The 100 Best (And Free) Online Learning Tools

EDUDEMIC

We’re always excited to find the next best thing. But how does one actually find this supposed next best thing? Let Edudemic do the work for you! For example, ever wanted to spend zero dollars but have some of the most bleeding edge technologies at your disposal? Fear not!

In the vain of C4LPT, we bring you many other resources that are not as well-known as those featured on their site. (Be sure to check out their list though as it also has some great stuff!) Below you will find a dazzling number of free (open) resources to learn, engage, and just make learning more fun. Enjoy!

Sharing and Collaborating

These sites offer a place for educators to find open educational resources as well as provide a place for those who want to share their ideas or work collaboratively on projects.

  1. Apple Learning Interchange. Educators create and share lessons and activities here.
  2. MoodleShare. For teachers on Moodle, this resource offers lesson plans, activities, and even entire courses for K-12 and higher education.
  3. Connexions. The modules provided here can be used as lessons, books, reports, or classes.
  4. Free Curricula Center. Find educational material such as textbooks and instructor guides for higher education classes.
  5. OER Commons. This OER community provides materials for both K-12 and higher ed.
  6. Curriki. This site aims to distribute free curricula and educational resources to teachers around the world.
  7. Google for Educators.  Google has compiled an enormous amount of information and resources for teachers here.
  8. Open Educational Resources. Find classes, tools, and other resources at this site.
  9. iBerry. This “academic porthole” provides links to open resources as well as a news aggregator so you can stay on top of all the OER news.
  10. K12EdCom.org. This site provides open courseware curriculum material specifically for those in K-12 education.
  11. WiZiQ. Teachers can use this site for uploading content, teaching online, and more while students can find classes on just about anything.
  12. MERLOT. Get peer-reviewed online learning materials for higher education at this site.

Open Courseware Search Engines

Use these search engines to find more open educational resources and information.

  1. OER Recommender. Search for courses and other resources by keyword with the OER Recommender.
  2. Open CourseWare Consortium. This site will search all member institutions for open courseware classes.
  3. Creative Commons. One of the leaders in the OER movement, Creative Commons offers licenses for those who create open content and also provide access to several search engines to help locate material.
  4. OCW/OER Search. This Google search engine will look up open and free materials for higher education.

Open Courseware

These institutions offer open courseware available for anyone to access.

  1. TU Delft OpenCourseWare. Find free classes focusing on engineering and technology here.
  2. Stanford Engineering Everywhere. See what Stanford has to offer in computer science, artificial intelligence, and electrical engineering courses.
  3. Harvard Medical School Open Courseware Initiative. If you have students planning to go pre-med, then these classes will be an awesome resource.
  4. MIT OpenCourseWare. Teachers and students can access almost 2,000 courses from MIT. There is also a section just for high school students called Highlights for High Schools.
  5. Tufts OpenCourseWare. Tufts University has a selection of life science courses on their site.
  6. Sophia Project. Find eight open courseware classes at this site modeled after the MIT OpenCourseWare project.
  7. UC Berkeley Webcasts. Be sure to search through the archives to find all the classes offered by UC Berkeley on this site.
  8. Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health OpenCourseWare. Johns Hopkins offers a variety of free public health courses here.
  9. Notre Dame OpenCourseWare. Notre Dame offers a few beginning level liberal arts classes on their site.
  10. Open Learning Initiative. Carnegie Mellon provides access to several classes in a variety of disciplines.
  11. Utah State OpenCourseWare. See the classes Utah State University has to offer here.
  12. Open Yale Courses. Find introductory classes from Yale here.
  13. Open UW. Check out the classes offered by the University of Washington here.

Online Academic Video Sites

These sites provide educational videos free of charge that will help inspire your teaching.

  1. Open Vault. Teachers will discover content produced by public TV and radio on this site.
  2. Nova Teachers Watch Video Online. Teachers can choose from short videos or longer videos from the Nova magazine and TV program.
  3. YouTube EDU. YouTube has a special section devoted to education-related videos.
  4. TeacherTube. Rest assured that all the videos here are made by and especially for educators.
  5. Teachers TV Videos. These educational videos cover a wide range of topics and are sponsored by an organization from the UK.
  6. Teacher’s Domain. Get video and audio segments from PBS programming just for educators.
  7. Learner.org. Find tons of free videos to enhance your teaching here.

Online Lectures

Find open lectures online from top universities and public media around the world.

  1. Academic Earth. Find video courses and lectures from major universities on Academic Earth.
  2. Forum Network. This site provides free video lectures from public stations, community partners, and respected speakers.
  3. MIT World. MIT publishes open lectures and events that occur at MIT on this site.
  4. TED. Find inspirational lectures given by fascinating people from all walks of life on TED.
  5. Lectr. This “knowledge sharing community” posts educational video lectures from classes around the world.
  6. Princeton University WebMedia. Get video and podcast lectures and events from Princeton on this site.
  7. Free Science Videos and Lectures. These videos and lectures vary from basic to complex and stretch across several different scientific fields.
  8. Intercollegiate Studies Institute Lecture Program. These academic lectures support the mission of ISI–to promote and sustain a free and humane society.
  9. VideoLectures.NET. This European project shares open education through academic video sharing.
  10. LearnersTV. Not only can you watch video lectures here, but you will also find science animations and lecture notes.
  11. Harvard@Home. While these videos haven’t been updated in the past year, the site is still worth visiting for the awesome video lectures from Harvard events.

Online Reference Material

These open resources are a great way to access reference material for the classroom and for student use.

  1. Purdue Online Writing Lab. This online writing lab has a vast amount of knowledge for anyone who wants to improve their writing skills.
  2. Open Directory Project. This OER project provides links to thousands of open resources online.
  3. Internet Public Library. Students and teachers can visit this online library to find reference material on a wide range of topics.
  4. FREE. The Federal Resources for Educational Excellence is a repository for all teaching and learning resources from federal agencies.
  5. Dictionary.com. Get an online dictionary plus much more with this tool.
  6. The Math Forum @ Drexel. This awesome resource will help both teachers and students with their tools, practice problems and puzzles, and offers a teacher exchange.
  7. Online Etymology Dictionary. This online resource provides the origins and history of many words and phrases.
  8. Bartleby.com. Get access to a massive list of reference books on this site.
  9. Awesome Stories.This site provides original sources from national archives, libraries, universities, museums, and government databases that are just right for research projects.
  10. Fact Monster. Get the facts as well as several reference resources on this site.
  11. Dynamic Periodic Table. This interactive periodic table is easy for any student to use and offers detailed information on each of the specific elements.
  12. refdesk.com. Discover facts, quotes, news, and use searches for a variety of other information all in one place at this site.
  13. Graphing Calculator. Students won’t need to invest in an expensive graphing calculator when you share this online resource with them.
  14. Library Spot Grammar/Style. Students and teachers will appreciate the tutorials, how-tos, and style guides provided here to help learn proper grammar and style.
  15. Searching for Stuff. Find what you need with this simple search site.

Social Media Tools

Use these social media tools free of charge to help students work collaboratively in dynamic ways.

  1. Edublogs. Get a free blog for your class on this site that is only for those in education.
  2. Class Blogmeister. This free service, designed just for educators, will have you creating a class blog in no time.
  3. Blogger. While this Google-based blogging platform isn’t education-specific, it is free and easy to use.
  4. WordPress. If you are a more experienced blogger looking for more creative opportunities, then check out free WordPress blogs.
  5. 21Classes. This free service helps you create classroom homepages as well as manage blogs for students or the class as a whole.
  6. Twitter. Twitter has become an incredible tool for connecting teachers and students in collaborative learning environments.
  7. Edmodo. Edmodo is like Twitter, but just for those in education.
  8. QuoteURL. This Twitter tool helps organize tweets so they are all on one page–helpful for Twitter-based projects.
  9. CiteMe. Students can use this Facebook app to learn about properly formatted citations according to major styles such as APA, Chicago, or MLA.
  10. DoResearch4Me. If your students are relying too heavily on Wikipedia, have them use this Facebook app to find information from reputable online sources.
  11. Hey Math! Challenge. For struggling math students, have them use this Facebook app to watch Flash movies that clearly explain difficult math concepts.
  12. Flashcards. Teachers and students can create flashcards for any subject they are studying with this Facebook app.
  13. Class Notes. Share your class notes, assignments, and reminders with this app.

Wikis

These wikis are all about sharing educational information. While some are on specific topics, others provide more general educational resources.

  1. WikiEducator. Get free content here or sign up to learn how to create and contribute your own content.
  2. eToolBox. This wiki from Wissahickon School District is all about integrating technology into the classroom.
  3. Wikiversity. With over 12,500 resources available here, you will find projects, research, and more on this wiki.
  4. Digitally Speaking. Teachers will find ideas and resources for using technology in the classroom in innovative ways on this wiki.
  5. Educational Origami. Become a part of bringing 21st century learning into the classroom when you visit this wiki.
  6. Welker’s Wikinomics. Economics teachers and students can find tons of information on this wiki and are also invited to contribute.
  7. Flat Classroom Project. This project wraps up its fifth year promoting global communication and collaboration between classrooms.
  8. GoAPES. This wiki is for secondary and college-level teachers of life sciences.
  9. Salk’s Periodic Table. This unique wiki is an interactive periodic table.
  10. Kidpedia. Kidpedia is an online encyclopedia written for and by kids.
  11. Qedoc. This wiki provides learning resources on a variety of subjects, including foreign languages, history, math, science, and business.

Online Books and Texts

These online books and texts offer a new way of providing information to students–free and sometimes open to editing by anyone.

  1. Project Gutenberg. Find tons of free books online here, including everything from classics to text books.
  2. Open Textbooks. The Community College Consortium for Open Educational Resources provides links to over 450 open texts appropriate for the community college level.
  3. Wikibooks. Find textbooks that are not only free to learners, but open to editing by anyone.
  4. International Children’s Digital Library. This resource provides free online books to children around the world.
  5. Read Print. Teachers and students will find tons of books, stories, and poems available for free here.

Professional Online Education Networks

Join in a professional network for even more ways to collaborate on open education.

  1. NextGen Teachers. If you’d like to be part of an organization that is all about teachers making positive changes in education through technology, then check out this network.
  2. Edutagger. This site facilitates knowledge-sharing by allowing users to find interesting articles and tag them to share with other teachers.
  3. Classroom 2.0. This popular and very active professional networking site focuses on collaborative technology in education.
  4. Education Leadership. Become part of the discussion about what makes effective leaders in education here.
  5. Passionate Teachers. Passionate teachers share ideas, strategies, and resources to promoting quality education on this site.
  6. TeachAde. Get professional resources and connections with other educators here.
  7. The Schools United. Educators around the world connect here to collaborate, communicate, and share resources for education.