Featured Course Archive: July-September 2010

Photo by Thomas Favre-Bulle on Flickr.

September 28, 2010: Erroneous Reports of Possible OCW Paywall Appear in News Media

Recent news articles have suggested that MIT is considering placing OCW behind a paywall. The content on OCW will continue to be free and available online, as it has always been. Read the rest of the statement from OCW.



Photo by purple_onion on Flickr.

September 23, 2010: Letter from the Executive Director

Enhancing OCW content and connecting a community of learners: read all about it in the newest letter from executive director Cecilia d'Oliveira.



Photo by Dystopos on Flickr.

September 20, 2010: MIT OpenCourseWare Teams Up with OpenStudy

OCW and OpenStudy are teaming up to help OCW users connect and study together. OpenStudy groups support real-time interaction between students and independent learners from around the world. OpenStudy members can answer one another's questions, work collaboratively on problem sets and connect with learners who share interests.




September 14, 2010: Aerospace Biomedical and Life Support Engineering

A new study describes a major risk for astronauts with wide hands after working or training in space suit gloves: their fingernails may fall off. A co-author of the study, MIT's Dava Newman, tackles the physiological challenges presented by working in space in Aerospace Biomedical and Life Support Engineering.



Photo of Pompeii by Ferdi's - World on Flickr.

September 9, 2010: The Ancient City

Investigate the relationship between urban architecture and the political, social and economic role of cities in the Greek and Roman world in The Ancient City.



Photo by presta on Flickr.

September 1, 2010: Chinese I Study Group

Studying Chinese I on OCW? No need to study alone. Just select "Join a Study Group" to find other online scholars.




August 27, 2010: OCW Named One of 50 Best Websites of 2010

TIME Magazine has named MIT OpenCourseWare one of the 50 Best Websites of 2010. OCW shares the honor with such notable and well-known sites as LinkedIn, Etsy and TEDTalks.




August 23, 2010: Molecular Biology and Genetics in Modern Medicine

Geneticists have discovered that "junk" genes that lie dead in our DNA can come back to life and cause muscular dystrophy. Scientists such as MIT's David Housman will now be looking for other diseases with similar causes.

Housman's Molecular Biology and Genetics in Modern Medicine provides a foundation for understanding the relationship between molecular biology, genetics, and medicine.




August 17, 2010: Technologies for Creative Learning

In this week's Pogue's Post, David Pogue covers the rise of do-it-yourself software from Google's App Inventor to MIT's own Scratch.

The possibilities for both teaching and learning opened by such accessible technology are endless. Some of these are explored in Technologies for Creative Learning.




August 12, 2010: A String of Saliva Beads

MIT researchers have discovered why saliva and other viscoelastic fluids from a string of beads when stretched between two surfaces – a glob of saliva stretched between your thumb and finger, for instance.

The science behind this lies in the principle concepts and methods of fluid dynamics, covered in Advanced Fluid Mechanics.




August 9, 2010: Practical Programming in C

The workhorse of the UNIX operating system and the lingua franca of embedded processors is C. In this short, intensive course, students learn the basic syntax and grammar of the language, then practice programming techniques.



Scientists have cloned sheep using the nucleus of mammary
gland cells. Photo by eir@si on Flickr.

August 3, 2010: Regenerative Medicine: from Bench to Bedside

Get a complete view into the science behind cloning, organ production, and in vitro formation of beating heart cells in Regenerative Medicine: from Bench to Bedside.



Photo by tbridge on Flickr.

July 30, 2010: MIT OpenCourseWare recognized by AAAS

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) has named MIT OpenCourseWare as a recipient of the Science Prize for Online Resources in Education. The Prize honors exceptional online materials that are available free of charge to science educators. An article about OCW will be published in the July 30 issue of Science.



Photo from Wiki Commons.

July 27, 2010: Computer Automatically Deciphers Ancient Language

Much of the ancient Semitic language Ugaritic has been translated using a computer program. The breakthrough has the potential not just to unlock other ancient languages, but could expand automated translation of modern languages.

The team responsible for this breakthrough was led by MIT Professor Regina Barzilay, whose Advanced Natural Language Processing provides an introduction to natural language processing.



Photo by gnackgnackgnack on Flickr.

July 22, 2010: Photography and Truth

Still photography is considered in Photography and Truth from the perspectives of history and social science. Discussions include uses and functions of pictures, understanding and interpretation of them, and how they shape – and are shaped by – politics. Be sure to check out the rich collection of example in the Photos section.



Photo by JKim1 on Flickr.

July 16, 2010: Editor's Picks

Not sure where to start on OCW? Our Editor has selected ten courses on a wide variety of subjects that will give you a good introduction to all OCW has to offer.



Photo by StaunchThrowback on Flickr.

July 12, 2010: 2,000 Courses and Counting

With the publication of ten courses last week, OCW has reached a milestone: 2,000 courses. "These 2,000 courses represent the voluntary contributions of hundreds of MIT faculty and thousands of MIT students," says OCW Executive Director Cecilia d'Oliveira. "It's a remarkable feat of intellectual philanthropy."



Photo by Richard Howard from MIT Spectrum.

July 7, 2010: Ortiz Named Dean of Graduate Education

Professor of Materials Science and Engineering Christine Ortiz has been named dean for graduate education. Get to know Prof. Ortiz’s work with Nanomechanics of Materials and Biomaterials on OCW.