Entry requirements

There are no formal entry requirements to study this qualification; however, you’ll need some basic knowledge of computing, and the ability to read and write to a good standard of English.

If you’re thinking about choosing mathematics as your second subject, check that you’re ready for mathematical study at this level by visiting our MathsChoices website.

Counting previous study

You could save time and money by reducing the number of modules you need to study towards this qualification if you have:

  • already studied at university level (even if you didn't finish your studies)
  • other professional or vocational qualifications such as HNCs and HNDs.

Find out more about credit transfer

Preparing for study with an Access module

If your study skills are a bit rusty or you want to try out Open University study before committing yourself, don’t worry! The OU offers Access modules designed to introduce the subject area, build your confidence and prepare you for further study, and you may be eligible to study an Access module for free! You'll get:

  • a personal tutor providing regular feedback with one to one telephone tutorials
  • support from a dedicated team throughout your study
  • detailed written feedback.
For this qualification we recommend:

Science, technology and maths Access module

What you will study

This fascinating, multidisciplinary module is an ideal starting point if you have little or no previous knowledge of the sciences, technology and mathematics, and would like to develop both your subject knowledge and your study skills. The subjects included are science, engineering and design, environment, mathematics, and computing and IT.

View full details of Science, technology and maths Access module

Your next step

Call us on +44 (0)1908 659253 or book a call back. Our friendly team of advisers will discuss your study options with you, and help you decide on the best starting point for you.

In this section:
How much will it cost?
Ways to pay for your qualification and other support

How much will it cost in England?

We believe cost shouldn’t be a barrier to achieving your potential. That’s why we work hard to keep the cost of study as low as possible and have a wide range of flexible ways to pay to help spread, or even reduce, the cost.

  • Fees are paid on a module-by-module basis – you won't have to pay for the whole of your qualification up front.
  • A qualification comprises a series of modules, each with an individual fee. Added together, they give you the total cost.
  • If, like most OU students, you study part time at a rate of 60 credits a year, you'll take six years to complete an honours degree.
  • Our current fee for 60 credits is £2,864*.
  • Our current fee for 120 credits – which is equivalent to a year's full-time study – is £5,728*.
  • At current prices, the total cost of your qualification would be £11,456*.
  • .

*The fee information provided here is valid for modules starting before 31 July 2018. Fees normally increase annually in line with inflation and the University's strategic approach to fees.

Additional costs

Study costs

There may be extra costs on top of the tuition fee, such as a laptop, travel to tutorials, set books and internet access.

If you're on a low income you might be eligible for help with some of these costs after you start studying.


An OU qualification will always help you stand out from the crowd, now and in the future – whether you’re just starting out, developing your career, or changing direction entirely.

Skills for career development

This qualification will equip you with a sound grasp of the principles of technologies in your specialist area, an ability to apply the principles, and an awareness of surrounding issues. Depending on your choice of second subject – business, design, mathematics, applied psychology or statistics – you’ll have a unique and focused skills set that will enhance your existing career and put you in a strong position in the jobs market, which increasingly depends on computing technologies across all sectors.

During the course you will gain a range of valuable transferable skills in communication, time management, analysis and problem solving, and be well prepared for further study should you decide to top up to an honours degree.

Career relevance

Research by e-Skills UK has shown that IT and telecommunications now employs 1 in 20 of the UK workforce. It also suggests the digital sector will need nearly 300,000 new recruits by 2020 to meet the demand for skills in this area.

This diploma course opens the way for a wide range of IT-related careers. Growth areas and areas of high demand include cyber security, mobile development, cloud computing and the management of Big Data.

Other careers

The range of organisations employing computing and IT specialists is extensive. Beyond pure technology roles, people with computing and IT expertise also enter management consultancy firms or corporate roles, while others go into technical writing roles or work freelance.

In addition to improving your career prospects, studying with the OU is an enriching experience that broadens your horizons, develops your knowledge, builds your confidence and enhances your life skills.

Exploring your options

Once you register with us (and for up to three years after you finish your studies), you’ll have full access to our careers service for a wide range of information and advice – including online forums, website, interview simulation, vacancy service as well as the option to email or speak to a careers adviser. Some areas of the website are available to see at any time, including help with looking for and applying for jobs. You can also read more general information about how OU study enhances your career.

In the meantime if you want to do some research around this qualification and where it might take you, we’ve put together a list of relevant job titles as a starting point (note that some careers may require further study, training and/or work experience):

  • applications programmer
  • information systems manager
  • database administrator
  • information technology consultant
  • multimedia programmer
  • software engineer
  • systems analyst
  • systems designer
  • computer support specialist
  • webmaster
  • applications developer
  • web designer
  • technical consultant
  • network engineer
  • technical sales.

Want to see more jobs? Use the career explorer for job ideas from the National Careers Service, PlanIT Plus in Scotland and Prospects across all nations. You can also visit GradIreland for the Republic of Ireland.


Register for this course

Start dates
Credit transfer: apply by 30/11/2017

Request your Computing and IT prospectus

Our prospectuses help you choose your course, understand what it's like to be an OU student and register for study.

Request prospectus

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