Free courses

Free courses

Produced by The Open University, a world leader in open and distance learning, all OpenLearn courses are free to study. We offer nearly 1000 free courses across 8 different subject areas. Our courses are available to start right away.

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Lunchtime learning

Got a few spare minutes? Brush up on your knowledge with our range of free bite-size courses and activities.

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Results: 135 items Grid List
Children’s perspectives on play Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: The Open University free course icon Level 1 icon

Education & Development 

Children’s perspectives on play

In this free course, Children's perspectives on play, you are asked to put yourself in the place of young children and to think about their view of play and their reasons for playing. When children have personal freedom to choose and make decisions about what and who they want to play with, as well as where they want to play, they are highly self-motivated and active in their engagements with everything around them. In this course you will think about how you listen to children’s perspectives, why it is important and also consider the choices children make about where they play and why.

Free course
5 hrs
Learning to Learn Copyright free image Icon Copyright free: ©iStock.com/payee free course icon Level 1 icon

Education & Development 

Learning to Learn

Learning and change can mean big decisions and asking important questions. This free course, Learning to learn, is a friendly starting point introducing a range of key ideas to help you consider what you want to do with your life and learn, by suggesting ways of building on and 'fine-tuning' your own expertise and encouraging you to think of yourself as a learner.

Free course
80 hrs
Am I ready to be a distance learner? free course icon Level 1 icon

Education & Development 

Am I ready to be a distance learner?

Have you wanted to study at a higher level and not been in a position to become a full-time student? Have you wondered if you are ready? Distance learning may open up opportunities for study but you might have not studied for a while, you might be returning to education, or you might not have had the chance to study at a higher level before. Perhaps you lack confidence about where to start or even how prepared you are to study as a distance learner. This free course, Am I ready to be a distance learner?, will boost your confidence while helping you to explore useful skills, and discover how ready you are to study and how to develop your study skills. Having got this far you are already on the road to becoming a distance learner.

Free course
3 hrs

Education & Development 

Get started with online learning

This free course will explain how you can study online without putting the rest of your life on hold.

Free course
6 hrs
Succeed in the workplace Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: 4maksym/iStockphoto free course icon Level 1 icon Badge icon

Education & Development 

Succeed in the workplace

Do you want to change jobs, are you just starting in the job market or may be returning after a break? If so, then this free course, Succeed in the workplace, is for you. It will help you explore career opportunities. You will also gain the skills to write strong CVs and application forms, and to handle different types of interviews. By the end of the course you will have made a start on your own realistic and strong action plan to enable you to find a job that will fulfil your aspirations and suit your lifestyle.

Free course
24 hrs
The family at the centre of early learning Copyright free image Icon Copyright free: Courtesy: Karen Horsley. free course icon Level 1 icon

Education & Development 

The family at the centre of early learning

This free course, The family at the centre of early learning, focuses on the positive learning relationships that can exist in any family and how ordinary, everyday domestic activities can sustain learning. You will consider how the traditions and cultural practices of the community to which the family belongs filters through to the child’s experiences. In doing so you will think about why such influences may not have a uniform impact from family to family. You will also explore how learning is a two way experience for both children and their parents or carers, in situations both within and beyond the home.

Free course
9 hrs
Digital literacy: succeeding in a digital world Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: © Sakonboon Sansri/Shuttterstock.com free course icon Level 1 icon Badge icon

Education & Development 

Digital literacy: succeeding in a digital world

This free course, Digital literacy: succeeding in a digital world, will develop your confidence and skills for life online, whether study, work or everyday life. It explores a range of digital skills and practices, including digital identity, digital well-being, staying safe and legal, finding and using information and online tools, and dealing with information overload. The importance is emphasised throughout of developing a critical approach to life online, whether consuming or creating information. You will be encouraged to reflect on your own situation and to apply what you learn to real-life scenarios, using a digital skills plan to keep a record of progress.

Free course
24 hrs

Education & Development 

Dance skills

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, whilst developing a wide-ranging movement vocabulary. The use of different dance techniques can be an effective way of building vocabulary and developing different kinds of skills and abilities. Technical dance skills can form the foundation on which to develop and enhance each individual's performance. As dance teachers, we may have a range of skills, but it isn't always possible to possess expertise in every type of dance style and technique. Having the knowledge and experience to teach African Dance forms, Jazz Dance or Hip Hop to students is a great way of introducing them to a variety of styles and can be a rich and rewarding process. However, many teachers in schools and colleges work within a Contemporary Dance style because it will have been the basis of their education and training. In this free course, Dance skills, it is also the main point of reference.

Free course
12 hrs
Succeeding in postgraduate study Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: © Everste/Getty Images free course icon Level 3 icon Badge icon

Education & Development 

Succeeding in postgraduate study

This free course, Succeeding in postgraduate study, will help you to become familiar with the requirements and demands of postgraduate study and to develop the skills and confidence to pursue your learning further.

Free course
24 hrs
Democracy? You think you know? Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: Used with permission free course icon Level 2 icon

Education & Development 

Democracy? You think you know?

Participating in the democratic processes is seen as being a fundamental aspect of citizenship. All pupils need a broad knowledge and understanding of the rights, responsibilities and duties of citizens, as well as an understanding of forms of government. Notions of citizenship have been forged alongside the expansion of the right to vote and the development of our ideas about democracy. In this fee course, Democracy? You think you know? we explore different interpretations of democracy and strategies for involving pupils in consideration of these issues within the citizenship curriculum.

Free course
8 hrs
Early years team work and leadership free course icon Level 1 icon

Education & Development 

Early years team work and leadership

This free course, Early years team work and leadership, explores aspects of teamwork and leadership for early years practitioners.

Free course
8 hrs
Childhood in the digital age Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: © boggy22 (via iStockPhoto.com) free course icon Level 1 icon

Education & Development 

Childhood in the digital age

This free course, Childhood in the digital age, delves into the lives of children and discuss the potential benefits and limitations of technology in their lives.

Free course
12 hrs
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