Thursday, July 29, 2010

Online Courses from MIT

In a recent post, I discussed the open courses offered by Yale University. I've since discovered that MIT also offers free courses online, and that they offer a greater variety, over 2000 to be exact. MIT offers free graduate courses as well. Many of the courses on offer are technologically oriented, including advanced mathematics courses like algebraic topology, quantum computation, and assorted courses in statistics. The engineering courses include airline schedule planning, sustainable energy, and space systems engineering. Before I found this website, I thought that MIT only offered courses in science and technology, but there are many courses in other areas, including a variety of courses in micro- and macroeconomics. The foreign language courses include four levels of Chinese, along with Japanese, Spanish, French, and German. If you look at the history department, you'll find a course in "How to Stage a Revolution." Of course, there's the question of how an independent student can get college credit for this knowledge, as CLEP doesn't offer an exam in algebraic topology. One idea might be to find a university that will let you "challenge" the course, in which you take the final exam and give you the credit if you pass. At any rate, the MIT Open Courses are an excellent resource for those who are studying independently at home, and give free access to knowledge that only students with the best academic performance get access to normally.

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