What is Open Yale Courses?

Open Yale Courses (OYC) provides lectures and other materials from selected Yale College courses to the public free of charge via the Internet. The courses span the full range of liberal arts disciplines, including humanities, social sciences, and physical and biological sciences.

  • Registration is not required.
  • No course credit, degree, or certificate is available through the Open Yale Courses website.

The online courses are designed for a wide range of people around the world, among them self-directed and life-long learners, educators, and high school and college students. The integrated, highly flexible web interface allows users, in effect, to audit Yale undergraduate courses if they wish to. It also gives the user a wide variety of other options for structuring the learning process, for example downloading, redistributing, and remixing course materials.

Each course includes a full set of class lectures produced in high-quality video accompanied by such other course materials as syllabi, suggested readings, and problem sets. The lectures are available as downloadable videos, and an audio-only version is also offered. In addition, searchable transcripts of each lecture are provided.

Who Leads Open Yale Courses?

Diana E. E. Kleiner, Dunham Professor of History of Art and Classics and former Deputy Provost, is Founding Project Director and Principal Investigator of Open Yale Courses. Professor Kleiner brings to the project a wealth of experience in the development of Internet educational offerings as well as her long-time experience as Yale professor, scholar, and administrator. Visit http://arthistory.yale.edu/faculty/faculty/faculty_kleiner.html.

Who is Participating in Open Yale Courses?

Leading Yale scholars and scientists who teach outstanding courses at the introductory undergraduate level are participating in Open Yale Courses. The project website provides brief biographical information and links to their departmental affiliation.

Who is Supporting Open Yale Courses?

Open Yale Courses is supported by a grant from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation in Menlo Park, CA. Through its Open Educational Resources (OER) initiative, launched in 2001, the Hewlett Foundation "seeks to use information technology to help equalize access to knowledge and educational opportunities across the world." The initiative supports "the development and dissemination of high quality content, innovative approaches to remove barriers to the creation, use, re-use and sharing of high quality content, and projects that seek to improve understanding of the demand for openly available content." Visit http://www.hewlett.org.

Can I earn course credit for Open Yale Courses?  

Although no course credit can be earned for courses viewed on the Open Yale Courses website, two of the courses made available through the project can be taken for Yale College credit through the Yale Summer Online. 

  • Listening To Music with Craig Wright
  • Milton with John Rogers

Both professors are teaching their courses to admitted students this summer in an online format. Both courses feature extensive interaction with faculty and fellow students. Click here to learn more and apply to either course.

What License is Used for Open Yale Courses?

The license that covers most of the lectures and other course material on Open Yale Courses is Creative Commons' Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 license. This license permits the free use or re-purposing of the Open Yale Courses material by others. Under this license you are allowed to download and redistribute the Open Yale Courses material or remix, tweak, and build upon this material to produce new lectures or other types of creations. To be allowed to do so, however, your use of the material must be non-commercial and you must credit Yale [and the appropriate Yale faculty member] as the originators of the material. Additionally, you must license any new use of the Open Yale Courses material under identical terms. For more information on the scope of the Creative Commons license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/us/.

In some cases, material under copyright held by a third party (i.e., an individual or organization not connected with Yale) may be subject to more restrictive licensing terms. Please refer to the Credit Section of the lectures and course material to identify third-party material.

Questions and Support

For general and technical support questions, please see the "Help" section of this site.