Free Tools to Tutor Yourself in Anything

Posted: 12/10/2009 in How to...., Tutorial

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While there is much to be learned from taking a course or finding a professional tutor, there are many tools out there that can help you learn just about anything you’d like to entirely on your own. With a little elbow grease, trial and error and dedication, these online tools can help guide you through the learning process step-by-step. Whether you want to learn how to renovate your kitchen or the intricacies of calculus, you’ll find the assistance you need through these resources.

General

These tutorial-filled sites offer instruction on a wide variety of topics.

  1. eHow: Formerly Expert Village, this site it full of detailed instructions and videos that will take you through the basics of activities in categories like health, food and drink, legal, parenting and more.
  2. SuTree: Here you’ll find thousands of user-submitted videos on just about anything you could possibly want to learn more about.
  3. Video Jug: This site will give you access to professional-looking videos that will have you improving your etiquette, applying your makeup or knitting a scarf better in no time.
  4. TrickLife: Check out this site for how-to instruction in computers, crafts, electronics, hobbies and a whole lot more.
  5. MyTutorials: You can search through the existing tutorials on this site, pose your own questions and get help or share your expertise in a video or lesson of your own.
  6. Tutorial Ninja: This site is home to a wide range of technology and science focused tutorials.
  7. Find Tutorials: Search through this site to find instructions on how to improve your skills in a variety of different topics from technology to fixing up your house.
  8. Learn That: Whether you want to learn how to make awesome salsa or just navigate through all the new features of the latest Photoshop, this site can help you find the guidance to do so more easily.
  9. Wikiversity: Just like the bigger Wikipedia site, the information offered here is free for the taking and easily searchable.
  10. 5min: Got five minutes? Then you’ve got enough time to watch one of these short but informative videos.
  11. Instructables: This site encourages you to get creative, share your skills and learn from other users.

Language

Learning another language can be a great way to challenge your brain and improve your resume. Check out these tools for some help.

  1. Google Language Tools: With Google’s tools you’ll be able to search for terms in foreign languages, translate, and even use Google in another language.
  2. BBC Languages: Check out what the BBC has to offer, with lessons in more than 36 different languages.
  3. LiveMocha: Find a friend and trade your language expertise through this social learning tool.
  4. italki: This tool allows you to hook up with a native speaker and get free help learning a new language.
  5. Babbel: This site is chock full of resources to help you learn a language, from flashcards to more extensive instruction.
  6. lingro: Have a website in another language you want help understanding? This site will allow you to click on the words you don’t know, instead of translating the whole thing.
  7. busuu: Join this language learning community to get a leg up on learning a new language.
  8. MIT Foreign Language and Literature: Read through the free course materials offered on this site to get access to the same instruction offered at world-class college MIT.
  9. Rosetta Project: If you want to learn more about the history and relationships between languages pay a visit to this site which is working to catalog information about all human languages.
  10. LingoPass: This site operates by asking users to exchange their language skills with someone else who wants to teach and learn as well.

Music

Take advantage of these lessons to learn to be more musically adept at everything from a violin to your own vocal chords.

  1. Guitar Noise: This site is a great place to watch some free instructional videos on the basics of playing guitar.
  2. ActiveBass: Learn more about all aspects of playing the bass, as well as some free lessons, on this site .
  3. Violin Masterclass: If you’ve ever wanted to know how to play the violin and want to learn the basics before taking more professional courses, check out these freebies.
  4. Brass Trainer: This site will test you on your brass playing skills, helping you master some of the fundamentals.
  5. Danman’s Music Library: Sign up on this site and get access to numerous instructional videos on playing everything from the ukulele to the stand-up bass.
  6. Sing Smart: Those who are looking to improve their vocal skills can visit this site to get a little vocal coaching.
  7. Drum Lessons: If percussion is more your cup of tea, visit this site to get the basics, some beats and helpful techniques.
  8. Hear and Play: Simply sign up with this site to get lessons in how to play by ear.
  9. Online Flute Lessons: This site will help you learn to play the flute or to play better if you already know a little.
  10. How to Play the Accordion: Those who’s musical tastes differ from the norm may want to try to learn to play the accordion, and this site can help.

Life Skills

If you never learned how to sew or cook, these resources can help you learn the basics.

  1. What the Craft: Even if you’re not a crafter there’s a lot to be gained from the tutorials on this site that will teach you the basics of sewing as well as some more advanced techniques in creating clothes.
  2. Sewing Tutorials: From creating patterns to sewing basics, this site is full of tutorials that will help you mend, hem and create.
  3. FreeNeedle: This site will help you sew aprons, curtains, pillows and a whole lot more.
  4. Elemental Stitches: Here you’ll find some tutorials on basic sewing projects for you, your pets and your home.
  5. Cooking Tutorials: Whether you need to know how to properly cook a Thanksgiving turkey or make your own pasta, this site has lessons for you to learn from.
  6. Gourmet Spot: From the basics of cooking to the finer points of entertaining, this site offers a wealth of information.
  7. Look and Taste: You can use this instructional site from anywhere– even your iPhone– making it simple to learn how to cook just about anything.
  8. Do Laundry the Right Way: If you have a tendency to shrink your sweaters and turn your whites pink, get some instruction from this site.

Around the House

You can learn to be your own handyman or woman with these great DIY tools.

  1. Make Magazine: Listen to this podcast to learn how to make and do just about anything around the house you’d like.
  2. ReadyMade: Get creative with your DIY projects with a little guidance from the projects featured on this magazine’s site.
  3. Car Maintenance Guide: Learn the basics of keeping your car in good working order through this blog.
  4. DoItYourself.com: With a little elbow grease and expertise gleaned from this site, you can fix just about anything in your house.
  5. SkillVids: Watch the videos on this site to learn some valuable DIY skills.
  6. The Bicycle Tutor: If you’re more of a bike person than a car one, learn how to keep your bike working and well-oiled from this site.
  7. Easy2DIY: This site will help you learn to fix a wide range of things around your home.
  8. DIY Home Improvements Depot: From drywalling to removing carpet, this site offers you a wealth of information on home improvements.

Technology

Whether you’re technologically impaired or just want to learn some new skills to add to your repertoire, these sites can help you learn more, faster.

  1. W3Schools: Learn how to build great websites through the great tutorials offered on this site.
  2. How-to-Geek: This site offers a geekier take on how-tos, dealing with computers, electronic and gaming tutorials.
  3. InPictures: If you need some basic instruction in working with a computer, this site offers illustrated tutorials to get you through.
  4. Geekpedia: Want to know how to work with Java? Do computer programming of other kinds? This site will teach you.
  5. MuppetLabs: Use this site to learn how to work with C++, Perl, Python and much more.
  6. actDEN: Boost your business skills by learning the ins and outs of Powerpoint, Office and Internet Explorer on this site.
  7. The Internet Archive: Explore the history of the internet with this site that has archives of sties on the web from years past.
  8. Productivity Portfolio: This site is home to five minute tips to help improve your computer and technology skills.

General Academic

These tools and resources can help you get a free education on your own.

  1. Forum Network: Listen to lectures from great universities, PBS and NPR from this site’s collection on hundreds of topics.
  2. MIT Open Courseware: You can take courses on your own time through this prestigious university’s open site.
  3. Harvard@Home: Get access to some of the most well-known researchers and scholars and their lectures through this site.
  4. Princeton WebMedia: Learn more about a wide variety of topics from the free lectures on this site.
  5. iTunes U: Use your iTunes for more than listening to music and download free lectures and videos from world class institutions through this facet of the program.
  6. OpenCourseware Finder: Search through thousands of free courses using this tool that you can download and take when you like.
  7. Project Gutenberg: You can do quite a bit of reading right from your own computer with this collection of classic books.
  8. WikiBooks: Read through some of the selections on this site to learn about a huge range of interests from science to new languages.
  9. Academic Earth: This collection of lectures will help you expand your mind and learn from professors and academics at famous institutions.
  10. Connexions: Check out the learning modules offered on this site for delving into a plethora of topics.
  11. Google Scholar: If you’re in need of some reputable reading material, this search tool will help you find journals and articles on your topic that you can trust.

Business

Brush up on your business skills through these free courses and tutorials.

  1. Business Tutorials: This site offers some great advice and information for new and young entrepreneurs.
  2. Change Management: If you’re hoping to improve your management skills, this site can give you some helpful pointers.
  3. KnowThis?: Here you’ll find some indispensable information on marketing and selling products– essential for the success for your business.
  4. Small Business Administration: This government organization offers some great, free courses on setting up and running a business.
  5. LearnThat: Business: From starting a business to paying your taxes, these tutorials offer you lots to learn and think about.
  6. My Own Business: Take this free online course to get some help in understanding what it takes to start your own business.
  7. HP Learning Center: Learn how to harness the technology aspects of business with these free courses.

Health and Fitness

Use these sites to get yourself in shape, find out more about your body and learn about important health issues.

  1. Get Body Smart: Learn more about how the human body works, inside and out, from this site.
  2. WebMD: Here you’ll find a ton of resources on just about every illness, disorder and all kinds of health issues.
  3. MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia: If you want to learn more about medical terminology or specific illnesses, this encyclopedia is a great tool.
  4. Fitness Online: This site offers a wide range of fitness advice and information to help you learn how to get fit and healthy.
  5. Health.com: Find important health information for working out, eating right and caring for your body on this site.
  6. eMedicine: Use this site to learn more the latest and greatest in medicine.

Math and Science

Go through these tools to learn more about space, scientific principles, and the earth itself.

  1. The Chem Team: Get a refresher or a basic run-through of some of the most important principles in chemistry with this site.
  2. The Physics Zone: If you know little or nothing about physics, this site will tutor you in the basics.
  3. NASA: Learn more about the world of outer space– in our own galaxy and further out– with the photos, videos and information on this site.
  4. Real World Math: If you’re the type who has always hated math because it seems useless in everyday life, then check out this site that shows how math can be applied to real world situations.
  5. S.O.S. Mathematics: This site will give you a math review from the basics of algebra all the way up to differential equations.
  6. Science A-Go-Go: Here you can keep up with the latest research and developments in science and learn something new each day.
  7. Geology Rocks: Want to know more about the inner workings of the ground under your feet? This site offers interactive tools for learning.

Liberal Arts

From exploring the great artifacts of American history to learning about the social sciences and humanities, these resources will help round out your education.

  1. Library of Congress: The Library of Congress is home to thousands of documents, photos and recordings that provide a multi-media telling of import events in American history.
  2. Digital History: There are numerous online exhibits, lectures, and interactive learning experiences available to the inquiring mind on this site.
  3. Biography: Here you’ll be able to learn more about some of the people who have shaped the path of history.
  4. The History Channel :You don’t have to have cable to take advantage of the videos and information this TV channel provides.
  5. H-Net: Here you’ll find peer-reviewed essays, multimedia learning tools and more to help you delve into the humanities.
  6. National Archives: Search through the hundreds of thousands of records this site organizes, and talk to the archive employees for more specific research needs.
  7. Encyclopedia Smithsonian: The Smithsonian is one of the largest museums in the world, with a collection of unrivaled depth and breadth. This tool will et you search through the items the museum holds.
  8. SparkNotes: Need a little help understanding a work of ancient literature or classic poetry? These free study guides can act as free tutors.

Fine Arts

Take a look at these resources to get a better handle on art history, learn to draw or brush up on famous literature.

  1. Artcyclopedia: Explore the history of art through this site that catalogs some of the biggest movements and names in art.
  2. Photography Mentor: Improve the quality of your shots with some tips on this photography site.
  3. Duey’s Drawings: Ever wanted to learn to draw but never had the time? This site will teach you whenever you feel like learning.
  4. Media College: Learn some new videography, cinematography, and editing skills from the tutorials on this media-focused site.
  5. Digital Arts: If you want to learn to edit videos and photos, this site is an ideal place to find a little help.
  6. Bartleby: Use this site to read and learn a variety of famous quotes– some of which you might have heard but not known from where they originated.
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