How well do you know The Open University?

Let's get down to quizness.


It’s quiz time! Put your OU knowledge to the test in this quiz celebrating 50 years since its founding. From famous alumni, to important moments in its 50 year long history, can you get all 10 questions correct?

  1. 1 When was The Open University founded?

    1. 1967
    2. 1968
    3. 1969
    4. 1970
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    Bit of an easy one to start you off - we are celebrating its 50th Anniversary after all! Fun fact: after its founding in 1969, the OU took its first 24,000 students in 1971.

  2. 2 Where is the central campus for The Open University based?

    1. Milton Keynes
    2. London
    3. Basingstoke
    4. Nottingham
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    The Open University has its headquarters at Walton Hall in Milton Keynes, which is roughly 80km north of Central London.

  3. 3 Who is the current Chancellor of The Open University?

    1. Professor Mary Kellett
    2. Baroness Martha Lane Fox
    3. Malcolm Sweeting
    4. Professor Josie Fraser
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    Getting tricky now! Martha Lane Fox, Baroness Lane-Fox of Soho, was installed as the sixth Chancellor of The Open University at the Milton Keynes degree ceremony on 10th September 2014, succeeding Lord Puttnam who stepped down after seven years in the role.

    Fun fact: all the other options are linked to the Open University, too! Professor Mary Kellett became Vice-Chancellor in 2018, and Professor Josie Fraser was appointed acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor in 2019. Malcolm Sweeting is the OU's current Pro Chancellor, whose role is to Chair the OU's Council.

  4. 4 Which of these former Prime Ministers has previously tutored for The Open University?

    1. Harold Wilson
    2. James Callaghan
    3. John Major
    4. Gordon Brown
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    Britain's former Labour Prime Minister took up office in 2007, but did you know he was also a part-time tutor at The Open University? Now you do! It was his first 'real' job before he took up politics.

    You may also be familiar with one of the options here: Harold Wilson. He was actually one of the key founding members of The Open University!

  5. 5 The Open University is the largest provider for graduates in the UK for which subject?

    1. Law
    2. English Literature
    3. History
    4. Psychology
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    It all began with 861 students studying the first law module 'W200 Understanding Law' in 1998, but now the OU is proudly the largest provider of Law graduates in the United Kingdom.

  6. 6 How many times has The Open University won the University Challenge?

    1. Once
    2. Twice
    3. Three times
    4. Four times
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    The Open University is one of few universities to have won the University Challenge twice - once in 1985, and the other in 1999. They were also the runners-up in 1997! As of 2019, the OU currently sits in the joint third highest position in the University Challenge all-time rankings.

  7. 7 Which of these famous comedians have graduated from The Open University?

    1. Sir Lenny Henry
    2. Peter Kay
    3. Jo Brand
    4. Josie Long
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    Famous British stand-up comedian, actor, singer, writer and television presenter Sir Lenny Henry graduated from the Open University in 2017 with a degree in English Literature (BA Hons).

  8. 8 Which of these London 2012 Olympic Gold medallists is also a current OU student?

    1. Jason Kenny
    2. Peter Wilson
    3. Heather Stanning
    4. Etienne Stott
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    He's an Olympic Gold medalist winner in the Men's canoe slalom C-2 event, an appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE), and a student at the Open University currently studying Psychology - Etienne Stott is truly remarkable!

    Fun fact: At the 2012 London Summer Olympics, Etienne Stott and partner Tim Baillie managed to win the coveted gold medal by going completely undefeated (after running first, no less!) despite only just taking the last qualifying spot in the semi-final.

  9. 9 Which year was the FIRST Open University TV broadcast aired?

    1. 1971
    2. 1972
    3. 1973
    4. 1974
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    The Open University's TV broadcasts are an important aspect of its 50 year history, and the very first broadcast was aired on January 3rd 1971, live on BBC 2 at 11am! 

  10. 10 Which year was the LAST Open University TV broadcast aired?

    1. 2005
    2. 2006
    3. 2007
    4. 2008
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    Fast-forward almost 36 years to December 16, 2006 at 05:30am when the last Open University course-related TV programme would be broadcast. Definitely the end of an era!

How well do you know The Open University?

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    OU Quizard

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    (Get it? Quizard? Wizard? I'm proud of that one.)

    Wow! With your thorough knowledge, I reckon you could teach your own module all about The Open University. 

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    So close! I reckon if you did the quiz again you'd definitely get them all right.

    (Or maybe just remember which boxes highlighted green after you clicked them).

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    Not bad at all! Although you'll need to study up a bit more if you want to earn those imaginary higher ranks. Just think - why settle for bronze, when you could get silver or even gold?

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    You scored

    Tough luck! But you know, I don't think it's a bad thing that you didn't get many questions right. If anything, it just means you're using your time more productively than learning random facts about The Open University. Unlike me, that is, who has learnt more about the OU while putting together this quiz than any normal human should...

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Sam Kenealy

Sam is a member of the Students Association staff team.

2 Comments

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    1. It does happen Mellissa, the Faculty of Business and Law held an event at the end of July. 140 students invited to campus, many for the first time and of course tours were included. Keep an eye out for future events and make sure you apply for the OU Students Association conference next year which will be fantastic.