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Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the UW


The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Washington (OLLI-UW) offers a range of programs for intellectually curious adults over the age of 50. We’re currently offering both in-person and Zoom courses.


OLLI-UW courses cover engaging subjects ranging from global events to the arts, from health science research to compelling issues of the day. Courses are led by current and retired UW faculty or experts from the community.

We offer a full schedule of about 20 courses in fall, winter and spring. Courses typically meet weekly for a two-hour online session in the morning or afternoon for three to five weeks.

After a year of remote offerings, OLLI-UW members have noted that the online format improves socializing because the ability to hear and see one another is aided by screens and volume control. Additionally, the flexibility of the remote schedule has meant that more UW professors can participate in OLLI-UW course lectures, boosting the quality of courses.

OLLI-UW members pay a fee of about $40–$55 per course, depending on the number of sessions.

Some past course topics have included:

  • Secret Lives of Birds We Love
  • America in the Gilded Age
  • J.S. Bach: The Progress of a Musical Mind
  • Presidential Powers
  • Museum Masterpieces in the US
  • Stars: Science and Stories

Monthly Lecture Series

These lectures are talks by experts on a wide range of subjects. These events are free for OLLI-UW members, and are held about once a month in several locations. Members are invited to bring their lunch and a guest. 

Some recent lecture topics have included:

  • Philosophy of Humor
  • Women's Suffrage Movement in Washington
  • Monsters and Monstrosities in the Middle Ages
  • Climate Change and the Puget Sound’s Marine Ecosystem

Study Groups

Designed and led by members, study groups are free to OLLI-UW members. Groups allow participants the opportunity to focus on a chosen topic for a brief or a sustained period of time. Many study groups are book groups.  

Special Events

Guided museum and garden tours, summer field trips and other special events are offered periodically throughout the year. Some events charge a small fee.