View Full Version : Good distance learning colleges in the uk?


midnightstar
10-27-14, 05:03 PM
Does anyone know of any good distance learning colleges in the UK? I was looking at Stonebridge and Open Study College but Stonebridge have a bad reputation according to other forums and apparently Open Study College don't do proper qualifications. I'm looking for a college that actually offers accredited courses and won't mess me around.

namazu
10-27-14, 05:27 PM
I don't know any specifics in the UK, but at least in the US, more and more "brick and mortar" colleges are also offering for-credit courses (and even certificate and degree programs) online.

I don't know if "Open Study College" is different from "Open University", but Open University (http://www.open.ac.uk/courses)appears to offer proper degrees (grants BSc (Hons) in psychology, for example, as well as other degrees and certificates and vocational credentials (http://www.open.ac.uk/choose/vocational-qualifications/)) and it is accredited.

You might also check out the websites of colleges / unis that aren't exclusively online to see if they have online-only options that grant academic credit and may lead to whatever qualifications you're seeking.

Depending on your needs / interests, the online degree programs at universities outside of the UK may also be an option.

Just be sure to verify that any program you choose is properly accredited (usually the accreditation is for the school as a whole, but certain fields may also have specific accreditation requirements in addition to the overall school accreditation) and has a good reputation, as it sound like you're doing. Be sure it offers the courses and support and formats you're interested in. It's generally best to stick with the not-for-profit universities / colleges.

What field(s) of study or professional training are you looking for? that might help narrow down the options.

midnightstar
10-27-14, 06:42 PM
I'm hoping to do level 3 animal care but idk yet

Flory
10-27-14, 07:34 PM
animal care is something that would be difficult to do as distance learning as there is a big practical element to it, also its sometimes difficult to get the necessary tutor support and lectures that youd get with going to a college full time. also what becomes difficult is with examinations, you have to find a college that will allow you to sit the exams there and when ive enquired about distance learning before some colleges are massively reluctanct to allow distance learners and non students to sit exams at their institutions as it effectively will be incorporated into their overall results as a college for students etc.

your best bet is to get to your nearest college and discuss your options. i know how frustrating it is :(, be careful with distance colleges too and making sure they are legit, some will offer a course but the certification is not necessarily recognised in the field of work you want to go in to. i.e its not a BTEC or city and guilds or NVQ

i'd say best bet is to get down to a bricks and mortar place first and foremost, they often have careers advisors down there that you can talk to about this tyoe of thing too and they can lead you down the correct path as regards to courses for your particular career path.

also to our american friends on here. we use the word college to mean community college as opposed to university :)

namazu
10-28-14, 12:36 AM
also to our american friends on here. we use the word college to mean community college as opposed to university :)
Thanks for the clarification!

In the U.S., some people attend community college for 2 years (or more...) and then transfer to a university to complete their degrees. But community colleges often offer programs that aren't available at 4-year schools, including a lot of vocational training.

I wasn't sure what level of study midnightstar was interested in, anyway, so either way, it works. :)



I'm hoping to do level 3 animal care but idk yet
Have you completed other qualifications yet, or would you just be starting out? From what I read, it looked like Level 3 was usually practicum-focused, rather than coursework-focused. As Flory said, that may be difficult to do online.

But if you need to do the coursework for the Level 2 certification first in order to progress to the Level 3 qualification, then there may be programs online. Here's one. (http://www.caw.ac.uk/courses/animal-care/level-2-diploma-in-work-based-animal-care/), though I know nothing about its reputation or whether City & Guilds is the right kind of certification...

It sounds like you do the coursework online and the practicum / hands-on work is done through a job or internship wherever you live.

Flory's suggestion to talk to a counselor at a brick-and-mortar uni near you sounds like good advice.

midnightstar
11-01-14, 03:09 PM
I've already got a level 2 animal care qualification, the problem is I can't commit to a full time course because I've got to have money coming in in order to pay all the bills etc so full time at college just isn't possible and part time would be difficult.