By David Wells

David’s still on track to start his Masters but may have to rethink his plans

It’s been a while but I thought I’d check in with another Masters update article. When I last wrote a blog post I was weighing up my options as to what module I would choose to start as part of the Open University Masters course F10: MA in Online and Distance Education. My initial choice was to start in September/October when the next set comes round. We are now sitting in September and no I’m not procrastinating this time but I have yet to sign up.

The reason for this is that after careful deliberation I’ve decided to take a slightly different route and put my MA studies on hold until February 2017. But this doesn’t mean that I won’t be studying, just not with the OU for the next few months.

Exploring all of my course options

After looking at the options for an Autumn start I have to say I was a little underwhelmed. Like I noted in my previous post there are three lists of module choices which need to be combined within the parameters of the OU study structure to reach the 180 point target (see images below).




This severely limited my immediate choices because very few were starting in the Autumn when I had originally planned to start. In fact the core, compulsory module Technology-enhanced learning: practices and debates (H800) only starts in February (the final time in this current incarnation as it happens) and only one of the options from List A starts in October. This was the ‘Networked Practitioner’ which is in fact only a 30 point course which immediately put me off as it is not a huge amount less in price than the 60 point options. So if I’m going to pay out this type of money -in and around the £1,500 region- then why save only £300 but split the points total in half? It doesn’t make financial sense because it will of course then take longer to complete the entire MA if I’m including 30 point courses.

I got in touch with the OU help desk to check and see if I am able to study the modules “out of order” and they said I am which then opened up modules from List B – the Optional modules. This would mean a potential September/October/November start after all but I was not completely blown away by any of these options and decided that studying a module from the third list as opposed to starting with the compulsory module might leave me confused and taking on too much, too soon.

Would i really want to pay out all of that money for a module I’m only taking because the dates make sense?

So what exactly am I going to do?

I’m so glad you asked! I’m going to wait until Feb 2017 and take the core, compulsory module which you can see on the above list.

And in the meantime….

As my overall goal is to become an online tutor and achieve some location independence I have decided to take this course online through Sheffield College. The LeTTOL course starts very soon providing they can get enough student numbers together for the late September start date. I’m still waiting to hear back from them for confirmation so hopefully soon I’ll get confirmation of this course starting and I can pay my fees and get going. I’m sitting poised to begin my new adventure.

If the course does not go ahead as planned then I’m just going to have to sit on my hands until next year. This is is not ideal but I have my plan and I’m sticking to it so that’s just the way it has to be.

HOW do you feel about my decisions? What would you do differently? Please LIKE/SHARE/TWEET or leave a comment below, we would love to hear from you. This social currency helps us to grow and improve the value we are able to provide for OU students.

Open University Companion Study Guide

Open University Companion Study Guide