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Learning through enquiry in primary schools

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This work-based learning course is relevant to a wide range of primary school professionals who support children’s learning – teaching assistants, cover supervisors, learning mentors, volunteers and additional classroom staff. You will develop your skills as an enquirer and researcher in primary schools, increase your theoretical knowledge and reflect on your workplace practice. 

Register for the course


Start End Fee Register
04 Oct 2014 Jun 2015
£775.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in October 2018.
Start End Fee Register
04 Oct 2014 Jun 2015
£775.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in October 2018.
Start End Fee Register
04 Oct 2014 Jun 2015
£1625.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in October 2018.
Start End Fee Register
04 Oct 2014 Jun 2015
£775.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in October 2018.
Start End Fee Register
04 Oct 2014 Jun 2015
£775.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in October 2018.
Start End Fee Register
04 Oct 2014 Jun 2015
£1465.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in October 2018.
Start End Fee Register
04 Oct 2014 Jun 2015
£2632.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in October 2018.
Start End Fee Register
04 Oct 2014 Jun 2015
£2632.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in October 2018.
Start End Fee Register
04 Oct 2014 Jun 2015
£775.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in October 2018.
Start End Fee Register
04 Oct 2014 Jun 2015
£2632.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

See below for information about part time tuition fee loans available for study towards a qualification.

This course is expected to start for the last time in October 2018.

*Fees may vary by country.

What you will study

This course promotes your learning in the workplace. You will explore topics such as safeguarding, creativity, technology and environments for learning in the primary school. Through a series of mini-research projects, you will develop your knowledge, understanding and practice in supporting children’s learning. You will use a range of enquiry methods that are appropriate to your work, such as observing and interviewing, as you plan and carry out small-scale investigations linked to course topics. You will develop your skills in questioning, information-gathering, evaluation and reflection. You will also consider issues of ethics and inclusion as you examine your professional practice and children’s experiences in primary school.

You will receive a Course Reader covering small-scale research in primary classrooms and the role of classroom support staff in promoting children’s learning. It will provide scope and inspiration for your own enquiries and professional development. You will also receive a booklet of shorter readings linked to study topics. On the website you will access the overall guide to the course, the weekly study planner, the directed practical enquiries, audio and video study materials, and all assignment and assessment resources.  

You will learn

By the end of the course you will have:

  • developed your knowledge and understanding of how primary-age children learn, through small-scale enquiry in a practical, work-based context
  • developed your knowledge and understanding, through small-scale research, of how key principles and theories influence your practice in relation to children’s learning and development
  • developed skills in observing and evaluating children’s learning and in supporting pupils who may experience barriers to learning
  • presented evidence of developments in your professional practice.

Vocational relevance

This course has a specific vocational relevance. It is the compulsory Level 1 work-based module in the Foundation Degree in Primary Teaching and Learning and Diploma of Higher Education in Primary Teaching and Learning, aimed at teaching assistants and learning support staff (including volunteers) working in primary schools throughout the UK. Following successful completion of the Foundation Degree or Diploma of Higher Education you may choose to progress to study at degree level. If you are thinking about training to be an early years or primary teacher, you can choose your optional module to support this goal. For more information on careers in teaching please see our booklet Becoming a Teacher.

Entry

This course is a compulsory module of the Open University Foundation Degree in Primary Teaching and Learning and the Diploma of Higher Education in Primary Teaching and Learning. Before you register for this module, you must have:

  • registered for either of these qualifications.

In order to study and successfully complete E101 you must:

  • have experience of working directly, in a paid or voluntary role, with primary children following the National Curriculum for England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland
  • be working directly with primary children in a suitable setting for a minimum of five hours per week in a paid or voluntary role throughout the module
  • have permission to carry out work-based learning tasks in your work setting (you will need to submit a Permission Agreement Form that has been signed by your employer with your registration application)
  • have a named, suitable person who is willing to offer you informal mentoring and support throughout the module; this person will confirm that the work you submit is based on your practice within the school setting. Your mentor should be an experienced member of staff in the school, e.g. Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO) or other subject coordinator, class teacher, head teacher or deputy head teacher. We will provide guidance for your mentor about the role and expectations and we will also offer, at no cost, an online OU course designed to promote the professional development of workplace supervisors and mentors
  • have regular and frequent access to a PC with access to the internet
  • be competent in using the internet for academic purposes and ditigal office applications (e.g. word processing).

To work in a primary school setting you will need to meet the ‘fit person’ criteria for doing so, including obtaining the necessary criminal record clearance required for the setting and country in which you are working. It is the responsibility of you and your employer to ensure you meet these requirements, and not the OU. You should contact the relevant agency in your country for more information if you are in doubt about your eligibility, or to find out more. For whom to contact in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales see our Criminal Record Clearance document.

If you have any doubt about the suitability of the course, please contact our Student Registration & Enquiry Service.

Outside the UK

This course is available in the United Kingdom and to students working in English-medium primary settings in Europe and British Forces schools.

Preparatory work

You will need to present your Permission Agreement Form with your registration application. 

You should identify your school-based mentor prior to the start of the course. Mentoring is a voluntary role that will involve approximately seven hours of support across the entire course. We will provide a booklet Guidance for school-based mentors. You can download and print our information sheet, Information for schools and mentors for E101 and E207, from our Childhood and Youth Studies website.

Regulations

As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the Module Regulations and the Student Regulations which are available on our Essential documents website.

If you have a disability

Written transcripts of any audio or video components and Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) versions of printed material are available. Some Adobe PDF components may not be available or fully accessible using a screen reader and mathematical, scientific, foreign language or diagrammatic materials may be particularly difficult to read in this way. Other alternative formats of the study materials may be available in the future. Our Services for disabled students website has the latest information about availability.

This course includes a website and the use of tools such as online forums.  If you use specialist software or hardware to assist you in using a personal computer or the internet and have any concerns about accessing this type of material you are advised to talk to the Student Registration & Enquiry Service about support which can be given to meet your needs.

If you have particular study requirements please tell us as soon as possible, as some of our support services may take several weeks to arrange. Visit our Services for disabled students website for more information, including:

  • help to determine your study requirements and how to request the support that you need  
  • Disabled Students' Allowances (DSAs)
  • using a computer for OU study
  • equipment and other support services that we offer
  • examination arrangements
  • how to contact us for advice and support both before you register and while you are studying.

Study materials

What's included

The study materials include a Module Reader and a Module Topic Book, Guidance for school-based mentors, and the website. The website contains the overall guide to the course, the weekly study planner, the Guide to your practical enquiries, audio and video study sequences, online study readings and activities, assignment information and assessment resources.

You will need

You will need access to the internet to use the website and study the course. Discussions with other students through the online forums are a very important form of additional support, so everyone is strongly encouraged to participate.

Computing requirements

You will need a computer with internet access to study this course as it includes online activities, which you can access using a web browser.

  • If you have purchased a new desktop or laptop computer since 2007 you should have no problems completing the online activities.
  • If you’ve got a netbook, tablet or other mobile computing device check our Technical requirements section.
  • If you use an Apple Mac you will need OS X 10.6 or later.

You can also visit the Technical requirements section for further computing information including the details of the support we provide.

Teaching and assessment

Support from your tutor

You will be allocated a tutor who will guide you through the study materials, assess and comment on your assignments, and advise and support you where necessary. Your tutor is particularly concerned with helping you with your study methods and providing feedback on your assignments. You will be expected to communicate with your tutor. Based on student numbers and locations, you may have the opportunity to meet at face-to-face tutorials; where these are provided, you are strongly recommended to attend. Where and when your tutorials are held will depend on the distribution of the students taking the course in your geographic area.

Contact our Student Registration & Enquiry Service if you want to know more about study with The Open University before you register.

Assessment

The assessment details for this course can be found in the facts box above.

You will be expected to submit your tutor-marked assignments (TMAs) and the end-of-module assessment (EMA) online through the eTMA system unless there are some difficulties which prevent you from doing so. In these circumstances, you must negotiate with your tutor to get their agreement to submit your assignment on paper.

Future availability

The details given here are for the course that starts in October 2014. We expect it to be available once a year.

How to register

Unfortunately, we are unable to accept online registrations for this course. Instead, please read the Entry section of this course description and contact our Student Registration & Enquiry Service.

Student Reviews

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Distance learning

The Open University is the world’s leading provider of flexible, high quality distance learning. Unlike other universities we are not campus based. You will study in a flexible way that works for you whether you’re at home, at work or on the move. As an OU student you’ll be supported throughout your studies – your tutor or study adviser will guide and advise you, offer detailed feedback on your assignments, and help with any study issues. Tuition might be in face-to-face groups, via online tutorials, or by phone.

For more information read Distance learning explained.

Are you already an OU student ? Go to StudentHome for information on choosing your next module.
Course facts
About this course:
Course code E101
Credits 60
OU Level 1
SCQF level 7
FHEQ level 4
Course work includes:
4 Tutor-marked assignments (TMAs)
End-of-module assessment
No residential school

Course satisfaction survey

See the satisfaction survey results for this course.

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