Get Started with OCW

“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

 

Welcome to MIT OpenCourseWare!

Here are a few things to know about MIT OpenCourseWare (OCW) before you begin:

  • OCW provides free MIT educational content you can use to enhance or refresh your knowledge or teach others. It's best to think of OCW as a free online library of course materials used to teach MIT undergraduate and graduate courses.
  • After a course is taught at MIT, we take selected course materials (such as the course syllabus and a description of the activities completed during the course) and publish them on the OCW website.
  • Please note: you cannot receive credit, a degree, or a certificate upon completion of OCW materials. OCW does not have registration or enrollment options, and we do not provide interaction or direct contact with MIT faculty, staff, or students.

There are more than 2,200 courses on OCW and you might want to begin your exploration in the following ways. If you have any questions with regards to getting started with OCW, please check out our Frequently Asked Questions section or contact us.

Start Your Learning Adventure

Each OCW course contains at least two parts: 1) some type of instruction which may include a syllabus, lecture notes, reading list, or calendar, and 2) a learning activity such as assignments, quizzes, or exams.

When looking at a course, the best places to begin are:

  • The syllabus, which explains the goals of the course, and prerequisite knowledge or course work.
  • The calendar, which gives you an idea of the sequence of what is taught and studied.

Then it's up to you to decide what you'd like to learn. Whether you choose to study a course from beginning to end or just focus on a concept or two, we encourage you to work at your own pace since you won't receive any credit, certificate, or degree from OCW.

To see if there is a community of learners studying the same subject or topic, please visit OpenStudy.com. You can ask questions and provide answers to anyone in the study group.

You might have questions about the overall sequence for courses within each discipline and what courses MIT requires for a complete program of study. You can find out by visiting the MIT curriculum guide. Please note, OCW provides this guide for informational purposes only. You cannot receive a degree, a certificate, or any kind of credit for your study of courses on OCW.

Find Teaching Aids to Supplement Your Curriculum

OCW offers numerous resources for you to use, adapt, and share with your students. Here are some helpful tips:

  • Use Advanced Search to find assignments, recitations, exams, labs, study materials, or related resources on a specific topic.
  • Scan our simulations, applets and visualizations list for your students to modify or control experiments.
  • Flip your classroom to spend more in-class time on discussion or problem solving by having your students review audio and video lectures for homework.
  • Encourage your students to review concepts they should master in order to study your course.
  • High school teachers may want to look at Highlights for High School, a collection of resources curated from the collection, helpful for enhancing the classroom experience, studying for AP exams, and providing exceptional students an opportunity to learn more.

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

How do I register to use MIT OpenCourseWare?
MIT OpenCourseWare is free and requires no registration.

Why doesn't every course have solutions to assignments, quizzes, and exams?
MIT faculty and instructors publish only as much content as they are comfortable providing on a Web site that is freely accessible worldwide. In some cases, solutions to homework assignments, quizzes, and exams are only discussed and presented in the classroom, and not made available in print or electronic format. In other cases, the instructors plan to re-use the assignments, quizzes, and exams in their MIT classrooms, so they do not wish to widely publish the solutions.

Why doesn't every MIT OpenCourseWare course offer video lectures?
Where possible, we have included pre-existing video on this site, and we continue to invest in video recordings. Video, however, remains a supplement to our mission of publishing and updating core teaching materials. Video is among the most costly types of content to produce and distribute, and including more video would impact the depth and currency of the site, affecting the many other ways visitors use our material. At present our focus remains on making the courseware used in all MIT courses available as a resource to educators and learners around the world.

Do all MIT OpenCourseWare video lectures have subtitles?
Going forward, every video lecture published by OCW will have subtitles and transcripts. However, due to the lengthy process of creating and reviewing these resources, subtitles and transcripts will often be unavailable until some time after the videos publish. For older video lectures, we are making an effort to retroactively publish subtitles and transcripts as our resources allow.

How do I get a copy of the course pack for a particular course?
The course-pack materials that accompany most MIT courses often contain proprietary information and copyrighted materials that MIT Faculty only use in their classroom interactions with MIT students. We cannot, therefore, make these materials openly available to MIT OpenCourseWare users.