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To sign in to most OU systems you’ll need your username and password. Your username could be your OUCU (OU computer username), your personal identifier (PI) or your email address.
General signing in to OU systems
When you registered on your first module you would have been sent your OUCU and password. You can find out what your OUCU is in your Profile page in StudentHome. If you can’t remember your OUCU you can also use your personal identifier (PI) to sign in.
Your OUCU is your OU computer username that you’re given when you first registered with us. It’s usually a combination of your initials followed by numbers and is all in lowercase, e.g. email@example.com.
Personal identifier (PI)
Your personal identifier is 8 characters in length and is commonly found on emails we send e.g. P1234567.
If you created an online account with us before you registered, you can sign in with the email address you used to create the account.
You can change your preferred email address we have for you via your Profile page in StudentHome.
Your password must be between 8 and 12 characters long, include letters, at least 1 number and at least 1 capital letter. It can also include any of these special characters: !, $, %, ^, &, *, [, ], @, #, ?, +, -, _ .
If you’ve forgotten your password you can reset it via Reset your OU password. For data protection reasons, the Student Computing and Distribution Helpdesk can't see your password so you'll need to reset it online.
If there's a problem and you can't reset your password, contact the Computing Helpdesk for further assistance.
If you're experiencing issues where you're repeatedly being redirected to the login screen, you may need to clear your cookies and temporarily cached files in your web browser. You can find out how to do this in Cookies on the OU website.
Your ac.uk email address
You don’t need to have an academic email address to study with us as we’ll always send emails to your preferred email address that you told us about when you first registered.
An academic email address, ending ‘.ac.uk’, is useful to have for getting student discounts. To receive these emails you’ll need to sign in to Microsoft Office 365 as you’ll need to verify your student email address.
Microsoft Office 365
Microsoft Office 365 is optional and freely available for registered students for the duration of your studies with us. It will give you an academic email address in the format [your OUCU]@ou.ac.uk where OUCU is your computer user name, e.g. firstname.lastname@example.org.
For full details of what's included in the Office 365 package see Microsoft Office 365.
Google Apps for Education
In March 2018 we rolled out Microsoft Office 365 to all registered students to replace OU Google Apps. Although you can no longer create a new OU Google Apps account, you can continue to use an existing account until the end of March 2019, when Google Apps will be completely decommissioned.
You can find more information on this in Your OU email address.
Problems submitting assignments
If after reading the guidance above you’re still unable to sign in to StudentHome and submit your eTMA in the usual way, you can submit it by email.
- You need to attach your electronic-tutor-marked assignments (eTMA) file to an email and send it to email@example.com.
- In the subject field you must put your Personal Identifier, your module code, and the tutor-marked assignments (TMA) number, all separated by a slash e.g. P1234567/B999/01.
- You need to wait for confirmation it’s been received - if you haven’t received this within 12 hours you will need to submit it again.
You should only submit your eTMA by email if you are unable to do so via the website. Once you’ve submitted your eTMA, you need to resolve your access problems by using the information above.
The Computing Helpdesk
The Computing Helpdesk assists students and Associate Lecturers with technical queries relating to the OU’s computing resources. We can't help with general IT questions about using packages like Microsoft Word or other components like anti-virus software.
Phone: +44 (0) 1908 653972
(Mon to Fri 09:00-21:30, Sat and Sun 09:00-17:00. Open bank holidays 10:00-16:00. Closed on Christmas Day, New Year's Day and Easter Sunday. Closed Wednesdays 16:30-17:30 for staff training.)