Dec 06, 2019 | 3 min read

5 Free Online Resources to Study Computer Science

Pavel Kaplunou , Marketing Communications

Many a time, understanding the fundamentals of computer science or having a grasp of its terminology can define what type of professional you are. It can be the deciding factor in your next career move, help establish trust with colleagues and employees, make justified business decisions or refresh what you already know.

Computer science is a broad field of study that unites techies and us regular people. The blanket term is used to cover several disciplines related to work of computer algorithms and computer systems, from theory to application. A plethora of online resources offers tons of educational materials to get started, but picking the right ones can be a tad overwhelming. We have gathered a list of 5 dependable and, most importantly, free resources to help you on your way.

1. CrashCourse: Computer Science

Medium: Youtube
Format: Video lessons
Credit: XP

Produced at PBS Digital Studios for the popular e-Learning channel CrashCourse, this video series is split into 10 minute video episodes. Your host is Carrie Anne Philbin, Director of Education at the Raspberry Pi Foundation, popular for promoting the topic of Women in STEM. She will take you through Early Computing to the Future of Computers and Programming in exactly four dozen bite-sized episodes that can be consumed on the go or at preferred intervals.

2. KHAN ACADEMY®: Computer Science Basics

Medium: Web, Google Classroom
Format: Videos, Transcripts, Interactive Games
Credit: XP

Khan Academy is a non-profit organization that produces courses and learning materials for students and teachers respectively across the globe. The word students should not put you off, as the curriculum will be suitable for anyone interested in structuring their knowledge. The linked course delves into on Algorithms, Cryptography, Information Theory, Public Networks and How Computers Work. However, this is far from the only learning program readily available on the resource. The best thing about it is that you create your own learning schedule and deadlines.

3. LinkedIn Learning

Medium: Web
Format: Video courses
Credit: e-Certificate or e-Badge in LinkedIn Profile

The LinkedIn e-Learning platform has a price tag attached, but the service also extends a free trial period. The caveat is that it is just one month, though, this is more than enough to stomach a few courses on demand. Most professionals will already have an account with  LinkedIn and the service does have a tendency to re-new its trial offers. Users are free to cherry pick courses based on their preferred level of difficulty.

4. Harvard CS50 Introduction to Computer Science

Medium: Web via edX
Format: Video courses
Credit: Professional Certificate

This introductory course is courtesy of Prof. David J. Malar, who teaches Computer Science at Harvard University. By far one of the more comprehensive courses, this deep dive learning program will require an 11 week commitment. Despite the lengthy run-time, this course has garnered positive reviews worldwide and comes highly recommended. Better earmark a start date before fall of 2020, as the course closes on the last day of December that year.

5. FutureLearn

Medium: Web
Format: Videos and articles
Credit: XP or Digital Certificate

Coursera’s UK counterpart and rival of sorts does not feature a definitive course in Computer Science as such. Rather, the electronic learning platform presents a changing roster of courses produced by renowned companies such as Accenture, EIT and Raspberry Pi, as well as a number of leading global universities. FutureLearn can be used by individuals and organizations alike, to address employee skill gaps and provide company-wide continuing education opportunities.

06 December 2019


Pavel Kaplunou, Marketing Communications

Pavel is Smart IT's Marketing Communication Manager. He oversees content creation and is in charge of the official Smart IT blog. Contact Pavel to learn about potential media and content collaborations. [email protected]