5 things to do before your module start date

So you've decided to study with The Open University. You've applied, been accepted and have your start date. But what do you do next?

Applying to study with The Open University can be a daunting and exciting thing to do. Then, getting the confirmation that you've made it on your course is amazing and a relief. So when you get your start date you might think, that's great nothing to do until it starts.

But you might benefit from some forward thinking and prep work before your studies start. Now you don't have to do this and everyone works in different ways, but I started my first OU course in September last year and I thought I'd share with you some of the things I did (and some of the things I wish I did) before my module started.

  1. 1 Explore your StudentHome page (and module website when it opens)

    One of the first places you get sent to when you receive your confirmation is your StudentHome page. This page helps you to navigate everything you'll need during your course. Familiarising yourself with the site before you start will help you to find what you need when time is more precise (you don't want to miss a deadline because you can't find where to submit your work).

  2. 2 Say "hello" on your tutor forum

    Some of the most important connections you'll make on your OU journey will be with your tutor and other OU students. So introducing yourself at the beginning of your journey is a great opportunity to get to know your tutor and your student cohort. These are the people who will help you throughout your course so make sure you say hello at the beginning!

  3. 3 Make a note of your deadlines

    This is the first of two organisation tips but I would definitely make a note of any TMA, EMA or exam deadlines at the start of your study. This is so you know exactly when your work is due and you won't be caisght off guard by a hidden deadline.

  4. 4 Make a study plan

    And here is organisation tip number two (the one I didn't do from the start): make a study plan for each assignment. There's nothing worse than running out of tim enear a deadline because you didn't realise how much work you had to do. 

    It's best to start getting your work ready so at least you know what is coming up and even if you get behind (which trust me a lot of students do) at least you'll know by how much so you can chat to your tutor about it. (Pictured above: an artistic representation of myself on the night of a TMA deadline)

  5. 5 Make a note to yourself of why you are studying

    It's always a good motivation to remember why you are doing this in the first place. Studying is hard work, and studying with the OU can be tricky as you're juggling all your other responsibilities. So if you're struggling with a deadline, or worrying about an exam, you can remember your motivation and why your doing this. OU students are a special type of person so always remember that you can do this!

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Jodie Denton


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