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Friends and family: What OU students do

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Understanding what OU students do will give you an insight into what your student is experiencing and a clearer idea of how to give them help and support – day-to-day and when they feel really stressed.

OU students fit study into their lives in hundreds of different ways. Students may be any age, working or not, already qualified or not – so each person has to find a pattern of study that works for them and the people around them.

What are OU students motivated by?

OU students are motivated to study in order to:

  • improve their career prospects
  • follow a personal interest
  • get ready for a new career
  • try a topic they knew nothing about
  • get the qualification they always wanted
  • continue their professional development
  • see if they can do it.

OU students do not study at fixed times, go to lectures or live away from home to study. But they do mix with other students at tutorials, residential schools and online forums.

OU module materials are written by teams of academic staff, undergo stringent quality control, and are reviewed regularly to keep them up to date. This means that students always work with excellent module materials.

OU study is flexible – but its assessment is not. Most students have assignments to do for fixed dates during the module and an exam at the end. The high status of OU qualifications is a reflection of the consistent and rigorous nature of OU assessment.

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