Either a student or a working professional, education is something that will help both of them to excel in their respective domains. It is difficult though, to go for paid courses for the many courses that you may want to learn. Online education is becoming very popular for several reasons these days. You get one stop shop for courses in various domains, most of the time it is provided by one of the best institutes in the world, you can read from comfort of your home or office and as per your desired time and most importantly it is mostly being offered for free.
Coursera.org Founded by computer science professors from Stanford University. Coursera works with Stanford University, the University of Michigan, Princeton, and the University of Pennsylvania to offer their range of courses. At present they have partnered with 62 universities for offering their courses. Courses offered are in the fields of Arts, Biology & Life Sciences, Business & Management, Chemistry, Computer Science, Economics, Energy, Engineering, Food & Nutrition, Health & Society, Humanities, Information, Technology & Design, Law, Medicine, Mathematics, Music, Film & Audio, Statistics & Data Analysis. Short video lectures on each topic are released every week for a particular course. There are weekly assignments given for some courses to increase the grip on the course content.
Khanacademy.org Created in 2006 by American educator Salman Khan, a graduate of MIT and Harvard Business School. At present it offers nearly 4000 micro-lectures. Their lectures are stored on YouTube. They offer video tutorials on topics like mathematics, history, healthcare, medicine, finance, physics, chemistry, biology, astronomy, economics, cosmology, and organic chemistry, American civics, art history, macroeconomics, and computer science. To get a quick understanding on any topic this is the best web site to visit.
Academicearth.org Launched on March 24, 2009, this website offers free online video lectures from universities such as UC Berkeley, UCLA, University of Michigan, Harvard, MIT, Princeton, CMU, Stanford and Yale. They cover subjects like Astronomy, Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Economics, Engineering, English, Entrepreneurship, History, Law, Mathematics, Medicine, Philosophy, Physics, Political Science, Psychology, Religion, and Statistics.
NPTEL National Program on technology enhanced learning is a Government of India sponsored collaborative educational program. This program aims to enhance the quality of engineering education in India and is open to all. The 7 Indian Institute of Technology and Indian Institute of Science jointly carry it. It offers complete video lecture series on around 600 engineering courses. Courses in Civil Engineering, Computer Science Engineering, Electrical, Electronics and Communication, Mechanical, Ocean, Biotechnology and Mining engineering streams.
MIT OpenCourseWare MIT OCW is an initiative from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. They have all their under-graduate and graduate level courses online, partly free and openly available to anyone, anywhere. They offer online material for nearly 2150 courses. They offer courses in Business, Energy, Engineering, Fine Arts, Health and Medicine, Humanities, Mathematics, Science, Social Science, Society and Teaching & Education.
All of the above mentioned website offer free courses. Students, Parents, Teachers and working professionals can refer them for specific purposes.