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The first geological map of the UK

The first geological map of the UK Copyright free image Credit: York Museums Trust New content
Duration 5 mins Updated 03 Aug 2015
One of the most important maps of the UK ever made – described as the ‘Magna Carta of geology’ – is to go on permanent public display in Cambridge...

Do cephalopods have consciousness?

Do cephalopods have consciousness? Creative commons image Credit: Maia Valenzuela under CC-BY licence New content
Introductory level Duration 10 mins Updated 27 Jul 2015
If we accept that some animals have consciousness, why should we extend that to include squid and octopus?

Do any animals have consciousness?

Do any animals have consciousness? Creative commons image Credit: L.Miguel Bugallo Sánchez under CC-BY-SA licence New content
Introductory level Duration 10 mins Updated 27 Jul 2015
Before arguing for cephalopod consciousness, the Cephalover explores arguments for any animals being conscious.

Sleeping on it can solve your problems

Sleeping on it can solve your problems Creative commons image Credit: j cliss under CC-BY-NC-ND licence New content
Introductory level Duration 5 mins Updated 24 Jul 2015
Heading off to bed can sometimes be the perfect way to solve your problems, according to new research

Are plastics making men infertile?

Are plastics making men infertile? Creative commons image Credit: Awo-noyama under CC-BY licence New content
Introductory level Duration 10 mins Updated 24 Jul 2015
Our world has plastic running through it - but is the prevelance of plastics threatening our survival as a species?

Renewable energy redoubles its global reach - Climate News Network

Renewable energy redoubles its global reach - Climate News Network Creative commons image Credit: "Ouagadougou shop" by Wegmann - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.
Introductory level Duration 10 mins Updated 17 Jul 2015
As the world economy and energy use both grew in 2014, renewables continued their rapid rise− but carbon emissions did not. 

Pluto comes into sharp focus – but it’s still not a planet

Pluto comes into sharp focus – but it’s still not a planet Copyrighted image Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute
Introductory level Duration 5 mins Updated 13 Jul 2015
New Horizons is giving us the chance to see Pluto, close-up, for the first time. But familiarity won't restore Pluto's planet status.

Catching History's Criminals: The Forensics Story

Catching History's Criminals: The Forensics Story Copyrighted image Credit: The BBC
Introductory level Updated 03 Jul 2015
Gabriel Weston investigates the world of the forensic scientist and the murders they've helped to solve.

Free OpenLearn courses.
OU course extracts and exclusive free courses

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The oceans

Free CourseFree Course Featuring: VideoVideo
The oceans Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Intermediate level Duration 15 hours Updated 20 Jul 2015
The oceans cover more than 70 per cent of our planet. In this free course, The oceans, you will learn about the depths of the oceans and the...

Minerals and the crystalline state

Free CourseFree Course Featuring: VideoVideo
Minerals and the crystalline state Copyrighted image Credit: courtesy of Peter Sheldon
Intermediate level Duration 10 hours Updated 14 Jul 2015
Rocks are made of minerals and, as minerals are natural crystals, the geological world is mostly a crystalline world. This free course, Minerals...

Migration

Free CourseFree Course Featuring: VideoVideo AudioAudio
Migration
Intermediate level Duration 8 hours Updated 11 May 2015
This unit introduces migration in animals, with special reference to birds, and also introduces the themes of movement, selection and homeostasis.

Nutrition: vitamins and minerals

Free CourseFree Course
Nutrition: vitamins and minerals Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 10 hours Updated 28 Apr 2015
Both vitamins and minerals are essential in the diet in small quantities. Learn about the two main vitamin groups and the major mineral elements....

An introduction to minerals and rocks under the microscope

Free CourseFree Course
An introduction to minerals and rocks under the microscope Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Intermediate level Duration 8 hours Updated 09 Dec 2014
Experience the study of minerals using a polarising microscope. While the study of minerals can involve electron or ion beam chemical analysis, the...

Practising science: Reading the rocks and ecology

Free CourseFree Course
Practising science: Reading the rocks and ecology Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 14 hours Updated 07 Feb 2014
Have you ever wondered how scientists analyse the environment? This unit introduces you to the techniques used by science students at residential...

Nutrition: Proteins

Free CourseFree Course
Nutrition: Proteins Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 8 hours Updated 07 Feb 2014
This Unit studies 'proteins'. Starting with a simple analysis of the molecular make up, the Unit moves on to look at the importance of protein and...

Test kits for water analysis

Free CourseFree Course Featuring: VideoVideo
Test kits for water analysis Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Intermediate level Duration 12 hours Updated 07 Feb 2014
This unit steps outside the laboratory to look at some examples of analytical procedures being carried out in the field using commercial test kits....

Drug development process: combating pain

Free CourseFree Course
Drug development process: combating pain
Masters level Duration 2 hours Updated 23 Jan 2014
The unit provides a brief introduction to the process of new drug discovery; from identification of a suitable candidate drug molecule to the...

Living with diabetes

Free CourseFree Course
Living with diabetes Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 5 hours Updated 10 Dec 2013
This unit introduces the parts of the body and processes involved in the development of diabetes.

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Change your life with a qualification

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Certificate in Astronomy and Planetary Science

CourseCourse
Certificate in Astronomy and Planetary Science Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University / Karen Parker
Duration 600 hours Updated 03 Aug 2015
If you’re fascinated by astronomy and planetary science, this certificate course provides a good basic introduction and equips you with the skills...

Certificate in Physics

CourseCourse
Certificate in Physics Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University / Karen Parker
Duration 900 hours Updated 03 Aug 2015
Physics is perhaps the most exciting intellectual adventure of our age – discoveries being made now will change your life, and learning physics...

Certificate of Higher Education in Natural Sciences

CourseCourse
Certificate of Higher Education in Natural Sciences Copyrighted image Credit: Irochka | Dreamstime.com
Duration 1200 hours Updated 03 Aug 2015
Are you fascinated by life’s big questions? Are you thinking about studying for a degree? The Certificate of Higher Education in Natural Sciences...

Certificate of Higher Education Open

CourseCourse
Certificate of Higher Education Open Copyrighted image Credit: Irochka | Dreamstime.com
Duration 1200 hours Updated 03 Aug 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...

Certificate in Promoting Public Health

CourseCourse
Certificate in Promoting Public Health Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University/Karen Parker
Duration 600 hours Updated 03 Aug 2015
Public health is everyone’s business and the contribution of local authorities, education, social care, families, police, prisons, business and...

Certificate in Health Sciences

CourseCourse
Certificate in Health Sciences Copyrighted image Credit: Irochka | Dreamstime.com
Duration 600 hours Updated 03 Aug 2015
This certificate provides a broad introduction to health sciences, exploring some of the scientific and social aspects of disease and disability....

Certificate of Higher Education in Environment

CourseCourse
Certificate of Higher Education in Environment Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University/Karen Parker
Duration 1200 hours Updated 03 Aug 2015
How can we best think about and live sustainably within natural and built environments, given the pressures that threaten them? This certificate is...

Certificate of Higher Education in Health Sciences

CourseCourse
Certificate of Higher Education in Health Sciences Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University / Karen Parker
Duration 1200 hours Updated 03 Aug 2015
If you’re interested in human biology, psychology and health, or you are thinking about studying a health sciences degree, this Certificate of...

BA/BSc Open degree

CourseCourse
BA/BSc Open degree Copyrighted image Credit: Dreamstime
Duration 3600 hours Updated 03 Aug 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...

Diploma in Paramedic Science

CourseCourse
Diploma in Paramedic Science Copyrighted image Credit: Irochka | Dreamstime.com
Duration 1200 hours Updated 03 Aug 2015
The Diploma in Paramedic Science is designed for paramedics who are already HPC registered but lack academic qualifications at this level, or whose...