Exam preps: 10 online learning resources for science students
Remember Newton’s First Law of Motion: “An object at rest stays at rest and an object in motion stays in motion with the same speed and in the same direction unless acted upon by an unbalanced force”.
Similarly, a student taking it easy stays in the same speed of revising, unless acted upon by self-motivation and inspiration. We hope these 10 online learning resources for science students will inspire you to start revising (if you haven’t already), or serve as useful study aids while you revise.
If you came across our top 10 learning resources for commerce students, you will notice a number of those websites featured have made it to this list too.
1. The Physics Classroom
The Physics Classroom was originally developed for physics students at Glenbrook Youth High School in Illinois, but it serves as an invaluable resources for first year science students looking to go over the basic physics concepts again, such as Newton’s Laws, Waves and Thermal Physics to name a few.
Check out the ‘Minds on Physics Internet Modules’ too – a collection of 1300 questions designed to improve students’ understanding of common physics concepts. Use it as a recap tool, or as a test to find out how much knowledge you’ve grasped.
Senior year students will probably be too advanced in their course to find this website helpful, but it’s still a great resource nonetheless for first year science students.
2. MIT OpenCourseWare
This website got a mention in our previous top 10 list. Started in 2002, MIT OpenCourseWare is an initiative by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to tackle the problem of inadequate education for youth.
It publishes some of the university’s lectures, syllabuses, notes and assignments online. To date, it has 2000 courses, many of which are science subjects – ‘Neuroscience and Behaviour’, ‘Thermodynamics of Materials’ and ‘Introduction to Computer Science and Programming’ – to name a few.
Several assignments, however, are not accompanied by the solutions.
That said, MIT OpenCourseWare still remains a superb resources for science students, especially considering the breadth of science subjects it covers.
3. Khan Academy
We can’t get enough of Khan Academy. It’s an amazing resource for students and learners of any age anywhere. Its comprehensive video library (more than 2400 and counting) and practice exercises make it a popular learning tool in schools. It has plenty of lessons on math and science subjects, from ‘Proof: log a + log b = log ab’, to ‘Introduction to angular velocity’ and ‘Markovnikov’s Rule and Carbocations’.
4. Academic Earth
This is another website that made it to our previous list. Academic Earth, an aggregator Web site founded in 2009, compiles lectures on a variety of subjects. Lectures on science subjects include Yale’s ‘Fundamentals of Physics’, MIT’s ‘Classical Mechanics’ and Stanford’s ‘Foundations of Modern Physics’.
It’s a great resource and provides learning materials from some of the finest American universities, and though there aren’t as many lectures available (yet), we expect the list will grow.
5. Virtual Chemistry
Virtual Chemistry, developed by Oxford University’s Virtual Reality Group, is a three-dimensional simulated laboratory. Every experiment contains interactive digitised video and animations of the experiment, animated three-dimensional simulations of chemical objects, interactive question and answer sections and links to other useful sites.
Virtual Chemistry offers students a fresh and dynamic way to study chemistry, not to mention glean learnings from one of the world’s top universities.
6. The Biology Project
The Biology Project, an interactive resource for biology students developed by The University of Arizona, contains tutorials and links to other useful resources. Some of the concepts covered are ‘Biochemistry’, ‘Cell Biology’ and ‘Immunology’.
Like The Physics Classroom, the concepts covered here are generally introductory, but it’s a useful resource for general revision.
Chemguy (aka Rob Lederer) is a Chemistry teacher from Alberta, Candada, who provides video lessons on Chemistry concepts. While students can access some of the lessons for free, full access to all the lessons and notes require donations. Some of the chemistry concepts Chemguy has covered include ‘Thermodynamics’, ‘Redox’ and ‘Stoichiometry’.
8. New Scientist
New Scientist is a magazine for those who are interested in scientific discovery and in its industrial, commercial and social consequences. It provides articles on a range of topics, including technology, physics and space. While the articles may not be academic, it provides great perspectives on science in everyday, real-life applications.
The only catch: readers have to subscribe to read the articles. If you’re a budding Newton or Einstein, buying a subscription may be a great, useful investment.
9. Royal Society Chemistry
Royal Society Chemistry, the largest organisation in Europe for advancing the chemical sciences, provides plenty of journals, articles and other resources on chemistry.
10. iTunes U!
Yes, iTunes U are amazing! There are plenty of universities and colleges all around the world putting up their lectures on iTunes U, including The University of Melbourne and RMIT. A few of our favorites are ‘Chemistry’ by Imperial College London, ‘Quantum Mechanics’ by Oxford University and ‘Science and Cooking’ by Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Science.
What online tools do you use to help you study? Share with other students in the comments section below.