Great Courses - Preparing for Retirement

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Gordon Groff

Well-known member
Sep 27, 2006
Lancaster, PA
Got a mailer a few days ago for "The Great Courses".  80% off all.  From what I could find out online, this was a pretty good deal.  So....  we just got 10 of them for about $600, thinking that when Nancy and I hit the road, that would give us something better to do in the evenings than than watching Big Bang re-runs.  Anyone here familiar with them?

gwcowgill said:
Never heard of them but, what do they offer?

They are series of college course lectures on many topics on DVD (or CD for just the audio).  We picked up some math, physics, cooking, health, astronomy, history, music.  I may have overreached, but from on-line reviews most folks seemed to think they were well done and informative.  Most have a dozen or more 1/2 hr lectures.  With the 80% off, most were in the $40 - $50 range.  Have not tried them out yet.  We plan to put them in the motorhome and next winter when we (hopefully) take our first snowbird flight we will check them out.  I just wonderd if folks around here have any experience with them.


  That sounds like a great idea you have. Education is never wasted. The delivery of knowledge from on line courses and downloads from the net have given those interested a whole new opportunity to learn. I have taken astronomy courses which has made stargazing a much better experience. Enjoy your retirement.

There are a lot of online courses available for free.  For example Coursera provides a wide variety of courses from many top universities.

Google "free online college courses."  Once you get past the sponsored links, you will find several other sources for free courses.

If you are an iTunes user you can find a wide variety of free podcasts on iTunesU.
I have seen the ads - I think in my IEEE journal - and have considered getting one. Please let us know what your opinion of them is.

I have gone online to HALF.COM , an Ebay company that sells all sorts of used books including text books for super low prices and bought books on subjects such as Calculus and Statics that I wanted to review. I got regular test books and Shaums Outlines which I found quite helpful.

They ship book rate so it can be weeks before the books show up.
I'll let y'all know how we like them when we get to 'em.  I'm thinking a 1/2hr. video lecture in the evenings will be interesting and a nice diversion from TV wasteland. 

Not planning to study seriously, but having fun telling my wfe she's going to learn calculus.  It's actually more intuitive and real-life than most folks realize.  Example: your mpg calculation for your rig is actually a derivative and your total fuel use for a trip is an integral.

The Kahn Institute has all kinds of free courses, ranging from economics to history to the sciences. I find the courses to be extemely useful and easy to following at your own pace. You can take a particular course and either progress through the questions at the end of each section or just go through the course material skipping the questions.

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