It is back-to-school time for children everywhere. And maybe you are hitting the books yourself, pursuing an advanced degree for the first time or finishing a degree you started years ago before you were derailed by work, kids or life in general. (I know how these things go. At the age of 35 I finally figured out what I wanted to be when I grow up, and it took me three more years to get my degree in library science.)
Whether you are headed back to the classroom or are simply in the self-improvement mood brought on by this time of year, we’ve got plenty of books and databases—subscription-based websites, learning resources and tools the library pays for so you don’t have to—to aid your self-education.
Universal Class offers hundreds of online, self-paced courses taught by actual instructors who communicate with you via email and evaluate your progress. These aren’t simply online tutorials or videos. They are much richer continuing education courses in everything from GED preparation and accounting to cooking and crafting.
Learn Haitian Creole
Okay, maybe Spanish or Arabic would be more practical. Transparent Language Online has activities and lessons to learn more than 80 languages (including Haitian Creole–I wasn’t kidding about that), many of which are enhanced with language and culture blogs or connected with language learning communities through social media like Facebook and Twitter.
Hit the Books
Check out “Back to School for Grown-ups” by Stephen Evans or “Smarter by Sunday” from the publishers of The New York Times. Learn (or relearn) a bit about history, literature, science, art, religion, philosophy and other subjects you haven’t studied in years.
Does back-to-school time have you inspired to learn something new? Let us know in the comments!