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Happy Ada Lovelace Day!

Happy Ada Lovelace Day! Creative commons image Credit: Wikimedia
Introductory level Duration 15 mins Updated 14 Oct 2014
An intriguing story of Ada Lovelace and Charles Babbage, and their role in the 19th century development of the computer.

Radar: What happened next?

Radar: What happened next? Copyright free image Credit: Public domain
Updated 29 Aug 2014
Since the Second World War, radar systems have become smaller, further, wetter and stealthier. Discover the application of radar in modern life...

OU on the BBC: Castles in the Sky

Featuring: VideoVideo
OU on the BBC: Castles in the Sky Copyrighted image Credit: BBC
Updated 28 Aug 2014
Embrace a remarkable human drama behind the invention that was to prove pivotal in the Battle of Britain - radar.

Iconic engineering: The Forth Bridge and Concorde

Iconic engineering: The Forth Bridge and Concorde Creative commons image Credit: George Gastin
Introductory level Duration 10 mins Updated 26 Aug 2014
Why do we look on with adoration and amazement at some engineering creations while others leave us feeling indifferent? Dr Ian Johnston examines...

Materials: Sustainability and structure

Featuring: AudioAudio
Materials: Sustainability and structure Creative commons image Credit: epSos under CC-BY-2.0 licence
Introductory level Duration 20 mins Updated 18 Aug 2014
Whether it's outlining the world's attitude to plastic bags or admiring the Pont de Normandie, Ian Johnston and Bernie Clark discuss sustainability...

How sustainable is mass production?

How sustainable is mass production? Copyright free image Credit: [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Introductory level Duration 15 mins Updated 15 Aug 2014
Miraculous inventions and engineering has enabled us to get our hands on cheap and effective products used in everyday life, but are the materials...

Radar: What happened next – Stealthier

Radar: What happened next – Stealthier Copyright free image Credit: Public domain
Updated 23 Jul 2014
The Germans took evasive action to avoid radar detection in the Second World War, and the avoidance / detection game has been played ever since.

Radar: What happened next – Further

Radar: What happened next – Further Creative commons image Credit: Arpingstone under CC-BY-SA licence
Updated 22 Jul 2014
During and after the Second World War radar systems continued developing, increasing in both range and accuracy.

Radar: What happened next – Smaller

Radar: What happened next – Smaller Copyrighted image Credit: RAF Mark's Castle
Updated 22 Jul 2014
The race against time to develop smaller radar systems during the Second World War.

Free OpenLearn courses.
Free extracts from OU course materials

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People-centred designing

Free CourseFree Course Featuring: VideoVideo ActivityActivity
People-centred designing Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 12 hours Updated 05 Mar 2014
Designed products surround us all and range from bus tickets to buildings. This unit focuses firmly on usability and the increasingly important...

Design

Free CourseFree Course
Design Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 28 hours Updated 10 Dec 2013
This unit looks at the process of design – from assessing the complexity of design as an activity, to exposing the difficulty in making general...

Finding information in technology

Free CourseFree Course Featuring: AudioAudio ActivityActivity
Finding information in technology Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 9 hours Updated 26 Nov 2013
The internet provides a world of information, but how do you find what you are looking for? This unit will help you discover the meaning of...

Design thinking

Free CourseFree Course Featuring: VideoVideo ActivityActivity
Design thinking Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 10 hours Updated 22 Dec 2011
Are you ever frustrated with something that you thought you could design better? Design thinking can structure your natural creativity to come up...

Potable water treatment

Free CourseFree Course Featuring: VideoVideo ActivityActivity
Potable water treatment Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 20 hours Updated 29 Jul 2011
Without it we are dead! Water is essential, but what processes must it go through to become fit for human consumption? This unit will guide you...

Invention and innovation: An introduction

Free CourseFree Course Featuring: VideoVideo
Invention and innovation: An introduction Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Advanced level Duration 55 hours Updated 28 Jul 2011
This unit is for designers, engineers, technologists and anyone interested in designing and inventing. It is also for managers and consumers...

Engineering: The nature of problems

Free CourseFree Course
Engineering: The nature of problems Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Intermediate level Duration 40 hours Updated 28 Jul 2011
Engineering is about extending the horizons of society by solving technical problems, ranging from the meeting of basic human needs for food and...

Structural devices

Free CourseFree Course
Structural devices Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Advanced level Duration 20 hours Updated 25 Jul 2011
Microelectronics has enabled designers of integrated circuits to exercise complete control over the electrical characteristics of each component...

Microelectronic solutions for digital photography

Free CourseFree Course
Microelectronic solutions for digital photography Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Advanced level Duration 4 hours Updated 25 Jul 2011
The human eye is a fascinating and complicated device, but how do digital cameras capture images? This unit examines one of the human–machine...

Structural materials in cells

Free CourseFree Course
Structural materials in cells Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Advanced level Duration 20 hours Updated 25 Jul 2011
Where does the structure of our body come from? This unit looks at the structure of cells and how proteins are used by both animals and plants to...

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Change your life with a qualification

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Certificate of Higher Education Open

CourseCourse
Certificate of Higher Education Open Copyrighted image Credit: Irochka | Dreamstime.com Updated content
Duration 1200 hours Updated 20 Nov 2014
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...

Top-up Bachelor of Engineering with Honours

CourseCourse
Top-up Bachelor of Engineering with Honours Copyrighted image Credit: Dreamstime Updated content
Duration 1200 hours Updated 21 Nov 2014
This course enables you to top up your knowledge and skills to honours degree level if you have completed an OU foundation degree or diploma of...

BA/BSc Open degree

CourseCourse
BA/BSc Open degree Copyrighted image Credit: Dreamstime Updated content
Duration 3000 hours Updated 21 Nov 2014
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...

Diploma of Higher Education in Engineering

CourseCourse
Diploma of Higher Education in Engineering Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University/Karen Parker Updated content
Duration 2400 hours Updated 20 Nov 2014
Engineering is at the heart of the built environment, and plays a central role in every aspect of our working and personal lives – from electricity...

Diploma of Higher Education in Materials Fabrication and Engineering

CourseCourse
Diploma of Higher Education in Materials Fabrication and Engineering Copyrighted image Credit: Dreamstime Updated content
Duration 2400 hours Updated 20 Nov 2014
This Diploma of Higher Education in Materials Fabrication and Engineering brings together qualifications offered by The Welding Institute (TWI) –...

Foundation Degree in Engineering

CourseCourse
Foundation Degree in Engineering Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University/Karen Parker Updated content
Duration 2400 hours Updated 20 Nov 2014
Engineering is at the heart of the built environment, and plays a central role in every aspect of our working and personal lives – from electricity...

Diploma of Higher Education in Computing&IT&Second Subject

CourseCourse
Diploma of Higher Education in Computing&IT&Second Subject Creative commons image Credit: Sam I Are under CC-BY-NC-SA Updated content
Duration 2400 hours Updated 20 Nov 2014
Computing and IT skills are hugely valued in the modern workplace; studied together with a second complementary subject they can give you an...

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 20 Nov 2014
Studying at university level is not just about gaining a degree. We also offer a range of other qualifications, including Certificates and Diplomas...

Foundation Degree in Materials Fabrication and Engineering

CourseCourse
Foundation Degree in Materials Fabrication and Engineering Copyrighted image Credit: Dreamstime Updated content
Duration 2400 hours Updated 20 Nov 2014
This Foundation Degree in Materials Fabrication and Engineering brings together qualifications offered by The Welding Institute (TWI) – the world...