Skip to content
You are viewing information for England.  Change country.

Development of financial practice

If you already have an appropriate financial qualification at Level 3 in the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (FHEQ) or Level 6 in the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF), this ten-week online module will help you to build on that qualification and achieve Higher Education (HE) credits. By combining your professional qualification with academic knowledge gained at The Open University (OU), you can achieve 20 credits in less than half the normal study time. This module has specific entry requirements: in addition to having a financial qualification, you must have previously studied the two OU modules, You and your money: personal finance in context (DB123) and Introduction to financial services (BD131).

Modules count towards OU qualifications

OU qualifications are modular in structure; the credits from this undergraduate-level module could count towards a certificate of higher education, diploma of higher education, foundation degree or honours degree.

Browse qualifications in related subjects


Module code
Study level
1 7 4
Study method
Distance Learning
Module cost
See Module registration
Entry requirements
See Am I ready?

Request your prospectus

Explore our subjects and courses

Request your copy now

What you will study

Because this module builds on existing professional learning, you’ll study fewer hours than for a standard 20-credit module. You will use a combination of the knowledge and experience you gained while achieving your professional qualification, and the academic skills and knowledge from the two OU modules You and your money: personal finance in context (DB123) and Introduction to financial services (BD131).

You will be asked to reflect on these two types of learning. You’ll integrate the learning you have done professionally and academically, and reflect on this in the context of working in the financial services industry.

All the study material, activities and assessment are available online. The online material encourages you to reflect on, build on and synthesise the knowledge and understanding you have from your professional qualifications and your HE study. There are also reflective and interactive activities that will help you prepare for the assessment, and some of these may be similar to those you would meet in your professional financial services or business environment.

This is an optional module in our Foundation Degree in Financial Services or Diploma in Higher Education in Financial Services.

Vocational relevance

This module is directly relevant to you if you have completed a professional qualification within the broad area of financial services at FHEQ Level 3 or equivalent (see the compulsory entry requirements). If you’re unsure if your qualification fits this description, please contact our Student Registration & Enquiry Service.

Teaching and assessment


The assessment details for this module can be found in the facts box above.

The end-of-module assessment is an interactive computer-marked assignment (iCMA).

Once the module has started, you will be required to submit evidence that you have completed the pre-requisites for the module (see Entry). Please note that if you do not have an appropriate qualification as listed above, you will fail the module.

Future availability

The details given here are for the module that starts in August 2014 and February 2015. We expect it to be available twice a year.


As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the Module Regulations and the Student Regulations which are available on our Essential documents website.

Course work includes:

1 Interactive computer-marked assignment (iCMA)
End-of-module assessment
No residential school


 This module has two compulsory entry requirements.

  • You must have an appropriate professional qualification from the financial services industry, equivalent to Level 3 in the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (FHEQ) in England, Wales and Northern Ireland or Level 6 in the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF). The qualification must have a value of at least 14 credits and will normally be classified as an accountancy or finance qualification. Please note that passing the OU module, Introduction to bookkeeping and accounting (B190), does not meet these criteria. Check this list to see if you have one of the necessary entrance qualifications. If you haven't gained one of the level 3 professional qualifications listed and will not have gained one before you complete DB124 you will not be able to complete DB124. If you have already registered for this module and cannot meet this requirement we strongly advise you to withdraw before the module start date to be eligible for a full refund of module fees paid. If you withdraw after the course start date you will not be eligible for any refund of fees.
  • Normally, you should have completed the two OU modules You and your money: personal finance in context (DB123) and Introduction to financial services (BD131) before studying this module.

If you have any doubt about the suitability of the module, please contact our Student Registration & Enquiry Service.

Preparatory work

This module draws on your professional qualification, so you might find it useful to refresh your knowledge and understanding of the material that you studied and of your professional experience in the financial services industry more generally.


Start End England fee Register
28 Feb 2015 Jun 2015 £877.00

Registration closes 08/01/15 (places subject to availability)


08 Aug 2015 Oct 2015 Not yet available

Registration opens on 12/03/15

27 Feb 2016 Jun 2016 Not yet available

Registration opens on 12/03/15

This module is expected to start for the last time in February 2016.

Ways to pay for this module

Open University Student Budget Account

The Open University Student Budget Accounts Ltd (OUSBA) offers a convenient 'pay as you go' option to pay your OU fees, which is a secure, quick and easy way to pay. Please note that The Open University works exclusively with OUSBA and is not able to offer you credit facilities from any other provider. All credit is subject to status and proof that you can afford the repayments.

You pay the OU through OUSBA in one of the following ways:

  • Register now, pay later – OUSBA pays your module fee direct to the OU. You then repay OUSBA interest-free and in full just before your module starts. 0% APR representative. This option could give you the extra time you may need to secure the funding to repay OUSBA.
  • Pay by instalments – OUSBA calculates your annual fees and spreads them out over up to a year, enabling you to pay your fees monthly and walk away with a qualification without any further debt. APR 5.1% representative.

Read more about Open University Student Budget Accounts (OUSBA).  

Employer sponsorship

Studying with The Open University can boost your employability. OU qualifications are recognised and respected by employers for their excellence and the commitment they take to achieve one. They also value the skills that students learn and can apply in the workplace.

More than one in 10 OU students are sponsored by their employer, and over 30,000 employers have used the OU to develop staff so far. If the qualification you’ve chosen is geared towards your job or developing your career, you could approach your employer to see if they will sponsor you by paying some or all of the fees. 

  • Your employer just needs to complete a simple form to confirm how much they will be paying and we will invoice them.
  • You won’t need to get your employer to complete the form until after you’ve chosen your modules.  

Credit/debit card

You can pay part or all of your tuition fees upfront with a debit or credit card when you register for each module. 

We accept American Express, Maestro (UK only), Mastercard, Visa/Delta and Visa Electron. 

Gift vouchers

You can pay for part or all of your tuition fees with OU gift vouchers. Vouchers are currently available in the following denominations, £10, £20, £50 and £100. 

Mixed payments

We know that sometimes you may want to combine payment options. You may, for example wish to pay part of your tuition fee with a debit card and pay the remainder in instalments through an Open University Student Budget Accounts (OUSBA).

For more information about combining payment options, speak to an adviser or request a call back.

Note: Your permanent address/domicile will affect your fee status and therefore the fees you are charged and any financial support available to you. The fees and funding information provided here is based upon current details for  year 1 August 2014 to 31 July 2015.
This information was provided on 30/10/2014.

What's included

The module is taught online via a website. You will follow a study calendar and access a range of materials drawn from various sources. Some will be accessible online in the OU Library and from other external sources.

Computing requirements

You will need a computer with internet access to study this module as it includes online activities, which you can access using a web browser.

  • If you have purchased a new desktop or laptop computer since 2008 you should have no problems completing the online activities.
  • If you’ve got a netbook, tablet or other mobile device check our Technical requirements section.
  • If you use an Apple Mac you will need OS X 10.7 or later.

You can also visit the Technical requirements section for further computing information (including details of the support we provide).

If you have a disability

As this module is taught online and through resources such as online forums you will need to spend considerable amounts of time using a computer and the internet. If you use specialist hardware or software to assist you in operating a computer or the internet and have any concerns about accessing the types of materials described you are advised to talk to our Student Registration & Enquiry Service before registering for the module about the support which can be given to meet your needs.

Written transcripts of any audio components and Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) versions of printed material will be available on the module website. Some Adobe PDF components may not be available or fully accessible using a screen reader and mathematical, scientific, and foreign language materials may be particularly difficult to read in this way. Other alternative formats of the study materials may be available in the future. 

If you have particular study requirements please tell us as soon as possible, as some of our support services may take several weeks to arrange. Find out more about our services for disabled students.