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OU on the BBC: Charles Darwin And The Tree of Life

OU on the BBC: Charles Darwin And The Tree of Life Copyrighted image Credit: Production team
Introductory level Duration 5 mins Updated 04 Sep 2014
David Attenborough takes a passionate, personal journey through Darwin's discoveries.

Evolution of human rights

Featuring: AudioAudio
Evolution of human rights Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University
Introductory level Duration 20 mins Updated 08 Oct 2013
What are the differences between individual and minority rights? How did the League of Nations and United Nations attempt to address the topic of...

Alan Turing: Life and legacy

Featuring: AudioAudio
Alan Turing: Life and legacy Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University 2012
Introductory level Duration 35 mins Updated 22 Jun 2012
To what extent did Alan Turing influence the evolution of modern computing? The 20th Century mathematician is considered by many to be the father...

How did teeth evolve?

How did teeth evolve? Creative commons image Credit: lincolnblues under CC-BY-NC-ND licence
Introductory level Duration 5 mins Updated 24 Feb 2011
My dear, what big teeth you have... but how did you (or, indeed, fish) come to have them?

Milk: The secrets of the dairy

Milk: The secrets of the dairy Copyrighted image Credit: Dvkorn | Dreamstime.com
Introductory level Duration 10 mins Updated 07 Dec 2010
Never mind pots of gold - it should be udders of gold. Vicky Taylor salutes the dairy cow, and reveals why some scientists think mammals might not...

Look evolution in the eye: Join the debate

Look evolution in the eye: Join the debate Copyrighted image Credit: Oleg2910 | Dreamstime
Introductory level Duration 5 mins Updated 27 Sep 2010
Proof of evolution? From the first light sensitive cells, to highly developed organs - patterns in the increasing complexity of the eye can be...

Evolution and the human family

Featuring: AudioAudio
Evolution and the human family Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University 2010
Introductory level Duration 30 mins Updated 01 Apr 2010
Can Darwin's theory of evolution be applied to cultural institutions like the family? If so, how can it help us to understand how family structures...

Living the Legacy

Featuring: AudioAudio
Living the Legacy Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University 2010
Introductory level Duration 30 mins Updated 01 Apr 2010
How can Darwin be used to inspire the scientists of tomorrow? What is the best way to communicate his theories to a modern audience? And what...

Publishing The Origin of Species

Featuring: VideoVideo AudioAudio
Publishing The Origin of Species Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University 2010
Introductory level Duration 15 mins Updated 01 Apr 2010
John Murray VII tells the fascinating story of how his ancestor, John Murray III, was offered the manuscript of Charles Darwin's The Origin of...

Darwin and Inheritance

Featuring: VideoVideo AudioAudio
Darwin and Inheritance Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University 2009
Introductory level Duration 35 mins Updated 26 Mar 2010
How are genetic traits handed down through generations? How did you inherit your grandfather's red hair whilst your parents are both black-haired?...

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Free extracts from OU course materials

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The science of evolution

Free CourseFree Course
The science of evolution Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 5 hours Updated 31 Aug 2012
This unit debates the issues surrounding the science of evolution and religion.

Obesity: Balanced diets and treatment

Free CourseFree Course
Obesity: Balanced diets and treatment Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Intermediate level Duration 15 hours Updated 27 Jul 2011
The incidence of obesity is on the increase in affluent societies, and the phenomenon commands increasing attention from health professionals,...

Studying mammals: A winning design

Free CourseFree Course
Studying mammals: A winning design Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 10 hours Updated 21 Jul 2011
The term mammal encompasses a huge variety of animals, including humans. But what makes a mammal a mammal? This unit explores some of the features,...

Studying mammals: Chisellers

Free CourseFree Course
Studying mammals: Chisellers Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 10 hours Updated 21 Jul 2011
Ever wondered why rats, mice and squirrels seem to reproduce at such an alarming rate? Rodents are among the most successful of all the mammal...

Studying mammals: Plant predators

Free CourseFree Course
Studying mammals: Plant predators Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 10 hours Updated 21 Jul 2011
From the mouse-deer to the elephant, plant eaters come in all shapes and sizes. But how do they manage to flourish on a salad diet? In this unit we...

Studying mammals: Meat eaters

Free CourseFree Course
Studying mammals: Meat eaters Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 10 hours Updated 21 Jul 2011
The powerful and majestic carnivores are the focus of many television documentaries. In this unit we will delve into the lives of these fearsome...

Evolution through natural selection

Free CourseFree Course
Evolution through natural selection Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 4 hours Updated 09 Jun 2011
In this unit, we describe the theory of evolution by natural selection as proposed by Charles Darwin in his book, first published in 1859, On The...

Studying mammals: Food for thought

Free CourseFree Course
Studying mammals: Food for thought Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 10 hours Updated 08 Jun 2011
Who were our ancestors? How are apes and humans related? And where does the extinct Homo erectus fit into the puzzle? In this unit we will examine...

Studying mammals: The insect hunters

Free CourseFree Course
Studying mammals: The insect hunters Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 10 hours Updated 08 Jun 2011
From pygmy shrews to armadillos, a wide range of mammals survive on a diet made up largely of insects. Many of these have fascinating adaptations...

Studying mammals: The opportunists

Free CourseFree Course
Studying mammals: The opportunists Copyrighted image Credit: Used with permission
Introductory level Duration 10 hours Updated 08 Jun 2011
Many mammals are food specialists, with complex adaptations that gear them toward a particular food source. So how do the omnivores survive and...

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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 Updated content
Duration 600 hours Updated 23 Sep 2014
If you’re fascinated by astronomy and planetary science, this certificate course provides a good basic introduction and equips you with the skills...

Understanding the continents

CourseCourse
Understanding the continents Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University/Karen Parker Updated content
Advanced level Duration 300 hours Updated 23 Sep 2014 Register by 18 Sep 2014
This wide-ranging course develops your knowledge of the continents, plate-tectonic processes and related issues in depth: its theme is crustal...

Infectious disease and public health

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Infectious disease and public health Copyrighted image Credit: Dreamstime Updated content
Advanced level Duration 300 hours Updated 23 Sep 2014 Register by 18 Sep 2014
This course approaches infectious disease from several perspectives and explores the underlying biology, epidemiology, ecology and evolution of...

Astrophysics

CourseCourse
Astrophysics Copyrighted image Credit: Irochka | Dreamstime.com Updated content
Advanced level Duration 300 hours Updated 23 Sep 2014 Register by 18 Sep 2014
Explore the astrophysics of stars and exoplanets – planets beyond our solar system – examining their properties, structure, evolution and the...

Astronomy

CourseCourse
Astronomy Copyrighted image Credit: The Open University/Karen Parker Updated content
Intermediate level Duration 300 hours Updated 23 Sep 2014 Register by 18 Sep 2014
This introductory astronomy course looks at the structure of stars and their life cycles, galaxies and quasars, and the origin and evolution of our...