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  1. #1
    Top Member N3R0's Avatar
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    Default Thoughts on Open University

    I'm studying for a Bsc Honours degree with OU and was wondering what peoples opinion was about studying and gaining a degree this way, as oposed to attending classes.
    I know there are benefits on both sides, i just wondered if anyone on here has any experience or insight in the matter.

    thanks.

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    DF God marcode's Avatar
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    will it be worth the same amount on paper when u go for the job at the end m8?

    oh and u wont get to go to the pub almost as often lol :

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    Top Member N3R0's Avatar
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    I've been assured that it is and in many cases it's worth more because it proves self motivation and development of study skills.

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    DF God marcode's Avatar
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    hmm.. well fair enuff then, u just get some bastard employers who place a lot of their decision on what uni the degree is from, its really crap and very backwards way of doing things.. but its sometimes the way things go

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    Top Member N3R0's Avatar
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    Thats exactly what i've been thinking, but it's hard to get an unbiased opinion.I've asked the uni about this and they say there's no difference, but then what would they say.
    It would just be a real shitter to spend years studying only to find employers are'nt that keen.

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    I do hope it is worthwhile geez, I would have the opinion that it does show more determination to do an OU course than to do the same thing as a full-time student. I'm assuming that you're holding down a full-time job at the same time too. That must be really tough. And from what I heard they are pricey too.

    I enjoy being educated, part-time though because I work. My employers have now stopped all funds for further/higher education. I (almost) finished a HNC just last year. I have got to re-do my final year project. I'm not excusing myself too much, but one big thing that has stopped me is that I have had no assistance from work at all with my project. I asked for them to provide me with a work based project and both times they have failed to give me one. This is mostly because I work nights, and I wouldn't be able to get support from the engineering dept anyway. So now this year, again, I will have to take a degree project from the ones available to full-timers, and try to complete it whilst lowering the standard of it to the HNC requirement. This is not easy when you have a project to 'do' something, what can I do - get 3/4 of the way through the research and then stop..?

    I think I might look into doing one of these next academic year. I just wish my employer would put a bit more faith in me! By the way for my HNC units I got 9 distinctions 2 merits & 1 pass (the pass was automatically awarded to people in relevant full-time employment). This is frustrates me, because I'd go full-time except I need money for my house/car etc. And my job? I operate/set grinding machines for a large well-known automotive supplier. It is mind-numbing
    No sympathy for the devil; keep that in mind. Buy the ticket, take the ride...

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    DF Member nhsal69's Avatar
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    N3RO,

    I'd say that your right, a degree from the OU shows a lot more commitment to learning than one from a "normal" uni. I also agree that there is snobbery around from employers regarding the university you studied in but this tends to more for specific types of degree like law etc, however I did my degree at "lesser" univeristiy and have never been told to piss off cos the degree wasn't from somewhere "established". So don;t panic as the OU ones are more respected degrees for the reasons stated above.

    Cheers
    Last edited by nhsal69; 23rd August 2002 at 08:34 AM.

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    DF Wh0re Woops's Avatar
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    Originally posted by N3R0
    I've been assured that it is and in many cases it's worth more because it proves self motivation and development of study skills.

    Yep , totally agree. When I interview people I am far more impressed by OU degree holders than Standard University. Most OU students have made huge self commitment and sacrifice to gain their qualification. This is not always the case with University students - most of them have gone straight from school which is a much easier cross-over. I have more admiration for people who have gone through OU or gone back to Uni as mature students.

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    VIP Member CzarJunkie's Avatar
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    Totally agree with the above, an OU degree is far more impressive than an ordinary University degree gained during 3 lazy, half cut years in so called 'Full time' education. In fact ordinary degrees are 2 a penny at the moment, every Tom, Dick and Harriet has one. I have a m8, who got a degree a couple of years ago and he was mashed most of the time, he used to do his essays on his way back to Uni on the train on monday mornins and copy most of it from text books, he left with a 2:1 with Hons.

    The only thing I will say, make sure you know what you are letting yourself in for, if you are already studying with the OU then you'll have a good idea how long it is going you to take you to get enuff credits to get a degree, what sort of time scale are you aiming at?

    Anyway, whatever the case, good luck m8, I admire what you're doing because I couldn't do it.

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    Top Member N3R0's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the advice, it's just what i wanted to hear really.
    I'm planning on getting 60 pts(part time) a year and increasing to 90 or 120 if possible(may have to pack in work).I have just completed a 1st year course and was impressed with the course materials, i'm due to start the next course in september before i goto level 2.

    It is difficult planning time for studies, around the wife and kids(1 and 1 on the way) and work, but i think this offers the best opportunity to gain a degree and still be around home.
    Besides, i'm 29 and i think i'd feel too old sitting in a classroom full of teenagers.


    Thanks again for all your input.

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    DF Wh0re Woops's Avatar
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    Best of luck M8 , wish I had the self motivation to take on something so demanding - I'm afraid i'm just to fond of my free time

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    DF Wh0re Robbie's Avatar
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    When I read your first post I hadn't realised that you had completed your foundation course.

    The OU has an excellent reputation, and you need to be highly motivated to complete your studies. Don't be put off by comments from those people who know nothing about courses in higher education. When you eventually graduate from the OU you will have earned your degree the hard way.

    I asssume you know that the OU operate study centres which are very useful as a support. One of the problems when doing an OU degree is the isolation from other students. Study centres help you get over this.

    Best of luck with your studies.

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    Top Member N3R0's Avatar
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    Hi Robbie, you sound like you have studied with OU yourself.
    When you say study centres i trust you mean at regional centres.
    My nearest is nottingham, around 25 miles away, although i've been told they have the occasional lectures in my home town chesterfield.
    Like you say, isolation is a problem with OU study, telephone tutorials also have their limits.I suppose further down the road i will become used to it.

    Thanks for the encouragement anyway m8.

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    VIP Member Snak3's Avatar
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    my mum did her degree at the OU back in the 70s, and she had a top paying job for years - she always said that her employer valued an OU degree for the reasons outlined above

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    DF Wh0re Robbie's Avatar
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    Default N3RO

    I never obtained my degrees with the OU but I was involved with them when they were using college premises for their centres.

    I graduated from the University of Liverpool, and studied there for my master's degree. Studying for an OU degree is probably not much different than postgraduate studies at conventional universities. You have to take responsibility for your own learning
    and are pretty much left to your own devices, particularly when writing your dissertation. Of course the one big difference is the use of resources. Liverpool, like most universities, has some excellent libraries and book stores.

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    DF PlaYa eminem's Avatar
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    definitely a no no for me the only thing dat gets me up in the mornin r lectures @ uni. If i did my degree this way id be in bed all day : Good on u though, shows commitment.

    EM.

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    DF MaSter merlinL14's Avatar
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    The compleation record for OU degrees is 2% of enrolees, so as an employer I would be biased towards candidates with an OU degree against candidates with a Uni degree on a head to head.

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    DF Jedi Aido's Avatar
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    Originally posted by N3R0
    [B]in my home town chesterfield.
    chesterfield - I work there!

    what course are you wanting to do with the OU?

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    DF PlaYa canardo's Avatar
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    good luck mate and in all honesty cant see isolation being a problem as even at a proper uni so to speak I find the lecturers being quite hard to approach as they are always lecturing etc

    so end up doing most of the q & a via email anyway
    degrees are much more about independent guided study than school ever was imo

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    DF Wh0re Robbie's Avatar
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    Originally posted by canardo
    good luck mate and in all honesty cant see isolation being a problem as even at a proper uni so to speak I find the lecturers being quite hard to approach as they are always lecturing etc

    so end up doing most of the q & a via email anyway
    degrees are much more about independent guided study than school ever was imo
    The point about isolation and the OU is that you don't have lectures or seminars to attend and, probably more importantly, you don't have a peer group with which to relate.

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