Are You Ready to Expand Your Horizons?

Are You Ready to Expand Your Horizons?

Off By Sharon Black

Personal development, career advancement or resettlement – whatever your destination, The Open University (OU) has the support, flexibility and qualifications to get you there.

There’s a reason why more than 1,500 Service personnel and their dependents are taking advantage of the learning opportunities with the OU – and it has a little something to do with the following.

Let your experience do the talking

It doesn’t matter what rank you are, if you have any previous qualifications or if you’ve never written an essay in your life – the OU values experience, and you have a lot of it.

• Find a course that builds upon your skills, maximises your talents and helps you to achieve your future goals.

• Gain a globally recognised qualification that draws directly on your personal experiences and practical skills and not your previous education.

• Choose from more than 200 different qualifications and 400 unique modules to find an area of study that interests you.

See a full range of courses and request a prospectus at:

Study while deployed

Have the freedom to study whenever and wherever you want, with the OU’s flexible distance-style learning.

• Work your studies to fit around your shifts and postings, allowing you to work and learn at the same time.

• Complete your qualification at a pace that suits you – whether you’re studying an introductory, degree or post graduate qualification.

• Take full advantage of today’s technology, by accessing all of your learning materials on the go using your smartphone, tablet or laptop.

Find out more about the OU’s flexible learning styles on our Armed Forces website. Visit:

Funding your degree

With funding, support and flexible payment options, you can achieve an accredited qualification without worrying about the costs involved.

• Use the MOD’s Enhanced Learning Credits (ELC) to contribute towards the financial fees of personal or career development. Visit:

• Take advantage of the OU’s flexible payment options and financial support packages to spread out the costs.

• Increase your earning potential by developing your skills, adding to your qualifications and improving your career prospects.

Understand the financial support available to you by visiting our fees and funding page, at:

Get a qualification that matters

With more than 50 years’ experience, world-leading tutors and partnerships with leading companies, you’ll achieve a globally respected qualification that you can use for:

Personal development

Lifelong learning starts now. Keep your skills, knowledge and interests up-to-date with our range of short courses, continued professional development workshops and postgraduate qualifications.

Career advancement

You don’t have to be a civilian to gain civilian qualifications. Improve your knowledge, enhance your skills and boost your career with one of our fully accredited qualifications and courses.


Leaving the Forces is a big step – one that’s made all the more interesting, easier and successful with the OU. Start studying before you leave so that you can start building the future you’ve already earnt, ready to face the competition when you’re out there.


And, it’s not only Service personnel who can benefit from the OU. Dependents can also take advantage of the same flexibility, course choices and expert teaching to further their own careers and personal interests.

Find out what it’s like to study with us. Visit:

Be supported along the way

And the best part is that you’re never on your own with the OU. As world leaders in distance education, we have the support you need every step of the way.

• Access our dedicated student support service for professional advice on learning, course choices and career guidance.

• Work with an expert tutor to receive all of the academic guidance and feedback you need to get you back into studying and top of your class.

• Join a vibrant, supportive and enthusiastic student community, with members across the world.

Read more about our student support services:

Go places

No qualification, career path or promotion is off limits with the OU. Examples of paths taken by previous Service personnel include:


Begin or advance your career in the IT industry with the OU’s range of Microsoft and Cisco certified courses -giving you access to a wide range of roles in and out of the Forces.

Key skills: Problem-solving, creativity, team-working and scientific knowledge.

Example courses: Cisco Networking (CCNA) (T216), BSc (Honours) Computing and IT (Communications and Networking) and Linux Essentials.

Possible career paths: Security analyst, softwareengineer, web developer andcybersecurity manager.


Join one of the many challenging and rewarding careers in STEM, with an OU engineering qualification.

Available qualifications: Certificates, diplomas,degrees and masters.

Key skills: Imagination, problem-solving and technical.

Industry opportunities: Communications, energy,healthcare, manufacturing,music and transport.

Example courses: Master of Engineering, Certificate of Higher Education in Design and Innovation and Foundation Degree in Engineering.

International Studies

Engage with the most pressing global issues today and confront key questions about conflict, cooperation and international order with a diploma, certificate or degree in international studies.

Example modules: The uses of social science, environmental policy and international relations.

Key skills: Intercultural and global awareness, critical analysis and an awareness of states.

Career opportunities: FCO, Cabinet Office, thinktank and NGOs.

Example courses: BA (Honours) International Studies and Diploma of Higher Education in History and Politics.


Learn the science of human behaviour, explore the thinking behind violent crimes and debate policies on rehabilitation and mental health with a certificate, diploma or degree in psychology.

Career opportunities: Counselling, forensics andfurther education lecturing.

Resources: Online tutorials, forums, books and DVDs.

Support: Distance learning, tutor support and student communities.

Sample courses: BSc (Honours) Psychology, BSc (Honours) Forensic Psychology and Foundation Degree in Counselling.


Looking to prepare yourself for the corporate world or launch your own entrepreneurial idea? Learn the fundamentals of business management, leadership and marketing in our range of business degrees and courses.

Available qualifications: Certificates, diplomas,degrees and masters.

Example modules:

Communication skills for business and management, strategic management and marketing and finance.

Key skills learnt: Strategic planning, project management and negotiation.

Sample courses: BSc (Honours) Psychology, BSc (Honours) Forensic Psychology and Foundation Degree in Counselling.