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    I'm a mature student looking to completely overhaul my career but my options are slightly limited so I'm having to look mainly at distance learning courses.

    So far the ones offered by the OU seem to be the best and most flexible but just wandered if anyone had any experience of them?

    The only other option local to me that accepts mature students is Wolerhampton?

    I really don't want to take another degree that takes me nowhere so any advice would be lovely!
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    I can't comment on the quality of the OU degree, but most Computer Science degrees are fairly broad, and they generally take 3 years to complete. So if your only reason for choosing an OU degree is to get yourself into an IT-related technical job through distance learning, then there are faster (and possibly cheaper) ways of getting your technical/engineering skills up to par as a distance learner.

    There are a lot of distance courses on Udemy and Coursera and edX for all kinds of topics. edX courses are all free (though you often need to pay for certification):
    https://www.coursera.org/
    https://www.udemy.com/
    https://www.edx.org/

    if you're interested in Networking and Security, then the Cisco CCNA/CCNP courses are an excellent way to get into that line of work. There are also some excellent certificates by CompTIA too: https://certification.comptia.org/

    Another in-demand skillset relates to cloud computing - the Amazon certification is worthwhile for this:
    https://aws.amazon.com/certification/

    And Microsoft have many different kinds of certification too:
    https://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/lear...fications.aspx

    If you're interested in programming/software development, then you could also look at treehouse:
    https://teamtreehouse.com/tracks

    Also, here's a very good (free) introductory CompSci course written by Harvard teaching staff on edX:
    https://www.edx.org/course/cs50s-int...harvardx-cs50x
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    Thanks for this, I've signed up with some edX courses already to try out. Will check out the others also.

    At the moment time is not a problem, I'm waiting for my youngest to start school before I start a full time job and thought I'd try to gain some qualifications to help with job prospects in the future.
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    (Original post by Jeblee)
    I'm a mature student looking to completely overhaul my career but my options are slightly limited so I'm having to look mainly at distance learning courses.

    So far the ones offered by the OU seem to be the best and most flexible but just wandered if anyone had any experience of them?

    The only other option local to me that accepts mature students is Wolerhampton?

    I really don't want to take another degree that takes me nowhere so any advice would be lovely!
    It depends what you want to do, but have you considered an apprenteship?

    Often the problem with a degree in IT is that it doesn't give you any experience. You either need to arrange a placement year or find an internship before you make any money.

    THE company I work for does degree apprenteships (Ie 4 days of work, then 1 day of uni each week) and after 3 years you leave with an honours degree and 3 years of hands on experience.

    You also get to pay as you earn, so over 3 years I'll make 50 grand and not have any student loan debt. It's open to anyone aged over 16, but if you're interested you'll need to be quick, applications for this year end at the end of the month.

    Accenture apprenteships
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    (Original post by DayneD89)
    It depends what you want to do, but have you considered an apprenteship?

    Often the problem with a degree in IT is that it doesn't give you any experience. You either need to arrange a placement year or find an internship before you make any money.

    THE company I work for does degree apprenteships (Ie 4 days of work, then 1 day of uni each week) and after 3 years you leave with an honours degree and 3 years of hands on experience.

    You also get to pay as you earn, so over 3 years I'll make 50 grand and not have any student loan debt. It's open to anyone aged over 16, but if you're interested you'll need to be quick, applications for this year end at the end of the month.

    Accenture apprenteships
    Unfortunately an apprenticeship just wouldn't work, I have 2 small children and the pay just wouldn't cover childcare costs (its that expensive!). I have plenty of personal experience, although I do need to refresh on a lot of stuff and thought a course may help.
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    (Original post by Jeblee)
    Unfortunately an apprenticeship just wouldn't work, I have 2 small children and the pay just wouldn't cover childcare costs (its that expensive!). I have plenty of personal experience, although I do need to refresh on a lot of stuff and thought a course may help.
    I feel you. I have a daughter as well, and I've definately noticed the drop in wages. That said, my first year apprenticeship wage is £16k, which is good for an apprenticeship at least.

    I would recommend trying as hard as you can to build a portfolio of work you have done and to try and get as much experience as you can, as its often one of the things that hinders people finding work in the field after a degree. In my, tbf limited, experience in the field the degree is only used to tick the box that says 'has degree'. Even the degree I'm doing is pretty much pointless (the work I'm doing now is harder than my degree will require in its final year) so it really is all about being able to prove that you can do the job your applying for. The degree itself doesn't really do that.
 
 
 
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