I’ve mentioned free college courses a few times here on Freely Educate, but today I thought I’d write an updated list of which universities are offering free college courses, along with a sample of courses students may take.
These courses do not qualify for ‘credit’ with the university, as that’s how they make their money, but they are 100% free to take and sometimes even the books (as e-books) are included!
You can occasionally get a junior college or sometimes even a university to accept a completed online course. In our experience, it has been important to request this approval, and to obtain it in writing, before taking the course.
Colleges and Universites offering free college courses
There will be many more than I can think of or find today, so I’ll update this post now and then. But this is a good place to begin when looking for free college courses to take online. The following schools offer courses for anyone to take, free, online. Below the university or college name, I’ll highlight a few of the offered courses, but do look at their sites for more courses.
At the very least, preview each course before having your child take it, or at best, take the course alongside alongside him or her. You’ll share deep discussions over what is being taught. This takes a lot of time for us, the teachers, but it is well worth the time spent.
Here are a sampling of the free courses offered by Harvard University. Visit their site (click the title above) to see many more options:
- Cell Biology: Mitochondria
- 18th Century Opera: Handel & Mozart
- Backyard Meteorology: The Science of Weather
- a 9-month long program in Chemistry
- Human Anatomy: Musculoskeletal Cases
Hillsdale is a great option for those who want to learn about, preserve, and protect the U.S. Constitution. They also cover literature topics regularly. Below are a few of the many courses offered – click on the title above to view them all.
- Mathematics and Logic: from Euclid to Modern Geometry
- Civil Rights in American History
- Athens and Sparta
- Shakespeare: Hamlet and The Tempest
- Economics 101
Yale has one of the largest libraries of free college courses. Click on the title above to view the list in alphabetical order. Here is a sampling of the variety of the courses offered at Yale:
Always continue learning, no matter the age
There are so many ways to further an education. We need to encourage our learners that they’re not done learning once they reach 18 years old or because we said they “graduated from school.” They should always reach for books, take courses, watch lectures or how-to videos and, above all, put what they learn into practice so they’ll be able to improve their skills. Ideally, at that point, they – and we – will share the knowledge we’ve acquired to help the next person learn.