chansen
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Does anyone know how well an Open University degree (say, in Foreign languages or English) is looked upon by employers? It's obviously not the best of universities, but is it as good as an average uni or worse? Has anyone here graduated from there? If so, has it helped you much to get a job in your field?
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spacedonkey
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I think how an OU degree is perceived by prospective employers depends on what career you're hoping to go into: some types of employers will want to see degrees from prestige universities, others will value the dedication involved in working for an OU degree in your own time (usually while working or juggling other commitments). It's impossible to make a blanket statement about it tbh.

I personally wouldn't do languages with the OU as - for me - there's not enough face-to-face time to get the practice in.

I am doing a social science (with sociology) degree with the OU, and I think the quality of teaching and materials is excellent.
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Howard
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(Original post by chansen)
Does anyone know how well an Open University degree (say, in Foreign languages or English) is looked upon by employers? It's obviously not the best of universities, but is it as good as an average uni or worse? Has anyone here graduated from there? If so, has it helped you much to get a job in your field?
Actually, the OU is a bloody good university. Never assume that distance learning is crap and automatically second rate compared with a bums on seats approach because it really isn't.

The Open University was ranked fifth of all UK universities for teaching quality in the Sunday Times University Guide 2004; a ranking higher than those for Oxford and University College London.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/League_...h_Universities

and also apparently it has the happiest students in the country..........

http://www3.open.ac.uk/media/fullstory.aspx?id=9376

I did an LLb(Hons) with the OU. I thought it was rather good.
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pitdrummer
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The OU is a fantastic way to learn. Fairly odd that after all the snobbery about the OU. EVERY uk university has a full copy of the open university press (free of charge i am led to believe). Plus the fact that they are EXTREEMLY well thumbed. What is amazing about the writing is, that at level one, no prior knowledge is assumed. They very skillfully take the student by the hand, and walk them, all be it quickly, to the required level. As a student, one of the other advantages, is, my liver is still intact......
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mayb1day
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(Original post by chansen)
It's obviously not the best of universities
How so? Because you don't actually attend a brick uni, does not make it any less a university.

I'm studying for a BSc in Technology and the materials are fantastic. The tutors are amazingly helpful, and the workload is equal to that of someone doing similar stuff elsewhere - the only difference is I do it in my own time whilst still holding down other commitments; which to prospective employers (speaking to my Father as one) shows a dedication that perhaps other students do not.

A degree from anywhere does not necessarily mean you'll graduate and go straight into a job in your chosen field - my other half graduated from a brick uni (many) years ago with a BSc in geology, and he now works in financial services - but of course having the qualification helps when prospective employers are looking at your CV.
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LW5x01
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OU - Best thing that has happened in my life so far!
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mayb1day
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Someone once said to me in conversation that 'the OU reaches the places and people others cannot'; and it's very true.

Without it I'd never have stood any chance at getting a degree (certainly not before my thirties) and I think for the fact that such an institution exists, we should be grateful.
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SmitherZ
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I'm going to be starting an OU degree this October and I honestly cannot wait considering everything I've heard about it.

I'll be doing a similar degree to a good friend of mine except she's going to a physical university, yet we both prefer our respective choices despite not having started yet. So I'm guessing that the OU has to feel like the right think to do beforehand as well as during the course itself.
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misslawrence
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(Original post by SmitherZ)
I'm going to be starting an OU degree this October and I honestly cannot wait considering everything I've heard about it.

I'll be doing a similar degree to a good friend of mine except she's going to a physical university, yet we both prefer our respective choices despite not having started yet. So I'm guessing that the OU has to feel like the right think to do beforehand as well as during the course itself.
I'm thinking of starting an OU degree too.. Please tell me how you like it so far.. Is it any good? Met your expectations?

Thanks for your reply
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Wave
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(Original post by misslawrence)
I'm thinking of starting an OU degree too.. Please tell me how you like it so far.. Is it any good? Met your expectations?

Thanks for your reply
WellI never went there but I know people who do (physics) and they say the OU is really good. I have never heard anyone say anthing bad about it except the "it's distance learning so it can't be good" snobs. Go for it
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winning11
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out of interest, how much does it cost? say for a 3 year degree
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Persipan
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(Original post by winning11)
out of interest, how much does it cost? say for a 3 year degree
Currently, somewhere in the region of £4,500ish with eligible students able to access financial support in the form of grants to cover their course fees; from September, £15,000 with financial support taking the form of a loan. Some prospective students may find that starting in May (and remaining on the current fee levels for the duration of their course) is a better financial option for them.
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exCR100
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I have been studying with the OU for a few years now (I'm studying for two degrees in parallel - Earth sciences and Applied maths) and they are absolutely brilliant. The standards are high and the teaching methods very well thought out.
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Persipan
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(Original post by exCR100)
I'm studying for two degrees in parallel - Earth sciences and Applied maths
What are you going to do from next year ('cos you can only get Transitional Arrangements funding for one)? Or will you be finished with one/both by then?
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exCR100
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(Original post by Persipan)
What are you going to do from next year ('cos you can only get Transitional Arrangements funding for one)? Or will you be finished with one/both by then?
I'll benefit from TA for one and pay full whack for the other. I'm an EU student anyway, we have been paying a fortune for ages, so the hike is not nearly as radical as for English students (although it will still hurt for 60 pointers!)
Sooner or later everyone will be paying the new fees anyway, there ain't no way round that one. You opt for OUSBA and get used to the monthly debit!
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hmm_what?
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(Original post by exCR100)
I'll benefit from TA for one and pay full whack for the other.
Have you checked this recently? It appears they've now decided that you will get one TA qualification but will not be able to pay for a second, even if you are halfway through it.
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AlexLouisJohn
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(Original post by misslawrence)
I'm thinking of starting an OU degree too.. Please tell me how you like it so far.. Is it any good? Met your expectations?
I'm currently doing an OU course under the YASS scheme, so I do a level 1 course alongside my A-levels, but I think the quality of each course varies greatly and can be quite inconsistent.

For example the main resource for my course, 'Understanding Cardiovascular Diseases', is a 300-page textbook that can be very wishy-washy in some areas. The assessments for it can also be misleading, as if they are trying to catch you out.

However, saying that I know of other people that have loved their OU course, and to be honest i'm no sure how much my course under the YASS scheme varies compared to other OU courses. Whichever way, I think employers would still look pretty highly on it as it is another qualification and can show you have skills such as time-management if you have a busy lifestyle.
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l0ckst0ck
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I'm interested in doing a course with the OU, i see the courses can be 3-6 years or maybe even more.
Is the workload heavy and are you able to maintain it over a number of years?
Is it hard to find motivational from working at a home environment?

Any help please? thanks!
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nessa76
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(Original post by l0ckst0ck)

I'm interested in doing a course with the OU, i see the courses can be 3-6 years or maybe even more.
Is the workload heavy and are you able to maintain it over a number of years?
Is it hard to find motivational from working at a home environment?

Any help please? thanks!
The work load can be heavy, but if your working then its best to do a degree part time. A 30 credit module only requires about 8 hours study per week. Most people probably watch tv for more than 8 hours in a week, so it is manageable if you know what i mean
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ebowey
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I studied with the OU before transfering to Stirling University in 2007, I was accepted based on my OU qualifications, although I could have jumped into year 2 but decided to start from scratch. That's how well respected they are, as well as my university library stocking their course-books, and even my linguistics teacher leaving to take up a post at the OU!

Now, I won't say they aren't without their criticisms. I feel they don't encourage enough independent research, and referencing guidelines are poor. But they certainly aren't a mickey mouse university.

I now work for the NHS, and a student at The University of Leicester.
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