edX - free education - BrokeInLondon



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Free Online Courses

edX is a not-for-profit open-source online learning platform, founded by two of the best universities in the world- Harvard and MIT– which aims to make learning free for anyone in the world, as well as collecting information and doing research on exactly how people learn, so that they can help make learning more efficient and easy than ever before. The site contains hundreds of free courses in dozens of subjects which can be learned anytime and anywhere in the world, all with great quality teachers and subject matter.

  • Covering more than 20 subjects and offering more than 200 courses such as: Introduction to Computer Science, Introduction to Public Speaking, Introduction to the Music Business, Software as a Service, Science & Cooking and much more
  • Free course registration
  • List of the colleges and universities that comprise the edX consortium
  • List of courses
  • Peer-to-peer social learning tools, to connect with others, make friends and share knowledge
  • Blog
  • Verified or unverified certificates on completed courses
  • Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ accounts

Site Pros

  • Large number of completely free university courses for anyone interested in the sciences and technology
  • Free courses from the best universities and professors in the world, ensuring fantastic quality across the board
  • Verified certificates, to add to your CV and build a roster of skills
  • Totally free learning- both registration and learning courses cost nothing
  • Site is clean and non-cluttered, and courses can be found easily

Site Cons

  • Under 10% of those who begin a course finish it and get their certificate
  • Classes mostly intro-level, and do not count as actual college credit
  • The majority of courses are scientific and technological– only a few focus on arts or the humanities
  • Courses can take up a lot of time to complete, with the more technical ones taking dozens of hours to finish
  • Though free for all, only a few foreign languages are available, and these can’t be searched for
  • No apps– difficulty learning on the move, or by mobile
  • For verified, rather than unverified certificates, there is a fee

Other Tips

  • Options to donate to the site, if you’ve gained from it and want to give something back
  • Courses can say a lot without actually teaching you anything- the forums and wider internet are crucial for understanding some of the courses, if you’ve had no experience beforehand


edX can be a little daunting to those new to the site, but for anyone looking to learn and willing to put in the hours, it can be a fantastic resource for introductory courses on a huge range of things. Fairly easy to use, with no time limits or deadlines, edX can be an excellent place for those with the time and dedication to learn a new skill for free.

Go back to Free Educational Courses category to find more websites and organisations offering free courses in London.