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The Open University: our work in the Republic of Ireland

John D'Arcy Nation Director

The Open University offers a route into higher education for anyone with a desire to learn. Its open access policy means that traditional entry qualifications are not a requirement for the majority of its courses. No other university makes this unique offer, especially across the full range of university subject areas. We contribute to local engagement within the community, enable employers to develop their staff, and we make higher education accessible to everyone in Ireland, regardless of age, income, qualifications or geography.

John D’Arcy, National Director since 2010

Our story

The Open University in Ireland is open to people, places, methods and ideas. We promote educational opportunity and social justice by providing high-quality university education to all who wish to realise their ambitions and fulfil their potential.

We focus on include widening access to higher education, irrespective of background or circumstances, and helping Irish employers to develop and upskill their workforces.

The OU was established by Royal Charter in 1969 and has operated across Ireland for 20 years. In Ireland we offer a wide range of courses and qualifications through supported open learning, we support our students and staff, undertake projects around learning enhancement, and engage with key education stakeholders and policy-makers.


Courses and qualifications

The Open University specialises in providing high quality distance learning at undergraduate and postgraduate level. There are nearly 1,500 people studying with us in every corner of Ireland; most of whom are looking to upskill and increase their career prospects. In fact, 81% of our students are combining their studies with work.

Our strategy

We are proud to be the only university that operates across the whole of Ireland and the United Kingdom and first established our Advice and Enquiry Centre in Dublin 1996. Our multi-nation perspective is a distinctive source of strength and value. We are able to bring the benefits of scale but flex to meet the specific social, economic and cultural needs in each nation.

Meet our students

The Open University in Ireland provides supported open learning to students across the length and breadth of the country. Our flexible programmes and wide range of qualifications enable learners to choose a study route that best suits them.

Partnership with RTÉ

Around 60 members of RTÉ staff are engaged in a variety of modules and qualifications at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. This excellent partnership has been extended for another two years.

We are a fairtrade university 2018

Request a prospectus

Explore our qualifications and courses by requesting one of our prospectuses today.

Request prospectus

Contact Us:

Holbrook House
Holles Street off Merrion Square
North Dublin 2, D02 EY84

Tel: +353 (1) 678 5399

Our office is open between 08:30 and 17:00 Monday to Friday.

Upcoming Events

Jan 23

Donegal Education and Training Board Further Education & Training Fair 2019

Wednesday, January 23, 2019 - 11:00 to 14:00

Radisson Blu Hotel, Paddy Harte Road, Letterkenny, Co. Donegal F92 FK15

Feb 8

An introduction to Chinese language learning in the past, present and future.

Friday, February 8, 2019 - 11:00 to 12:00

The National Library of Ireland, 7-8 Kildare Street, Dublin 2, D02 P638.

Feb 9

An introduction to Chinese language learning in the past, present and future.

Saturday, February 9, 2019 - 15:30 to 16:30

Location: The National Library of Ireland, 7-8 Kildare Street, Dublin 2, D02 P638.

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