I will explain my story and hopefully answer some questions you might have about studying yourself!
(Revising with my boy!)
In 2008 I started a degree course in Children’s Nursing, due to 1000 reasons… Looking back now my undiagnosed chronic illness probably played a large part… I ended up with a Diploma in Children’s Nursing I never used rather than the Degree I went in for.
Two years ago my husband was completing a degree in Sports and Fitness with the Open University and I decided it was something I wanted to do!
Luckily if you don’t have a degree you get student finance that you pay back in your wages, so although I had studied for 3 years and had a diploma I was still able to utilise Student Finance.
I had 240 credits for my Diploma and needed a further 120 for a degree. Courses can either be 30 or 60 credits. Rather than spend 4 years doing 30 credit courses I decided to push myself and do two years of 60 credit courses while working full time!
The first year didn’t go amazingly, I hadn’t studied for years and was getting back into the swing of things. Unfortunately because of this my overall mark has gone down, but you need to start somewhere!
This September I chose my second 60 credit course ‘introduction to mental health’… Although I will overall have an open degree as the courses I chose aren’t specific topics to children’s nursing I still chose health related topics so my degree made sense and mental health is an interesting topic I think everyone should take some time to learn about!
In the May I fell pregnant after completing 2/5 of my assignments.
I had to do one assignment while pregnant with hypermesis… I was in and out of doctors/hospital/bed with constant sickness and worn out but managed to do my assignment and as it was such an interesting topic I managed to get an okay result!
The next assignment I had to do when my baby was one week old… Oh my goodness I was so tired but once again being an interesting topic and with the help of my family I pushed through and completed the essay getting my best mark so far!
One point I would give- if you choose a topic you are interested in EVERYTHING is easier! Weekly work, coursework and exam prep!
The final hurdle was an exam that took up 50 percent of my overall course mark… I took this exam at home with an invigilator as I was EBF and baby needed me twice for feeding through the 3 hour exam!
This is good to know for those with family ties… If you have a baby that you need to feed or cannot leave the home they will come to you!
I have my results back on 16th July and can book my graduation from 22nd July! It has been 10 years in the making!
Now I know I did an essay with a one week old BUT you are allowed extensions… And you get your essays at the start so you could technically do them all at once or extend the submission day!
I recommend Open University to anyone. It is so much harder than regular University as I had a job and then a newborn but it is worthwhile to improve yourself!