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Discovering mathematics

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  • Points: 30
  • Code: MU123
  • Level: 1
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Student reviews

I loved this module. I did it alongside another and this one was a de-stresser. It guided you in slowly and didn't presume your maths level. Had good explanations and fab tutors.

Course starting: October 2018

Review posted: August 2019

I found the above module very interesting as I am already working in a secondary environment and I made use of the resources in my lesson. I used the similar shapes with my colleagues and across the department.

Course starting: February 2018

Review posted: July 2019

I did this module as I was thinking of becoming a teacher. I also wanted to help my child with homework.
The books were great used in conjunction with the online tasks.
The tutor was very supportive and I found the online and classroom tutorials in Glasgow very beneficial in understanding what was required from the tutorials.
I would recommend the module to anyone who wants to improve their maths skills and communication and understand how maths applies to real life situations to solve problems.

Course starting: October 2017

Review posted: March 2019

This has to be one of my favourite modules so far with the Open University. MU123 starts from a very basic level of maths and slowly builds you up - week by week. The books are great! lots of examples and explanations throughout and practice questions.

I was nervous about taking this module at first, but I do not regret taking this. I'm looking forward to applying my new mathematics skills in my economics modules!

My tutor was amazing throughout the journey, if I didn't understand a topic he would always make the time to explain. Very attentive with emails also. My tutor made this a very enjoyable experience for me. The feedback on my assignments was always very detailed and helped me to understand where I had lost marks.

I would highly recommend this course to anyone who is interested in maths.

Course starting: October 2017

Review posted: September 2018

Having taken A-Level Maths in 1998 and failing abysmally, I was not sure what to expect from this course. I was in for a pleasant surprise. It eased me back into the mathematical way of thinking, provided lots of exercises to reinforce ideas and made the whole process enjoyable. There was lots of tutor support on offer, however I was able to keep ahead of the workload and did not use it, still it was a comfort to know it was there if I needed it. I would say the level of Maths started on par with GCSE's and moved up to A-Level standard, but it was easy to keep up as one idea progressed to another. I feel well prepared to start MST124 in a few months time.

Course starting: October 2017

Review posted: August 2018

MU123 is the ideal introduction to mathematics for those looking to improve their knowledge of the subject, pursue further education in a mathematical subject, or simply review the fundamentals.

As someone who had revised their mathematical knowledge extensively before starting a degree, I expected MU123 to be very dull. To my surprise, MU123 managed to fill a number of important gaps in my knowledge and kept me intrigued by consistently providing examples of how the techniques are applied to real-world problems.

Mathematics has a reputation in schools across the United Kingdom for being dull, confusing, and repetitive. The authors of MU123 have done a fantastic job of explaining the techniques you are using and why they are important, such that no exercise feels pointless. The module wants to spark a passion for mathematics, and I strongly believe it will succeed for most students.

Jacob McCann

Course starting: October 2017

Review posted: August 2018

Overall this was a thorough course and an excellent introduction to mathematics. If you want a refresh or did not feel you did as well as you should have at school (like me) then this is the course for you. One important point is that this course is nothing like studying at school, especially when I did my GCSEs, it is so much more systematic and well structured, also you now have a huge source for mathematics help from the OU and websites.

If you are hoping to do mathematics further then this course really is essential as MST124 is quite a jump. However, as I started to look at the exam on MST124 I could see questions making a lot more sense thanks to the grounding given by MU123. One piece of advice if you are going onto further mathematics then I would recommend aiming high with MU123 and getting the most out of it.

One welcome change is the fact that you now have the opportunity to get a distinction which I really think motivates people to try that little bit harder, it certainly worked with me.

The support was excellent and the tutor normally gets back to you within a few days or even on the same day.

Overall an excellent experience.

David Shaw

Course starting: October 2017

Review posted: August 2018

Brilliant course, detailed coursebook, fantastic tutor. If you want to get into maths this is the ideal first step in preparation.

Rahima Khatun

Course starting: January 2017

Review posted: July 2018

I really enjoyed this module, the maths were very clearly explained, except for logarithms (which I have had a mental block on since school!).

I found it a good module and has helped with some of my future study.

Martin Bradford Budds

Course starting: October 2015

Review posted: March 2017

This is quite an interesting module! And I tell you why. Mathematics was never my thing, but the material and support were so good that it made, for me, maths learning enjoyable. I had a really kind tutor who motivated me a lot. The content was very good explained. There were a few tedious themes for me, but once you understand them, you find out that they are as indispensable as any other. For the first time I can say I enjoyed learning mathematics.

For those who think they might fail in maths like I did, this module will give more self confidence. At least, this is how it worked for me.

Murilo de Melo Reis

Course starting: October 2015

Review posted: November 2016

Great module. Really enjoyed it. Materials were very well presented and gave clear advice on how to tackle certain mathematical questions. Would definitely recommend this module to anyone who wants a more gentle start to mathematics.

Course starting: October 2014

Review posted: September 2015

This was such an enjoyable course! I only did it as a filler for my free choice modules and I regret now not doing a maths degree (and I previously hated math).

I did get an A at GCSE but that was 15 years ago and I still found this course very manageable.

My tutor was brilliantly helpful and the TMAs are well spread.

Best module of the OU so far!

Course starting: February 2014

Review posted: June 2015

I found this course a good introduction to many mathematical concepts I had not met for quite some time. Really enjoyed this module!

Course starting: October 2013

Review posted: May 2015

I took MU123 as a standalone course to decide if the OU and distance learning were for me. Three months later, I transferred to a BSc (Honours) Computing and IT degree. Best decision I've ever made.

I hadn't studied in 20+ years having previously learned all science subjects in a different country and language. My skills and knowledge were a mix of MU123 and MST124 subjects. Though I love science and was once decent at it, I took a humble approach to give myself a chance to adapt to a new system.

MU123 is a well-designed course with engaging activities anchored in real life. It provides a sound foundation from ABC's to trigonometry, algebra, and even statistics - my two favorite units. There's always something to look forward to.

The material isn't overly difficult, yet students who skim read early on suffered later when a new layer of complexity foreshadowed MST124. Assignments are thorough and planning them wins the day. Perfect course for someone who "doesn't like maths", or needs to increase their confidence. My tutor was excellent and I couldn't have had a better start with the OU. Though I would have survived MST124, MU123 patched all knowledge gaps I had.

Sophie Landry

Course starting: February 2014

Review posted: January 2015

An excellent course. I would recommend this for anyone planning to do a maths related degree. Reasons for my recommendation are that this is an excellent refresher (with associated proofs and historical context) for everything I had learned at O and A level. The structure and flow of ideas is superb. The focus on clear communication is vital, and incredibly helpful in later modules.

It also acts as a great practice for learning how to study and pace maths courses (very different approach from my social science course). Ultimately maths is a skill that benefits from repeated practice tackling problems.

The online practice quizes and regularly interspersed activities are well timed to offset the reading / understanding with skill practice and demonstration. Something I find very effective, as I feel I learn by doing, rather than reading.

I had been nervous after a 23 year gap since A level pure and applied. I feel this was time well spent, even if 80% was essentially well presented revision of 1980s chalk, talk and distractions with a group of teenagers.

Stuart Keith Wilson

Course starting: February 2014

Review posted: December 2014

Please note

Each of the views expressed above is an individual's very particular response, largely unedited, and should be viewed with that in mind. Since modules are subject to regular updating, some of the issues identified may have already been addressed. In some instances the faculty may have provided a response to a comment. If you have a query about a particular module, please contact your Regional Centre.

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