By David Wells

Connecting with fellow OU students and following bloggers within the community was a vital part of getting my degree

Growing my Knowing

The always awesome Leanne is a regular contributor to STOU and she also blogs over on her own site, formerly History, Serendipity and Me since retitled as Growing my Knowing. We met up with Leanne and her husband Steve during a tour of the Milton Keynes campus last August.

“When I tried my hand at studying with The Open University serendipity threw a twist my way and flipped my academia upside down. I learned so much from the module materials but even more about myself and the wider world. I now find myself studying for a history degree which is a little odd as most of my life was spent with a strong dislike of anything history related!”

Follow Leanne for a bundle of OU posts, family adventure and discovery blogging and a whole load more. Oh and I don’t know what theme she uses but her website looks great too.

Wife, Mum, Student, Bum

Kerrie or “Mardy Kerrie” as she calls herself is a 33-year-old wife, mum (three children) and most definitely not a bum of any description! You can find out more about her and follow her journey over at the blog. Certainly not a one-trick pony she also does reviews of products and days out as well as an extensive range of posts chronicling her Open University journey. She also boasts a hefty social media presence.

A Polyglot Mum

Leila describes herself a “Mother, Language Learner, Foodie, Coffee Drinker”! We wrote a guest blog post for her back in (see here) and the recipes on the site are worth the free admission price alone.  She’s also studied French and Spanish through the OU and provides many helpful hints and tips for fellow learners to devour.

Jog on mum

How could you not love a blog that runs the tagline: “The Musings and Meanderings of a Marvellously Mad Mummy”?! That alliteration already has a thumbs up from us. Geraldine describes her blog as a little space on the web and unpaid therapist.

“I am mum to two small people (a pink one and a blue one) and I have one very wonderful supportive hubby! I post about anything that comes into my mind and won’t go away – so please enjoy your stay in my eclectic and crazy world!”

Geraldine also featured on the Student Life snippets podcast and treated us to a vocal rendition of “Help” by the Beatles.

The Dog Wood Tales

A quick search of Neil Hopkins’ blog reveals plenty of OU-related posts. In April 2009 he wrote, “After looking at the prospectus and going to see an advisor at an open day this week, I’m going to sign up for an Open University degree which will add up to six years of part time study. It looks like it’s going to be a lot of work, but I really need to do something in the evenings other than falling asleep in front of the telly. Bring it on!”

Neil also enjoys a very healthy Google Plus presence with a whopping 180,000 plus views of his page.

Michelle Inman

Formerly known as Sugar and Starlight, Michelle Inman has recently re-branded and moved across to her self-titled blog as she continues to grow her own digital brand. By day, Michelle works as a digital agency director, freelance writer, virtual assistant and social media executive that’s all). By night, she blogs and studies a postgraduate science degree with The Open University.

Fun fact: she also has a great fondness for guinea pigs.

The Intermittent Student

Excellent resource of posts covering an OU student’s journey through TMAs, EMAs and the like.

“So why have I gone back to studying again…. well, my fiancee or wife, depending on when you read this, signed up for an Open University course, so I thought that as I had not studied for some time it was probably as good a time as any to start again. Also with both of us studying, hopefully it would be easier to motivate each other to study. So without a huge amount of planning or thought, I seem to have signed up (and paid) for the first module on the path to BA (Honours) Politics, Philosophy and Economics. This blog will follow my studies.”

And follow them it does. Great stuff.

And a few more for you to bookmark

The Study Notebook

We interviewed Becky earlier this year and she’s still working away on her fantastic business selling beautifully-designed notebooks for students.

Special mention for James Newton

Blogging with authority over at, the site is now down and James Newton has fallen off the radar recently. We featured on him on STOU last year and wish him well with whatever he is doing currently.

Classy Genes

Genes blog creator Karen O’Rawe is a “Lover of the arts, history & shiny things. Chair History Hub Ulster. Project Manager at Castleton Lanterns WW1 Project. Marketing Manager Belfast International Arts Festival. Geek. Views my own.”

Secret World of an Unknown Housewife

“I am Sarah …Secret Housewife …Lifestyle blogger, BiBs Finalist 2013, lover of wine & lip gloss. But not necessarily at the same time.”

Young OU Students

The Open University is home to thousands of students and an increasing number of young students.

OU Students Blog

Voice of the OU Students’ Association

Geek is Chic

OU student working towards Environmental Science Degree. I love arts, crafts travel and cats.

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The Open University study guide is now available! Click on this image to find out more.

The Open University study guide is now available! Click on this image to find out more.