Archive for March 6th, 2013

Putting the OU into British Council

Wednesday, March 6th, 2013

The news that the British Council is the latest partner to join Futurelearn, the first free, open, online platform for courses from multiple UK universities, founded by The Open University brings to mind earlier partnerships with the British Council. In the 1970s the British Council was among those bodies which paid for consultancies, training courses, fellowships, books, materials and equipment. It enabled OU staff to assist with the planning and development of academic programmes and the administrative and regional structures and procedures of the People’s Open University in Pakistan (now the Allama lqbal Open University). There was training of the university’s academic, administrative and regional personnel at the OU. Three senior staff, including Pro-Vice-Chancellor Ralph Smith, were seconded to Pakistan. Joe Clinch, (later University Secretary) spent 10 months in Pakistan. The OU collaborated with the British Council in response to other requests for advice and assistance.