I began my Open University journey in October 2010. Excited as I was to learn of the opportunities that OU had to offer. OU was brought to my attention when I completed a five-part home study course with USDAW–the Union of Shop, Distributive and allied workers of which I am a member and a shop steward.
It was surprising to me that the union had so much to offer. Being a Tesco employee, and a member of the union since 2006, it was only when I completed the home study course on aspects of unionism, that I realised the enormous potential there is for one to advance their learning. The union actively encouraged you to sign up with OU via a leaflet, and my curiosity led me to the site. I was amazed by the amount of free resources there was to be had and the variety of topics that cold be studied at undergraduate and post graduate level.
Initially, I was looking for a subject that matched my interests in broadcasting, as my wife and I had started a television production company borne out from our interest in video-sharing sites like youtube. But I had to settle for a degree in Computing and IT which to my mind would invariable prepare me for having a hands-on approach to dealing with technology as my company grows.
Consequently, after some research, I settled for the level one courses of M150 Data, computing and information that began in October of 2010 and T175 Networked Living- Exploring information and Communication Technologies. I soon found out that the information that I was about to assimilate was deep, new and fulfilling. At first I had to really make an effort to get into gear to absorb the new information that I was being exposed to. My studies had led me to a new world: one that was fascinating and relevant to the world that I am living in.
Now, 6 months later, I am coming down to th end of my first module, M150, and looking back, I can say that I have no regrets in rediscovering my student days. Having to put in at least 16 hours a week on my own time as a an individual in full time employment. I studied mainly on my breaks. As a night worker, thios suited me. I would make as best use of my daylight hours, particularly on a sunday when I would do my TMAs or tutor marked Assignments.
Looking forward, I am confident that I will pass my M150 and T175. I hope to start two new courses: TM128 Microsoft Servers in October, and T216 Cisco Networking (CCNA) in February. I aim to put into practice a lto of what I have learnt, especially in T175 about the value of note taking and journal writing. not only because I feel I will need it, but as a means to keep my self motivated and focused.
Completing my degree by 2016 seems a long way off. But I think it will be work every day of study. I feel blessed that I have found Open University and that I have this chance to open my mind to an area of life that I find so fascinating.
I would not hesitate to recommend study with the Open University to any one.