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anyone done an OU degree?

(8 Posts)
petitmaman Mon 04-Aug-08 15:47:31

I am thinking of doing an OU degree probably in child development type thing and just wondering if anyone had done one or similar and what their experience was?
eg. how many hours a week did they have to put in? is it fairly straight forward to get started? will it matter that i probably won't be able to make the seminars? does it matter that i am not presently working with children? (though have in past and have dd1 6yrs and dd2 17months) wanting to probably go into teaching or social work as dds get older. do you think pt at local uni(still 20 miles away) would be easier? esp as i can find motivation difficult?
sorry for the ramble, any thoughts would be appreciated. Thank you

Ivegotaheadache Sun 10-Aug-08 23:39:30

I started a degree in psychology, and it wasn't easy!
Not the level of work as that was ok, but it was the time factor. My dd's were quite young at the time around 3 and 2 years and I couldn't study at all during the day, only after 7 when they were in bed.

You were supposed to read all the chapters of the books they gave you but I didn't really have the time to do that, so I found I'd just read up on the chapters that the assignments were about and when it came to exam time, I revised the chapters I hadn't already read, ifswim and that was fine.

The other thing was, they give you a planner thing and they recommend that you take 1 week to complete the assignment but that wasn't long enough IMO. I'd be up half the night before it had to be sent off to make sure it was ready-not great when you have 2 lively girls running around.

At the time I did a residential course too for a week (which was a lovely break), but it just added to the workload.

If the dc's were at school then I'd probably do an OU course again, but I suppose it would be the same even if you did go to the local uni, as you could only do the work when you have the time.

Ready4anotherCoffee Sun 10-Aug-08 23:49:43

I'm abut to start my 3rd year with the OU and I love it although I ahve to agree that it can get qutie mad and stressful near deadlines as I too can only really study when everyone is in bed.

As a fairly unmotivated person I find that it works for me as it has the deadlines within the course, which breaks it down a bit.

Go for it!!!

controlfreakyagain Sun 10-Aug-08 23:53:02

i'm embarking on 2nd year af postgrad psychology diploma.... it's fab. there's lots of free advice and help available.look on website and call them up for help.... good luck.

MarsLady Mon 11-Aug-08 01:05:56

Mine will be complete next year grin

I have 5 children, the youngest being 4 yo twins. I've loved the study and will continue on after I've gotten the first degree. The OU is rather addictive. smile

Niecie Mon 11-Aug-08 01:24:19

I agree - OU is addictive.

Haven't done a degree as such, just a post grad conversion so only did 3 psychology courses (including child dev.) but workload was manageable so long as you are able to get some decent work done in the evenings.

I think they reckon on 16 hours a week for a 60 point course and that was about right, averaged out. Some weeks it was more and some less. Assignments can be a nightmare though - I need a long run at things - I can't get going in short snatches of time so a supportive DH/DP/family are very helpful to get some time at weekends to get properly stuck in.

You don't have to go to seminars/tutorials if you don't want to and often I haven't and not suffered for it. Their usefulness depends on the tutor ime, and whether you like their way of doing things.

Don't worry about not working with children - the OU is made for people who want to try something different.

I am currently doing an OU MSc in Psychology so I am a sucker for punishment but for me, as a SAHM and no spare cash for childcare, the OU is perfect since you can manage your studies around the children. I wanted to do a MSc (in developmental psychology as it happens) at a university 20 miles from me but had to give up on the ideas as I couldn't make it work whilst DS2 was still in pre-school - on top of the fees (which are more spread out anyway with the OU because it takes longer) I couldn't have afforded the childcare.

By the way, if you are thinking about teaching it might be better to do a subject other than child dev. I am toying with teaching but psych and child dev aren't very useful - teacher training courses seem to prefer those with curriculum subjects (maths english etc) for their degrees.

Ivegotaheadache Mon 11-Aug-08 11:03:18

I probably sounded a bit negative about OU in my earlier post, actually I think it's a really good way to study.
There's a lot of help if you need it and you can attend lectures (I think it was once a month but I can't really remember) and it was on saturday morning which was great for the dc's.

It's only really tiring when you've got an assignment to do to a deadline, but I think you can email it in now, whereas I couldn't before. But as long as you plan your work it should be ok - it's all designed for people who either work or have families ect.

I would love to carry on with the OU but I can't afford it now. I couldn't pay the fees within 6 months now, I'm a SAHM and DP earns too much to get financial support and there's no extra money.

In fact, I want to do law now but with the OU it will cost about 10K for the whole thing. It's cheaper for me to do it part time in the evening at a local university, I can get a student loan (again, I've not paid off the first one!) for the fees.

petitmaman Wed 13-Aug-08 19:33:32

thank you. all v useful

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