Answers to the OUSA History of the OU quiz


1. Who is the Open University’s current Chancellor?

a. David Puttnam (D)

b. Martin Bean (E)

c. Brenda Gourley (M)

Answer: David Puttnam

2. How many times has the Open University won the TV quiz University Challenge?

a. 0 (Y)

b. 1 (X

c. 2 (U)

d. 3 (Q)

Answer: 2 (1984 and 1999)

3. In the first year of teaching the Open University ran four modules (then called courses) – what were the four course codes

a.  M100, D100, A100, S100 (A)

b.  S100, T100, S101, T101 (B)

c.  M100, D100, A100, ST100 (F)

d.  M100, D100, A100, T100 (K)

Answer: M100, D100, A100, S100

(M100 – Maths, D100 – Social Science, A100 – Arts, S100 – Science) The first Technology course, T100, started in 1972.

4. Who wrote:

What other nation in the world could have given us William Shakespeare, pork pies, Christopher Wren, Windsor Great Park, The Open University, Gardeners’ Question Time and the chocolate digestive biscuit?

a. Bill Bryson (A)

b. Lenny Henry (R)

c. Griff Rees Jones (S)

Answer: Bill Bryson

5. Which MP described the OU as “Blithering Nonsense”

a. Robert Jackson (Z)

b. William van Straubenzee (W)

c. Iain Macleod (T)

Answer: Iain Macleod

6. What year did the Open University gain its Royal Charter?

a. 1963 (O)

b. 1969 (R)

c. 1971 (T)

Answer: 1969

7. TESSA is the acronym for 

a. Teacher Education in Sub Saharan Africa (O)

b. Tutor Enrolment and Student Services Alignment (U)

c. Teamworking Education Service, Student Allocation (W)

Answer: Teacher Education in Sub Saharan Africa

8. The BBC/OU Series Child of our Time focused on 25 babies born to 22 families. What year was it first broadcast?

a. 1999 (P)

b. 2000 (N)

c. 1988 (F)

Answer: 2000

9. The approximate number of OU students in 1971 was:

a. Between 2,500 – 5000 (G)

b. Between 15,000 – 25,000 (Y)

c. Between 100,000 – 150,000 (H)

Answer: Between 15,000 – 25,000

10. In Willie Russell’s Educating Rita, what is Rita’s real name?

a. Rita (N)

b. Susan (O)

c. Margaret (P)

Answer: Susan

11. Approx how many items were included within the first OU Science Home Experiment Kit:

a. 30 (U)

b. between 100 and 150 (E)

c. over 300 (P)

Answer: between 100 and 150 (136 items)

12. The OU has always used pioneering technologies to deliver distance teaching. What was the name of this device:

a. Cyclops (R)


c. McArthur (E)

Answer: Cyclops

13. The OU Students Association was created in 1972. In it’s early years how much did it cost an OU student to become a member of the Association per annum?

a. 50p (I)

b. £1 (G)

c. £5 (B)

Answer: £1

14. Which of these languages is/has been taught by the Open University?

a. Welsh (M)

b. Latin (K)

c. Chinese (L)

d. All of the above (C)

e. None of the above (W)

Answer: All of the above

15. What is the name of the OU’s website which allows you to try OU learning for free?

a. OpenLearn (E)

b. Open Sesame (T)

c. OpenTeaching (U)

Answer: OpenLearn

16. She was a founder of the Open University, the first Minister of the Arts and wife of NHS pioneer Aneurin Bevan. What was her name?

a. Margaret Thatcher (R)

b. Jennie Lee (N)

c. Barbara Castle (S)

Answer: Jennie Lee

17. The first Open University Graduation was broadcast live on BBC2 from Alexandra Palace. What year was it?

a. 1971 (J)

b. 1972 (H)

c. 1973 (M)

Answer: 1973

18. What is the name of the famous comedian from Dudley who is an OU graduate?

a. Jasper Carrott (B)

b. Lenny Henry (I)

c. Peter Kaye (Q)

Answer: Lenny Henry

Final challenge


Photo made availably by Horia Varlan under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic License © Horia Varlan

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