Health and Medicine Open Courseware: The Ultimate Guide

March 22, 2011

One of the best ways that you can serve your patients as a nurse is to improve your knowledge and work to be the best possible nurse you can be. Thanks to technology, it is possible for you to learn more about the human body — and update yourself on the latest medical information — from trusted resources. If you want to learn more about the body, you can do so with help from open courseware.

Open courseware offers you college classes, including masters degree and PhD degree level classes, to help you learn more about various subjects. You can get access to these materials for free, learning at your own pace. You won’t be able to college credit for these classes, but you will be able to expand your knowledge. Here are some great options for improving your medical knowledge:

Anatomy and Physiology

Learn more about the way the body is put together, and the way it works. These great courses offer you better understanding of the body.

  1. Human Physiology: A study of the human body from the University of Utah.
  2. The Human Body: Great coursewaeware from Harvard covering different aspects of the human body.
  3. Medical Terminology: This is actually a great course that can help you learn more about the jargon used in medical settings.
  4. General Human Anatomy: Berkeley offers this great course on the human body.
  5. Anatomy and Physiology: Western Governor’s University offers a great course on anatomy and physiology. A great refresher for any health care professional.

Genetics and Development

Find out more about the genes that make up humans. Explore human development on a physical and mental level. An interest look at what makes us who we are.

  1. Adolescent Health and Development: A great look at the way young people grow and develop.
  2. Human Growth and Development: Tufts University takes you through the developmental stages of human growth.
  3. Masculinity, Sexual Behavior & Health: A look at sexual development in men. An interesting course.
  4. Genetics: Get an idea of how genes work. A fascinating course from MIT.
  5. Genetics: This open courseware class is offered by Tufts University. Great insights into genes and development.
  6. Genomic Medicine: Another great course from MIT, this one helps you learn more about the genome, and medicine based on our discoveries.
  7. Young people’s wellbeing: A health course designed to help you learn how to help young people improve their general physical, mental and emotional health.
  8. The Wisdom Years: Focusing on health during the latter stages of life. Great developmental information based on the elderly.
  9. Health Across the Life Span: A great course from Johns Hopkins University on different stages of health.
  10. General Psychology: Find out more about mental development from this basic class.
  11. Neuroscience and Behavior: This MIT offering looks at brain development and how it affects behavior.

Body Systems

These open courseware classes focus more on different systems in the body. Great lectures, assignments and more to help you learn about the body’s individual systems.

  1. Cardiovascular Pathophysiology: A great look at the cardiovascular system, providing helpful information on the heart and related systems.
  2. Renal Pathophysiology: Interested in the kidneys? This course looks at the function of the kidneys, and the system in which they operate.
  3. Human Reproductive Biology: Find out more about the reproductive system. Looks at reproduction in males and females.
  4. Gastroenterology: Learn about the gastrointestinal tract and the systems that are associated with the way food moves through our system.
  5. Physiology of the Ear: Yet another MIT course offering about medicine.
  6. Musculoskeletal Pathophysiology: Find out more about the muscles and the skeleton in this Tufts University course. A great look at the way the body is held together and moves.
  7. Occurrence of Central Nervous System/Analysis of Differentiation Mechanism: This course is in English from the University of Tokyo.

Diseases and Biology

Follow the development of different diseases, and learn about the microbiology inherent in our bodies. Great, helpful courses on protecting our bodies from foreign organisms.

  1. Modern Biology: Get a basic understanding of biology, and the smallest cells in the body.
  2. Human Biology Course: University of Leeds offers a look at biology from the standpoint of human medicine.
  3. Principles of Human Disease: Find out more about disease, what causes it and other basics.
  4. Basic Human Pathology: Learn more about different diseases that affect different areas of the body.
  5. Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases: Offers a look at epidemiology, and the way infectious spread.
  6. Pathophysiology of Infectious Diseases: Focuses on microbiology as it helps you gain an understanding of the “why” behind disease.
  7. Evolution of the Immune System: Takes a look at how the body fights off disease.

Public Health and Medical Ethics

Keep up with the latest information in public health developments. Additionally, you can learn about medical ethics and ideas of treatments from these courses.

  1. Medicine and Public Health in American History: Take a look at the history of public health in the U.S.
  2. Sociology of Health and Medicine: Learn more about medicine and health in our society.
  3. Medicine, Human Rights and the Physician: Look at at human rights, humanitarian aid and medical ethics.
  4. Social and Behavioral Foundations of Primary Health Care: Johns Hopkins University offers a look at the development of health care.
  5. Environmental Health: A look at public health and how it relates to environmental factors.
  6. Impact of Pandemic Influenza on Public Health: An enlightening look at public health as it relates to pandemics.
  7. Ethical Issues in Public Health: Another great offering from Johns Hopkins on the subject of public health and ethics.

Medical Technology

Learn more about medical technology. The following open courseware classes include information on imaging, medical computing and health informatics. Very interesting courses.

  1. Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging: Learn more about imaging, and the basics of MRI.
  2. Lieberman’s Interactive Tutorials in Radiology: Great primer information on basic radiology.
  3. Information Technology in Healthcare: Another opportunity to let Harvard help you learn more about how technology can be used in medicine.
  4. Noninvasive Imaging in Biology and Medicine: Great course on using imaging in a non-invasive manner.
  5. Bioinformatics and Computational Biology Solutions Using R and Bioconductor: Great opportunity to learn more about informatics.
  6. Epidemiology and Biostatistics: Great information on biostats. Allows you to learn more about medical literature.

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