Today as I was scrolling through my social media news feed, a friend of mine had posted this catchy quip

“So much to learn!  So little time.”

Which of course immediately caught my attention.  So I had to follow the link she had posted to this website where I made the delightful discovery of Coursera where they boast that you can “Take the World’s Best Courses, Online, For Free.”  Home educator that I am I had to investigate further.  This is what I found.

I’ve taken this excerpt from the About Coursera section…

We are a social entrepreneurship company that partners with the top universities in the world to offer courses online for anyone to take, for free.   We envision a future where the top universities are  educating not only thousands of students, but millions.   Our technology enables the best professors to teach tens or hundreds of thousands of students.

Through this, we hope to give everyone access to the world-class education that has so far been available only to a select few.  We want to empower people with education that will improve their lives, the lives of their families, and the communities they live in.

The course offerings are broad, spanning from Microeconomics, Game Theory, Scientific Computing or Cryptography to Nutrition, Quantum Physics and Guitar sprinkled with plenty of Maths, Sciences and the Humanities.  It seems from a quick cursory visit like a more interactive version of The Great Courses by the Teaching Company that we currently enjoy using, and then some.   With a striking difference being that, unlike the aforementioned TGC, Coursera is completely free.

The Coursera Terms of Service mentions registration and participation on the site as being restricted to individuals over eighteen years of age while also allowing anyone over thirteen to participate with parental/guardian consent.  Looks like a great resource for alternative learners in the secondary school age range as well as adults.  We will likely make use of this innovative learning platform in our own home (un)school.

What do you think?  Find any courses that look interesting to you?

© Una-Melina // Worthy Books & Things, 2013.