Extreme savvy spending: free college courses

Green Apple on BooksMost of my blog articles have focused on saving money with coupons or how to find travel deals. But, after stumbling across a news story that talked about coursera.org, I have a savvy spending tip that has nothing to do with shopping: did you know that many colleges and universities offer free lecture and course materials to anyone that simply wants to learn?

coursera logoCoursera is a website that partners with leading universities (Stanford, Princeton, etc.) to make higher education available for anyone. Now, I did a quick view of the courses currently available, and there’s not many (350+), but it appears that they are constantly adding more. After I perused coursera, I decided to do some Internet searches to see if there were other websites that offered free higher education, and I stumbled across a few more:

Saylor.org: This website has K-12, college-level, and professional development courses. Topics range from Computer Science, to Math, to HTML and CSS. This website was developed by a non-profit foundation and it appears that their focus is on growing coursework offerings at the undergraduate college level.

MIT Open Courseware: MIT open coursewareThe Massachusetts Institute of Technology offers a selection of course content online including: Principles of Microeconomics, Linear Algebra, Introduction to Psychology, and Introduction to Computer Science and Programming. There are materials for 2150 courses available and 125 million visitors have come to the site so far. Independent learners can use the content to enrich their education for free and there’s even app if you want to learn on the go.

iTunes U: Apple has a free app that gives you access to an online catalog of free educational content. There are more than 500,000 free lectures, videos, books and other resources within the app. Search for virtually any topic and you’ll learn from professors at top universities.

edXedX: If you’re interested in learning about non-traditional topics beyond science and engineering, this website appears to have the best content. Currently, you can register for Science & Cooking (Harvard), Ideas of the 20th Century (UT Austin), and Foundations of Computer Graphics (UC Berkeley).

Carnegie Mellon University Open Learning Initiative: There’s only a handful of courses available on this site, but definitely some different offerings such as Elementary French I, Media Programming, and STEM Readiness.

After looking at all of these websites, I definitely will be taking a course or two to check online learning out!

-Missy

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