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7000+ OpenCourseWare Courses from Top Institutions

Curated collection of thousands of open educational resources from institutions like MIT, Stanford, and Yale.

Twenty years ago, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) set itself the ambitious goal of making the bulk of their courses available online to learners worldwide. On April 4th, 2001, MIT announced they’d published core educational materials for free through their MIT OpenCourseWare (OCW) platform.

Soon, other universities joined in by sharing Open Education Resources (OER) on their university websites, including the Open University, as recently reported by Class Central: 1000+ Open University Free Certificates.

“The idea is simple: to publish all of our course materials online and make them widely available to everyone.” Dick K.P. Yue, Professor, MIT School of Engineering.

A decade later, Harvard and MIT launched the course platform edX. Online course platforms typically offer more interactive learning experiences than OCW platforms, often allowing students to sign up, complete assignments, interact with peers, review courses, and earn badges or certificates of completion.

MIT OpenCourseWare classic look, before its refresh in 2022

Class Central has been monitoring the development of the modern online course movement for more than a decade. Nowadays a substantial part of the course content is locked behind a paywall. OCW platforms, by contrast, give educators an opportunity to freely share high quality educational resources, and also leverage them in their own courses.

So we did some research and compiled the following list of OCW platforms launched by institutions worldwide. They offer some of the best teaching and learning materials available for free online.

If you find an important source missing, please leave a comment below. We’d be happy to include it in our compilation.

Quick Links

For your convenience, we’ve listed all the institutions that maintain an OpenCourseWare platform below. Click on one to jump to the corresponding section:

More Courses

If you don’t find what you need in the course list below, browse Class Central’s catalog of over 150K courses or visit our thematic collections:

You can find all the Class Central free certificate articles here.

OpenCourseWare (OCW) Courses 

2500+ MIT Free Online Courses

MIT OpenCourseWare refreshed homepage

Launched in 2001, MIT OpenCourseWare offers more than 2,500 courses and resources, provided on their website, which was refreshed last year, and on their YouTube channel, which has 400M views. These courses cover a wide variety of subjects both at the undergraduate and graduate level. The platform’s most popular courses include:

150+ Stanford Free Online Courses

Stanford Engineering Everywhere homepage

Stanford Engineering Everywhere (SEE) provides free access to full course materials of 9 popular courses in Engineering. With its Creative Commons license, it allows educators to use Stanford engineering course materials in their own classrooms. 

Most of Stanford’s on-campus computer science courses have a companion website. Many are only open to Stanford students. But others are open to everyone, giving access to course materials such as slides, readings, and assignments. Some even provide video lessons — for instance: CS106B, CS107CS110CS221CS229CS231n, and CS224N.

Class Central has collected 150+ Stanford on-campus courses.

Stanford Online homepage

Stanford Online offers a catalog of extended education, including paid professional certificates, degrees, and free content. Its Youtube channel Stanford Online offers many video lectures on topics like NLP, Deep Learning, and Machine Learning with Graphs. The courses offered include:

40+ Yale Free Online Courses

Open Yale Courses homepage

Since 2007, Open Yale Courses (OYC) provides selected lectures and other learning materials from Yale College courses, free of charge. Millions of learners from around the world have watched them on the OYC website, and through YouTube and iTunes UYale’s YouTube channel has accumulated over 154M views. The courses offered include: 

1000+ Open University Free Online Courses

OpenLearn homepage

The Open University offers 1000 free online courses via their OpenLearn platform. And these include free certificates of completion, or sometimes, badges.

OpenLearn takes the form of a catalog of open educational resources (OER), including articles, podcasts, videos, and of course, full-fledged online courses.

Here are some of the courses you can take on OpenLearn:

2500+ NPTEL Free Online Courses

NPTEL homepage

The National Programme on Technology Enhanced Learning (NPTEL) is an online learning repository initiated by seven Indian Institutes of Technology (Bombay, Delhi, Kanpur, Kharagpur, Madras, Guwahati and Roorkee) along with the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, in 2003.

It provides free access to over 2,300 courses in engineering, basic sciences, and selected humanities, social science, and medicine.

The videos of these courses can also be found on their YouTube channel, which since 2007 have accumulated 438M views, making NPTEL one of the most popular OCW resources on the planet. Their courses include: 

150+ Michigan Free Online Courses

Open Michigan homepage

Open Michigan is the home for all things open at the University of Michigan, including Open Educational Resources. Learners are free to access a range of course materials, videos, lectures licensed under Creative Common. Courses include:

70+ Carnegie Mellon University Free Online Courses

Carnegie Mellon University Open Learning Initiative courses

The Open Learning Initiative (OLI) provides textbook-replacement courseware in some of the domains of research of Carnegie Mellon University. Most of them are paid (albeit often reasonably priced), but some are entirely free. There are 80+ courses, including:

200+ TU Delft Free Online Courses

TU Delft OCW platform homepage

TU Delft launched its OpenCourseWare (OCW) website with three master’s degree programs: Water Management, Micro-electronics, and Offshore Engineering in October 2007. Today, they offer 200+ courses. These include:

90+ University of California Irvine Free Online Courses

UCI Open homepage

UC Irvine launched its OpenCourseWare in November 2006 and posts lectures on its YouTube channel. Courses include:

60+ Utah State University Free Online Courses

Utah State OER platform

USU’s OpenCourseWare (OCW) provides open access to educational resources in different subjects like Anthropology, Biological and Irrigation Engineering, and Education. The latest material is from 2008 and the lectures are audio recordings. It does allow reuse. Courses include:

200+ NTHU Free Online Courses

National Tsing Hua University is a research university in Hsinchu City, Taiwan. They host 1200+ courses in Chinese language on their OCW platform. The videos are also uploaded on their YouTube channel which since 2008 has received 10M views.

It is one of the rare OCW platforms still creating and uploading new content. You can switch between Chinese and English to browse the course information and video lectures are taught in Chinese. The latest courses include:

270+ NTU Free Online Courses

National Taiwan University (NTU) is one of the most prestigious universities in Taiwan.  NTU OCW now offers 270+ courses in traditional Chinese language on the website and some course videos are also on its Youtube channel. 6 new courses were launched in 2021. The 10 most popular courses on the platform have a total of 14M views

220+ NYCU Free Online Courses

National Yang Ming Chiao Tung University (NYCU) is a national university in Taiwan. NYCU OCW hosts 220 courses on its website and videos are also available on YouTube. As far as we can tell, the courses are mostly in the Chinese language. NYCU OCW Youtube channel has garnered 23M views since 2012.

50+ University of Tsukuba Free Online Courses

The University of Tsukuba, located in Tsukuba, Ibaraki, is one of the prestigious national universities established by the Japanese Government. Tsubaka OCW offers a number of courses and lecture videos in the field of Maths, Psychology, Physics, and many others. The videos are hosted on their YouTube channel which since 2013 has accumulated 2M views.

200 METU Free Online Courses

Middle East Technical University (METU) is a public technical university located in Ankara, Turkey. METU OpenCourseWare offers ~200 courses in Turkish and English. The videos are hosted on its YouTube channel which since 2013 has received 2M views.

140 Hanyang University Free Online Courses

Hanyang University is a private research university in South Korea. Their OCW Platform hosts 140 courses in Korean and English. Their YouTube channel has received 8M views since 2008.

140+ UTokyo Free Online Courses

The University of Tokyo is a public research university located in Bunkyō, Tokyo, Japan. On their OCW platform, they offer 140+ courses in the Japanese Language. In 2018, they launched a Youtube channel which has since then accumulated 600k views.

55+ Kyoto University Free Online Courses

Kyoto University OpenCourseWare (OCW) actively publishes and publicly shares the videos and materials from the courses, open lectures, and international symposiums at Kyoto University. They offer 55+ courses, but also keep uploading lectures to their YouTube channel, which since 2008 has accumulated over 25M views.

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Heba Ledwon

Heba was the Business Development and Partnerships Specialist at Class Central. She worked closely with businesses and universities to provide the most possible value for the Class Central community.
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Rui Ma

With a background in Health Statistics and Sociology, she has built a career path in Data Analytics.
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Manoel Cortes Mendez

Software engineer and online graduate student in computer science passionate about education, technology, and their intersection.

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