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There’s never been a better time to study part-time

During August, students across Wales received their all important exam results. Now might be the time for some to think differently about how to go about studying for a degree.

What if you could learn and earn at the same time, as well as still receiving some financial support towards the cost of studying? What if you could study from home at a time and a pace that suits you, while being supported by your tutors and a community of other learners? If this sounds appealing, then it’s definitely time to consider part-time study with The Open University in Wales.

Alannah Lewis chose the OU because of the cost and flexibility

Alannah chose the OU because of the cost and flexibility

The OU is 50 years old this year and things have changed a lot since we opened our virtual doors in 1969. Late night TV broadcasts have been replaced by real-time online tutorials with support from online forums, and packages of equipment through the post replaced by our online OpenScience laboratory allowing you remote access and control of virtual experiments from the comfort of your own desk.

Our students have changed too. They’re getting younger – the median age of a new OU student in Wales is 32 and over two thirds of our students are under 40. 65 per cent of our students work while they are studying with us, earning money while they study for a degree and helping them to get on the career ladder sooner and with less debt behind them.

The financial support now available to part-time students in Wales is another great reason to think about OU study. Dependent on household income and how much you study, OU in Wales students might be eligible to receive up to £4,500 funding towards living costs. Students will also still be able to take out tuition fee loans to help cover the cost of fees if they need to. This means study has become more affordable for many people wishing to learn part- time and gives you a fantastic option for getting your degree.

The OU has an open entry policy so we don’t worry about your exam results only how committed you are to studying and what you want to achieve. It’s perfect for those who might not have got the A-Level results they hoped for or not been able to complete their A-Level course.

Alannah Lewis is 21 and is from from Hengoed in the Rhymney Valley, and left school part way through sixth form without completing her A Levels. She went straight into work, but her ambition was to become a barrister which required a university qualification. Alannah began her degree in Law with the OU and is now Head Coordinator in Wales for Young Legal Aid Lawyers (YLAL), a legal aid organisation based in England and Wales. She chose OU study because of the cost and the flexibility.

I left school part way through sixth form without completing my A Levels. I went straight into work. I was toying with the idea of university but it was the inflexibility and the cost that really steered me away and that’s how I got to the OU.

I like the flexibility and how even though we’re given content and modules to do, essentially you can learn on your own terms. The OU offers equal opportunities for everyone. You don’t have to come from a certain educational background in order to do an OU degree or any course for that matter. That is what I really liked and that is what encouraged me to go with the OU.

Alannah Lewis, OU student

We have an enormous range of courses available and loads of support to help you achieve your goals. If you thought the OU wasn’t for you, it’s time to think again. There are 9,000 OU students currently studying across Wales - we can’t wait for you to join us.

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Rhodri Davies 
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