Teaching with Digital Media and Hippocampus

I’m always on the lookout for sources of digital media online that can be incorporated into online and face-to-face learning environments.  This week, a friend suggested that I check out Hippocampus and I was honestly amazed at what the site offers.  Hippocampus states that its goal is “to provide high-quality, multimedia content on general education subjects to high school and college students free of charge.”  The site is part of Open Education Resources, a worldwide movement to make educational content “open,” which means that the resources are free and accessible to anyone.  Hippocampus offers digital textbooks, multimedia lessons and even complete online courses on a variety of topics including calculus, physics, biology and US History.  The resources are high-quality and offer students and educators a great deal of differentiation, not only in the depth of the instruction but also the language in which the materials are presented.  Some of the materials are presented in Spanish and all of the lessons include captions for students who may be hearing impaired. For instance, check out these two Calculus lessons:

Definition of a function (English)

Definition of a function (Spanish)

The great part is that many of the resources include interactive assessments to keep students engaged and help them reflect on what they’ve learned.   My only real criticism with the site is that the content cannot be embedded into other locations.  I’d prefer to have the ability to include the materials directly into a course shell or into a website.  While Hippocampus provides links to individual lessons, I worry that some students could get distracted if they encounter other materials on the site.  Even with that minor issue, Hippocampus is a tremendous resource. If you’re teaching an online class or want to include more digital media into your face-to-face class, you really need to check out Hippocampus.


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