The annual Whatuni Student Choice Awards (WUSCAs) highlight the incredible work carried out by institutions for their students. Due to Covid restrictions, this year’s awards were not collected on uni campuses as usual, but instead based on submissions from institutions, which were then judged by our special student panel.
2021 WUSCA winners
I was never cut out for brick uni so the OU has been a saving grace for me. It's hard at times but if it wasn't.. Everyone would do it. So far I am enjoying it. Its terrifying and I can feel isolated but the help is there If I ever reach out.
Not necessarily applicable to myself as I'm only in my 2nd year ( my second 1st year technically as doing two degrees) but there is an employability email and virtual and real life workshop opportunities to attend
I like the layout og online learning with the OU. Have no qualms with that. The tutor part obviously depends who you have year to year. Some tutors are very interactive and others aren't. Mine this year has taken a lot longer to return marks but they have a deadline just as we do as students and its their right to wait til the last day if they want to I suppose.
Again it's predominantly online. Lectures included. Pre-covid there were once a month face to face lectures held at a brick uni and they were insightful but I've only experienced that in first year then covid hit
They constantly remind you of the support you have. You just need to reach out. Very accessible if needed
I haven’t found the course very engaging or interesting, however the layout of the study materials has been really easy to follow and there’s been lots of support available from the university if needed. Because the Open University is always provided online the experience hasn’t really been impacted by the pandemic and I still feel like you are getting the same value for money as before.
They send emails about graduate days but I haven’t attended any of them as I already have a job.
The course is all online as it is with the Open University. There are study days usually but obviously not since the pandemic. They do offer online study groups where you can ask your tutor questions and most tutors are really responsive if you contact them with an issue, and have been really understanding about providing extensions with everything that’s gone on the last year!
This isn’t relevant as the course is entirely online.
I don’t know what support is offered in these situations but you can always contact the tutors if you have an issue with anything.
Flexibility of studying from home was very good. Quality, frequency and content of tutorials is very poor and causes lots of stress. Module content - statistics as mandatory when you have no intention of working in this field is a huge bind (driven by BPS as opposed to OU). Uni could do soooo much better that it does today - def on a further decline so chose wisely...
can't get anything without a Masters and probably Doctorate - learned this too late..
By far one of the worst adult decisions I've made so far. Considering the high costs involved (30k upon completion), it is horrifying how poor the 'service' is that we get, now magnified with Covid. I chose OU for the flexibility of being a single working mum and for that part I am grateful that I can study when suits me. Therein ends the positives. Tutor quality is poor at best but def variable. Most help comes from WhatsApp groups (even if they are a bit challenging if left unmanaged) but can cause confusion as each has their own tutor feedback. The very least the OU could do is have the tutors provide the same, consistent tutorials but no, the format and content varies considerably with some down right contradictions, some Powerpoints thrown together or look like they were written by a 5 year old. The frequency of the tutorials is poor and most are ineffective considering we are all studying from home and need help. Its like learning a language from a language book when distant learning so support is key but v poor here. Response times to direct emails is up to 10 days, fat lot of help if you are a week away from assignment due date. Overall my recommendation would be, if you have an alternative, take it...
never used any however I believe there are some groups - mental health support with poor decline in tutor support during Covid was bad
The Open University is designed to be completed around working a job, I believe it allows this greatly. You are given a large amount of freedom with how you complete each module, also there are many tutors and support staff to assist you.
It’s been alright considering covid but little to no interaction with tutor is a bit difficult. Also tutors take quite a while to return work so hard to get ahead if you need to.
They try but not well advertised
Lots of self reaching as expected, contact hours with tutors are extremely few.
No physical campus
Not really any that I have seen
Very good and would recommend to other prospective students. The tutors and and student services are very helpful throughout your degree which is really appreciated.
My course is taught online with flexible hours (part time)
Everything is online so easy to access resources and different services
They have been great so far. It's the perfect way for me to attend university given the current circumstances and also personal circumstances. So I wouldn't have asked for it any other way.
They have so many online and in person career fairs and other events for those types of things.
The course is all online and is mostly self taught. The tutors are amazing and how they go through the work in the tutorials has really helped me along. Though I rarely attend tutorials and prefer to self study the work.
The online resources are amazing. The access given to thousands of library resources has been a blessing. Being a distance learner I can't say much on the facilities offered on the campus but the online resources have been phenomenal.
Experience varies a lot depending on module and designated tutor, some more supportive than others. Overall seems ok so far. You need to be very good at making a schedule for your studies as you are fully responsible to follow the weekly schedule to get everything completed on time.
Not completely sure about this
This is studied by distance, you get a designated tutor you can contact whenever needed.
My experience this year has been very dull, uninspiring and frustrating. I feel like I am wasting my time and have been ripped off. I can't really think of anything good to say about them other than that I will be finished very soon.
Little more than a few e-mails, most from non-relevant industries.
I have been working in software development for nearly 15 years. I was always curious about a computing related degree and particularly computer science. This degree fails to deliver basic training necessary to work in todays industry. As the course progressed to level three there was less and less practical work until the finally project which was nothing more than filling out time sheets and self appraisals. I am honestly shocked and feel completely ripped off. This course has more in common with sociology or management than computer science or computing. In your finaly project you will not gain any marks at all for the actual work on your project but rather how you "reflect" on it and how well you present plans and timesheets. This also leaves it wide open to abuse as tutors do not appear to have even basic understanding of their own course material from previous modules.
Considering the open Uni charges the same fees as a brick uni they are a bit of a joke tbh. You'll be sent books at the start of every term and just expected to get on with it. Little support is offered from tutors who will quite happily just ignore you for the whole term. All the modules contents need to be brought into the 21st century and digitised.
Studying with the open uni gives great flexibility. However, the course contents are so so dull, they are so un-interesting. At the start of every term you are sent 3 books and just left to get on with it. The uni gives little support beyond this. It's always amazed me how I can go onto a site like Udemy pay around £60 and have a much more engaging an interesting experience learning about a specific topic.
Website is confusing.
Some lectures but most don't go deep enough.