Udacity now includes classes on physics and mathematics!

As a researcher and educator in mathematical physics, you can imagine how excited I am by this news.

When I first started cataloguing online learning initiatives some months ago, I noticed that many of the modern efforts tended to focus a lot on computer science and web programming. This concerned me so much that I even started spending all my spare time setting up a website to bring such modern, polished, technology-based learning to the classical fields of applied mathematics and mechanics.

Progress on this front has been slow, but with the advent of MOOCs, and Udacity recently expanding its focus beyond computer science, I’m beginning to see that lectures such as mine will one day find a good home!

The following is a list of the new courses on Udacity that are now open for enrollment:

  • Intro to Physics: Landmarks in Physics—Learn the basics of physics on location in Italy, the Netherlands and the UK, by answering some of the discipline’s major questions from over the last 2000 years!
  • Intro to Statistics: Making Decisions Based on Data—Statistics is about extracting meaning from data. In this class, we will introduce techniques for visualizing relationships in data and systematic techniques for understanding the relationships using mathematics.
  • Logic and Discrete Mathematics: Foundations in ComputingDiscrete mathematics, also known as combinatorics, is a broad term. In this course, learn the basics of Boolean algebra and discrete mathematics with an emphasis on their connections with computer science.
  • Software Testing: How to Make Software Fail—When writing software, destruction can be just as valuable as creation. Learn how to catch bugs and break software as you discover different testing methods that will help you build better software.
  • Algorithms: Crunching Social Networks—Ever played the Kevin Bacon game? This class will show you how it works by giving you an introduction to the design and analysis of algorithms that enable you to discover how individuals are connected.

These courses begin on June 25, and as you might imagine, I can’t wait for the introductory physics class to start. It sounds like so much fun!

But until then, you can learn some physics watching beautiful demonstration videos on MIT’s TechTV.