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Chinese business culture essentials free course icon

Languages 

Chinese business culture essentials

?Knowledge of Chinese etiquette has become invaluable as business dealings with China increase. But what is also crucial is an awareness of the much broader context of Chinese culture. Core cultural values and beliefs exist throughout the Chinese community, including business relationships. Understanding them can be essential to the success of a business meeting or negotiation. In this short course you'll discover a broad overview of Chinese culture. You'll explore topics including language, building trust, hierarchical society and gift-giving. It will also identify the potential challenges these present. You'll even learn some useful expressions in Mandarin Chinese and simplified characters along the way.

OU course
Creative commons image Icon Course image by Pexels from Pixabay: https://pixabay.com/ photos/ bench-grass-man-person-reading-1853961/ under Creative-Commons license
What happens to you when you read? free course icon Level

Health, Sports & Psychology 

What happens to you when you read?

Ever wondered about the psychology of literature or stories? Or how a certain narrative might change our attitude or perspective? This free course, What happens to you when you read? explores our relationship with books and the ways in which engaging with fiction in particular can change readers.  Research shows that as well as providing us with a form of entertainment, the activity of reading can bring benefits to our wellbeing in challenging times. People have experienced and explored these benefits throughout history. A good story can entertain us, develop our creativity and imagination, and transport us to different fictional worlds, but it can change us psychologically as well. Transcript As you work your way through this course, you will have the chance to participate in both reading and writing activities and experience for yourself what happens to you when you read.

Free course
3 hrs
Copyrighted  image Icon Copyright: Micha Klootwijk | Dreamstime.com
Psychological drama: Writing fictional crime drama for a forensic psychology course article icon

Health, Sports & Psychology 

Psychological drama: Writing fictional crime drama for a forensic psychology course

For Graham Pike, writing psychology courses is part of the job. But what happened when he found himself having to create a crime drama?

Article
Copyrighted  image Icon Copyright: Production team
Influence of temperament article icon

Education & Development 

Influence of temperament

This course taster is taken from the Open University’s ‘Child Development’ course (ED209). It is an extract from one of the four course text books (Oates, J., and Stevenson, J. (2005) ‘Temperament and development’, in Oates, J., Wood, C. and Grayson, A. (eds) Psychological Development and Early Childhood, Oxford, Blackwell.) © Open University 2005

Article
Copyrighted  image Icon Copyright: BBC
Ian McMillan's Writing Lab: Get writing: Tips and advice article icon

History & The Arts 

Ian McMillan's Writing Lab: Get writing: Tips and advice

From getting inspiration to getting published - take your writing to the next level with our tips and advice.

Article
Copyrighted  image Icon Copyright: The Open University 2012
Charles Dickens: Celebrity Author audio icon

Languages 

Charles Dickens: Celebrity Author

Charles Dickens was not only the most famous writer of his day, but, during the second half of his career, also a prominent public figure known through his readings and speeches. He cultivated, and relished, a close relationship with the vast audiences who came to hear him, in towns and cities throughout Britain, and in the USA. His readings appealed to his own deep instinct in support of the development of the imagination of the people, and also acknowledged the common Victorian pastime of domestic literary recitation. As an actor he took on the visage and gestures as well as the voice of his characters; audiences were spellbound.

Audio
1 hr 15 mins
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Unzip your genes - Debate the influences on characteristics article icon

Science, Maths & Technology 

Unzip your genes - Debate the influences on characteristics

Join the discussion: So there are genetic and environmental influences on our characteristics. But is it really that simple? Perhaps our genes can influence our environment, or vice versa?

Article
Copyrighted  image Icon Copyright: The Open University 2011
The Wizard of Oz: From Fractions to Formulas audio icon

Science, Maths & Technology 

The Wizard of Oz: From Fractions to Formulas

Maths in movies has often been used creatively as a method by which to engage students in formulas and numerical theory. The 1939 classic The Wizard of Oz features a maze of potential mathematical problems – not least the Scarecrow’s incorrect pronunciation of Pythagoras’ theorem. Presented by The Open University’s David Brannan and Phil Rippon, ‘From Fractions to Formulas’ is a light-hearted parody of the Wizard of Oz (pronounced "Oh-Zed"), in which the traditional characters are replaced by mathematical concepts, including fractions and Pi, that come together in an enactment of the pioneering mathematician, Leonard Euler's formula: e^(i Pi) = -1. The accompanying tracks are taken from Open University maths courses and explore the problems tackled in the drama. For more information and how to study at The Open University, go to www.mcs.open.ac.uk

Audio
1 hr 30 mins
Copyrighted  image Icon Copyright: The Open University 2010
Pygmalion meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer audio icon

History & The Arts 

Pygmalion meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer

The popular American TV series "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" spanned seven seasons and gained a cult following. But how is it linked to the culture of ancient Greece and Rome? On closer inspection, its characters and narratives are revealed to be new incarnations of ancient classical myths that have filtered down into modern media. This album explores one episode, "I Was Made to Love You", in which Warren creates an artificial perfect girlfriend, just as Pygmalion sculpts an ivory statue to be his partner in Ovid's Metamorphoses. Many interesting parallels demonstrate the way in which universal human anxieties about gender identity, femininity, control and sexuality are continuously being re-examined through myth. This material forms part of The Open University course A330 Myth in the Greek and Roman worlds.

Audio
55 mins
Copyrighted  image Icon Copyright: BBC
Never the twain? article icon

Society, Politics & Law 

Never the twain?

Inspired by the 2008 Reith Lectures, our community debated if the people living in the East are fundamentally different from those living in the West. Forum member Weiminfuwu borrowed a line or two from Kipling to ask if people living in the West and their counterparts in the East see things differently.

Article
Copyrighted  image Icon Copyright: The Open University 2008
Start writing fiction audio icon

History & The Arts 

Start writing fiction

This album provides the budding author with everything they need to know about approaching the art of fiction writing. Each track contains discussions and interviews with best-selling novelists from a variety of backgrounds including Alex Garland, Louis de Bernières, Abdulrazak Gurnah and Monique Roffey. This enlightening and engaging series tackles the practicalities and pitfalls of writing fiction. It contains invaluable advice on the creation of characters, the structure of narratives and how to turn an idea into the book you’ve always wanted to write. This material forms part of The Open University course A174 Start writing fiction. (New and updated content added July 2009)

Audio
1 hr
Copyrighted  image Icon Copyright: BBC
Ian McMillan's Writing Lab interviews: Sarah Dunant on... writing a thriller audio icon

History & The Arts 

Ian McMillan's Writing Lab interviews: Sarah Dunant on... writing a thriller

Sarah Dunant talks about the tricks of plotting a taut thriller, in the last of our series of in-depth interviews with the guests from Ian McMillan's Writing Lab

Audio
5 mins
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