You have got to hand it to The Great Courses (sometimes also called The Teaching Company). Based in Chantilly, VA, the company has traveled across America, recording professors lecturing on great topics. They have roughly 350 courses in their catalog, market them aggressively with millions of print materials and emails, and generate $110 million in annual sales. It’s quite an accomplishment, especially given that consumers now have free alternatives — the ability to download 450 Free Courses recorded by world-class universities.
Free is good. But we readily admit that The Great Courses can be worth the cost, particularly if you buy their courses on sale. The lectures are generally engaging, well polished and certainly informative. And it just so happens that we’ve dug up 10 free lectures sponsored by the company. (Most are individual lectures taken from longer courses available for purchase online.) Give them a try and then decide whether free or paid is the way to go.
UPDATE: If you would like to sample a complete course for free, you now can. See the details on this page: Download a Free Course from “The Great Courses” Through Audible.com’s Free Trial Program
- Will China and India Dominate the 21st Century Global Economy – LINK REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE GREAT COURSES – Lee Branstetter, Carnegie Mellon
- Revealing the Dead Sea Scrolls to the World – Video – Gary A. Rendsburg, Rutgers
- Ancient Origins of the Olympic Games - LINK REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE GREAT COURSES – Jeremy McInerney, University of Pennsylvania
- The Search for What Killed the Dinosaurs – Audio – Peter Ward, University of Washington
- The Story Behind the D-Day Invasion – Audio – Thomas Childers, University of Pennsylvania
- Optimizing Brain Fitness – Video – Richard Restak, George Washington University School of Medicine & Health Sciences
- Memory and the Brain - Video – Jeanette Norden, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine
- Voting: Determining the Will of the People – Video – Scott Stevens, James Madison University
- It’s All About the Calories! - Video – Roberta Anding, Baylor College of Medicine
- Hector Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique – LINK REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE GREAT COURSES – Robert Greenberg, San Francisco Performances
- Bonus Lecture: Globalization of Capital Flows – Video – Timothy Taylor, Macalester College
Related Content: Don’t forget to visit our collection: Back to School: Free Resources for Lifelong Learners Everywhere
Brain image above comes courtesy of BigStockPhoto.