Saturday, March 4, 2017

Top 5 YouTube Science Channels (for school or for home)

Top 5 YouTube Science Channels (For school or for home)

These are the top 5 YouTube Science Channels for school or for home. The ranks are subjective based on my personal experience watching dozens of science YouTube videos a week.

#1  Kurzgesagt - In A Nutshell

Coming in at #1 is Kurzgesagt - In a Nutshell. They make beautifully animated science videos at the rate of about one per month. Topics are wide-ranging and relevant including videos on overpopulation, The Fermi Paradox,  nuclear energy, and GMOs. No matter the topic, the videos are always engaging, accurate and beautiful. This is a quality over quantity channel with one video coming out every month or so.  On twitter, the team revealed each video takes between 400 and 500 hours of work from start to finish. 

For more information on this amazing channel check out their website here.

Check out their channel here.

Key Attributes: 

The production quality, animations, and voiceovers are top notch.

The art style is amazing (simple yet elegant).

You can tell the creators care about putting out quality content.

Well researched with an engaging presentation of information.

Explanations are top notch for developing conceptual and contextual understanding. 

Interesting Topics that encourage critical thinking and discussion.

Things that could be better:


#2 SciShow


SciShow is the definitive YouTube science channel. They have videos on nearly every topic, (over 1200 videos at this time)  and are excellent at keeping up to date with their topics. Videos are posted pretty much daily, so they always keep you coming back for more science. SciShow is mainly hosted by the excellent Hank Green (brother of author and fellow YouTuberJohn Green).  Hank brings a quirky comedic charm to the field of science and can make any topic interesting. The sheer number of videos and the overall quality of the videos makes SciSHow an excellent choice! (Check out SciShow Space and SciShow Psych for even more SciShow)

Check out the channel here.

Positive Attributes: 

Tons of high-quality videos on pretty much any topic and for any lesson.

Well researched information (and they provided sources).

Covers up-to-date science in the news (with accuracy).

Great host in Hank Green 

Things that could be better: 

Hosts can talk a bit fast (mostly because they are enthusiastic about science!). 

Videos sometimes pack in too much information into a short video (could be overwhelming for some)

#3 Crash Course

Crash Course is the definitive education YouTube Channel and they do science very well. Crash Course started out with history and the humanities but have expanded to cover numerous academic areas. Crash Course currently works with PBS and are partnered with Kahn Academy. They have covered Physics, Astronomy, Biology, Ecology and Chemistry among other topics. I am particularly fond of their Big History series which gives a great run-through of the history of the universe. John Green hosts many of the videos. John Green is famous for writing the book  The Fault in Our Stars and is a great host!

Check out the Channel Here.
and Big History Here.

Positive Qualities:

Well-researched information (text book quality info for the digital age!).

Systematic and sequential content on topics that work like a textbook (but far more engaging). 

Great hosts, production values and humor!

Great use of visuals to develop conceptual and contextual understanding.

Things that could be better:

Videos pack in a lot of information ( could be overwhelming for some ).

Videos can require rewinding and rewatching to catch everything.

#4 Veritasium

Veritasium is a YouTube channel created by Derek Muller that asks interesting questions about science and engineering. Muller has a Ph.D. in physics education research and gives well thought out answers to simple, engaging questions. Derek is knowledgeable and knows how to explain complex topics in a clear, engaging way. Some of my favorite sequences are when he is out there talking to real people about science! Derek has great enthusiasm for science and his channel is a must watch for science nuts!

Check out the channel here.

Positive Attributes: 

Asks interesting questions about everyday phenomena.

Uses clear language to describe scientific phenomena.

Uses everyday context and normal objects to describe big ideas.

Nice Variety of topics to choose from ranging from physics to philosophy. 

Things that could be better: 

Would benefit from more engaging visuals and animations.

Production quality is slightly lower than previous channels.

#5 Vsauce

Vsauce is a mostly educational channel created by Michael Stevens. The channel features science, math, philosophy, and never shies away from pushing the limits of human thought. Michael is smart and charismatic and creates excellent content that may just change how you view the world. Vsauce presents big ideas nad asks questions you never thought to ask. The channel is at its best when it challenges viewers to look at the world in new and interesting ways.  

Check out the channel here.

Positive Attributes: 

Engaging, charismatic host who knows how to get a viewer engaged by asking the right questions.

High-Level information for older individuals.

Each video is extensively researched and the information is presented clearly.

Provides great statistics, charts, and visuals.

Math content is unique and really interesting.

Things that could be better:

Topics and information require a good amount of background knowledge.

Michael sometimes speaks too quickly and uses academic language that is not alway accessible to all viewers. 

Thanks for Reading! Go Science!

Check out my list of the Best YouTube videos about the science of bananas !

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