Top 4 Free Ways to Learn Online

MIT Main Apr09
Image via Wikipedia

Languages

Learning a language online is easy as there are many resources such as BBC Languages. BBC provides a free language resource with podcasts and video courses with daily phrases. Languages included are French, German, Spanish, Italian, Greek, Portuguese, Chinese and many more.

Lectures

Many universities around the world offer free lecture notes, exams, and videos. There are YouTube and even iTunes offerings which contain video, audio-books and tours. MIT publish many of their courses online at OpenCourseWare (OCW), some of their popular courses (during May 2010) are Physics I: Classical Mechanics, Introduction to Computer Science and Linear Algebra . Remember that by doing the course at MIT OpenCourseWare you won’t simply get a degree.

Programming and Websites

W3 Schools is an excellent starting point for learning to use HTML, JavaScript and CSS. There are also many free books that have been published for learners, one of them is Eloquent JavaScript. The book has many examples and lets the reader try out many of the examples in their browser. Opera has published a great resource at Opera Web Standards Curriculum. The website promotes web standards for better websites.

To get started with programming pick a language that you will enjoy learning. Ruby is a simple language for beginners to start with and also has advanced functions. Free documentation is available for programmers at the website. According to TIOBE, Java is the most popular language. This means you should be able to find help quickly. A nice starting tutorial can be found at About.Com. C++ is another language which is popular and can be used for developing many programs. Microsoft has a free version of their Visual Studio software and also have a free tutorial.

Instruments

Why not learn an instrument online? Instruments such as the guitar have many free resources. Try YouTube and GuitarNoise for free lessons ranging from songs to scales. You can learn the basics of music theory at Ricci Adams’ Musictheory.net. The website has lessons, exercises and tools such as staff paper generators and tempo calculators.

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