MIT-SHASS MOOC courses available on edX

Discover the MIT-SHASS MOOC courses available online at edX — free, for anyone, anywhere.   


Introduction to Philosophy | 24.00x
Caspar Hare and Ryan Doody

Learning how to ask and answer big questions
MIT Philosopher Caspar Hare presents the first introductory philosophy MOOC offered by an American university. In "24.00x, Introduction to Philosophy: God, Knowledge and Consciousness," Hare leads students through the fundamental questions that underlay our understanding of existence, while grounding them in the basic practices of analytical philosophy.

Feature Story  |  Video: Introduction to the Course

Frank Bentley and Ed Barrett

A project-based course that guides students through creating a novel mobile application — from generative research to design, usability, implementation and field evaluation.




Evaluating Social Programs | JPAL 101x
Rachel Glennerster and Marc Shotland

The benefits and methods of randomization
JPAL101x provides a thorough understanding of how randomized evaluations can be used to evaluate social and development programs.

Through a combination of lectures and case studies from real randomized evaluations, the course focuses on the benefits and methods of randomization, choosing an appropriate sample size, and common threats and pitfalls to the validity of the experiment.


The Challenges of Global Poverty | 14.73x
Esther Duflo and Abhijit Vinayak Banerjee

Addressing one of the world's most important issues
This is a course for those who are interested in the challenges posed by massive and persistent world poverty. The questions taken up include: Is extreme poverty a thing of the past? What is life like when living under a dollar per day? How do we make schools work for poor citizens? Is microfinance invaluable or overrated? Does foreign aid help or hinder? And many others. At the end of this course, students should have a good sense of how to become part of the solution to global poverty. 

Visualizing Japan | VJx: an MITx/Harvardx project
John W. Dower, Andrew Gordon, Shigeru Miyagawa, and Gennifer Weisenfeld

Westernization, Protest, Modernity from the 1850s-1930s
The first MITx/HarvardX collaboration, Visualizing Japan (VJx) opens windows on Japan’s transition into the modern world through the historical visual record. Based on the pioneering MIT Visualizing Cultures project for image-driven research, VJx was a finalist for the 2015 Japan Prize. 

Paradox and Infinity | 24.118x
Agustin Rayo and Damien Rochford

Students in this class will study a cluster of puzzles, paradoxes, and intellectual wonders, and discuss their philosophical implications. The topics covered include time travel, free will, infinity, computability, and Gödel’s Theorem.z



Foundations of Development Policy | 14.74x
Esther Duflo, Abhijit Vinayak Banerjee, and Benjamin Olken

Advanced Development Economics
In this course, students will study the different facets of human development in topics such as education, health, gender, the family, land relations, risk, informal and formal norms, public policy, and institutions. Among the questions considered will be: What determines the decisions of poor households in developing countries? What constraints are poor households subject to? What policies have been tried? Have they succeeded?

Introduction to Game Design | 11.126x
Eric Klopfer, Philip Tan, and Sara Verrilli

An introduction to the basic methods of game design, this course includes defining and analyzing games and their mechanics, and understanding how mechanics affect gameplay and player experiences. Practical assignments include creating both paper and digital prototypes, using user testing to find points of failure and iterative design processes to revise and improve overall gameplay.


Microeconomics | 14.100
Jonathan Gruber

What is produced in an economy? How is it produced? Who gets the product? Microeconomics seeks to answer these fundamental questions about markets. In this course, we’ll introduce you to microeconomic theory, together with some empirical results and policy implications. You’ll analyze mathematical models that describe the real-world behavior of consumers and firms, and you’ll see how prices make the world go ‘round.



Philosophy: Minds and Machines | 24.09x
Alex Byrne and Damien Rochford


What is the relationship between the mind and the body? Can computers think? Do we perceive reality as it is? Can there be a science of consciousness?


This course explores these questions and others. It is a thorough, rigorous introduction to contemporary philosophy of mind.


According to many scientists and philosophers, explaining the nature of consciousness is the deepest intellectual challenge of all. If you find consciousness at all puzzling, this is a great place to start learning more.