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Student Policies and Regulations

All Student Policies

Our student policies align with the Open University Student Charter.


For information about changes to policies and regulations see the Change log.


These policy PDFs are compliant with accessibility legislation and can be read with a compatible screen reader. You can find further information about accessibility at the Open University in our Accessibility Statement.


If you require any of these documents in an alternative format, please Contact us or contact your Student Support Team if you’re a current Open University student. Students living in Wales can speak with a student support adviser in Welsh on 029 2047 1170 should you wish to do so.

  • Academic Conduct Policy

    This policy defines ‘plagiarism’ and other forms of academic misconduct and highlights how to avoid them.

  • Academic Freedom Principles Statement

    This is a University statement of academic freedom principles.

  • Academic Progress Policy

    This policy defines how The Open University monitors whether a student is making sufficient academic progress as defined in our regulations, how and when study restrictions may be applied, and how students can apply for permission to undertake further study given a study restriction.

  • Academic Regulations

    These regulations, together with the Conditions of Registration, define the basis of the academic relationship between the student and the University.

  • Accessibility

    The Open University Student Accessibility Policy confirms The Open University's approach to promoting accessibility and ensuring all our students are effectively supported in achieving success in Higher Education.

  • Admission of Applicants under the Age of 18

    This document sets out the University's policy for the admission of applicants under the age of 18 and includes the admissions process for applicants under the age of 16.

  • Advocacy

    The OU recognises that there are times when it may be easier for a student to communicate with the University through the use of an advocate.

  • Anti-Fraud, Bribery and Corruption

    The purpose of this policy is to provide a definition of fraud, bribery and corruption.

  • Assessment Banking Rules

    The Assessment Banking Rules set out the conditions you will have to meet if, when you defer an eligible module, you wish to retain the scores from assessments you have completed.

  • Assessment Handbook (Microcredentials)

    The Assessment Handbook (Microcredentials) has now been replaced with separate policies that cover different aspects of assessment whilst studying with The Open University. Separate course-specific information on your microcredential website will tell you about the individual assessment task for your microcredential.

  • Assessment Policies

    The Assessment Handbook has now been replaced with 8 separate assessment policies that cover different aspects of assessment whilst studying with The Open University.

  • Assessment through the Medium of Welsh

    Mae'r polisi hwn a chanllawiau perthnasol wedi cael eu llunio fel rhan o ymateb Y Brifysgol Agored i Hysbysiad Cydymffurfio Swyddfa Comisiynydd y Gymraeg a gyflwynwyd i'r Brifysgol Agored. Nod yr hysbysiad cydymffurfio yw sicrhau bod Y Brifysgol Agored yn bodloni gofynion diwygiedig Mesur y Gymraeg (Cymru) 2011. Rhan o'r telerau hyn yw bod myfyrwyr sy'n byw yng Nghymru yn cael cyflwyno aseiniadau neu sefyll arholiadau drwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg, a dylai'r polisi hwn a chanllawiau cysylltiedig amlinellu sut y bydd hyn yn cael ei weinyddu.

  • Care Experienced Students Policy

    This policy sets out the support available for students who are care experienced and how to let the University know if you are care experienced.

  • Careers and Employability Services: Statement of Service

    An outline of the advice and guidance available from Careers and Employability Services.

  • Changing Your Study Plans: Deferrals, Withdrawals and Cancellation

    An explanation of the rules that apply if you want to defer or withdraw from your studies, or want to change your choice of module or qualification.

  • Code of Practice for Student Assessment

    These regulations define how your study will be assessed.

  • Code of Practice for Student Discipline

    The aim of this code is to make sure that we maintain academic standards and provide an appropriate learning environment.

  • Complaints about The Open University as a Credit Broker

    If you believe you have been misadvised or misled during the introduction to OUSBA then you should make a formal complaint using this procedure.

  • Complaints and Appeals Procedure

    The Student Complaints and Appeals Procedures enable you to bring matters of concern to the attention of the University.

  • Computing

    The Open University Student Computing Policy sets out the expected ways in which you, as a student, will use Open University computing services in your studies.

  • Conditions of Registration

    These Conditions of Registration and the Registration Agreement set out the terms of the agreement between you and The Open University. They also reference other policies, procedures, guidance documents, The Open University regulations and codes of practice listed in Related Documentation. Together, these documents set out the details of your rights and obligations as a Student of The Open University.

  • Conditions of Registration (Microcredentials hosted on the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE))

    These Conditions of Registration and the Registration Agreement set out the terms of the agreement between you and The Open University. They also reference other policies, procedures, guidance documents, The Open University regulations and codes of practice listed in Related Documentation. Together, these documents set out the details of your rights and obligations as a Student of The Open University.

  • Conditions of Registration for Apprentices

    The Conditions of Registration for Apprentices set out the terms and conditions (“Conditions”) that apply to registration for undergraduate and postgraduate taught modules and qualifications studied as part of an Apprenticeship Programme with The Open University, and the study of an Open University qualification as part of an Apprenticeship Programme.

  • Conditions of Registration for Degree Holder Entry Programme (DHEP)

    These Conditions apply to Students who register for the Graduate Diploma in Professional Policing Practice (V21), and the modules within this qualification as part of the Degree Holder Entry Programme (DHEP), and set out the terms of the agreement between you and The Open University, including your rights and obligations as a Student.

  • Conditions of Registration for Postgraduate Research Students

    The Conditions of Registration for Postgraduate Research Students provide the terms and conditions that apply to registration for postgraduate research qualifications studies at The Open University. These Conditions set out the terms of the agreement between the student and the University.

  • Conditions of Registration: Short Courses

    These Conditions of Registration and the registration agreement set out the terms of the agreement between you and The Open University. They also reference other policies, procedures, guidance documents, Open University regulations and codes of practice listed in Related Documentation. Together, these documents set out the details of your rights and obligations as a Student of The Open University.

  • Data Ethics Policy

    The policy on Ethical Use of Student Data for Learning Analytics has been superseded by a new Data Ethics Policy.

  • Deferral Policy (Microcredentials delivered on FutureLearn)

    This policy applies to Learners studying an Open University Microcredential via the FutureLearn platform. This policy does not apply to those studying any other modules and/or qualifications offered by The Open University.

  • Dignity and Respect

    This policy can be used to help deal with any form of bullying and harassment at the Open University.

  • Domestic Abuse/Gender Based Violence Policy

    The Open University is committed to a zero-tolerance approach to Domestic Abuse and Gender Based Violence (GBV). This document describes how The Open University will respond to any disclosure of Domestic Abuse/GBV, covers matters of confidentiality and signposts available support.

  • Employability

    This policy outlines the University's approach to employability development for registered students.

  • End-of-Module Assessment (EMA) Policy

    This policy outlines the information related to End of Module Assessments (EMAs) only to help you complete this final assessed task.

  • End-of-module tutor-marked assignment (emTMA) Policy

    This policy outlines the information related to end-of-module tutor-marked assignments (emTMA) only to help you complete this final assessed task.

  • Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

    Information about the University’s legal duties, individual responsibilities and arrangements for managing different aspects of equality.

  • Exam Policy

    The Exam Policy covers how, where and when you will submit your exam, what happens if you have problems submitting your exam and what happens if you submit it late or not at all. It also outlines the additional support available to students with disabilities or additional requirements.

  • Fee Rules

    The Open University may charge different fees for Students in different countries, for different levels of study, for different modules and for Students who start or change their studies at different times. This is in line with the different ways in which higher education may be funded, the costs of providing educational services, or because The Open University provides a different range of services.

  • Fitness to Practise

    Please read this procedure if you are an applicant, student or learner on a qualification where registration with a Professional, Statutory or Regulatory Body is required in order to practise your profession, or where you are required to comply with a Code of Ethics and professional standards.

  • Fitness to Study Policy

    The Open University is committed to helping students achieve their study goals and to providing support throughout the student journey, in accordance with the OU Student Charter. We recognise that studying can contribute towards positive wellbeing in many cases.

  • Freedom of Information Code of Practice

    This code of practice explains the two main responsibilities of the University under the FoIA, how information will be shared and what information is exempt.

  • Gender Identity

    This policy applies to current and former students who inform the University that they have made, or intend to make, the transition to a gender other than the one they were assigned at birth.

  • Information, advice and guidance

    This policy sets out our policy on delivering information, advice and guidance to prospective, past and current students.

  • Microcredential Policies

    These documents set out key information and terms that apply to you as a Learner of The Open University studying an OU Microcredential. This covers both OU Microcredentials that are hosted on FutureLearn and those hosted on the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE).

  • Microcredential Result Check: Information and Guidance

    This document will provide you with the necessary information and guidance to query your result if you have evidence that an error has been made in determining your result

  • Module Results Determination Policy

    The purpose of this policy is to ensure you are fully informed about how module results are determined, what grades of pass are applicable to different modules and when results are published. It also informs you about what steps you should take to request a Module Result Check, make a Formal Module Result Appeal or apply for Aegrotat Credit.

  • Open University Students Association Relationship Agreement

    The OU-OU Students Association Relationship Agreement sets out how the OU and OU Students Association work together.

  • Plagiarism and Research Misconduct Policy (Postgraduate Research Students)

    Plagiarism is a form of cheating. It is the act of taking or copying someone else’s work, ideas, or intellectual property, including another student’s, and presenting it as if it were your own.

  • Postponement Policy

    This policy outlines the general rules explaining the eligibility criteria to apply for discretionary and elective postponement and the deadlines by which you need to make these requests.

  • Pregnancy and Maternity

    This document outlines the policy and guidance that applies to students who might need support because their study is affected by pregnancy, maternity, paternity, adoption, fostering or in vitro fertilisation (IVF) treatment.

  • Prevent Principles

    As an institution of higher education, the OU has an important role in providing appropriate platforms to challenge extremist views and ideologies.

  • Recording of Online Tutorials

    The Open University’s policy on the recording of online learning events covering participants’ rights, and the use, retention and storage of these recordings.

  • Refund and Compensation Policy

    The Refund and Compensation policy sets out the circumstances where The Open University will offer compensation and/or refunds in the unlikely event that it is not possible to preserve continuation of study as a result of the withdrawal of a programme of study.

  • Religion and Belief

    This policy outlines the support available to students whose religion or beliefs may have an impact on their studies.

  • Research Code of Practice

    The Research Code of Practice sets out the principles that govern the conduct of research at The Open University, and the standards for good research practice. It applies to postgraduate research students, and Open University staff and visiting academics conducting, managing, supervising or supporting research.

  • Research Degree Regulations

    These regulations are the definitive statement on the regulatory framework governing Research Degrees at The Open University.

  • Research Degrees Handbooks

    Our research degrees handbooks tell you about the services available to you; and give advice about what to do at key points in your research degree studies.

  • Resit and Resubmission Policy

    This policy outlines the general rules which apply to resitting exams or resubmitting work and the conditions you need to meet to be eligible for a resit or resubmission.

  • Retention of Alumni Data and Records

    This policy defines the principles, time periods, mechanisms and responsibilities for the University’s retention of alumni personal data.

  • Retention of Student Data and Records

    This policy defines the principles, time periods, mechanisms and responsibilities for the university’s retention of student personal data.

  • Safeguarding - Ensuring the Safety of Children and Vulnerable/Protected Adults

    The University recognises that it has a duty of care in creating a safe environment.

  • SCONUL Access Policy

    This policy defines the principles of SCONUL Access membership at The Open University.

  • Social Media

    The Open University Social Media Policy applies to you if you use social media in relation to your Open University studies.

  • Special Circumstances Policy

    This policy covers Special Circumstances affecting continuous assessment like tutor-marked assignments (TMAs) and interactive computer-marked assignments (iCMAs), as well as Special Circumstances affecting the final assessed task, including exams, end-of-module assessments (EMAs) and end-of-module tutor-marked assignments (emTMAs).

  • Student Carers Policy

    This policy outlines the support that the University can provide for students who have caring roles.

  • Student Charter

    The Student Charter is the foundation stone on which our OU community is built.

  • Student Debt Policy

    This Student Debt policy covers the circumstances which might lead to you having outstanding fee and/or charges with The Open University as detailed in the Conditions of Registration and Fee Rules. It also outlines the means that will be undertaken to recover these outstanding amounts should you become in debt to The Open University.

  • Student Privacy Notice

    The Student Privacy notice sets out how we use your personal data.

  • Student Protection Plan

    The Student Protection Plan sets out the measures in place to protect students in the unlikely situation where a risk to the continuation of their studies arises. The plan applies to all students registered with The Open University, including undergraduate and postgraduate, short courses, postgraduate research, apprentices, Higher Technical Qualifications, Vocational Qualifications and students on Open University validated awards delivered in collaboration with other providers and wholly owned subsidiary organisations.

  • Students in secure environments or Studying with an unspent criminal conviction

    The Open University has over 40 years of experience in collaborating with criminal justice agencies throughout the UK and the Republic of Ireland to facilitate education for students in prisons, secure hospitals, and those with legal constraints studying in the community. The University seeks to balance its obligations towards applicants and students with unspent criminal convictions, legal restrictions or orders fairly with its obligations to the entire student and staff community as well as those visiting the University or attending its events.

  • Terms and Conditions (Microcredentials delivered on FutureLearn)

    These Terms and Conditions apply to registration for an Open University Microcredential. They set out the terms of the agreement between you and The Open University, and refer to policies, guidance documents and codes of practice listed in Related Documentation. These documents set out the details of your rights and obligations as a Learner of The Open University studying a Microcredential and you are entering into a legal agreement.

  • Terms and Conditions: Professional Development courses

    This document applies only to Learners who register for an Open University PD course on the Learner Dashboard that does not count towards any qualification, starting from 1 April 2022 onwards. This document sets out the terms of the agreement between you and The Open University, including your rights and obligations as a PD Learner.

  • TMA and iCMA Policy

    This document covers the policy for completing and submitting your continuous assessment tasks and explains how the assessment scores are calculated, separate module-specific information such as the assessment strategy on StudentHome, your Module Guide, Study Planner and Assignment Booklet will give you more information about the TMA and iCMA assessment tasks in your module. Therefore, this document should be read in conjunction with the module specific information.

  • Tutor Support Statement

    This statement was written for students, to expand on aspects of the Student Charter which relate to the relationship between students and their tutors.

  • Understanding your Class of Honours

    Examples of how Honours classification works for undergraduate and Integrated Masters degrees.

  • Whistleblowing Policy

    This policy provides guidance to staff and students wishing to raise their reasonable suspicions about irregularities in the running of the University or of the activities of colleagues within the University.

  • Yr iaith Gymraeg (Welsh Language Standards)

    Mae’r Brifysgol Agored yn un o nifer o brifysgolion sydd wedi’u henwi ym Mesur y Gymraeg (Cymru) 2011. Mae hyn yn golygu y gall unrhyw fyfyrwyr yng Nghymru ddisgwyl derbyn rhai gwasanaethau yn Gymraeg gan y Brifysgol Agored.

For more information about changes to policy, terms and conditions, and curriculum visit the change log.