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Our blogs are written by Open University (OU) academics, staff, students, and our partner organisations. They share their expertise and emerging research as well as comment on current social issues.

Papyrus scroll showing the Egyptian pharaoh Ramesses III with the gods Amun, Mut, and Khonsu © The Trustees of the British Museum

Myths, legends and landings – our evolving relationship with the moon

Ahead of the OU in Scotland-hosted European Lunar Symposium, academics Dr Dominic Dalglish and Dr Stuart McKie explore our long and fascinating relationship with the moon.

11 June 2024

A close-up image of dates on a calendar

Religion and calendars – moons and summer solstice

Calendars can give you a valuable insight into a place’s customs and practices, politics, and religion, as Dr Liudmila Nikanorova, an OU Lecturer in Religious Studies, explores with the example of Russia’s Sakha Republic.

11 June 2024

The moon pictured from a distance, with a person using their hands to make a heart shape around it

The history of the moon through languages and cultures

The significance of the moon across different languages and its continued influence on cultures across the world is shared by Bärbel Brash, a Staff Tutor in The Open University’s School of Languages & Applied Linguistics.

11 June 2024

Photo of Edinburgh Fringe banner.

Harvesting inspiration at the Edinburgh Festivals

Comedy researcher and Open University literature tutor Dr Emma Sullivan shares how she finds a wealth of riches at Edinburgh’s Festivals.

10 June 2024

Photo of a young person using a laptop on a dining table, with a mug beside them.

Home education myths debunked

Young people may be learning outside of formal schooling for many reasons. In this blog Chelle Oldham, OU Staff Tutor in Education and Childhood, shares key findings from recent research shining a light on the voices of some of these young people.

18 March 2024

Artificially generated interpretation of a painting originally by the artist Caravaggio.

Transforming education with Artificial Intelligence

Ahead of interactive events in Scotland exploring Artificial Intelligence, Professor of Computer Science John Domingue shares the latest developments in AI at the OU and beyond.

12 March 2024

Illustration of Robert Burns

Robert Burns – the power of poetry and music

The power of Robert Burns’ poetry set to music, particularly for psychiatric care, is explored by Open University Staff Tutor and Senior Lecturer in Music, Dr Rosemary Golding.

25 January 2024

A snowy lake landscape in Bengtsfors, Sweden

Winter Walking – and Writing!

Poet, novelist and Open University Associate Lecturer Sophie Cooke shares how she was inspired by winter walking during a writing residency in Sweden.

22 December 2023

The word 'Change' spelled with paper boats.

Equipping Scotland for climate change

The importance of the 28th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28) for Scotland's communities, businesses and future generations is explored by OU Lecturer in Environmental Systems Dr Leslie Mabon.

11 December 2023

A man with Down's syndrome, facing directly towards the camera, and smiling.

Spotlight on learning disabilities nursing

Healthcare support worker Mahri Carmichael is a studying learning disabilities nursing with the OU. Mahri discusses her route into nursing and reflects on this flexible, dynamic specialism.

21 June 2023

Survival Systems employee

Help for Scottish SMEs aiming to modernise

New research recognises the positive impact of staff upskilling on business success. Tim Lewis shares how the OU in Scotland can help businesses through the Flexible Workforce Development Fund.

20 June 2023

'The Sun Amphitheatre' © Mike Bolam

Arts and science meet at summer solstice week

Graham Harvey, OU Emeritus Professor of Religious Studies, discusses the collaboration between the OU in Scotland and the Crawick Multiverse, where we're co-hosting events to celebrate the artistic, scientific, and cultural significances of the summer solstice.

12 June 2023

Dr Wendy McInally

Advocating for specialised cancer nursing

Ahead of the European Cancer Nursing Day 2023 event in Edinburgh, Dr Wendy McInally, Senior Lecturer in the OU's School of Health, Wellbeing & Social Care, highlights the importance building the right knowledge, skills, and experience to deliver complex cancer care.

2 May 2023

Sir David Attenborough ©Alex Board I Silverback Films I BBC

Scotland’s rarely seen wildlife revealed

The latest ground-breaking BBC/OU co-produced series, Wild Isles, is presented by Sir David Attenborough. OU in Scotland's Kate Signorini shares how Scotland is a star of the show.

17 April 2023

A smiling chef standing in a kitchen

Supporting the tourism and hospitality workforce

This Scottish Tourism Month, the OU’s David Allen highlights our support for the tourism and hospitality sector to recruit and retain staff, following Brexit and COVID-19 challenges.

24 March 2023

Business Barometer roundtable meeting in Dundee, 2023.

Scottish employers share skills challenges

A range of employers, representatives from local educational institutions, and business leaders, came together to share their experiences of the local skills landscape, and challenges they're facing, reveals Tim Lewis, Business Relationships Manager at the OU in Scotland.

20 March 2023

Jill McNaughton and Loraine Millar ©TwoRiversMedia

Women and campaigning: grassroots activism

The final article in our series inspired by OU/BBC Scotland co-production The Women Who Changed Modern Scotland is by journalist Catriona Stewart. She explores how women’s grassroots activism has thrived alongside juggling work, home and family.

7 March 2023

Dr Helen O'Shea, by Julie Howden

Women in politics: successes and barriers

Academic adviser on the OU/BBC Scotland documentary, The Women Who Changed Modern Scotland, Dr Helen O’Shea, explains why we need to redefine our understanding of success when it comes to women’s participation in politics and how it impacts everyone.

28 February 2023

Dr Kim Barker, by Neil Hanna

Women's equality in Scotland: its history and future

Academic advisor for the Open University/BBC Scotland documentary The Women Who Changed Modern Scotland, Dr Kim Barker, explores the development of women’s equality.

21 February 2023

High Court of Justiciary sign in Edinburgh

Promoting social justice through law reform

OU students are helping to promote social justice by informing law reform in Scotland. Liz Hardie from the OU's Open Justice Centre explains how in this short blog. 

20 February 2023

Business people chatting next to a whiteboard.

Helping businesses to bridge skills gaps

Employers across Scotland say that their organisations are facing acute skills shortages, with the impact leading to reduced output, profitability and growth. The OU's David Allen shares how Scotland's businesses of all sizes can access training to bridge vital skills gaps. 

30 January 2023

Leeanne MacPherson, OU Nursing Graduate.

Defusing nursing’s ticking timebomb

The current shortfall in nursing staff has been described as a ‘ticking timebomb’. The OU provides accessible routes that open up nursing careers to more people, says the Liz Sturley from the OU's School of Health, Wellbeing and Social Care.

12 December 2022

Shirley Manson, Charlotte Church, and Michael Pedersen, photo Edinburgh International Book Festival / Robin Mair

Openness of book festivals rings true with OU

Part of the OU in Scotland's commitment to contribute to the cultural landscape of our country has been to support and partner with Scotland's book festivals. Derek Goldman, OU in Scotland's Senior Knowledge Exchange Manager, explains more.

14 November 2022

Photo of a hand writing in notebook in a cafe, by Green Chameleon on Unsplash

Earning and learning, thanks to the OU (blog in English and in Greek)

Athanasia Argyriadou is from Greece and lives in Scotland. She is working full-time and learning at the same time, thanks to the OU's open access ethos and supported distance learning methods. Athanasia shares her study journey in this short blog.

11 November 2022

Ayrton Beatty

Degree dreams come true with the OU

Ayrton Beatty struggled at school, but the OU gave her the confidence to achieve her dream of gaining a degree in psychology. Ayrton shares her study journey in this blog.

10 November 2022

Photo of an open book in front of shelves full of books.

Access to education transforms lives

There are over forty people in secure facilities across Scotland – prisons and hospitals – currently studying OU modules. An OU in Scotland student shares how studying whilst in prison has given him an opportunity to turn his life around.

9 November 2022

Lyndsay Thomson

From Doubt to Degree, via the OU

Lyndsay Thomson from Cumbernauld overcame self-doubt and gained confidence to achieve an OU Business Management degree. She shares her OU journey in this short blog.

8 November 2022

Open University honorary graduate Sabir Zazai being interviewed outside the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall.

Lights, camera, action…celebrating student success

Susan Stewart, Director of the OU in Scotland, reflects on student achievement and welcoming honorary graduates to the OU family at our recent Glasgow degree ceremonies.

7 November 2022

Photo of 'police line do not cross' tape, with a police car in the background.

From Police Officer to Crime Writer via the OU

Stuart Johnstone is a published crime-fiction writer and an Open University graduate. Stuart shares how his childhood dream of becoming author came true thanks to the OU.

7 November 2022

Wind turbines at Nigg in Cromarty Firth, photo from Dr Leslie Mabon's field work.

One year on from COP26: greater urgency and expectation

One year has passed since Glasgow hosted the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference – or COP26 for short. The baton passes to Egypt for COP27 this month. Dr Leslie Mabon, OU Lecturer in Environmental Systems, explores progress made since COP26.

4 November 2022

Champions at Open Learning Champions networking event in Glasgow, April 2019

OU delivers vital opportunities to Scotland's businesses

Small businesses in Scotland can now access free training from the UK's largest university to help upskill their workforce. Tim Lewis, Business Relationships Manager at the OU in Scotland, explains how employers and employees can benefit from the fund.

3 October 2022

Champions at Open Learning Champions networking event in Glasgow, April 2019

The impact of Open Learning Champions

The Open Learning Champions project equips people across Scotland with the knowledge and skills to use the OU’s free learning resources, to help learners in their communities. Gill Ryan, OU in Scotland Access Participation & Success Manager, explores the project’s impact.

1 September 2022

Jade Taylor

Supporting students to achieve full potential through cost of living crisis

We prioritise making education accessible to everyone, it's important to us that our students know we are here for them during the cost-of-living crisis says Viki Soper, Senior Manager of Student Operation and Fees.

22 August 2022

Grant, an Open University in Scotland social work graduate and professional bagpiper.

Society needs next generation of social workers now

Flexible study is the best way to attract the next generation of social workers, says Deirdre Fitzpatrick, Head of Social Work for The Open University in Scotland.

22 July 2022

OU students Sarah and Karine

OU students balancing study and caring

Shona Littlejohn, OU in Scotland's Depute Director for Student Experience and Widening Access, shines a light on the essential care our students provide.

8 June 2022

A person lying in a tent, with trees outside

All about…The Student Mental Health Agreement

Lidia Dancu, OU in Scotland's Student Mental Health Co-ordinator, shares how the OU in Scotland and the OU Students Association are working together to support and improve the mental health and wellbeing of students resident in Scotland.

7 June 2022

A happy, smiling teenage boy is pictured sitting at a table, with a laptop

Can you break the code?

Mathematics and Statistics expert Dr Andrew Potter, of the OU, writes about a codebreaking challenges app on OU free learning platform OpenLearn, plus the maths that lies behind them.

29 April 2022

Image of Dr Caroline Ogilvie

Together the OU and the BBC 'Bring Learning to Life’

The OU's Head of Broadcast & Partnerships, Dr Caroline Ogilvie, shares her thoughts on our unique partnership with the BBC and how we work together to 'Bring Learning to Life'.

5 April 2022

Laptop next to sign reading 'You Got This', by Prateek Katyal on Unsplash

Study motivation helped by a good blether

Ewe and Lidia from OU in Scotland’s Access, Participation and Success Team share their experiences of studying with the OU and of building communities through Big Blether events.

9 February 2022

A woman at a laptop wearing a headset and talking, while moving her hands

Community Learning and Development workforce supported by the OU in Scotland

Shona Littlejohn, OU in Scotland's Depute Director for Student Experience and Widening Access, shares why the OU is excited to be working with partners to offer a range of development opportunities to Scotland's community learning and development workforce. 

31 January 2022

Photo of a notepad, pen and an open book, in front of a bookshelf full of books. By Aaron Burden on Unsplash.

A life turned around through OU study

In this short blog, an Open University in Scotland graduate shares how studying with the OU whilst in prison enabled him to take control of his own destiny.

26 January 2022

Wonder of free learning graphic produced by Visual Thinkery for the OU, and licensed CC BY 4.0

The road to success is wide open

OpenLearn, the OU’s home of free learning, has attracted 100 million visitors in the past 15 years. Head of OpenLearn Dr Patrina Law discusses its achievements and social mission.

19 January 2022

Photo of two people in a cafe with laptops and notebooks. By Brooke Cagel on Unsplash.

The real meaning of student voice

Viki Soper is an Access, Participation and Success Officer at The Open University in Scotland. In this blog Viki shares what student voice means to her and how it informs her work.

19 November 2021

Photo of a laptop and a notebook.

Studying and working with the OU

Joe Turner-Law is a Senior Adviser at the OU in Scotland and an OU student. In this blog Joe shares what it’s like combining his studies and his work supporting fellow students.

18 November 2021

People on a street, by Timon Studler on Unsplash.

The value of access to education

Allan Kavuma was forced to migrate from his homeland of Uganda to the UK. In this blog Allan shares his journey to achieving his goals, through studying with The Open University.

17 November 2021

Photo of a pair of spectacles on books, by Tamara Gak on Unsplash.

Studying in a secure environment

There are over forty people in secure facilities across Scotland – prisons and hospitals – currently studying OU undergraduate modules. In this short blog, a literature and creative writing student in a secure environment shares what it’s like studying with the OU.

16 November 2021

Photo of a 'Welcome to COP26' sign.

COP26 - an Observer's perspective

Graeme Smith, Team Manager in Student Recruitment and Support at the OU in Scotland, shares his personal experience as a COP26 Observer and his compelling takeaways.

10 November 2021

A close up shot of a football, on a pitch, about to be kicked by a player. Image by Emilio Garcia on Unsplash.

Scottish football and climate change

Ways that Scottish football might adapt in the coming years due to climate change, and steps to reduce its extent, are discussed by Dr Leslie Mabon, OU Environmental Systems Lecturer.

09 November 2021

Cyclists in Glasgow

Time to rebalance the books for life on Earth

With the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) underway in Glasgow, the OU is proud to be a part of the proceedings to offer a “culture and science” perspective on the impacts of climate change, says Professor Nicholas Braithwaite.

08 November 2021

A female construction site worker, holding a digital tablet and walkie talkie

Career development opportunities for union members

How the OU supports union members to develop their careers and find new employment opportunities is explored by Michael Conroy, a Learning Organiser for Unite the Union.    

23 September 2021

A seated man, looking at his laptop screen

Trade unions support upskilling and reskilling

Access for trade union members to learning opportunities during the COVID-19 pandemic, and beyond, is discussed by Tommy Breslin, a Senior Development Officer for Scottish Union Learning within the Scottish Trades Union Congress.    

23 September 2021

Sas Amoah

Delivering equality with actions not just words

Delivering race equality in education with actions, not just words, is explored in this blog by Sas Amoah, OU Digital Media Producer and Co-Chair of OU’s Black & Minority Ethnic Network.    

27 August 2021

NHS rainbow chalk drawing

The future of nurse education? Studying with the OU

The OU's open-access programme which is helping people across Scotland to become nurses is explored in this short blog by Wendy McInally, OU Senior Lecturer in Nursing. 

12 May 2021

Carla Belkevitz in Clydebank

OU's unique learning has never been more relevant

The Open University's unique and globally recognised model of supported distance learning has come into its own, as we have all adapted to a changing world with the Covid-19 pandemic, says OU in Scotland Director, Susan Stewart.

23 April 2021

A seated woman, smiling

How SMEs can develop in-demand skills

OU skills training of up to £5,000 which small to medium-sized enterprises across Scotland can access via a Scottish Government fund, is discussed by Suzanne McQuade, OU Business Relationships Manager for Scotland. 

19 April 2021

Skills+ Scotland, The Open University in Scotland's vision for the 2021-26 Scottish Parliament

Towards an inclusive economic recovery

Discover how the OU is supporting an inclusive economic recovery from the COVID pandemic, and our vision for the next Scottish Parliament, in this blog by Marie Hendry, OU in Scotland Depute Director.

12 April 2021

Geologists work at the Cononish mine and feature in the Gold Town documentary

Gold Rocks Scotland

Geologist, OU Senior Lecturer and Gold Town programme advisor Dr Julie Robson discusses geology’s role in gold exploration and sustainable management of the planet’s resources, ahead of episode three of the OU/BBC documentary.

19 March 2021

Image of a hand writing in a notebook with a pencil, beside an open laptop.

The need for an inclusive recovery

How Scotland can rebuild its economy in an inclusive manner post-pandemic is explored in this blog by Susan Stewart, Director of The Open University in Scotland.

18 March 2021

The Green Welly Stop business is in the Highlands village of Tyndrum

Globalising Tyndrum

Gold mining in the Highlands is the focus of new OU/BBC documentary Gold Town. Dr Gerry Mooney, an OU Senior Lecturer and programme adviser, explores the global connections of nearby Tyndrum.

12 March 2021

A smiling man and woman seated at a table, with an open notebook

Student carers need more support

The pandemic’s impact on carers, and a new free resource for staff at universities to be able to better support student carers, are discussed by Gill Ryan, an OU Access, Participation and Success Officer. 

11 March 2021

A seated woman, resting her chin on her hand

Learning supports wellbeing

As we start 2021 with so many things we'd normally do still off limits, there’s a wide range of free content to help you move forward, says Shona Littlejohn, OU in Scotland Depute Director. 

07 January 2021

Man using a laptop in a cafe

Supporting and Upskilling Scotland

Skilled people are vital in helping with economic recovery. The OU is committed to providing flexible online education to support and upskill people across Scotland, says Diane Cooper, OU in Scotland Partnership Manager.

23 November 2020

Susan Stewart, OU in Scotland Director

Retrain or reskill to meet the global challenge

In challenging times for the global economy and jobs market, support will be needed more than ever for workers looking to retrain or reskill, says OU in Scotland Director, Student Stewart.

17 November 2020

Prof Sir Geoff Palmer

Scotland’s links with Caribbean Slavery

Scotland’s first black professor, leading human rights activist and Open University honorary graduate, Prof Sir Geoff Palmer CD, shares reflections on Scotland’s black slavery history and the importance of teaching it today.

29 October 2020

Carol Hunter

Vital that care experienced voices are heard

Award-winning care experienced Open University Bachelors graduate and Masters student Carol Hunter shares her personal and educational experiences, in this blog for Care Experienced Week 2020.

28 October 2020

Dr Julie McElroy

Closing the disability assistance gap

Award-winning disability rights campaigner, inspirational public speaker and OU student Dr Julie McElroy, shares first-hand how supportive access to higher education can empower people with disabilities.

22 October 2020

Woman with worried expression, sitting at kitchen table with papers, calculator and an open laptop

Facing maths fears in a jiffy

Andrew Potter, Staff Tutor in Maths and Statistics at the OU in Scotland, explores how the OU is helping people across Scotland to overcome their maths fears.

28 September 2020

Three people working at computers

Cyber security skills at IBM enhanced via Graduate Apprenticeships

Suzanne McQuade, OU Business Relationships Manager for Scotland, explores how IBM is utilising the Graduate Apprenticeship scheme in Scotland to upskill its talent pipeline from within.

16 September 2020

Helen Kafantari Maciver working at Western Isles Hospital

From Healthcare Assistant to Staff Nurse via OU

Emergency Department Nurse at the Western Isles Hospital, Helen Kafantari Maciver, shares her journey from healthcare assistant to staff nurse, via an Open University degree.

16 September 2020

Map of OU students by Scottish Parliament region 2018-19 - Central Scotland, 1740; Glasgow, 1770; Highlands and Islands, 1750; Lothian, 2900; Mid Scotland and Fife, 1990; North East Scotland, 2480; South Scotland, 2310; West Scotland, 1860

Learning for everyone supports recovery

Learning has an essential role in Scotland's economic recovery post Covid-19, says the OU in Scotland's Director, Susan Stewart.

24 August 2020

Bernardine Evaristo

Write yourself into The Open University story and you might change your life

The experiences of novelist Bernardine Evaristo’s character chime with those of many OU students, says OU in Scotland Director, Susan Stewart.

21 August 2020

Woman standing outside workplace

Wanting to learn or develop job skills? Then the OU is for you

The OU has taken a rapid, responsive approach during the pandemic to help minimise the impact for workers and businesses, says Marie Hendry, its Scotland Depute Director for External Engagement and Partnerships. 

15 July 2020

A laptop user's hands resting over the keyboard

How to overcome the challenge of online learning

With Scotland’s students and school pupils abruptly switching to online study due to the Covid-19 pandemic, OU Senior Lecturer Laura Alexander shares advice to help with the challenge. 

30 June 2020

Person holding an iPad with images of books displayed on screen

Schools may be closed, but we’re still open for learning

Schools will always be the best place for children to learn, but there can be a role for other bodies to complement and support teachers and parents in a way that works for them, says OU in Scotland Director Susan Stewart. 

29 June 2020

Photo of woman waving at laptop

A world of learning at your fingertips to celebrate significant days

While many of us are trying to keep ourselves and others engaged and informed at home by going online, it seems particularly significant that this week is National Digital Learning Week. Indeed, it’s a week full of timely and respectful tributes. Susan Stewart, Director of the OU in Scotland, explores five ways to mark these celebrations, with free online learning.

14 May 2020

Image of OpenLearn website's homepage - Dive in and start learning

Learning in the time of lockdown

In these strange days, you may feel that learning is the last thing on your mind. But since the beginning of lockdown, the OU's free learning platform OpenLearn has welcomed a record numbers of visitors, says OU in Scotland's Gill Ryan.

11 May 2020

Photo of woman waving at laptop

How to age well while self-isolating

People have been made to isolate to delay the spread of COVID-19, but there are several risks of self-isolation to older people. This blog by the OU's Dr Jitka Vseteckova offers some tips on how to combat these risks. These tips will be explored further at an Ageing Well Virtual Talk with Dr Vseteckova on Thursday 7 May 2020. 

5 May 2020

Smiling woman seated at laptop

Mental health and stress awareness more important than ever now

In Stress Awareness Month, Ben Wood of The OU's Open Media and Informal Learning Unit writes about resources available on free learning site OpenLearn. 

15 April 2020

Business people seated round a table for a meeting

Apprenticeships, study and skills development aren't just for the young

In Scottish Apprenticeship Week, Marie Hendry, OU in Scotland Depute Director for External Engagement and Partnerships, discusses upskilling opportunities for businesses. 

6 March 2020

A World Social Justice Day graphic

Don't call it a day on learning - OU will help you gain vital skills

On World Day of Social Justice, Susan Stewart, Director of the Open University in Scotland, celebrates making education open to all, regardless of educational background.

20 February 2020

Dr Michael Dempster

Dr Michael Dempster: A year o firsts fir the Scots language (article available in the Scots language and Standard English)

While we’re celebrating Burns Night, it’s also a time to celebrate the recent developments and the bright future for the Scots Language, says Scots Scriever, Dr Michael Dempster. 

24 January 2020

Jennie Lee speaking at an Independent Labour Party gathering at Garrison Bridge, West Scotland, 1930.

Jennie Lee: MP, minister, rebel, fighter, Open University champion

As a touring exhibition opens on the life of Jennie Lee, a founder of The Open University, OU in Scotland Director Susan Stewart shares ten things about Jennie that you might not know. 

30 October, 2019

Newtonhill Primary School pupils

Language learning for primary classrooms, as TELT by teachers

Wendy Craig and Aimee Bainbridge, teachers at Newtonhill Primary School in Aberdeenshire, discuss their participation in the Open University’s TELT programme – TEachers Learning to Teach languages. 

10 September, 2019

Business people in conversation

Upskilling and reskilling of staff no longer optional extra - it is vital

Marie Hendry, OU in Scotland Depute Director, External Engagement and Partnerships, discusses the benefits to workforces of staff skills development, as an OU Roadshow with several employer events across the country gets set to launch. 

22 August, 2019

Woman writing at sunset

Using the power of writing to deal with grief

Ahead of her event at the Edinburgh International Book Festival Catherine Simpson, author of 'When I Had a Little Sister' and Open University alumnus, shares her experiences. 

13 August, 2019

Apollo 11 - Aldrin Looks Back at Tranquillity Base. Credit - NASA

Fifty years after that 'one small step' there's a new rush to reach the Moon

With anniversaries being celebrated of Apollo 11 landing on the Moon, and The Open University being founded, Dr Mahesh Anand discusses projects he has led at the OU working on Apollo samples, and looks to the future of space exploration.

24 July, 2019

Lord Crowther - OU Charter Day

Education for all is our ethos - and millions of people have benefited

Susan Stewart, Director of the Open University in Scotland, celebrates the 50th anniversary of the OU and the lives it has changed.

24 April, 2019

Woman in a meadow at sunrise, with arms outstretched

A fairer society and decent quality of life gives us many happy returns

On the International Day of Happiness, Professor of Economics at the OU, Paul Anand, discusses happiness in Scotland and other countries.

20 March, 2019

Woman at a computer

Having a 'Day' to mark equality of opportunity is a goal worth having

Marie Hendry, OU in Scotland Depute Director, External Engagement and Partnerships, writes about the importance of opening education, skills development and careers paths to all.

8 March, 2019

Photo of two people shaking hands across a table

Leadership in voluntary organisations: from the top, bottom, and across the table

Collaborative leadership in voluntary organisations is discussed by Dr Carol Jacklin-Jarvis, from the Centre for Voluntary Sector Leadership within The Open University Business School.

15 February, 2019

Why Glasgow’s ‘Bolshevist Uprising’ in 1919 wasn’t quite the red threat to UK many believed

Gerry Mooney, Senior OU Lecturer in Social Policy and Criminology, examines events in Glasgow's George Square 100 years ago, and explains why they remain so vivid for many in the city today.

31 January, 2019

Laptop, headphones and a pile of books

From the Highlands to the Borders - A day in the life of an OU online creative writing tutor

OU creative writing tutor Jules Horne, an award-winning playwright and fiction writer, shares her experience of using an online classroom for a workshop on Hamlet with students in diverse locations.

30 January, 2019

A poetry graphic

Veterans have poetic licence to reveal their deepest feelings

Siobhan Campbell is Co-Chair of the Master of Arts in Creative Writing at the OU and editor of ‘Courage and Strength: Stories and Poems by Combat Veterans’. She writes about projects with veterans of the military forces.

28 January, 2019

Adhesive notes with resolutions - Save money, enjoy life, take a trip

How to detox your finances for 2019

Martin Upton, Director of the True Potential Centre for the Public Understanding of Finance (PUFin) at the Open University Business School, shares some steps for reviewing household finances.

8 January, 2019

An active volcano

How Scotland's extinct volcanoes help us understand today's eruptions 

Dr John Murray, Volcanologist and a Senior OU Research Fellow, explains how research by a Scottish geologist on the Ardnamurchan peninsula decades ago helps inform present volcano studies.

29 November, 2018

Female studying, with books and laptop

Open to innovation and entrepreneurialism 

Susan Stewart, Director of The OU in Scotland, writes about open educational resources and their role in helping develop entrepreneurship, particularly in rural areas. 

22 November, 2018

Girls - consider an engineering career 

Officially one of the ‘Top 50 Women in Engineering’, Carol Morris, OU Senior Lecturer in Engineering and Innovation, calls for more females to consider a career in engineering.

8 November, 2018

Scott Montgomery and Shelagh McLachlan at Ayrshire College

It's never too late to learn Social Science

Scott Montgomery is retraining for a new career, doing an OU degree part-time through a collaborative teaching arrangement with Ayrshire College. He talks about his learner journey, and the College’s Shelagh McLachlan - herself an OU graduate - shadows Scott for a day.

29 August, 2018

Comedy masks image

Comforting to know that comedians still take on the tough job of tackling taboos

Humour has always provided a vehicle for performers - and the rest of us - to explore difficult topics, says James Robson, Professor of Classical Studies and Head of the School of Arts and Cultures at The OU. How is this playing out in summer 2018?

15 August, 2018

Sam Orme

My Open University Experience

Software engineer Sam Orme is an OU graduate. He transferred credit from his college HND (Higher National Diploma) in Computing: Software Development towards his OU degree. Sam gained his university qualification while working full-time.

08 August, 2018

Hands holding

Dementia and Decision Making at the End of Life

In the month that the NHS marks its 70th anniversary, Dr Kerry Jones, OU Lecturer in End of Life Care, examines the support and care that people with dementia get towards the end of life.

31 July, 2018

Duck-Rabbit illusion

On the benefits of uneasiness...

OU Associate Lecturer in English Literature Dr Michael Rodgers argues that the uneasiness we experience reading the work of Vladimir Nabokov can be positive - and that the benefits of uneasiness extend to everyday life, including the student experience.

22 June, 2018

Silhouette of a man

‘Migration control’ isn’t about migration – it’s about controlling who can be in our society

Tendayi Bloom, Lecturer in Politics and International Studies at The OU, asks if a state has the right to suddenly choose which of us can be included in society and which cannot.

21 June, 2018

Teacher Memory Simaloya

200 Zambian teachers participate in development workshops with The OU and World Vision

The OU's Dr Lore Gallastegi updates on the Zambian Educational School-based Training (ZEST) project, which centres around Continuing Professional Development for teachers.

13 June, 2018

Photo of female with iPad

Widening Participation: OU Conference chair’s update on digital inclusion and ethical dilemmas

Reflections from Shona Littlejohn, OU in Scotland Depute Director, Student Experience and Widening Access, following The OU's Widening Participation Conference.

31 May, 2018

Kīlauea volcano in Hawai'i

Lava in Hawai'i is reaching the ocean, creating new land but also corrosive acid mist

With the eruption of the Kīlauea volcano in Hawai'i, dangerous corrosive acid mist is being produced, as well as new land, writes OU Honorary Associate Dr Dave McGarvie.

24 May, 2018

DataFest18 logo

DataFest 18: OU courses, research and projects

Knowledge Exchange and Enterprise Manager Dr Simona Foscarin shares highlights from The OU's participation in the recent DataFest18, a festival of innovation. 

13 April, 2018

OU graduate Sheila Cameron

Supporting students with disabilities

Shona Littlejohn, Depute Director, Student Experience and Widening Access, at The OU in Scotland writes about supporting students with disabilities. 

3 April, 2018

Maria Macnamara, founder of Smalls for All and OU Honorary Graduate, with children in Africa

#IWD2018: Maria Macnamara, OU Honorary Graduate and founder of Smalls for All

On International Women's Day, OU Honorary Graduate Maria Macnamara writes about the work of her charity, Smalls for All, which helps women and children in Africa. 

8 Mar, 2018


Why nutritional psychiatry is the future of mental health treatment

The OU's Dr Joyce Cavaye writes about the growing discipline of nutritional psychiatry, that focuses on food and supplements to provide essential nutrients in treatment for mental health disorders.

2 Mar, 2018

OU in Scotland Director Susan Stewart with her favourite books

#WorldBookDay - our Director's favourite five

On World Book Day, Susan Stewart - Director of The Open University in Scotland - shares the five books she rates as her favourites.

1 Mar, 2018

Martin Robb and conference panellists

'Supporting Boys' conference in Glasgow

The OU's Dr Martin Robb writes about the 'Supporting Boys' conference in Glasgow, at which he spoke about research projects into young men, masculinity and role models.

27 Feb, 2018

Learning Partnership Officers Sam Kemp and Gill Ryan

Flexible voluntary sector learning from The OU

Charities, social enterprises and other not-for-profits can discover at 'The Gathering', Scotland's largest free event for the third sector, how The OU can help support their staff and volunteers gain new skills and develop.

16 Feb, 2018

Nurse and OU in Scotland graduate, Michaela Olver

From Health Care Support Worker to Staff Nurse

Graduate Michaela Olver shares her journey from Health Care Support Worker to Staff Nurse, via an Open University degree she gained while working.

23 Jan, 2018

Managing My Money

How to detox your finances in 2018

We kick off the New Year with some top tips on managing your personal finances from OU expert, Martin Upton.

04 Jan, 2018

Graduate nurses

Making the headlines in 2017

As 2017 draws to a close, we look back at some of the news stories and blogs that have been making the headlines on The OU in Scotland website in 2017.

21 Dec, 2017

Clydebank Blitz

When the Blitz came to Clydebank

Professor Annika Mombauer discusses how bombs rained down on Clydebank in 1941.

05 Dec, 2017

Iceland volcano

Is Iceland's tallest volcano, Öræfajökull, awakening?

A volcano close to home that is showing signs of activity according to Dr Dave McGarvie.

28 Nov, 2017

ZEST project - World Vision Zambia and Chibombo zonal school colleagues

Teacher development in Zambia

The Open University is developing a one-year school-based teacher development programme in Zambia.

13 Oct, 2017

Dr Sally Magnusson

Music’s power to help dementia

An estimated 100,000 people live with dementia in Scotland and that number is set to increase year on year. Dementia is a catch-all term for a number of degenerative brain diseases, such as Alzheimer’s Disease, for which there is currently no cure.

21 Sept, 2017

Pete Cannell and Claire Hewitt

Using open educational practices to widen access and bridge gaps in education in Scotland

Educational resources are increasingly available online. The shift from print to digital has been rapid and much of the material is ‘open’ in the sense that it is freely available to anyone with an internet connection and an appropriate digital device

08 Sept, 2017

OpenLearn Champions

Adult learning: exploring the policy and practice of widening access

One of the first conclusions drawn by Professor Sir Peter Scott in his early work as the Scottish Government’s Commissioner for Fair Access, is that reaching the targets set out in A Blueprint for Fairness requires “a radical project, more radical perhaps than we care to acknowledge”

Aug, 2017


Performers at Edinburgh Festival

Open Outlook - June 2024

Find out more about the latest news and events from The Open University in Scotland with the June 2024 issue of Open Outlook.

10th June 2024
The Open University's Professor Mahesh Anand standing in front of a Moon image - photo by Mark Bolam.

OU to host European Lunar Symposium 2024

The European Lunar Symposium will be held in Scotland for the first time and is being hosted by The Open University in Scotland.

14th May 2024
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