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Left or right? What should we do about political bias in the Social Sciences

Left or right? What should we do about political bias in the Social Sciences Creative commons image Credit: Gary Edwards
Duration 10 mins Updated 13 Mar 2015
The question of bias in academic disciplines is one that has resurfaced in recent years, particular in relation to the Social Sciences. 

Beyond formal learning – supporting communities of life-long learners

Beyond formal learning – supporting communities of life-long learners Creative commons image Credit: Gary Edwards
Duration 10 mins Updated 09 Mar 2015
The OU fostered the collective construction of knowledge by helping learners build social connetctions, and by offering realistic objectives and...

An OU Vision for the 21st Century?

An OU Vision for the 21st Century? Creative commons image Credit: Catherine Pain
Duration 10 mins Updated 13 Feb 2015
As the OU prepares to welcome new VC, Peter Horrocks, later this year, it might be a good moment to ‘take stock’ and reflect on both where we have...

Badges come to OpenLearn

Badges come to OpenLearn Copyrighted image Credit: Main image © Wavebreakmedia Ltd | Dreamstime.com / Badges and montage Open University
Updated 09 Feb 2015
Using our free courses but want to show others what you've learned? We've got great news for you...

Prisoner students - learning to escape?

Prisoner students - learning to escape? Creative commons image Credit: Gary Edwards
Duration 10 mins Updated 27 Jan 2015
As the government gears up to making universities and prisons responsible for deterring radicalisation can The Open University (OU) look...

Science Pathway Discussion Hub

Science Pathway Discussion Hub Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University / Karen Parker
Updated 23 Jan 2015
Discussion hub for those studying the Science Pathway with Pathways to Success.

Health and Social Care Discussion Hub

Health and Social Care Discussion Hub Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University / Karen Parker
Updated 23 Jan 2015
Discussion hub for those studying the Health and Social Care Pathway with Pathways to Success.

Social Science and Psychology Discussion Hub

Social Science and Psychology Discussion Hub Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University / Karen Parker
Updated 23 Jan 2015
Discussion hub for those studying the Social Science and Psychology Pathway with Pathways to Success. 

Science Tasters

Science Tasters Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University / Karen Parker
Updated 23 Jan 2015
Is studying Science for you? Dip into some of our tasters and find out!

Free OpenLearn courses.
Free extracts from OU course materials

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Taking your first steps into higher education

Free CourseFree Course
Taking your first steps into higher education Copyrighted image Credit: Image courtesy of chanpipat at FreeDigitalPhotos.net Updated content
Introductory level Duration 24 hours Updated 19 Mar 2015
[BETA] What is university study like? Is it for me? If you are asking yourself these questions, this badged course is for you. ...

English: skills for learning

Free CourseFree Course
English: skills for learning Copyrighted image Credit: © PepitolPhotos/Istockphoto.com
Introductory level Duration 24 hours Updated 17 Feb 2015
[BETA] This course is for anybody who is thinking of studying for a university degree and would like to develop the English reading and writing...

Succeed with learning

Free CourseFree Course
Succeed with learning Copyrighted image Credit: EBLokhina/iStockphoto.com
Introductory level Duration 24 hours Updated 17 Feb 2015
[BETA] Succeed with learning is an informal, introductory course for people who are want to feel more confident about their learning skills. This...

Continuity and learning

Free CourseFree Course Featuring: VideoVideo
Continuity and learning
Introductory level Duration 12 hours Updated 10 Feb 2015
This OpenLearn course has a practical and professional development focus. You will explore interactive dimensions of workplace learning: how people...

English grammar in context

Free CourseFree Course Featuring: VideoVideo
English grammar in context Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Advanced level Duration 15 hours Updated 09 Dec 2014
The use of grammar is more complex than it appears. This unit looks at the way grammar can be used as a tool for adapting our communications (both...

Dance skills

Free CourseFree Course Featuring: VideoVideo ActivityActivity
Dance skills Creative commons image Credit: Used with permission
Intermediate level Duration 12 hours Updated 09 Dec 2014
Dance communicates ideas through movement and is an expressive art form. Students need to learn how to use their body in a safe and healthy way,...

New Free OpenLearn Courses

Free CourseFree Course
New Free OpenLearn Courses Copyrighted image Credit: © mattjeacock/istock
Introductory level Duration 1 hour Updated 11 Oct 2014
This collection highlights the new free OpenLearn courses that have recently been published.

Exploring childrens' learning

Free CourseFree Course Featuring: VideoVideo
Exploring childrens' learning Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Intermediate level Duration 20 hours Updated 26 Sep 2014
How does a child’s mind and behaviour change as they develop over time? In this unit four theories of child development are explored. Each theory...

Essay and report writing skills

Free CourseFree Course
Essay and report writing skills Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 15 hours Updated 18 Aug 2014
Writing reports and assignments can be a daunting prospect. This unit is designed to help you develop the skills you need to write effectively for...

Learning to Learn

Free CourseFree Course
Learning to Learn Copyright free image Credit: ©iStock.com/payee
Introductory level Duration 80 hours Updated 16 Jun 2014
Learning and change can mean big decisions and asking important questions. This free online course is a friendly starting point introducing a range...

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Change your life with a qualification

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Top-up BA Early Years

CourseCourse
Top-up BA Early Years Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University/Karen Parker Updated content
Duration 1200 hours Updated 29 Mar 2015
This pathway enables experienced practitioners with a Foundation Degree in Early Years (normally sector endorsed) to enhance their professional...

Certificate of Higher Education Open

CourseCourse
Certificate of Higher Education Open Copyrighted image Credit: Irochka | Dreamstime.com Updated content
Duration 1200 hours Updated 29 Mar 2015
If you’re keen to try university study and want to keep your options open, this certificate course is ideal. It’s part of our unique Open...

BA/BSc Open degree

CourseCourse
BA/BSc Open degree Copyrighted image Credit: Dreamstime Updated content
Duration 3600 hours Updated 29 Mar 2015
Over 40 per cent of OU students who graduate do so with an Open degree. It’s a statistic we’re proud of – the BA/BSc Open is one of the most...

CertHE in Supporting Teaching and Learning in Primary Schools

CourseCourse
CertHE in Supporting Teaching and Learning in Primary Schools Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University / Karen Parker Updated content
Duration 1200 hours Updated 29 Mar 2015
Do you work in a primary school supporting children’s learning? This is one of the fastest growing occupational groups in the UK. If you’re a...

Foundation Degree in Primary Teaching and Learning

CourseCourse
Foundation Degree in Primary Teaching and Learning Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University / Karen Parker Updated content
Duration 2400 hours Updated 29 Mar 2015
Teaching assistants and classroom support staff represent one of the fastest growing occupational groups in the country. If you’re a teaching...

Diploma of Higher Education in Primary Teaching and Learning

CourseCourse
Diploma of Higher Education in Primary Teaching and Learning Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University/Karen Parker Updated content
Duration 2400 hours Updated 29 Mar 2015
Classroom and teaching assistants and classroom support staff represent one of the fastest growing occupational groups in the country. If you’re a...

Diploma of Higher Education Open

CourseCourse
Diploma of Higher Education Open Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University / Karen Parker Updated content
Duration 2400 hours Updated 29 Mar 2015
Studying at university level is not just about gaining a degree. We also offer a range of other qualifications, including Certificates and Diplomas...

BA (Honours) Early Years

CourseCourse
BA (Honours) Early Years Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University/Karen Parker Updated content
Duration 3600 hours Updated 29 Mar 2015
Do you work with young children? Do you want to boost your career and develop your practice? This degree course provides a solid, practical...

Youth: policy in practice

CourseCourse
Youth: policy in practice Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University / Karen Parker Updated content
Advanced level Duration 600 hours Updated 29 Mar 2015 Register by 17 Sep 2015
This online course continues the development of the critical, practical and analytical skills you need to work proactively within the youth...

The early years: developing practice (APEL route)

CourseCourse
The early years: developing practice (APEL route) Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University / Karen Parker Updated content
Introductory level Duration 600 hours Updated 29 Mar 2015 Register by 07 Jan 2016
This APEL route and its assessment will enable you to consider the knowledge and understanding you have gained through your experience of working...