Free Online Cancer Course Available

“Introduction to the Science of Cancer” is a free, noncredit, online course being offered through iTunes U by The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC – James) in conjunction with Ohio State’s Office of Distance Education and eLearning.

More than 30 OSUCCC – James oncologists and researchers explain key cancer-related concepts in accessible, user-friendly terms. In 35 videos within the course’s five modules, these cancer experts explain the nature of cancer; the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of cancer; and cancer research. Course content includes downloadable slides and readings, along with supplemental information.

“Introduction to the Science of Cancer” is designed for people who have limited knowledge of science but who want a better understanding of cancer. It could also be useful to those with interest in cancer in under-resourced countries, including nursing and medical students, hospital staff, reporters/editors, secondary-school teachers, social workers and community-health personnel.

“The OSUCCC – James offers this free course to encourage a greater commitment to cancer prevention globally,” says OSUCCC Free Online Cancer Course Available Director and James CEO Michael A. Caligiuri, MD.

Caligiuri introduces each module and presents an overview of cancer research.

In 2012, an estimated 14.1 million people developed cancer worldwide, and 8 million people died of it. The number of cancer cases is expected to rise to 22 million in the next 20 years due to growth and aging of the world population. Sixty percent of cancer cases and 70 percent of cancer deaths occur in Africa, Asia and Central and South America, which have few resources for cancer treatment.

“We believe that a sound understanding of cancer by people everywhere will encourage a stronger commitment to cancer prevention by individuals, communities and nations, and lead to better cancer care,” Caligiuri says. “For that reason, the OSUCCC – James is making this course available.”

To view the course and course materials, visit scienceofcancer. Full access to the course and course materials requires an Apple ID and the iTunes U app. Both are free.

The OSUCCC – James also makes the Introduction to the Science of Cancer course available to teachers and other educators on a password-protected website specifically designed for them. For more information and to request access to the site, send an email to

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