Director Letter

Dear Friend of OCW,

We are delighted to celebrate another year of MIT OpenCourseWare—our 17th since the project was announced April 4, 2001!

MIT faculty, students, and instructors are at the heart of OCW. Their generosity in sharing just about everything taught at MIT has created an ecosystem of openness that is transforming teaching and learning around the world. The free availability and accessibility of content from MIT instructors make OCW a powerful tool for anyone with the drive to learn and improve their knowledge.

We are also inspired by OCW fans like you—motivated students, educators, and independent learners—who put learning into action. We hear your stories of personal triumph in mastering a concept that once seemed impossible to understand. We are amazed by the many learners who continue to study in very adverse circumstances. These stories and the feedback emails we receive (and we read every single one) demonstrate the real and far-reaching impact of OCW.

What’s New

You may have noticed that many of the courses we’ve recently published are very rich in resources. This is certainly by design! But a few recent publications are especially robust.

A great example of this is the Brains, Minds and Machines Summer Course. Combining cognitive science, neuroscience, and artificial intelligence, this course explores what intelligence is, how it is produced by the brain, and how it could be replicated in machines. The course site features 61 instructional videos from leading researchers in these fields, plus helpful background tutorials and videos of student projects.

In a special Instructor Insights section, the coordinator of the course, Ellen Hildreth, shares her reflections on fostering the development of interdisciplinary thinking, maintaining coherence across a wide range of topics, and more.

What’s In the Pipeline

We are now working on an ambitious schedule of other publishing projects that include 5.08J Biological Chemistry II, 6.S905 Programming for the Puzzled, 8.03SC Vibrations and Waves, 24.912 Black Matters: Introduction to Black Studies, and CMS.631 Data Storytelling Studio: Climate Change.

We continue to be committed to sharing materials from across MIT’s curriculum and to representing, as best we can, the experience of learning at MIT. Our goal is to support and serve learners at every point in their lifelong educational journey.


Joseph Pickett
Publication Director
MIT OpenCourseWare

P.S. It’s always fun to take a moment and review some of OCW’s accomplishments, especially by the numbers: