bodminman (19th January 2011)
Expanding on the Open degree I'm doing, you simply mix n match the courses you want to do, you have to choose some from a selection given but the rest is yours. So in my case I'm doing ones that have no exams xD, I only study during my hour lunch break bt I'm a month ahead of schedule, the assignments can be tough bt you only need 40% to pass and that's good enough at level 1.
The OU also paid all my course fees and the student loan company gave me a non-repayable grant
[QUOTE=Robz;617449]that's a bit modern for you isn't it? I thought a slingshot would be more your type :P
*Puts on caveman outfit and starts hacking away at a lump of wood to make a club*
When people have talked about getting grants etc... where did people go? I am topping up a HND to a degree, starting next week. I am quite lucky in that my work are going to pay half of the course fee as part of my CPD. If i can try and get any more help (as the bill will still be roughly £750-£1000) on a paltry IT Techs wage, i will!
I just finished doing a Foundation Degree which took three years part time at a cost of about £900 a year and I can top up to a BSc with a years day release at a local uni. Did I learn anything? No, the work was out of date the lecturers had hardly worked in industry and I went through the motions to tick some boxes.
If you want to do it go for it, if you only want to do it to shine your cv up then you may not have the commitment needed to give up two nights a week and many weekends doing assignments.
There are many things employers look for in a candidate that go beyond work experiance and qualifications. Our head stands behind "So what do you do outside of work?" being the most important question in his interviews. Anyone who gives the best account of them as a person gets higher praise from him. People always seem to overlook this. I work for a national childrens charity doing advocacy work and I love discussing it with others and it looks damn good on your cv. Perhaps doing something similar may be a good option for all to have a better cv.
I have a fair bit of experience with the OU, and I loved it, but it can be VERY demanding of your time.
To work full time, and to do the degree in 6 years, you are going to have to put in a lot of time, and if you have a social life currently outside of work, you can kiss that goodbye for a good part of the time your doing it unless you can get support from your employer for it.
I have 80 points at lvl 1, 100 points at lvl 2. I decided to take 9 months off this year, as I was finding my social life had become non existent.
I've been studying with them all of last year, i stopped for 2 years previous to that to do the whole getting married/buying a house thing, and had studied for 2 years prior to that.
If you've got a head for maths, logic and interested in programming.... M263: Building Blocks of Software.
I found this course really challenging, as I have no background in programming at all. It really pushes your understanding of programming, and is little to do with actual coding, and more to do with understanding principles in good code writing. It's not a good starter course, but could make a good 2nd year course.
CCNA (T216): Exactly as it says on the tin! It's the CCNA course, the material provided by cisco. I'm planning to pick this up next start time.
TM128: Microsoft Server Technologies - New from October 2010, looks promising and sold out instantly on release. With a little extra study this will be enough to get a Microsoft cert on the outside.
I want to do this one next year too, hence why i took this year off, to have a break before i try and do 2 courses at once, which can be tough work.
T155: Linux- An Introduction - Good fun, short 10 week/10 point course for anyone who's never worked with linux before. You wont be building your own linux server cluster from this, it's a very basic course, and i pretty much did the whole course in 2 weeks, with the main project being done in one weekend/2 late evenings of work.
There are lots of courses dedicated to web development, and especially Java with the OU, and about as many dedicated to working around the business side of ICT, and newer courses around new tech and telecomms based stuff.
I'm struggling to pick my lvl 3 courses myself, as I can't really see which one will actually benefit me and my current line of work!
Just for noting, my first 2 years of OU study was in Chemistry, I have a certificate in Natural Sciences already, and I've done S103 (now S104), S205 and the 2 residential courses that go with them SXR103 and SXR205.
I also attempted the do the astronomy course (S282), and many said it was a good course, but I found it absolutely awful and boring. It was a level 2 course, and mostly covered work i did in my first year of A-level physics, and i gave up after the 3rd assignment.
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