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Diversity and inclusion in the workplace
Diversity and inclusion in the workplace

Start this free course now. Just create an account and sign in. Enrol and complete the course for a free statement of participation or digital badge if available.

Introduction and guidance


Welcome to this free course, Diversity and inclusion in the workplace. The course lasts 24 hours and is comprised of eight weeks. You can work through the course at your own pace, so if you have more time one week there is no problem with pushing on to complete a further study week. The eight weeks are linked to ensure a logical flow through the course. They are:

  • Week 1: What is a diverse workplace and why is it important?
  • Week 2: Diversity characteristics and discrimination – Part 1
  • Week 3: Diversity characteristics and discrimination – Part 2
  • Week 4: Barriers to diversity and inclusion
  • Week 5: Skills and strategies for success
  • Week 6: Diversity and inclusion in recruitment and career progression
  • Week 7: Examples of good practice
  • Week 8: Next steps

Each week should take you around 3 hours, but remember to work at your own pace. There are no time limits on this course. There are a number of activities throughout the course where you are asked to note down your response. A text box is provided for you to do this, however if you would prefer to record your answers in another way that is fine.

At the end of each week there is also a quiz to help you check your understanding. And, if you want to receive a badge and statement of participation, at the end of Weeks 4 and 8 there is a quiz which you need to pass. You must also be enrolled on the course in order to track your learning and reach 100% completion.

As you work through the course you may find you want to learn more. There are further reading sections at the end of the weeks to help you with this.

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • recognise the value of a diverse workplace and the potential benefits to both individuals and organisations
  • identify a range of diversity characteristics and better understand discrimination in context
  • consider barriers to effective diversity and inclusion, and describe the skills and strategies needed to overcome them
  • explore strategies for recruiting and retaining staff, and for creating an inclusive culture that supports career progression
  • reflect on personal experiences and potential biases, identifying individual and organisational goals to enhance workplace culture and productivity.

Spotlight on… While all themes are equally important, in Weeks 2 and 3 you’ll see this box used to indicate a topic that employers have identified as an area of particular interest in surveys conducted by Open University careers staff.

Moving around the course

In the ‘Summary’ at the end of each session, you will find a link to the next session. If at any time you want to return to the start of the course, click on ‘Full course description’. From here you can navigate to any part of the course.

It’s also good practice, if you access a link from within a course page (including links to the quizzes), to open it in a new window or tab. That way you can easily return to where you’ve come from without having to use the back button on your browser.

The Open University would really appreciate a few minutes of your time to tell us about yourself and your expectations for the course before you begin, in our optional start-of-course survey [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] . Participation will be completely confidential and we will not pass on your details to others.