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06 Nov 2012

The Open University announces ‘mobile degree app’ OUAnywhere

OUAnywhere

OUAnywhere

The Open University announces ‘mobile degree app’ OUAnywhere

The Open University (OU) is announcing OUAnywhere, a new initiative that will allow students to access and download main texts and audio visual materials for all its undergraduate degrees through device specific apps from their smartphones and tablets.

Due for release in Q1 2013, OUAnywhere puts all a student needs to study their degree in their hands. Undergraduates will be able to access all Level 1 and 2 (30 and 60 points) main course materials through their handheld devices. In addition, students will be able to access a diverse range of the OU’s audio and visual content to support their studies.

The app was created in response to a rising number of students who are using tablets and smartphones as part of their approach to studying.

OUAnywhere will be available across a plethora of platforms, including:

• Android devices
• iPads (iPad 1 and above)
• iPhones (iPhone 3GS and above)
• Kindle Fire
• Microsoft Surface

OUAnywhere represents the natural evolution of open education. Retaining the accessibility of online courses, OUAnywhere also allows OU students to attain a formally recognised qualification through their studies whilst delivering the trademark flexibility, support, and innovation upon which The Open University was built.

“OUAnywhere will allow students to hold the University in their hands,” said the OU’s Learning and Teaching Solutions Director Anne Howells, who is heading up the programme. “More and more students are using tablets and smartphone technology, and higher education needs to keep up to fulfil their evolving demands. Through OUAnywhere, the University is delivering innovation that meets those needs, and puts the OU ahead of the HE pack.”

The apps are currently in development, but more updates on its progress and the impending launch will be released in the coming months.

ENDS

About The Open University
The Open University (OU) is the largest academic institution in the UK and a world leader in flexible distance learning. Since it began in 1969, the OU has taught more than 1.8 million students and has more than 250,000 current students, including over 15,000 overseas.

The OU came top for student satisfaction in the National Student Survey this year, and has been in the top three universities every year since the survey began in 2005. In 2011/12 it had a 93 per cent satisfaction rating. Over 70% of students are in full-time or part-time employment, and four out of five FTSE 100 companies have sponsored staff to take OU courses.

In the UK’s latest Research Assessment Exercise (RAE 2008) the Open University was ranked in the top third of UK higher education institutions. More than 50% of OU research was assessed in the RAE as internationally excellent, with 14% as world leading.

Regarded as Britain’s major e-learning institution, the OU is a world leader in developing technology to increase access to education on a global scale. Its vast ‘open content portfolio’ includes free study units on OpenLearn, which has had more than 23 million visits, and materials on iTunes U, which has recorded over 56 million downloads. The OU has a 41 year partnership with the BBC which has moved from late-night lectures in the 1970s to prime-time programmes such as Frozen Planet, Bang Goes the Theory, James May’s Big Ideas and The Money Programme.

About Learning and Teaching Solutions (LTS)
Learning and Teaching Solutions is the University’s own media production unit. It is responsible for all aspects of module production from design to delivery.


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