Online Study Aids & Free Online Courses: Help in Math, Science, Business, Computer Science, the Arts and More!
Online Study Help- Mostly Free of Charge
Here's what's getting me through my college courses and can help you in high-school courses too. Or maybe you just need to brush up on a topic/concept- whatever be the case, these are great tools.
It's not easy to find helpful study aids online- what you're trying to understand is often conveyed in a manner that is very convoluted and messy and it seems out of reach for you. You may feel hopeless- maybe you feel like it's too late to do well in your classes. I promise you, there is hope! You just have to search and find what can help you the most. The sites below have helped many struggling students. Most of the sites you can get the important features free! Check out my list of awesome, easy study sites/aids/tutorials.
What Udacity Is All About
This site is completely free and right now has courses in computer science,math, science, business, etc- it's expanding its course list. Udacity offers free college courses. This site is really excellent. You "enroll" in one course or a couple courses, and you go through the video lessons, and do the quizzes that go along (at your pace of course). It checks your answers, and tells you why you got it right and what's wrong with the other answers. The site is really neat, and the people in the video are easy to listen to.
Also, it's not just any Joe Schmoe that teaches you. For instance, there is a web class that teaches you basic things you need to know to build a website. The guy who teaches it actually helped to develop Reddit: Steve Huffman! You also don't have to go through the whole course. If you're struggling in math, for instance, you can find the course you're struggling in and the topic and it can act as a little, free math tutor!
Basically, this site offers free, online courses. And if you want college credit for it, you can do that too. (Of course, that will cost you some moola!)
2. Wolfram Alpha
This site is AWESOME. You can ask it to compute nearly anything. Ask it to find integrals, derivatives, the gravitational field of Mexico, NY. The cool thing about this site is that it does the computation every time. It's not a site that has saved a whole bunch of answers ready at your whim. It calculates your answers. It even has nutritional facts on its database. It's quite an astounding site, really.
With this, there are some limitations though. You're limited in the amount of things you can do (for instance, the amount of step-by-step solutions you can see). Wolfram asks for a hefty fee so you can have unlimited access. This is a undesirable feature, but it's almost understandable because this site is indescribably cool, and useful.
What do you think of online learning?
3. Khan Academy
I love khan academy! It's been described as the future of education. Sal Khan, the creator, has promised that the features on the site will always be free. It is the ultimate tool. The videos are about 81-5 minutes long per topic and there is a section for exercises you can do. The guy who does the videos is very intelligent, and is sort of corny/dorky at times, but he's a very lovable teacher. He's really passionate about khan academy and helping students understand topics. Now, this site covers A LOT. Everything from art history, to business, to american civics, calculus, astronomy, physics, etc. Lots and lots of topics covered and is my favorite study aid.
Do note, that when you go to the site and search a topic and you don't find it, you should try going to their youtube channel. I have found many helpful physics videos this way, It's easier to search for their videos on youtube.
4. Chegg (formerly Cramster)
If you go to the homework help section on chegg, you can get step by step solutions for you textbook questions (the odd questions are all free). They have a play button when showing you the solution, so they only show you a step at a time, giving you a chance to try and figure it out on your own. I like this site, and I use it often- but sometimes it's hard to find the textbooks you're looking for. But luckily, once you find it, you can find it in the 'your recent textbooks' section.
With a free-account, you are limited. And an account for a full-year is expensive- monthly is a bit too much at well. I purchased a full-featured year-account, and although it's expensive, I think it's totally worth it. It helped me tremendously with physics and math. I don't think I would have done well without it, to be honest. Awesome site for problems and solutions- don't be too hesitant to buy an account. Maybe a friend would like to get in on this with you and you can split the cost!
I haven't been on brightstorm a whole lot, since I've been content with my other study aids so far, but when I stumbled upon this I thought the site was pretty cool. The site is free, and making an account on the site is also free. The site has free math videos (for algebra 1&2, geometry, trig, precalc and calc) and science videos (physics, chemistry and biology). There are transcripts of the video, a section where they find local tutors for you, and a section for you to ask questions. Some of the lecturers in the videos are pretty funny and make the topic fun to learn, which is why I bookmarked this site. Makes learning a little bit easier.
What's your favorite online learning site?
6. Open Course Ware (OCW) From MIT, Harvard, Yale, Standford and More
Free OCW from the top colleges are offered to you. They often offer free lecture notes, videos, exams and quizzes. Some of the top OCW Colleges are:
- Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- University of California, Berkley
- Carnegie Mellon University
- Utah State University
- Brigham Young University
I've included links only to the top 3 (to avoid being overly promotional) for your convenience. OCW is good in getting more of a college experience. It offers more well-rounded information, and it's pretty awesome to hear lecturers from places like MIT! However, they aren't as interactive as Udacity or Khan Academy. It's probably best to use some of these sites in conjunction with one another! Just a thought :)
Help me add to the list!
This list consists of a small amount of educational tools and study aids. If there are any other awesome educational tools you like, that you think are innovative or groundbreaking or whatever, list them below so I can check them out and add them to this list!
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