Free Online Math for Middle School and Up


The Art of Problem Solving people recently announced their new Alcumus program, which provides online lessons on assorted math topics, including probability and combinatorics, which most math textbooks do not cover well, if at all.

Update October 2011:

Alcumus currently complements our Introduction to Algebra, Introduction to Counting & Probability, Introduction to Number Theory, and Prealgebra textbooks, as well as our Algebra 1, Algebra 2, Introduction to Counting & Probability, Introduction to Number Theory, and Prealgebra 1 online courses. We expect to continue to expand topics in Alcumus.

AoPS Alcumus information page

I am signing up all my MathCounts students. If you’re a homeschooler, we would love to have you join us!

What Is Alcumus?

Alcumus is an online program of study which interacts with the student and adapts to his or her level. As you get stronger in a topic, Alcumus automatically provides more challenging material, but if you struggle, Alcumus will give you additional practice.The current database features more than 1100 7,500 problems with fully worked-out solutions and over 60 110 video lessons — and they keep adding more.

Parents can track their students’ performance with detailed progress reports, and the students may revisit problems and lessons at any time.

This program is great practice for our math competitions, such as MathCounts and the AMC, but it is also open to students who just want to explore math concepts on their own time.

How Can I Join?

According to the AoPS website, students may only sign up for Alcumus as part of a registered class. I have set up a class called “Let’s Play Math!” which is open to all interested homeschoolers and self-directed learners. Update 10/18/2011: You no longer have to join as part of a class. Just get an AoPS account and start having fun!

Problem Solving Hints

Keep scratch paper handy, and you may want a calculator for some of the more complicated problems. I’ve been relying on mental math, and I have the mistakes to show for it.

Several of the problems are challenging, because the program is trying to serve students with a very wide range of abilities. If you miss the problem, or if you click “I Give Up,” the program will show you the answer worked out. Don’t be afraid to use the “Give Up” option. If a problem is too hard for you, that means there’s a topic you can look forward to learning about.

The program always shows the solution for every problem, even the ones you get correct. If you are unsure about any of your answers, you should read the solution, even if you got the problem right. Understanding the worked-out solution may give you another way to think about the problem, or it may give you some insight that will help on a future problem.

12 thoughts on “Free Online Math for Middle School and Up

  1. Hi
    thanks for the information on alcumus. I have registered my 11 year old son on that. Iam giving you his username . It is math_rocks. Iam yet to submit the form (under age ). If you need any other information regarding the class let me know.
    Mathura Sundar

    1. It is not a very active class, but it does exist. I added a couple of new students this month. It’s not like the AoPS online classes — we’re just a handful of people working independently through the Alcumus problems, organized into a class only for the sake of registration. You can’t get into the class by searching; you have to follow the instructions in this post.

  2. In the intro it says “Free Online Math for Middle School and Up”” but I didn’t find anything that’s free. Where do I find the free online math?

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