Using YouTube to help with university

By   —   October 9, 2016   —   in Culture

YouTube can be good for a laugh and pleasant distraction, but it also has many channels that university students can use to their benefit when it comes to their education. Whether it’s just a quick explanation of something you missed in class or a break from the typical studying session, the Sheaf has put together a list of educational YouTube channels that will satisfy the quest for learning and help you ace your classes.

Kurzgesagt — In a Nutshell

This channel makes animated videos with narrations that explain concepts relevant to modern society and culture in 10 minutes or less. Although there are not a lot of videos up on the channel, the ones already uploaded are high quality.

The channel makes videos about lots of different areas of study, but it only covers current society — sorry history students, this isn’t the channel for you. The videos youtube-shamille-sarcaugado a good job of providing context on specific concepts, such as fracking or black holes, especially in such a short length of time.


By now, the phenomenon of TED Talks is extremely well known and if you don’t already watch these short lectures, you really should start.

The concept of TED Talks is to share the best ideas from the TED conferences with the rest of the world. These lecture-style videos cover a vast subject area — all you have to do is put in the time to look through the collection for something that will be helpful to you.

While the videos covering topics like science and business are very informative, the videos most worth your time are the ones that teach you about things like time management and discovering your potential — something every student should know.


Videos on this channel are all about a minute long and they cover topics relating to physics theories and scientific theories in general. The videos explain difficult concepts in an easy to understand way, making them enjoyable for both students who are cramming for an exam and students who just want to expand their knowledge for fun. Students who didn’t think science was cool before definitely will after watching this channel.

Crash Course

From world history to biology and everything in between, this channel makes videos covering nearly every topic imaginable. Delivered with clever wit and humorous anecdotes, these videos are highly entertaining while still being incredibly informative — it’s easy to forget that you’re learning while watching them. Crash Course is a great channel to help with studying, however, for the student who has trouble staying focused, it may not be the best study tool, as it’s nearly impossible not to get distracted looking around.

Khan Academy

This channel covers a vast amount of subjects, including math, economics and much more.  As stated on its YouTube channel, Khan Academy’s mission is “to provide a world-class education for anyone, anywhere.” The videos use voice-over narration and have graphics that look like a blackboard which give the illusion of being in class, but they are usually more engaging. This is a great channel for math and science-based university courses.


This channel has a mixture of lecture-style videos and animated videos that cover many topics from economics to aging. The lecture-style videos are similar to TED Talks but some of them are much longer. The animated videos are insightful and entertaining, but there are not nearly as many of them as the lectures.

The channel also has debates and interviews with leaders in a variety of different fields, which are engaging and an innovative way to learn. Whatever your time limits and subject interests are, this channel will have the right video for you.

Best of luck and happy studying!

Lyndsay Afseth

Graphic: Shamille Sarcauga

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