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MIT Offers The Public Free Poker Courses Online

Prestigious University Teaches Poker As Part Of ‘Open Learning’ Program


Do you enjoy poker and dream of an education from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology? That’s now possible after the prestigious university recently announced two poker courses offered as part of the MIT Open Learning program.

Not only are the courses open to anyone, even if they aren’t a registered student, but it’s also free! Those looking to brush up on their skills and gain some insight into the game can now do so online via one of the country’s top institutions.

This year’s course options include “Poker Theory and Analytics” and “How To Win At Texas Hold’em Poker.”

What To Expect

MIT has offered Poker Theory and Analytics for several years and takes students beyond the poker table. The course focuses on some of the game’s key elements and combines those skills in relation to investment management and trading.

The syllabus notes that beyond how to improve poker skills and tournament strategy, students will also “develop the basic foundation for decision-making in poker.” Some of the “homework” includes tournament play as well.

“I spent several years playing poker professionally while studying finance as an undergraduate at Villanova University,” instructor Kevin Desmond said. “I chose to join Morgan Stanley as a trader rather than pursue poker as a career. My transition into trading was very seamless as a result of my experience playing poker and interest in game theory concepts. I would like MIT students to have the same opportunity.”

How To Win At Texas Hold’em Poker is taught by business professor Will Ma, who has some nice poker skins on the wall including more than $680,000 in live tournament winnings. Some of the coursework includes a look at the mathematics behind the game, preflop ranges, variance, and more. Students will be asked to compete in an online poker league as well.

The MIT Open Learning program is meant to offer education opportunities for lifelong learners around the world. The courses include lecture videos, notes, study materials, and more. Other courses recently announced include topics like classical music, learning conversational Italian, and even thermodynamics.

“The mission of Open Learning is to share knowledge,” MIT Vice President for Open Learning Vijay Sarma says. “We want to make sure that learning isn’t this thing we keep, but people can take and do something with it – for their lives, for their enjoyment, for the fulfillment of their ambitions, their dreams.”

The MIT students on campus have also had their own poker club since 2012,

Those looking for more advanced poker training may also want to check out the Card Player Poker School, which also has free courses to view.