THE GREAT COURSES (TGC) is a series of college-level audio and video
courses produced and distributed by THE TEACHING COMPANY (TTC), an
American company based in
The courses differ from most online learning platforms in that they
are produced for enrichment purposes only and offered without
schedules, homework, exams, or certificates. Many of the courses deal
with quite narrow topics such as The
The company was founded in 1990 by Thomas M. Rollins, former Chief Counsel of the United States Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources. Rollins had been inspired by a 10-hour videotaped lecture series he watched while at Harvard Law School , and began recruiting top professors and experts based almost entirely on customer feedback. On October 2, 2006, the company was acquired by Brentwood Associates , a private equity investment firm.
In 2012, the company produced the first of several cooking courses in
partnership with The
Culinary Institute of America , and announced an
expansion of that partnership in 2013. In 2014, the company announced
a partnership with The
National Geographic Society to jointly produce
courses on photography and expedition travel, and a ten-year
The Smithsonian to produce courses on history,
science, travel and the arts. In 2016, the company announced a
In 2015, the company began offering its video courses as part of an unlimited subscription streaming service called "The Great Courses Plus". In 2016, the company introduced a subscription channel on Amazon Video .
In January 2017, The Great Courses launched a content website, The Great Courses Daily, – a free newsreader-style site that hosts articles, interviews, and videos that highlight course content.
As of 2016, the company offers over 600 courses ranging in length
from six lectures to over ninety lectures in several subject
categories: business , economics , fine arts , music , ancient and
medieval history , modern history , literature and
Most series are developed for adult lifelong learners ; there is also a series for high school students. Courses are not verbatim recordings of college lectures, but rather are developed by The Teaching Company in conjunction with the professor to fit the chosen medium. Professors must first pass auditions that are screened by The Great Courses' customers. Video versions of courses include graphics and green screen effects. Courses also include supplemental "guidebooks" prepared by the professor with outlines of the individual lectures, recommended reading lists, general bibliographies, and questions to consider. Full printed transcripts are also available.
Courses are available for online video and audio streaming or may be accessed in many formats including CD, DVD, audio and video downloads, digital streaming, and verbatim transcript books. The company also offers audio versions of some courses to Audible.com subscribers, and has made video titles available to Netflix subscribers.
PARTIAL LIST OF NOTABLE INSTRUCTORS
Gregory S. Aldrete
Kenneth R. Bartlett
Arthur T. Benjamin
Allen C. Guelzo
Richard J. Haier
* James Hall
* Ken Hammond
Kenneth W. Harl
Donald J. Harreld
Daniel N. Robinson
David B. Ruderman
* ^ Bales, Kate (February 16, 1994). "Ivy League Courses for Price
of a Video". The New York Times. Archived from the original on July
14, 2009. Retrieved 2009-06-21.
* ^ A B Max, Sarah (July 29, 2013). "If Its Customers Love a
Business, This Equity Firm Does, Too". The New York Times. Retrieved
* ^ "
Brentwood Associates Acquires The Teaching Company L.P."
* Linda Mathews (1996-03-31). "Adult Education; No Tests and You Can
New York Times .
* Kate Bales (1994-02-16). "Ivy League Courses for the Price of a
New York Times .
* Kendra Nordin (2003-01-28). "From the college lecture hall to your