular online resources for many courses filtered from across the web. With an organized interface it’s an amazingly useable educational website that makes learning easy.
Learning languages have never been easier unless the world knew about Duolingo. If you want your child to be an expert in multiple languages apart from just English, this is the right tool that offers learning languages like Spanish, Italian, German, and French via audio, video, and written modes.
Let your kids get a hang of coding already with this fantastic website that’s dedicated specially to teach coding. It stands out in the competition by offering a live practice window where your kids can practice coding while viewing the lesson material alongside.
This is especially a wonderful website for kids with lots of puzzles, games, photos, and videos thrown around. The best part is, that it offers courses and materials based on topics and not mediums.