Open Uni

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by meandmycornet, Aug 8, 2005.

  1. meandmycornet

    meandmycornet Active Member

    Has anybody else on here done a coure or a full degree with the open uni?? or is anybody doing one right now? I'm just about to embark on my very first open uni course and was just wondering if anybody else is/was/has??

  2. davidquinlan

    davidquinlan Member

    I've completed two courses for a Diploma in Music, A214 and AA302, and am in the middle of a Project Managment Course, M865.
  3. Cornishwomble

    Cornishwomble Active Member

    I'm in the middle of a psychology degree with the OU and I would recommend them to you. They make it so easy for you as long as you are prepared to put the work in. It is a lot of hard work and you have to sacrifice time to get it done but the benefits gained far outweigh that
  4. NeilW

    NeilW Member

    I'm 3/4 (90/120 points) through the taught part of an MSc in Computer Science. Can't remember all of the course numbers, but M880 (Software Development), M881 (Database), M873 (User Interface), (Architecture of Computer Systems), (Development using Java)

    Thinking of doing M865 next summer - what's it like?

    The courses are hard work - particularly if you want to do your best! "Wee small hours" become a reality when there's an assignment to complete!

    I'd recommend going on the "open tutorial" day, particularly on your first course (assuming there is one...) and the revision weekend prior to the exam - they're well worth it.... Ask your tutor questions too - that's what they're there for....

    What are you doing, Fi?

    But good luck!

  5. Griffin

    Griffin Active Member

    Started doing a BA Humanities, but went to 'real' uni before I completed it. Did Introduction to the Humanities, Art and its Histories, Reading Ancient Greek, Reading Latin, and Art Religion and Society in Sienna, Padua, and Florence 1200 - 1400. Phew!
    Going to finish it off after Ive finished at Sheffield Uni.
    Should have two BA's then...
    Might do a Masters after at the OU, if I can fit it in.
  6. davidquinlan

    davidquinlan Member

    M865 is a pretty good project managment course. Lots of theory as you would expect, some, in my experience not really relevant in practice (as I said, in my experience!!)

    The most frustrating thing is that they prefer you use their chosen project management software for assignments, Sciforma PS8 as opposed to MS Project (which I would assume is more popular!)

    You are well on your way to your Msc! well done! I'm planning to complete the Postgrad diploma in the Management of Software Projects.
  7. demelza

    demelza New Member


    I am two months into completing my first course, A214, which is a Level 2 music course. Although the start is very elementary for anyone who has played for some time, it gets much more indepth later on and is now very challenging but reqarding. There is also a fantastic Summer school. Would definitely recommend it!
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 8, 2005
  8. tubatu

    tubatu Member

    I did this course several years ago and the summer school was the best part of it, don't forget to take your instrument with you, as they have a concert at the end of the week, with music provided by the students.
    I wasn't able to take my Tuba with me and ended up playing the recorder in an ensemble and singing in the choir.

    The tutors were fantastic and very knowledgeable, it's a great opportunity for some intensive learning.
  9. meandmycornet

    meandmycornet Active Member

    For my first course I'm doing one of the openings courses, as sort of a taster too open uni study, its Y152 living arts, I read the words 'brass bands' in the discription and I knew it was for me!! I'm hoping to do a PGCE when I've got my degree (thats what I'm working towards!) so I'm going too be doing mainly education type courses but I think I might do that Music one with the summer school, sounds excellent! What sort of standard do you have too be though? and this is probably a stupid question but is there a lot of composing involved?? :tongue:

    Thanks everyone :D and good luck with all your studies!

  10. tedmundo

    tedmundo Member

    Yes; do it. The material they send out is excellent - books, audio, video - and the
    tutorials, dayschools and residential schools are realy valuable. Fun too when you
    can get together with other students.

    However, the work IS hard; requires a lot of self-discipline. But it's worth it.

    For comparison: I got my first BA humanities in 1960 at Manchester, the easy way
    (I still had a retentive memory); then after 30+years of career in computer technology
    I took on OpenU and worked at half-pace to a BSc environmental stuff - this is challenging
    but I'm hoping to get it classified (with Hons.) this year.

    Go for it, and best wishes.
  11. NeilW

    NeilW Member

    Yes, I'd forgotten to say that ( :D ) - learning isn't as easy as it was the last time I tried - the grey stuff doesn't work as well as it used to and stuff doesn't stick as easily for exams...

    Some of the AV materials I've had are a "bit strange", but some of them are fine.... Sometimes got the impression that they'd produced AV stuff "because they can". The written material is, however, very good.

    At least they ship "multimedia" CDs now rather than having to record the TV in the wee small hours (and hope you programmed the video correctly!).

    The other thing is : don't get "behind schedule" (they'll provide you with one that lists what you need to do week by week). You struggle if you've got to do an assignment on work you've not read/done! The assignment cut-offs are a bit flexible, but the last one isn't (usually - I got an extension on one when I'd got a broken arm and couldn't write. Also got longer for the exam to allow me to take breaks - they're quite sympathetic!)

    Need to do some careful planning around band contests too (with the attendant "extra rehearsals"!!) to make sure you get the OU work done too (yes, I was sitting doing OU course reading while waiting to play at the Stevenage area - someone was needed to guard the instruments/stuff!!)

    Good luck!

  12. meandmycornet

    meandmycornet Active Member

    Well I only finished college a month ago, so I don't think or rather I hope I haven't forgotten how to make my brain work!! :tongue: I just decided it was the best option for me, as I wanted too stay at home and study for a degree at the same time! Obviously lots of other reasons too and I'm really looking forward to starting my course :D
  13. tedmundo

    tedmundo Member

    Have to agree that the quality of the printed material has been higher than that of the AV stuff. Still much of the latter is kind of "optional", in that it reinforces (rather than replaces) the printed texts.

    Good advice too from NeilW about keeping up to date with the study calender that they provide. I always keep it taped to the table-top where I do most of my study. That way I can synchronize the chapters that I'm reading with the AV events and especially with the tutorial and assignment cutoff dates.

    Since I'm one of those people who hates to deface books (highlighters, folded corners, pencil marks) I've become a Post-It fan. Highlighting in this way corresponds with note-taking in lectures (memory again); and this way I get clean books at the end.

    I wish you every success with your studies.
  14. meandmycornet

    meandmycornet Active Member

    whats AV?? you've all been referring too it all the way through the thread and I don't know what it is!

    Ok i'm too dumb for words, its Audio - Visual right? :tongue: as soon as i pressed submit it clicked in my tiny little brain!
  15. NeilW

    NeilW Member

    Yes. Audio-visual == AV
  16. meandmycornet

    meandmycornet Active Member

    I just got my course pack today, its really good! I've read through the assignments and can't wait for my course to start! in fact, i might start early, if thats allowed!
  17. tedmundo

    tedmundo Member

    ...allowed...? It's almost mandatory. Seriously, OpenU study is aimed at people who are not fulltime students, i.e. they have other resposibilities in life - families, careers, prison/military service, etc. It's definitely not cheating to get into the topic as soon as it becomes available. Go for it.
  18. NeilW

    NeilW Member

    You may find that you've not (quite) got everything yet (if my dispatches are anything to go by!).

    My tutor allocation doesn't normally arrive until the course is just starting (don't forget to send them an email to tell them a bit about yourself and say "hello" - its only polite to do so before you bug them for help :) )

    Sometime the schedule has been late too... Likewise the errata list, index etc though sometimes they are on the website before you get them.

    Also worth logging in to the students website and having a look at the course website. Also sign yourself into the OU BBS (FirstClass) and say hello to your fellow course members.... This assumes your online login information has arrived!

    You may or maybe not be able to submit your assignments electronically, so you'll want internet access.... (I believe not all courses support it, which must be a pain - means you've got to finish them early enough to post them before the deadline!)

    When in doubt you can always PM the various contributers to this thread - someone's bound to know or have been there before....

    PS don't forget the points you earn from passing OU courses are transferrable should you change your mind in a couple of years and decide you want to go and do a fulltime course somewhere

    PPS the big airbags that they use for packaging make a really good noise if you jump on them :eek:
  19. tedmundo

    tedmundo Member

    Good advice ther from NeilW about phoning your tutor since y152 doesn't have face-to-face tutorials to introduce yourself at.

    On electronic assignment submission, not all tutors (most of whose dayjobs are outside OpenU) want to spend their own printer/paper/time printing up to 20 students' assignments. Alternatively, I've found 1st class post with proof-of-posting quite adequate. DO NOT USE recorded delivery since this requires tutors to collect mail that arrived when they're out.

    Like Neil says - when in doubt PM

  20. andywooler

    andywooler Supporting Member

    I can only agree with the advice you've received so far from former and current students. I completed the MBA with the OU a couple of years ago having gone through their Certificate and Diploma in Management.
    Summer schools are a must - I was able to do a few outside the UK which added some variety to the content of the school - Dublin was an especially great venue!

    First Class conferenceing is a great way to learn from others too - not just your own tutor group but the overall course/degree rooms are worth a visit. The person who is often quiet in the saturday tutor groups is often one of those who is very active in the various virtual conferences!
    Keeping up with the TMA's is a must though - get too far behind and you'll be forever playing catchup!

    Best of luck - IMHO, this is a fine Uni to be studying with - certainly in my sphere, the OU MBA is highly valued.

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