A scheme to bring free Level 1 Functional Skills courses to tens of thousands of people via online learning has been launched by the OU in partnership with Further Education (FE) Colleges in England. It will help people develop basic skills in English and Maths by studying on the OpenLearn platform, and they can then get a qualification via a local college partner.
Tablet screen with OpenLearnThe pilot project, funded by the Department for Education’s Flexible Learning Fund, involves three colleges – Bedford College Group, Middlesbrough College and West Herts College – who have worked with the OU to develop the online courses. This is the first time that the OU has collaborated closely with FE colleges to support learners at this level.
People can access course materials on OpenLearn at their leisure and study at a pace and time that suits them. Each college will support learners in their area and facilitate exams so that people can go on to get their Functional Skills qualification if they wish – all for free.