Help and support

Below are the frequently asked questions about OpenLearn Cymru.

Frequently asked questions

ExpandWhat is OpenLearn Cymru?

OpenLearn Cymru gives you free access to Welsh and English language learning materials and useful resources about Wales and other about subjects useful to vocational learners in Wales from The Open University and third party resources.

You can view OpenLearn Cymru in Welsh or English, and access other interesting resources from The Open University on cookie policy.

We launched OpenLearn back in October 2006 thanks to a grant from The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. Our shared vision was free online education, open to anyone, anywhere in the world. OpenLearn and OpenLearn Create is the result and we have since reached over 23 million people. 2014 sees the introduction of the Welsh Medium resource called OpenLearn Cymru

ExpandWhy should I register?

You will get the most from OpenLearn Cymru if you register (registration is free).

Registering will give you full access to a range of features that are not available to guests, from enrolling on free courses, tracking your progress and downloading activity records.

You can easily unenrol from these courses at any time.

You do not need to register if you just want to read content without participating in activities.

You can read about how we handle your personal data in our privacy statement.

ExpandCan I get any qualifications through OpenLearn Cymru?

It's not possible to gain any qualifications through OpenLearn Cymru. You will need to register for a University course if you want to become a student and have the support of a tutor, sit examinations and gain qualifications. For more information visit the cookie policy page.

ExpandHow does using OpenLearn Cymru differ from studying with The Open University?

OpenLearn Cymru is one of the free learning platforms from The Open University. It does not require you to become an OU student and does not award credits or grant degrees. It does not provide access to the services provided for registered students of the University. If you are interested in studying with the University please visit the cookie policy page.

ExpandI'm interested in enrolling on a free course. What does level mean?

Much of the content on OpenLearn Cymru will be accessible to anyone with a general interest in a subject. Each free course is set at a particular level to indicate the amount of previous educational experience expected for you to be able to study the unit without too much difficulty, and within the stated hours of study. There are four levels - introductory, intermediate, advanced and masters - indicated in the summary description of each free course. If you are new to higher education we recommend that you start with free courses at introductory level.

ExpandCan I speak to a tutor?

OpenLearn does not provide you with a tutor.

Technical questions

ExpandWhat kind of computer do I need to use OpenLearn Cymru?

OpenLearn Cymru is optimised to be enjoyed by users on the current full versions of Firefox, Safari and Chrome on Windows 7 and Mac Snow Leopard, Lion and Mountain Lion, and Internet Explorer 9 and 10 on Windows 7 and 8.

Older browsers will display most of the content normally, but some features won't work. In particular, Windows users who use Internet Explorer 8 are strongly advised to upgrade their browser, or use an alternative, to get the full value of content.

In addition, we aim to provide the best possible experience for users of iPads, Android Tablets and Surface, but cannot guarantee that all features will work as intended on these devices.

Furthermore, some content on the site - in particular older interactive features and audio-visual content - was optimised for browsers at the time these were originally published and users may experience some compatibility issues. Most notably, many interactives use Flash, which is not supported widely on portable devices.

ExpandWhy can't I log in?

There could be many reasons but the most probable is that you have simply forgotten your password, are trying the wrong one or are entering it incorrectly. Does your username or password contain a mixture of upper or lower case letters? It should be entered exactly.

ExpandIs it possible to save the video files to a disk or to my hard drive?

It is possible to download some audio and video files from the OpenLearn Cymru website.

ExpandIs OpenLearn an open source project?

OpenLearn is committed to open systems and will share its approach with those who may wish to launch similar efforts. OpenLearn is best described as an open educational resources (OER) project.

This means that we are using many of the principles of the open source software movement and applying it to materials and tools that help people learn. Most of our educational content can be reused according to the Creative Commons licensing that we have adopted and where this logo is seen:

CC logo

The software tools that we have developed are also being released as open source to make them available for reuse and for others to contribute to the development. Finally, we are trying to use as many open source components in our work as possible, in particular building the main learning environments on the open source Moodle system. We do need to use some proprietary software behind the scenes to fit with how The Open University works, but these do not impact on the final system.

ExpandHow do I change the font size on OpenLearn Cymru?

The OpenLearn Cymru website has been designed so that text can be resized using the standard tools in your browser. For example in Internet Explorer and Firefox this is achieved using the View menu and increasing the text size. If you use Google Chrome, you can adjust the font size in 'Settings' > 'Advanced Settings' > 'Web content'.

ExpandWill OpenLearn Cymru be compliant with W3C standards and accessibility requirements?

We aim to make OpenLearn Cymru content as accessible as possible. We continue to work towards full compliance with W3C standards for all aspects of the site, including providing accessible versions of our most interactive content.

OpenLearn Create has been reviewed by accessibility experts and tested using a range of different assistive technologies and computer settings. While we recognise there are areas that can and will be improved based on recommendations from this review and otherwise identified, core aspects of the site are already provided in a way which meets the needs of a wide variety of users. Users with screenreaders should have no difficulty accessing the text-based content. Users who require specific Windows or browser settings should not have any difficulties with the site, nor should users with screen magnifiers.

Video and audio materials are provided in such a way that they can be played through a range of different media players or downloaded and have textual descriptions or transcripts to accompany them. As far as possible, where material is provided as figures/images, we have included textual descriptions of them, but this does not yet cover every diagram or formula.

For more information on this please see our website accessibility statement

ExpandWhat information does OpenLearn Cymru collect from visitors to the website?

At OpenLearn Cymru we want to understand about your use of our website and how we can help you. We do this in three ways: by logging general activity on the site such as the time each visitor spends on the site and whether they have also used some other sites; by tracking the use of content for learning; and by asking visitors whether they are willing to be involved in research. You can read about how we handle your personal data in our privacy statement.

ExpandWhat are "cookies" and does OpenLearn Cymru make use of them on this website?

Cookies are small data files on your hard drive or browser. Cookies cannot read your hard disk or make any information collected by use of a cookie available to a third party. A cookie can only be read by the organisation that installs it. OpenLearn Cymru cookies store information about your use of the website, in particular we use these so that we can recognise that you have visited the site before. This information is used for statistical analysis including to assess the usefulness of our site and the effectiveness of our navigational structure, and to identify trends in educational needs and demands. You can read more about this in our cookie policy.

ExpandDoes OpenLearn Cymru share the information it receives?

We do not release this information to third parties. Understanding how our users interact with OpenLearn Cymru helps us to improve the service we offer. If you prefer not to share anonymous information on your use of the site, you can disable cookies from your browser and delete all cookies currently stored on your computer. You do not need to have cookies turned on to use or navigate through many parts of our website.

ExpandHow do I register on the website using my OUCU?

If you already have an OUCU you only need to enter it when registering on OpenLearn. No other information is needed.

Copyright and intellectual property

ExpandWho owns the intellectual property in materials published on the OpenLearn Cymru website?

The Open University owns and retains copyright in its course materials. However, our material also includes substantial extracts from other sources: quotations from books and journals, still and moving images, interviews with academic and subject experts and performers, and so on. We make use of these extracts under licence. We make every reasonable effort to clear and license our use of other rights holders' work. We will remove promptly any material that infringes the rights of others. If you believe that any of our content is infringing the rights of others please contact us by email at

ExpandWhat can I do with OpenLearn Cymru materials?

We aim to make most OpenLearn content freely available for non-commercial educational use in all media worldwide. In the free courses in which we own copyright, these are licensed for you to use under the . 'Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share-Alike'.

This means that you must meet the following three requirements to use the materials:

  • Your use is 'non-commercial'.
  • You always cite The Open University and retain the name of any original authors.

We grant you the right to make use of the materials as they are or in modified form. You may translate, modify, print, network, reformat or change the materials in any way providing that you meet the terms of the licence. Free course content in which we do not own copyright, but which we have licensed for use from other rights holders, are identified in the acknowledgements of every free course and in the article information of other OpenLearn content. These extracts may be used freely as part of your use of the website but we are unable to grant the right to modify them or to use them as stand-alone items. The surrounding OpenLearn content may be modified, however, and the extract retained for use within the modified version.

ExpandWhat does OpenLearn Cymru mean by "non-commercial" use of OpenLearn Cymru materials?

The Open University considers 'non-commercial' to include educational institutions, commercial companies or individuals making use of OpenLearn content on a cost-recovery basis.

  • You may use OpenLearn content in any format or medium, including photocopied or hard copy printouts, and make a small charge in order to recover the cost of printing.
  • You may use content as part of a course for which you charge an admission fee.
  • You may charge a fee for any value added services you add in producing or teaching based around the content providing that the content itself is not licensed to generate a separate, profitable income.

Our intention is to make these materials as widely and as freely available as possible.

ExpandHow do I cite OpenLearn Cymru content?

If you use or amend or incorporate the 'OpenLearn Cymru' content provided under a Creative Commons licence, use the following attribution: '(Name of free course). An OpenLearn Cymru chunk used/reworked by permission of The Open University copyright © (Year).' If a chunk has a named author then the following citation must be added 'Written by (name)'. If your use is online, you must also include a link to the Creative Commons 'Attribution; Non-commercial; Share Alike' licence. If your use is offline depending which site you take our content from you need to include the following web addresses 'www.open.edu/openlearncymru' or ''

ExpandHow do I contribute my own work to OpenLearn Cymru?

OpenLearn Create, has been built with contributors in mind. Take our content, rework it or adapt it for your own use and then contribute it back into the OpenLearn community by placing it in OpenLearn Create.

ExpandCan I use your materials to teach my class?

Educators are encouraged to use OpenLearn Cymru content in the classroom.

ExpandCan I link to OpenLearn Cymru from my website?

Please feel free to link to pages within the website. There must be no claim, appearance, or implication of an affiliation with or endorsement by The Open University. We cannot guarantee the permanence of any specific link other than those to the homepage.

Other

ExpandHow do I unsubscribe from the OpenLearn / OpenLearn Cymru newsletter?

Please click on the word Unsubscribe in your copy of the e-newsletter and this will unsubscribe you.

ExpandCan I buy Open University books?

If you want to learn more, OU Worldwide offers many study materials from our full courses for those studying for pleasure or not yet ready for a full course. Our self-study workbooks, CDs, DVDs and software take you to the heart of the subject. Whatever your preferred style of learning, our range of materials enable you to interact with your subject and develop a real understanding.

If you're already studying, OU Worldwide can help there too! Our study support books, including the bestselling Good Study Guides, can help with your exams and assignments. They cover all the essential learning skills required for study, such as using a computer for research and online tutorials, absorbing information from your course books, preparing your essays and revising for exams.

In addition to our course materials, our TV programmes created in partnership with the BBC add colour, depth and imagination to everyday subjects. Series include Masters of Money, The Story of Wales and Our Food.

Visit the OU Worldwide to see our full range.

ExpandCan I watch Open University TV programmes?

The Open University makes many programmes in partnership with the BBC and other broadcasters, covering arts, humanities, social science, education, maths, science, nature and technology.

A listing of programmes co-produced by The Open University on TV and radio this week can be found in the TV, Radio and Events on OpenLearn.

Many are available on DVD or video from the OU Worldwide website. For television stations interested in broadcasting OU/BBC programmes, full details can be found in Broadcast Media Sales

ExpandHow can I make a donation?

In developing OpenLearn, The Open University is very grateful for the generous support of The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. The philosophy of open content mirrors exactly The Open University's founding principles of widening access to high quality educational opportunities. Through OpenLearn, the University expects to contribute significantly to the development of both the quality and reach of open educational resources delivery at an international level.

The generosity of our users, supporters and partners will help our dedicated staff to continue the academic, pedagogic, technological and research activities that support OpenLearn.

Making a donation

You can make your donation to The Open University using our safe and secure online form. Please quote OpenLearn in the 'What prompted you to donate?' box. Your gift - whatever the amount - will enable us to continue to fulfil our mission.

You may also send your donation to:

The Open University Development Office Walton Hall Milton Keynes MK7 6AA United Kingdom

Phone: 01908 653786

e-mail:

Website:

ExpandWill enquiries to OpenLearn Cymru be answered?

If you can't find the answer that you are looking for, please contact us at and we will try to respond as soon as possible.

ExpandAre there any other initiatives like this at The Open University?

The Open University is a world leader in the development of open educational resources (OER) and several prominent projects have emerged in recent years reflecting our work in this groundbreaking new field of Education.

To find out more about the Open University OER projects, current and complete, and to view a showcase of our research and good practice which takes place at the University, please visit the Open Educational Resources at The Open University website.