Khan Academy is a non-profit internet based company aiming to provide free online materials and resources to learners around the world.
Started in 2005 by Salman Khan, the company is based around the idea that “you can learn anything”. Since its humble beginnings, when Khan was simply tutoring his cousins in math, the company has grown to help more than 36 million learners worldwide master subjects ranging from earth science to buying your first house and easing the path to graduation.
I first heard about Khan Academy about 4 years ago. I was struggling through my one and only required college math course. My grandpa, who is more tech-savvy than most 16 year-olds, suggested that I look up what I was struggling with on Khan Academy and get some free help. I had never heard of the website and felt like real free help was too good to be true. Nonetheless, I went home and hopped on google to see it for myself.
Here is what I found:
- Courses on everything from math and computer science to art history
- Partner programs with organizations like the Metropolitan Museum of Art
- Short, simple, and easy to follow videos and interactive practice exercises
- A tool that became the key to getting help and balancing my incredibly busy schedule
As someone who has never done well in math, I found Khan Academy’s courses easy to follow and incredibly helpful. I was able to go through the pieces that I needed extra help with at my own pace. I could also go back through and re-watch the extra difficult portions as many times as I needed. The math subject content even goes as far back as kindergarten, so I could also get any background that I needed without feeling like I was asking a stupid question if it was something I should have learned in high school (or even earlier).
I kept using Khan Academy.
After successfully completing my math class, my use of Khan Academy didn’t end. I found myself checking it for other topics that were tricky, or to aid my research for my history courses. The search function makes it easy to search for a specific subject, topic, or course without having to go through every single subject area. Eventually, I started using it for non-school reasons, like to learn the basics of HTML/CSS coding. The wealth of classes and information is endless.
It let me set my own pace and time.
During my time in college, I was extremely involved on campus, which meant that I didn’t always have a schedule that allowed me to go to the tutoring center while it was open. And many times when I could make it the history courses I was taking for my major didn’t have tutoring available. Khan Academy allowed me to get the help that I needed at my own pace and on my own time.
Some students swear by Khan Academy.
Christopher Mendez, a junior at The University of Iowa who is double majoring in Mechanical Engineering and Spanish with a minor in Mathematics swears by Khan Academy. While struggling through Calculus, his tutor suggested looking at Khan Academy. Mendez says, “They bring advanced topics into simple terms that make the content easier to understand. Not only have I used it for math, but for my physics courses as well.” With a heavy course load, and busy schedule, Khan has allowed Mendez to balance everything. “The best part is the ability to pause the videos and actually absorb what you’re learning as opposed to having it force fed to you during a lecture.”
No matter what you’re majoring in, or which gen-ed course is tripping you up, Khan Academy is a valuable asset to learners everywhere. With thousands of tutorials on countless subjects, help is literally only a few clicks of the mouse away. The best part? You can get a ton of help from anywhere, anytime, for FREE!