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“High quality things always come with high price tags attached” – this is a known statement. That being said, quality online education courses from reputable institutions, such as the Indian Institute of Technology, MIT, and even Yale are available absolutely free of charge. These courses are very useful for brushing up your computer knowledge or learning something new that is of interest to you. Here are five such free online courses:
- NPTEL Courses: With the aim of enhancing the quality of engineering education, these free online courses are facilitated jointly by the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) and the Indian Institute of Science (IISc). In depth course materials are available in web and video formats.
Who should join: NPTEL courses are most suitable for practicing graduate and diploma holding engineers of all disciplines.
Benefits: These courses are on par with the kind of education you would expect from IIT, but at the same time they are easy to understand. Please keep in mind that you will not get any credits or certificates for the courses of study you choose.
- MIT Open Courseware: Here you will find web based course content for virtually all of the most sought after courses of MIT. You receive a variety of courses in science, arts and engineering.
Who should join: MIT courses are useful for graduates of science, arts, commerce and engineering disciplines.
Benefits: The course contents are developed by professors of MIT and remain on par with MIT’s regular syllabi. Unfortunately, you are ineligible to receive any credits or certificates for completing the courses.
- Open Yale Courses: Open Yale courses gives access to the huge database of reputable Yale University course content. Various courses in science, engineering, economics, history and philosophy are available for free via distance learning.
Who should join: Open Yale courses are useful for graduates of science, arts, business and also various engineering disciplines.
Benefits: The course contents are developed by professors of Yale University and you receive the same quality education that paying students are offered; however you do not get any credits or certificates for completing the courses.
- Rai Open Courseware: This is another good place where you will find free online courses of various discplines like engineering, mass communications, law, and even aviation. These course contents are facilitated by Rai Foundation Colleges in India.
Who should join: Rai Open courseware is useful for degree holders in a wide array of business, science, arts, and also engineering fields.
Benefits: If you are ready to either brush up on some skills you already received during your degree coursework, or you just want to check out new disciplines, you will find this course content that was developed by professors of Rai University to be most valuable. Unfortunately, you get no credits or certificates for completing the courses.
- OEDB: This site has links of two hundred free online classes and acts as a clearing house. The online courses are selected from various reputable universities. You are sure to find an eclectic mix of online courses in various disciplines like arts, math, and also the engineering fields.
Who should join: These classes are perfect for a wide array of scholars with advanced degrees, diplomas, or simply those looking for ancillary education.
Benefits: The site provides very handy information about the different online free classes available with different universities on a wide array of subjects.
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Free online classes are powerful resources for brushing up or upgrading your present skills without spending a single penny. However, there are some limitations to the overall benefits of these free online courses. First and foremost, you will not get any certificate for most of the free online education courses. Secondly, most of this open courseware does not connect you with the faculty. You have to learn the subject matter yourself.
- NPTEL Courses at http://nptel.iitm.ac.in/courses.php
- MIT Open Courseware at http://ocw.mit.edu/OcwWeb/web/courses/courses/index.htm#AeronauticsandAstronautics
- Open Yale Courses at http://oyc.yale.edu/
- Rai Open Courseware at http://www.rocw.raifoundation.org/
- OEDB at OEDB.org