Interested in history? Fascinated with physics? Want to get a Harvard (or Berkeley or Yale) education without leaving the Island? Or, do you want to know how to build a mini hovercraft? eLearning opens up these opportunities to anyone with the time and a computer with internet access.
Recently, Bill Hogan of the AARP Bulletin posted an article about eLearning, or Lifelong Learning, called How to Learn Just About Anything Online – for Free, check out Hogan's article on the AARP web site.
According to Wikipedia:
E-learning is essentially the computer and network-enabled transfer of skills and knowledge. E-learning applications and processes include Web-based learning, computer-based learning, virtual classroom opportunities and digital collaboration. Content is delivered via the Internet, intranet/extranet, audio or video tape, satellite TV, and CD-ROM. It can be self-paced or instructor-led and includes media in the form of text, image, animation, streaming video and audio.
Below are listed some interesting web sites dedicated to lifelong learning.
Academic Earth is an organization founded with the goal of giving everyone on earth access to a world-class education. Academic Earth is a user-friendly educational ecosystem that will give internet users around the world the ability to easily find, interact with, and learn from full video courses and lectures from the world's leading scholars.
Academic Room facilitates multidisciplinary engagements among scholars and researchers around the world. Their mission is to democratize access to scholarly resources, which are organized in over 10,000 academic sub-disciplines. They share the conviction that easy and unimpeded access to quality educational resources should be a right and not a privilege. Academic Room's platform allows academics, researchers and students to create highly specialized portals for their subfields. These portals can be enriched with professional directories, scholar profiles, video lectures, bibliographies, journal articles, books, reviews, images, ancient manuscripts and audio recordings. Eventually, other developers will be able to deploy their apps on the Academic Room platform.
Coursera is a social entrepreneurship company that partners with the top universities in the world to offer courses online for anyone to take, for free. Coursera envisions a future where the top universities are educating not only thousands of students, but millions. Their technology enables the best professors to teach tens or hundreds of thousands of students. Through this, Coursera hopes to give everyone access to the world-class education that has so far been available only to a select few. They want to empower people with education that will improve their lives, the lives of their families, and the communities they live in.
EdX is a not-for-profit enterprise of its founding partners, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Harvard University that offers online learning to on-campus students and to millions of people around the world. To do so, edX is building an open-source online learning platform and hosts an online web portal at www.edx.org for online education. EdX currently offers HarvardX, MITx and BerkeleyX classes online for free. These institutions aim to extend their collective reach to build a global community of online students. Along with offering online courses, the three universities undertake research on how students learn and how technology can transform learning – both on-campus and online throughout the world.
The Forum Network is a PBS and NPR public media service in collaboration with public stations and community partners across the United States. Through an expanding network of local public stations producing content with their community partners, The Forum Network brings a diverse range of perspectives on both local and global issues to audiences around the world, and contains an online library featuring thousands of lectures by some of the world's foremost scholars, authors, artists, scientists, policy makers, and community leaders, available to citizens of the world for free.
Howcast empowers people with engaging, useful how-to information wherever, whenever they need to know how. Howcast streams tens of millions of videos every month across its multi-platform distribution network.
The Khan Academy is an organization on a mission: a not-for-profit with the goal of changing education for the better by providing a free world-class education for anyone anywhere. All of the site's resources are available to anyone. It doesn't matter if you are a student, teacher, home-schooler, principal, adult returning to the classroom after 20 years, or a friendly alien just trying to get a leg up in earthly biology. The Khan Academy's materials and resources are available to you completely free of charge.
MIT OpenCourseWare is a free web-based publication of MIT course materials that reflects almost all the undergraduate and graduate subjects taught at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; it is open and available to the world and is a permanent activity of MIT. The Massachusett Institute of Technology cautions: OCW is not an MIT education; OCW does not grant degrees or certificates; OCW does not provide access to MIT faculty; Materials may not reflect entire content of the course.
The My PC Series is a free set of hands-on, jargon-free classroom based curricula of computer classes that Microsoft has developed for delivery through adult learning organizations.
Open Culture brings together high-quality cultural & educational media for the worldwide lifelong learning community. Web 2.0 has given us great amounts of intelligent audio and video. It's all free. It's all enriching. But it's also scattered across the web, and not easy to find. Open Culture's whole mission is to centralize this content, curate it, and give you access to this high quality content whenever and wherever you want it
Open Yale courses provides free and open access to a selection of introductory courses taught by distinguished teachers and scholars at Yale University. The aim of the project is to expand access to educational materials for all who wish to learn.
TED is a small nonprofit devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. It started out, in 1984 , as a conference bringing together people from three worlds: Technology, Entertainment, Design. TED.com makes the best talks and performances from TED and partners available to the world, for free. More than 700 TEDTalks are now available, with more added each week.
Udacity is a totally new kind of learning experience. You learn by solving challenging problems and pursuing udacious projects with world-renowned university instructors (not by watching long, boring lectures). At Udacity, they put you, the student, at the center of the universe. Udacity classes will make you sweat. Passing a Udacity class is as demanding as passing a university-level class. But you will have a lot of fun along the way as you learn new skills and interact with amazing instructors and peers. In return for your hard work, Udacity offers a range of certification options that are recognized by major technology companies who are actively recruiting from the Udacity student body. Join the hundreds of thousands of Udacity students who have already been empowered by this new form of learning.
VideoLectures.NET is a free and open access educational video lectures repository. The lectures are given by distinguished scholars and scientists at the most important and prominent events like conferences, summer schools, workshops and science promotional events from many fields of Science. The portal is aimed at promoting science, exchanging ideas and fostering knowledge sharing by providing high quality didactic contents not only to the scientific community but also to the general public.
Every semester, UC Berkeley webcasts select courses and events for on-demand viewing via the Internet. webcast.berkeley course lectures are provided as a study resource for students and are not sanctioned as a substitute for going to the course lectures.
WonderHowTo.com is a community-fueled, search engine and directory for Free How-To Video. It provides the largest, most contemporary, and most diverse resource in this increasingly vibrant space.
YouTube EDU centralizes the content from over 100 universities and colleges. This robust collection gives you access to lectures by professors and world-renowned thought leaders, new research and campus tours. With YouTube EDU you can access over 200 full courses from leading universities, including MIT, Stanford, UC Berkeley, UCLA, and Yale.