Free education might be scarce, but free massive open online courses aren’t!


South African matric students have recently received their Grade 12 results and with great excitement for their futures comes great anticipation. For those who wished to further their studies but haven’t made it into a tertiary education institution like a university or college, we might have the right solution for you!

Thanks to the privilege of living in the Digital Age we have access to several digital benefits, such as free online courses! Universities around the world like Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology offer various courses through organisations for the benefit of people who usually cannot afford the initial university certificate, diploma and degree courses provided, people who would like to expand their knowledge for personal use or to improve their CVs for interviews.

These courses are collectively called MOOCs or Massive Open Online Courses and in the past seven years, close to 800 universities have created more than 8,000 of these MOOCs. In just the past six months, over 200 universities have created over 600 courses accessible to anyone!

We’ll highlight the most popular organisations and websites that provide these courses and the categories available.



Founded by Harvard University and MIT in 2012, edX is an online learning destination and MOOC provider, offering high-quality courses from the world’s best universities and institutions to learners everywhere. Their students come from every country in the world! Whether you are interested in computer science, languages, engineering, psychology, writing, electronics, biology, or marketing, edX has a course for you! edX was founded by colleges and universities and is governed by these institutions, making the NPO a trustworthy source for eligible courses.

Enroll now and learn something new:



Coursera was founded in 2012 by two Stanford Computer Science professors who wanted to share their knowledge and skills with the world. Professors Daphne Koller and Andrew Ng put their courses online for anyone to take – and taught more learners in a few months than they could have in an entire lifetime in the classroom.

Since then, they’ve built a platform where anyone, anywhere can learn and earn credentials from the world’s top universities and education providers.

Check out their courses here:



Alison was founded in Galway in 2007 and has grown organically to become a major force in online education. Today, with more than 11 million learners in 195 countries, Alison is changing how the world learns. They offer a range of free courses that meet the many diverse needs of their learners. Graduates will have the choice of purchasing their certificates after completing a course. Alison is free of charge to you, but it’s still a business – albeit a socially-focused one.

View their courses here:


Many of these are completely self-paced, so you can start taking them at your convenience. There are many more websites that offer free courses, but we’d advise you to start here and you can fulfil your 2018 resolutions starting today!