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OpenLearn Live: 2nd December 2016

OpenLearn Live: 2nd December 2016 Creative commons image Aero Icarus under Creative Commons BY-SA 4.0 license New content
Updated 02 Dec 2016
Ice falling from planes isn't an urban myth - it can be more dangerous than that. Plus how Victorians saw Shakespeare. Learning and research from...

Songs of Love and Hate: On Leonard Cohen

Featuring: Video Video
Songs of Love and Hate: On Leonard Cohen Creative commons image By By jonl1973 (http://www.flickr.com/photos/chigley/2682089366/) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons under Creative-Commons license
Introductory level Duration 10 mins Updated 15 Nov 2016
After Leonard Cohen's death, Richard Danson Brown explores the way the songwriter specialised in conveying difficulties in father-son relationships...

25th International Radio Playwriting Competition

25th International Radio Playwriting Competition Copyrighted image Copyright: BBC
Introductory level Duration 5 mins Updated 07 Nov 2016
The only global competition for radio playwrights. Find out more about 2015-16's event and explore drama and dramatists with OpenLearn.

National Novel Writing Month

National Novel Writing Month Copyrighted image Copyright: Image courtesy of National Novel Writing Month
Introductory level Duration 1 hour Updated 01 Nov 2016
Could you write a novel in a month? National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) challenges you to write 50k words in November. Get a head start...

Neil Gaiman on his inspirations as a fantasy author

Featuring: Video Video
Neil Gaiman on his inspirations as a fantasy author Copyrighted image Copyright: BBC
Introductory level Duration 5 mins Updated 31 Oct 2016
Author, Neil Gaiman, discusses how PL Travers (author of Mary Poppins) and Enid Blyton were both a catalyst for his love of fantasy fiction. 

Dame Stella Rimington on John le Carré

Featuring: Video Video
Dame Stella Rimington on John le Carré Copyrighted image Copyright: BBC
Introductory level Duration 5 mins Updated 31 Oct 2016
British author and former Director General of MI5, Dame Stella Rimington, tells us why she thinks John le Carré is the master of the spy...

Bob Dylan as Nobel Laureate: Two reactions

Featuring: Video Video
Bob Dylan as Nobel Laureate: Two reactions Creative commons image Jean-Luc Ourlin under Creative Commons BY-SA 4.0 license
Introductory level Duration 10 mins Updated 14 Oct 2016
In South Asia, delight. In Japan, dismay. Two writers explore how Asia reacted to Bob Dylan's Nobel prize.

Val McDermid on celebrity villains in crime novels

Featuring: Video Video
Val McDermid on celebrity villains in crime novels Copyrighted image Copyright: BBC
Introductory level Duration 5 mins Updated 12 Oct 2016
Val McDermid talks about her inspirations for the monstrous character of Jacko Vance in 'Wire in the Blood' and how celebrity is the new lord of...

Quiz: Create your perfect whodunit

Featuring: Activity Activity
Quiz: Create your perfect whodunit Copyrighted image Copyright: © Philcold | Dreamstime.com - Crime Novel
Introductory level Duration 5 mins Updated 11 Oct 2016
Could you give Miss Marple or Poirot a run for their money? Answer our quiz questions to find out your perfect whodunit plot and which crime...

Free OpenLearn courses.
OU course extracts and exclusive free courses

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Writing what you know

Free Course Free Course Featuring: Audio Audio
Writing what you know Copyrighted image Copyright: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 8 hours Updated 25 Aug 2016
Do you want to improve your descriptive writing? This free course, Writing what you know, will help you to develop your perception of the world...

Start writing fiction

Free Course Free Course Featuring: Audio Audio
Start writing fiction Copyrighted image Copyright: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 12 hours Updated 13 Jun 2016
Have you always wanted to write, but never quite had the courage to start? This free course, Start writing fiction, will give you an insight into...

Working with dilemmas

Free Course Free Course
Working with dilemmas
Advanced level Duration 4 hours Updated 21 Apr 2016
Dilemmas are part of the fabric of organisational and individual life; these are often presented as the choice between two (or more) equally...

History of reading: An introduction to reading in the past

Free Course Free Course
History of reading: An introduction to reading in the past Copyrighted image Copyright: Used with permission
Intermediate level Duration 1 hour Updated 17 Mar 2016
This free course, History of reading: An introduction to reading in the past, consists of a series of essays, drawn from material contained in the...

Reading

Free Course Free Course
Reading Copyrighted image Copyright: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 8 hours Updated 09 Mar 2016
Reading is an essential skill for all of us and developing our skills in reading is a good investment. This free course is packed with practical...

What is good writing?

Free Course Free Course
What is good writing? Copyrighted image Copyright: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 12 hours Updated 09 Mar 2016
Does the idea of essay writing put you off the idea of studying? This free course, What is good writing?, will help you to realise that essays are...

History of reading tutorial 1: Finding evidence of reading in the past

Free Course Free Course Featuring: Activity Activity
History of reading tutorial 1: Finding evidence of reading in the past Copyrighted image Copyright: Used with permission
Intermediate level Duration 2 hours Updated 16 Feb 2016
How do we know what people read in the past, and how they read it? This free course, History of reading tutorial 1: Finding evidence of reading in...

History of reading tutorial 2: The reading and reception of literary texts – a case study of Robinson Crusoe

Free Course Free Course
History of reading tutorial 2: The reading and reception of literary texts – a case study of Robinson Crusoe Copyrighted image Copyright: Used with permission
Intermediate level Duration 1 hour Updated 16 Feb 2016
How have famous books been read and received by audiences in the past? This free course, History of reading tutorial 2: The reading and reception...

History of reading tutorial 3: Famous writers and their reading - Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Vernon Lee

Free Course Free Course
History of reading tutorial 3: Famous writers and their reading - Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Vernon Lee Copyrighted image Copyright: Used with permission
Intermediate level Duration 1 hour Updated 16 Feb 2016
Have you ever wondered about the reading tastes and habits of famous writers in the past? This free course, History of reading tutorial 3: Famous...

Helen Langdon's ‘Caravaggio’

Free Course Free Course
Helen Langdon's ‘Caravaggio’ Copyrighted image Copyright: Used with permission
Advanced level Duration 20 hours Updated 08 Feb 2016
Accounts of Caravaggio's life are filled with suggestions of murder and intrigue. But does knowing more about this dark artist's experiences help...

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Change your life with a qualification

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Certificate of Higher Education Open

Course Course
Certificate of Higher Education Open Copyrighted image Copyright: Irochka | Dreamstime.com
Duration 1200 hours Updated 02 Dec 2016
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

Course Course
BA/BSc Open degree Copyrighted image Copyright: Dreamstime
Duration 3600 hours Updated 02 Dec 2016
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...

Certificate of Higher Education in Humanities

Course Course
Certificate of Higher Education in Humanities Copyrighted image Copyright: Dreamstime
Duration 1200 hours Updated 02 Dec 2016
Why study the arts? Apart from sheer enjoyment, these subjects give you an enormous breadth of cultural literacy while training you to think and...

Diploma of Higher Education in Humanities

Course Course
Diploma of Higher Education in Humanities Copyrighted image Copyright: Dreamstime
Duration 2400 hours Updated 02 Dec 2016
The Diploma of Higher Education in Humanities will help you refine your skills of debate and analysis while developing your cultural literacy. It...

Diploma of Higher Education Open

Course Course
Diploma of Higher Education Open Copyrighted image Copyright: The Open University / Karen Parker
Duration 2400 hours Updated 02 Dec 2016
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) Humanities

Course Course
BA (Honours) Humanities Copyrighted image Copyright: The Open University / Karen Parker
Duration 3600 hours Updated 02 Dec 2016
This degree in humanities offers a broad-based grounding in the study and enjoyment of the arts and humanities – covering a fascinating variety of...

BA (Honours) English Literature

Course Course
BA (Honours) English Literature Creative commons image
Duration 3600 hours Updated 02 Dec 2016
English literature is a broad and accessible subject that is important in its own right and offers connections to a wide range of other kinds of...

BA (Honours) English Language and Literature

Course Course
BA (Honours) English Language and Literature Copyrighted image Copyright: The Open University / Karen Parker
Duration 3600 hours Updated 02 Dec 2016
This degree course offers a stimulating and wide-ranging introduction to English language and literature. You’ll have the opportunity to...

MA English part 1

Course Course
MA English part 1 Copyrighted image Copyright: The Open University/Karen Parker
Advanced level Duration 1200 hours Updated 02 Dec 2016 Register by 21 Sep 2017
Expand on your previous study and prepare for your dissertation through an exploration of a rich variety of literary texts, from the ancient past...

Reading and studying literature

Course Course
Reading and studying literature Copyrighted image Copyright: The Open University/Karen Parker
Intermediate level Duration 600 hours Updated 02 Dec 2016 Register by 14 Sep 2017
This module will introduce you to the study of English literature by looking at a selection of texts from the Renaissance to the present day...