50 free sources of learning content for your curation


Christmas always brings a conundrum. The kids want new toys, but they don’t play with the ones they’ve already got! Dutifully, you spend your hard earned cash adding to the pile of toys. Recognition is fleeting. By the time you read this blog, all new toys will have become a part of the amorphous mass of toys that sits in the corner of the bedroom. There they are doomed to remain, relatively untouched for the rest of the year, until of course the cycle begins again.

Nothing changes as we get older. Or indeed when we move to the world of work. New toys, that’s what we need. Or do we? Maybe, if we make just one resolution this year, it should be to play with the toys we’ve already got. It’s with that thinly stretched metaphor in mind that I give you this:

50 free sources of learning content for your curation.

I think it’s a bit of a travesty that we spend as much as we do trying to make the perfect piece of learning content, again and again. Of course the learning process takes us far beyond the realms of what content alone can do; we need learners to experience, practice, reflect and repeat real-world actions if they are to truly change behaviour. Content can be the start; it can be the trigger for a new experience, a new insight, a new conversation. But it is just that, the start of a learning journey. So I believe we should spend more time tapping into content that is freely available and putting this to use within our organisations. Our time, money and effort should be spent elsewhere – on the experiences and implementations that allow learners to put ideas in to practice.

With that in mind we’ve quickly curated some sources of information for you to tap. These websites host huge amounts of content on a wide-range of subjects, but in the interests of keeping the numbers down the following sites are of particular use to those looking to trigger learning experiences in the business world.

Name URL Description Good for
OER Commons http://www.oercommons.org/browse/general_subject/business Links to over 1000 business related learning content objects Academic articles
Stanford Business School http://www.youtube.com/user/stanfordbusiness Stanford Business School videos Videos
Management for the rest of us http://www.mftrou.com/ Introduction to management topics Introductions
Jim Collins http://www.jimcollins.com/media_topics/all.html Video and Audio resources from leading business author, Jim Collins Management, leadership
Team technology http://www.teamtechnology.co.uk/ Introduction to issues around leadership and management Psychometrics
Free Management Library http://managementhelp.org/ Huge range of management topics Management, leadership
CIO http://www.cio.com/ White papers, webcasts everything for the Chief Information officer CIO
Leaders Direct http://www.leadersdirect.com/ Over 150 pages of tips and checklists on leadership and self management Leadership
PowerHomeBiz http://www.powerhomebiz.com/ Site for small businesses with good tips and glossary Small Business
Fast Company www.fastcompany.com The website for Fast Company magazine contains an easily accessible searchable archive of all its articles, past and present. It contains a number of interesting articles concerning power and office politics.  Good for leadership, strategy, teamwork innovation, web
Harvard Working Knowledge http://hbswk.hbs.edu/ Great papers across the range of management topics from some of the key experts in the field Management, leadership
Frances Hesselbein Leadership Institute http://www.hesselbeininstitute.org/ Formerly Peter Drucker site, links to Leader to leader journal Management, leadership
Wharton Leadership Centre http://leadership.wharton.upenn.edu/welcome/index.shtml Leadership research papers, access to older articles leadership
The Business Publications Search Engine http://www.bpubs.com/Management_Science/ Good links to articles on BPR, Change, CRM, Leadership Project management and many others Management papers
Customer Care Institution http://www.customercare.com/ Everything about looking after the customer Customers
PM World Today http://www.pmworldtoday.net/archives/2012/march.htm#papers Featured papers on the subject of Project management Project Management
Project Management Institute http://www.pmi.org/Knowledge-Center.aspx Knowledge centre – resources to inform and improve the practice of project management Project management
Thinking Managers http://www.thinkingmanagers.com/ Edward de Bono and Robert Heller site giving clear and concise summaries of the best writing and ideas from the world’s best business media Management
The Work911 series http://work911.com/articles/index.htm 200 articles covering a range of management topics Management
12 manage http://www.12manage.com/ Summaries of management methods and models Models
Alliance Training and Consulting http://www.alliancetac.com/index.html?PAGE_ID=34 Good range of resources covering communication skills, customer service, employee development, leadership and many others management topics
MagPortal.com http://www.magportal.com/c/bus/strat/ Portal site that gives links to latest magazine articles on business strategy,management and leadership Magazine portal
Bloomberg Businessweek http://www.businessweek.com/ The latest uptodate thinking, articles, videos Latest thinking
Inc.com http://www.inc.com/ Latest thinking on leadership and managing, sales and marketing, Finance, Technology and Innovation Latest thinking
Curious Cat Management Improvement Connections http://curiouscat.net/articles/ Articles focused on operations management and improvement Operations management
Article Planet.net http://www.articleplanet.net/management/ Shortish articles covering an eclectic range of management topics Management
OER Commons http://www.oercommons.org/browse/general_subject/business Great source of open resources, mainly focused on schools but a good range of material on business for the post-secondary level Open resources
MIT OpenCourseWare http://ocw.mit.edu/index.htm Incredible resource of lecture notes and videos MIT Courses
MIT YouTube http://www.youtube.com/user/MIT Videos of lectures – not all areas covered but those that are are covered in great depth MIT lectures
TED Talks YouTube http://www.youtube.com/user/TEDtalksDirector Great range of videos from inspirational speakers Videos
Harvard YouTube http://www.youtube.com/user/harvardbusiness?ob=4&feature=results_main Great range of videos from some of the world’s experts Videos
The Ken Blanchard http://www.youtube.com/user/KenBlanchardCos?ob=0&feature=results_main Leadership videos Management videos
Wikiversity http://en.wikiversity.org/wiki/Wikiversity:Main_Page Growing site with some business and management courses Wiki resource
Learn out loud http://www.learnoutloud.com/Podcast-Directory/Business/Leadership-and-Management Portal to a range of management podcasts Podcasts
Emerald Research http://www.emeraldinsight.com/learning/podcasts/index.htm Podcasts drawn from the latest research published by Emerald Academic, podcasts
Under New Management http://www.obweb.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&id=42&Itemid=66 Podcasts focusing on rigourous empirical research Academic, podcasts
Bized http://www.bized.co.uk/learn/index.htm Whole range of different sorts of materials such as worksheets, case studies Business studies materials
CBS Money Watch http://www.cbsnews.com/moneywatch/management/?tag=hdr;cnav Main focus on financial issues but other management issues covered Finance
Business Balls http://www.businessballs.com/ Businessballs is a free ethical learning and development resource for people and organizations, run by Alan Chapman, in Leicester, England Business studies materials
Khan Academy – Finance & Economics http://www.khanacademy.org/#microeconomics College level Economics done in Khan Academy house style – a voiceover with drawings Finance
Business Link Start-up Directory https://online.businesslink.gov.uk/hub/action/render?pageId=learningdirectory Everything you need to know about getting started in business – but also useful for those working within organisations Business Startup
Marshall Goldsmith Library http://www.marshallgoldsmithlibrary.com/html/marshall/resources.html Personal site of Marshall Goldsmith, the influential leadership thinker Leadership
5min Business http://www.5min.com/Category/Business Video aggregation website, taking in content from a range of business websites Videos
Tom Peters! http://www.tompeters.com/freestuff/index.php A selection of Tom Peter’s content available freely, as long as you do not charge for their use Management, leadership
Business Insider Document Centre http://www.businessinsider.com/document-center A selection of simple (US) templates for business and legal documents Business Startup
Business Model Generation http://www.businessmodelgeneration.com/canvas A great method for creating business models Business Startup
The Times 100 – Business Studies Theory http://businesscasestudies.co.uk/business-theory/ Topic overviews with pay-for case studies available Business studies materials
FastCoExist http://www.fastcoexist.com/ From The Fast Company, a website focused on breakthrough innovation innovation, web
Systems Thinking – John Seddon http://www.systemsthinking.co.uk/6.asp A wide range of articles on Systems Thinking and Lean Operations management
Clayton Christensen http://www.claytonchristensen.com/key-concepts/ Summary and links to articles by Clayton Christensen, Harvard Professor Management, leadership
Ted ED http://ed.ted.com/lessons?category_id=41 TED videos with a focus on business and economics and quiz questions. Business and Economics

If you’d like to learn more about the role curation can play in your learning strategy, why not come along to CurationCamp, on the Tuesday evening following London’s Learning Technology 2013 conference. It’s free and beer will be supplied (for a bit!) by yours truly and Curatr. If you can’t make it you can follow the event on twitter with the hashtag #ltuk13fringe

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  1. #1 by Kelly Meeker at January 21st, 2013

    I have one more source to recommend! I work for OpenSesame, which is a marketplace for online training courses. With more than 21,000 courses from 250+ different sellers, we have a large selection of free courses customers can choose from. Here’s a blog post with some of the most popular:
    https://www.opensesame.com/blog/top-10-free-elearning-courses-opensesame

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