• You pay for each module separately – you don’t pay for a whole qualification up front. 
  • A qualification comprises a series of modules, each with an individual fee. Added together, they give you the total cost.
  • Modules cost £1393 (30 credits) or £2786 (60 credits).*
  • Most OU students study 60 credits a year over six years for an honours degree. 
  • Fees include OU course materials, tutor support, assessments, and exams.
  • We’re here to help. From student loans and monthly payment plans to financial support, we’re confident we can help you find a flexible payment option that’s right for you and could even mean you pay nothing at all.

Comparing university fees?

The cost of full time OU study (120 credits) works out at £5572 per year.*

* 2016/17 prices; fees normally increase annually in line with inflation and the University's strategic approach to fees.

Check the course description for detailed fee information.

Additional costs

  • If you choose to study a residential school module, you will be responsible for the cost of travel to the venue and an additional charge of £270 to cover the cost of accommodation and meals.
  • There may be additional costs associated with study such as a laptop, travel, set books and internet access.

Paying for your study

Part-Time Tuition Fee Loans

OU students can apply for a Part-Time Tuition Fee Loan (also known as a student loan). It's the most popular way to pay for study – over 60% of our new students in England are paying this way.

Student Finance England pays your fees, which you pay back later in affordable monthly instalments, and only when you’re earning over the income threshold, currently £21,000.

  • Nothing to pay upfront.
  • Available for undergraduate qualifications that are at a higher level than any you already hold.* 
  • Part-Time Tuition Fee Loans aren't means tested so it doesn't matter how much you earn.
  • There's no upper age limit.
  • Available for part-time study, even if you have a job.
  • You won’t be asked to start repaying your loan until the April four years after the start of your qualification or the April after you leave, whichever comes first. 
  • Repayments are linked to your income to ensure they’re affordable – for example, if you earn £25,000 you’ll pay just £30 a month.
  • Even if you plan to study at full-time equivalent intensity with us, you still apply for a Part-Time Tuition Fee Loan.

*You may be eligible for a loan for some qualifications even if you already have a degree. This will be indicated on the relevant qualification pages.

How to apply

First, register with us on the qualification you’d like to study, choose your modules and tell us you’ll be applying for a loan. Then, apply for a Part-Time Tuition Fee Loan starting in the 16/17 academic year online via Student Finance England. This will take about 15 minutes and you should have your passport and National Insurance number to hand. It can take as long as six weeks to finalise applications, so apply as soon as possible to make sure you can accept your Part-time Tuition Fee Loan to enable you to start your course.

Other ways to pay

  • Pay as you go – find out more about an account with Open University Student Budget Accounts Ltd (OUSBA) and the option of paying for your study in instalments as you go. You must be at least 18 years of age and credit is subject to your financial circumstances and status.
  • Pay up front – by debit or credit card when you sign up for each module.
  • Employer sponsorship – around one in ten OU students are sponsored by their employer. If your study relates to work, your employer may be prepared to pay some or all of your fees.


Talk to an adviser

For help understanding your funding options.

Book a call back  

Bringing down the cost

Financial support

If you’re on benefits or your income is less than £25,000, we have two ways to help:

  • You may be eligible for a free introductory Access module to build your confidence and skills before moving on to a full OU course. For more details, visit our Access page.
  • Once you’ve registered, you may be able to get help with study-related costs like travel, childcare and internet access.

Students with disabilities

  • The Disabled Students' Allowance (DSA) is a government grant to cover study support costs if you have a disability. It’s not means tested, and there’s no age limit.

For more details, visit our Supporting students with disabilities page.

Use your previous study

If you have already studied at university level, you may be able to count it towards your Open University qualification – which could save you time and money by reducing the number of modules you need to study. At the OU we call this credit transfer.

It’s not just university study that can be considered, you can also transfer study from a wide range of professional or vocational qualifications such as HNCs and HNDs.

Find out more about credit transfer.

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