Friday, 22 November 2013


Earlier this week, I sent an email to the OU, explaining how I really wanted to give up my course. 

A couple of years ago, the OU put up its prices, along with every other university in England. The price of a 60 credit module went up from about £700 to £2500. Those of us who had already started our studies were put on what they're calling 'transitional fees', meaning that we pay the old fees until we finish our degrees or until 2017, whichever is sooner. This is on the condition that we study at least one module a year. (My grand plan of studying until I die and piling up the degrees is sadly no longer feasible.)

My worry at ducking out of my course was that I'd have several months without studying and may lose my transitional funding, in which case my time with the OU would have to come to an end. My email got an automated reply, telling me that I'd hear back within two days 'unless it was a complicated issue'. Three days later and fed up with spending more time awake than asleep at night, I phoned student support. Thankfully, I had a very patient person on the other end of the phone ('I'm here till 5.30, so take your time,' she told me, which made me laugh). Anyway, I'm now off the course, haven't lost my transitional funding, and will hopefully get a bit of a refund. Mission accomplished. 

So I'm going to get the book list for 20th Century Literature and read through it at my leisure. I have to finish Anne of Green Gables first, though. I've been comfort reading. Other people comfort eat, I head for well-thumbed books rather than biscuits. Anne has just broken her slate over Gilbert Blythe's head, so I'll let her finish before I begin Chekhov. 

I can also give proper attention to this weekend, knowing I've no longer got an impossible assignment hanging over me. We're driving to Manchester tomorrow, as Son Number One would like to study military history there. History has interested him for years, thanks to an enthusiastic supply teacher he had when he was about eight. 'A' levels narrowed the interest down to military history, and he found that Manchester uni does a course that includes peacekeeping and terrorism (the study of terrorism, I should say). So, just when I feel like a lie-in, we have to be up at 6.30 tomorrow morning, ready to drive for four hours, attend a presentation, and drive home again. 

Happy days...

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