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19 In lifestyle

how I feel about starting at the Open University

Boy has the first of October crept up on me.  I’ve obviously known I’d be starting by degree soon for ages, but it only dawned on me at the beginning of the week that duhh, October 1st is this weekend.  And now I’m questioning my intelligence bearing in mind I’m about to start a maths degree and can’t keep track of a calendar…

Anyway.  Not having an actual event, like a moving out date, freshers week or first lecture, to count down to probably explains my dimwittery.  Somehow it doesn’t feel as much of a big deal as it would if I was going away to a traditional uni, and I have to keep reminding myself that I’m gonna have a LOT of work on my plate.  God help me!

I’ve read lots of forums and joined Facebook groups, and am looking forward to meeting people at the IRL tutorials I’ve booked myself onto.  Plenty people said it can be a little confusing and daunting at first to get your head around distance learning and know where to start, but once you get into the swing of it it’s fine!

the-open-university

I’ve chosen to start full time which is apparently 40 hours of study per week, so this gal is gonna have to be organised.  I was advised to take it slower to begin with and start out part time, but I’ve chosen to throw myself in at the deep end anyway!  Lots of people say they’ve managed full time study alongside a full time job, so I think I should be able to manage it!  Famous last words haha.  Touch wood.  Ideally I don’t want my degree to drag out over too many years if it’s only part time, but I can always scale it back if I change my mind.

Obviously I’ll be blogging all the way through my experience with the Open University, to document my progress and hopefully start discussion.  If anyone else has studied through distance learning or has any advice in general, I’m all ears.

As for how I feel about having chosen the OU… I’ve met a lot of new people over the last few months and that’s a lot of curious questions about my life, plans and education to answer!  I basically have a rehearsed response. 😛 Gotta say I’m still glad I made the decision not to go away to uni – tbh I just don’t really think I’d like it, nevermind all the other reasons that it wouldn’t have made sense.  I know it’s somewhat unconventional to run a lifestyle blog alongside a maths and physics degree but we’ll see how it goes.  Keeping open as many options as humanly possible, with this that and the other going on.

open-university-maths-and-physics

lily kate x

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19 Comments

  • Reply
    Antonia
    1st October 2016 at 7:54 pm

    That’s so exciting. It’s amazing that you choose way of education that fits you. I’m starting my first year of college this Monday. Feeling very nervous but also excited. Looking forward to reading about your student experiences and life in general. xo

    Antonia || Sweet Passions

    • Reply
      lily kate
      2nd October 2016 at 9:51 pm

      Ah good luck for college! I’m sure the nerves will disappear and you’ll love it 🙂 I really do feel that I’ve made the right choice for me, I just don’t think uni would suit me! Looking forward to sharing everything with you 😀

  • Reply
    Amy
    2nd October 2016 at 1:00 am

    I love this post. I’m about to come to the end of doing a degree at a physical University and I’m considering doing an online one come next year to hopefully give me some flexibility in life to sort of chill out for a year but I can still keep my brain learning and doing something interesting. I can’t wait to start reading how it goes for you in preparation for me potentially starting mine.

    Amy
    http://www.thenoiseinwonderland.com

    • Reply
      lily kate
      2nd October 2016 at 9:56 pm

      I’m so glad! I really hope my blogs about my OU studies will be helpful, entertaining or at least some way useful 🙂
      What did you study? Online learning seems like a good way to have the flexibility of both!

  • Reply
    Charlotte brickley
    2nd October 2016 at 4:21 pm

    Well done on your decision! I’m nearly at the end of my open university degree! I did mine part time so it’s taken me 6 years! Hopefully will be worth it though!

    Charlotte

    • Reply
      lily kate
      2nd October 2016 at 10:00 pm

      Thanks Charlotte! It’s great to hear from a fellow student hehe 😀 Well done YOU on finishing your degree – what course did you study?

  • Reply
    Pixie
    2nd October 2016 at 7:13 pm

    Good luck with your degree – I was surprised and impressed when you said you was studying maths and physics (those words alone make my head hurt!) I would have guessed English lit or history, funny how we make assumptions about people we don’t know. It’ll be interesting to see how you keep motivated without actual lectures to attend; I’m looking forward to going on the journey with you. xxx

    • Reply
      lily kate
      2nd October 2016 at 10:03 pm

      Thank you! People seem to either love or hate maths and physics 😛 Funny that you’d guess that – people have assumed before that I’d be studying English because I enjoy writing, but tbh I just enjoy it when I can write whatever the hell I want on my own blog! I did do history A-level and seriously consider it as a degree though 🙂
      I really hope my posts / journey doesn’t disappoint! Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  • Reply
    Max
    3rd October 2016 at 4:07 am

    I hope you get into the swing of things and I am looking forward to hearing how it goes! Here are my questions concerns that hopefully you will be updating and answering as you progress. Do you work with or get to know any of the professors or instructors? I keep hearing that it is the way of the future, but You are the first young person I have heard of to choose distance learning, usually I just hear about people who are working full time to pay the bills doing it after their kids are in bed, or people who are already in the job they want, but just need the degree to reinforce their credentials. Will you meet or get to work with anyone in your fields. And yeah, if there are no lectures you have to remember to go to on time, how do you decide what to do? From my perspective, jobs teaching at university are pretty thin on the ground. I keep hearing that I have to keep my mind open to teaching one of those on-line courses, or learn how to plan one, or “make one interesting”, so I will be mining your blog posts for tips and info. Also, did you have to go away to go to uni? Are there none nearby that have the program you wanted? So many questions.

    • Reply
      lily kate
      3rd October 2016 at 3:36 pm

      Thanks Max! I do have assigned tutors yes, and I believe I’ll get to know them over the next few months! I expect that lots of the people doing my course will be fitting it around a full time job or a family, but there are more 18 year olds than I expected in the young students facebook group! I’ll be attending a couple of tutorials at physical unis so will hopefully meet people there, or find people online and then meet up. I have a study plan of what I need to know and when – traditional uni is a lot of independent study from what I’ve heard so it won’t be tooo different in that respect anyway! It does seem like a system that will be better suited to the way society is changing to it maybe wouldn’t be a bad idea to get involved.
      I didn’t have to go away to uni – I live about 15 minutes walk away from one and others are only a train journey away! However with any bricks and mortar university I’d have set times that I needed to be in set places, and I wanted the freedom of being able to study wherever (and whenever, to an extent). There were no real advantages to me going to one tbh!

  • Reply
    Lucy
    3rd October 2016 at 5:34 pm

    Good luck starting your course!! Sounds like a pretty exciting time 🙂 don’t worry, nobody sticks to the 40 hours study time so you’re ahead just for having considered it! I hope it all goes well and you get into the swing of it nice and quickly. There are some student bloggers who manage to do it all (I am not one of them) so there’s some hope I guess 🙂 xxx
    Lucy @ La Lingua | Life, Travel, Italy

    • Reply
      lily kate
      5th October 2016 at 10:23 pm

      Thank you Lucy! I guess 40 hours maybe is ambitious and I’m just being a total newbie here haha. Plenty people seem to manage so I’m sure I’ll find a way!

  • Reply
    Becky | accooohtrements.wordpress.com
    4th October 2016 at 10:09 am

    I’m so intrigued by the idea of the OU, I’m keen to hear loads more about your experience!

    Becky ⋮ a c c o o o h t r e m e n t s . w o r d p r e s s . c o m

    • Reply
      lily kate
      6th October 2016 at 9:30 am

      It’s an unconventional route for an 18 year old I know, so I’ll be more than happy to share everything! It’s great to know that people are interested in hearing my thoughts 😀

  • Reply
    Gareth
    4th October 2016 at 10:10 am

    Great decision to start studying with the OU. Just started my fourth module and, while it is as you say challenging, I’m sure you’ll love it. Tutors are amazing (truly) and the guidance / explanation for assignments is invaluable. Best of Luck

    • Reply
      lily kate
      6th October 2016 at 9:38 am

      Thanks Gareth! I’ve heard so many great things about the tutors. I had my first online tutorial the other day and felt like the 1-1 support available was far better than it seems to be at traditional unis. Good luck with your coming year!

  • Reply
    Rach
    4th October 2016 at 1:14 pm

    Absolutely love you for making this choice. You gotta do what’s good for you, and I think you’ve made an awesome choice. You lil’ smart cookie, I’m such a proud blogger friend. x

    willow-tea.com

    • Reply
      lily kate
      6th October 2016 at 9:40 am

      Rach you just get me <3 I just know that uni wouldn't have been right for me for so many reasons! Mega proud blogger friend of you too, your gap year plans sound AMAZIN xxx

  • Reply
    My Open University Experience | Observations 6 Weeks In - Joli House
    15th November 2016 at 7:01 am

    […] other words, I said at the beginning of my degree that I’d share all my thoughts/observations/tips/rants (if there are any) about my Open […]

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