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Wednesday, April 15, 2009

20 Free eLearning Resources

Today I have Karen Schweitzer guest blogging. Please be sure to check out her guest post. Guest posts are always welcome, please contact me.

The Open Content movement has led to the creation of freely available software, web apps, content management systems, and other helpful eLearning resources for educators and students. If you're looking for high quality content that can be used at home and in the classroom, here are 20 sites worth exploring:

Shmoop - This site offers literature, history, and poetry study guides written by Ph.D. and Masters students from top universities. Students use Shmoop to get facts, kick-start an academic paper, and discuss questions with other online learners. Teachers use Shmoop in reading and writing assignments.

Moodle - Moodle is a free Course Management System (CMS) that can be used to create online learning sites. Educators who are new to Moodle and want to get started quickly can take advantage of the site's many tutorials and articles.

Connexions - This Rice University website is a good place to share and view open education materials. Anyone can contribute a chunk of knowledge, course, or textbook. Contributions are split into modules and fully accessible to anyone with an Internet connection.

Wobook - Educators and students can publish ebooks for free on this web oriented book site. Wobook accepts PDF, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Open Office documents.

Yudu Freedom - Yudu is a free library of digital content. You can read and buy digital content, and if you have something to publish, you can publish and share your own content.

Momindum - With this free service, you can record your lectures, presentations, or meetings and share them online or offline with other people. Momindum works with a wide range of other resources, including websites, Word documents, PowerPoint slides, PDF documents, and Flash animations.

TeacherTube - This You-Tube style website serves as an online community for teachers and online learners. Educators can upload instructional videos, lesson plan videos, and other visual content. Videos can be made public or shared on an invitation-only basis.

Cramberry - Cramberry is a smart, online flashcard maker with unique capabilities. Users can study the flashcards made by other people or make their own free flashcards. Cramberry tracks progress and can be used by anyone with a PC or iPhone. - This website, which was created by a nonprofit public charity, is becoming increasingly popular for classroom use. posts pros and cons on diverse controversial topics to encourage discussion and critical thinking.

Second Life - Second Life is a popular eLearning resource. This free 3D virtual world has been used in thousands of universities and school systems to teach students about various topics.

Make Internet TV - Created by a non-profit organization, this website offers simple instructions for people who want to learn how to record and publish Internet video. Covered topics include equipment, shooting, editing, licensing, publishing, and promoting.

Chalksite - Designed specifically for teachers, Chalksite makes it easy for parents, students, and teachers to stay connected. Teachers can set up a central spot for all three parties to access grades, assignments, discussions, and more.

Class Marker - This site is the perfect place to conduct online testing. Class Marker can also be used to create and grade quizzes and tests. Special features include the ability to set time limits, link directly to quizzes from a website or email, and have quiz results emailed to you.

GradeFix - GradeFix is a free homework management system for students who want to optimize their schedule. Some of the things that have been accomplished with GradeFix include higher retention and at least half a grade improvement in coursework.

OpenHuddle - This multi-use video conferencing system makes it easy to interact online. Users can chat and send instant messages to one another using video, audio, and text.

Twiddla - Similar to OpenHuddle, this web-based meeting site is great for people who want to be able to browse the web together. With Twiddla, you can share websites, graphics, and photos. You can also brainstorm together on a blank canvas (white board).

Tangler - Tangler is perfect for educators and students who want to create a free, discussion forum. Forums can be made public or private and are fully customizable.

Campfire - This site offers instant messaging for groups. There is nothing to install or configure. Every Campfire chat is easy to start, password protected, and optimized for group chat.

ooVoo - ooVoo is a free system that supports video calls with up to six people at a time. It is the perfect way for online class members to stay in touch.

Dimdim - This online web conference is a great way to create virtual classrooms and deliver live presentations over the web. Dimdim can share synchronized voice, images, video, websites, white pages, and other content to up to 20 people at a time.

Related links

Guest post from Karen Schweitzer who writes for the college database on

Many thanks to Karen Schweitzer.
Enjoy your reading!