Last modified on June 27, 2016, at 21:55

Walter Lewin

Walter Hendrik Gustav Lewin (born January 29, 1936) is an astrophysicist, retired MIT professor, and producer of the most popular physics lectures on MIT OpenCourseWare.

Two of Lewin's courses have been converted into edX courses, 8.01x and 8.02x. People who pass "x" courses will get a certificate from MIT. The resolution was increased and some small edits were made compared to the OpenCourseWare versions. Lewin's course on Electricity and Magnetism went online in February 2013, Newtonian Mechanics is online as of September 2013. As of May 2014, there were yet no plans to convert 8.03 "Vibrations and Waves" into an edX course.[1]

The edX versions of 8.01x and 8.02x are available on YouTube:

There is some controversy about these videos because a 32-year-old French married woman, Faïza Harbi, suffering from psychological disorders watched some of them and was allegedly pressured by Lewin to send him some naked selfies.[2] MIT apparently had some concerns that this caused a Title IX violation, and cut ties with Lewin and the videos.

See alsoEdit


  1. Walter Lewin AMA on reddit. (2014-05-20). Retrieved on 2015-02-22.
  2. "It would take almost a year before Harbi, with the help of MIT’s investigators, said she came to understand that Lewin’s interest in her was not motivated by empathy, and that their first conversations included inappropriate language. Shortly after contacting her, Harbi said, Lewin quickly moved their friendship into uncomfortable territory, and she was pushed to participate in online sexual role-playing and send naked pictures and videos of herself. After about 10 months, Harbi said, she resumed self-mutilating after seven years of not doing so. The harassment, however, “started day one,” Harbi said. Eventually, she said she discovered she was one of many women, which MIT confirmed. Harbi last October sent MIT a packet of more than 100 chat logs, emails, pictures, recordings and screenshots to document the harassment against her and other women." Straumsheim, Carl, "Unprecedented Walter Lewin Sexual Harassment Case Comes Forward 'We All Felt Trapped'. Inside Higher, Published January 23, 2015. Accessed February 22, 2015.