Anatomy and Physiology Online Classes for Free: Class Summaries

Although most schools only provide online courses to their enrolled students, there are several schools that offer free anatomy and physiology online courses to the public. These courses are not interactive and are not-for-credit.

Online Anatomy and Physiology Courses for Credit

Individuals who want to learn more about anatomy and physiology can find a number of online resources that don't require registration or tuition; however, these courses don't lead to college credit. Those interested in options that do prepare them to earn alternative forms of credit can consider courses that charge a fee for access to online resources. offers this type of fee-based online learning with its concise, engaging video lessons and self-assessment quizzes. Students also have access to free transcripts for the video lessons, both of which can prepare students to earn real college credit. Students who explore's Biology 104: Anatomy and Physiology course will find lessons on these topics and more:

  • Basic Anatomy and Cell Biology - Use this chapter to learn about the fluid mosaic model of the cell membrane, passive and active cell transport, epithelial tissue, anatomical directional terminology and human body planes.
  • Respiratory System - Examine the airway and the lungs, pleural cavities, external and internal respiration, gas and carbon dioxide transport and ventilation.
  • The Five Senses - Subjects include the olfactory bulb, receptors of the eye, external ear structures, the inner ear and cranial nerves.
  • Gross Anatomy of Muscular System - Find out about the various muscles of the body, including head and neck, shoulder, arm, axial and hip muscles.
  • Anatomy and Physiology of Male and Female Reproductive Systems - Topics in this chapter include meiosis, male and female reproductive anatomy, hormones and oogenesis.

Free Online Non-Credited Anatomy and Physiology Courses

Free online anatomy and physiology classes are made available through an OpenCourseWare program (OCW). OCW courses are free, available to anyone, and are not-for-credit. There is no registration or application required. OCW courses are publications of the course materials and assignments used in teaching anatomy and physiology. OCW programs don't use email or chatrooms to provide communication between students and faculty.

Western Governors University

Western Governors University offers three free online anatomy and physiology courses. The first 14-week class consists of 15 self-study modules that cover such topics as the nervous, digestive, muscular, reproductive and respiratory systems, as well as hormones, blood composition and homeostasis. Each module has various reading assignments and activities to complete.

The second anatomy and physiology class, to be taken after the first class is completed, is five weeks in length and consists of seven self-study sections. Topics covered in this course include the cardiovascular system and cardiac muscles, the endocrine system, joints and movement, muscle stimulation and hydration.

Finally, the third course has four modules that deal with metabolism, the liver, fluid balance, lung volumes and oxygenation. It is suggested that this course be completed in 3 weeks.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) also offers three online physiology courses for free, Quantitative Physiology: Organ Transport Systems, Quantitative Physiology: Cells and Tissues, and Physiology of the Ear.

The organ transport systems course covers the anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology of the renal, cardiovascular and respiratory systems. The cells and tissues course discusses how cells maintain their composition and how molecules move across cellular membranes. The course on the physiology of the ear investigates the analysis and coding of sounds that is performed by the inner ear, the mechanics of sound transmission, hair-cell transduction and causes for hearing disorders. All of the OCW courses at MIT provide downloadable course materials and assignments.

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