Top 50 Free Open Courseware Classes for Aspiring Scientists

Aspiring scientists can get a lot of help and knowledge from free online classes. Many universities offer open courseware classes that can help you learn the basics of a number of scientific fields. You can keep up to date on the latest developments, and learn to understand basic concepts. Whether you want the understanding to help you in your current job, or whether you are preparing to enter a degree program in the sciences, these 50 open courseware classes can help you get a solid handle on science.


Stylised_Lithium_AtomThis is one of the most interesting fields of science today. Here are some physics open courseware classes.

  1. Modern Physics: The University of Virginia offers the basics of modern physics for those who are just starting out.
  2. Modern Technology: Get an idea of the basic scientific method, and an outline of the fundamentals of physics from the University of Winnipeg.
  3. Introduction to Modern Physics: This Tufts University course helps you understand the history behind modern physics, and goes over the principles behind the biggest breakthroughs.
  4. Andes Physics Course: This course is part of the Open Learning Initiative from Carnegie Mellon University. Modules take you through the basics of physics.
  5. Visual Quantum Mechanics: Kansas State University offers and interesting journey through the world of quantum physics.
  6. Physics Courses: MIT offers a whole variety of open courseware classes on physics.


You need to know chemistry for a lot of different sciences. These courses can provide you insight into the basics of chemistry.

  1. Chemistry Classroom: The University of Akron offers a variety of chemistry classes that can help you understand the basics.
  2. Chemistry Modules: Vision Learning provides a number of visual learning modules related to different chemistry concepts.
  3. General Chemistry Online: Learn about basic chemistry in a visual and interesting way from Frostburg State University.
  4. Principles of Chemical Science: This course from provides a basic look at different principles related to chemistry.
  5. Chemistry and Biochemistry: This offers links to different open courseware from the University of Lethbridge in Alberta, Canada. Learn about biochemistry and chemistry concepts.
  6. Physical Chemistry Lecture Notes: These notes and lectures from Colby College can give you a good start on the concepts behind physical chemistry.


Get a basic understanding of the building blocks of life with these biology open courseware classes.

  1. Introductory Biology: MIT provides an introduction to biology, including interesting video lectures.
  2. Cell Biology: This course from the University of Arizona offers a look at the basic unit of biological composition: the cell.
  3. Principles of Biology: Understand the principles behind biology with help from this University of Utah course.
  4. Human Biology: The University of Leeds offers a look at the biological makeup of human beings.
  5. Life Sciences in the 21st Century: A look at modern biology and other life sciences from Virginia Tech.
  6. General Biology: The University of Massachusetts Boston provides an overview of the general principles of biology.
  7. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology: Get a look at the basics biochemistry and biology on the molecular level from the University of California Berkeley.

Astronomy and Space Science

Astronomy is a beautiful and interesting science. Here are some great courses related to astronomy and space science.

  1. Introduction to Astronomy: Learn the basics of the starts, planets and how they are formed from MIT.
  2. The Evolving Universe: The Open University offers an interesting course on galactic formation.
  3. Modern Astrophysics: A look at the physics of space, and how matter behaves in the vast outreaches of the universe.
  4. Motion Under Gravity: Gravity is a major influence in space science and astronomy. Learn the basics of motion and gravity from the Open University.
  5. Receivers, Antennas, and Signals: This course from MIT can help you learn about the signals from earth as well as space, and learn how different signals help in astronomy.
  6. A Brief History of Astronomy: The University of California San Diego provides an interesting look at astronomy through history.
  7. The Galileo Project: A fascinating offering from Rice University detailing the motion of stars and planets.

Earth Science

Learn about the sciences associated with our planet, Earth.

  1. Basics of Impact Cratering & Geological, Geophysical, Geochemical, Environmental Studies of Some Impact Craters of the Earth: This MIT course looks at impact craters scattered throughout Earth, and their scientific implications.
  2. Atmospheric and Ocean Circulations: Get an idea of the way physics affects the air and oceans in this class from MIT.
  3. Environmental and Natural Resources Economics: This course from Humboldt State University provides a look at the economics associated with natural resources and the environment.
  4. Geology and Science: Get a look at the scientific method, and how it relates to the science of geology from the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point.
  5. Geo-Sci Lecture Notes: Cornell University offers some comprehensive lecture notes on geology science.
  6. Introduction to Environmental Engineering: This course from Penn State provides a basic look at the basics surrounding the science of the environment, and attempts to engineering the natural and built.

Medical Science

Learn about the basics of the human body, and medical science, with these free open courseware classes.

  1. Human Physiology: Learn the basics of how the human body works from the University of Utah.
  2. Biostatistics: Johns Hopkins University offers a number of helpful courses in biostatistics and how they relate to medicine.
  3. Genomic Medicine: MIT offers a look at the medicine related to genes, and how gene therapy works.
  4. Design of Medical Devices and Implants: Another course from MIT, this provides you with a look at how medical technology is designed, and how it works.
  5. Human Growth and Development: Learn about how humans develop from birth to death from Tufts University.
  6. Population Medicine: Another course from Tufts offers a look at how medicine is accomplished today, with larger populations.


Learn about the science of human behavior, and how it affects them, and those around them.

  1. Introduction to Personality Psychology: This course from the University of Michigan introduces the concept of personality.
  2. Brain and Cognitive Sciences: MIT offers a number of interesting and applicable courses related to psychology and cognition.
  3. SALMON Psychology: This collection of psychology courses and lectures from the University of Plymouth offers insight into a number of issues.
  4. Ambient Intelligence: This MIT course looks at how humans interact with computers and machines, and how it affects their cognition and perception.

Computer Science

Using a computer is a necessary exercise in many scientific fields. Here are some courses that can help you better understand and use computers.

  1. Communication, Technology and Policy: Learn about how computers aid in communication and their importance from the University of Southern Queensland.
  2. The Beauty and Joy of Computing offers a basic overview of computers and computing.
  3. Mathematics for Computer Science: This MIT course offers a look at how math can be used in computer science.
  4. Advanced Data Analysis: Learn how to analyze data and how to interpret what you find with this Tokyo Tech open courseware class.
  5. Machine Structures: This is another helpful Berkeley class that can help you learn about structures, computer memory and other concepts.
  6. Programming Methodology: This course from Connexions offers a basic look at the methodology behind computer programming.
This entry was posted in Education, Science and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.