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From informal to formal learning

Cloud created by:

Kylie Matthews
5 February 2015

 Date: 24th February 2015

Time: 10:00 – 12:20

Location: Library Seminar Rooms 1 & 2



  • 10.00 – 10.40  Exploring the motivations of the general public as they consciously and unconsciously consume free Open University courses and resources - Patrina Law,  Liz Toone and Simon Budgen, (Open Media Unit)

The Open Media Unit has been evaluating the public response to putting free educational resources on public websites. This briefing outlines some of the expected and unexpected findings revealed by surveys and public comments.

DiscOU- Explore the OU's existing archive for resources and ideas 

  • 10.40 – 11.20    The Virtual Microscope in informal and formal settings -  Simon Kelley (Faculty of Science)

 The virtual microscope site has been used in OU courses since 2010. The external site has been live for two years, and is in use by several other universities. Students appear to accept and value it, and we are currently developing new collections for other partners. So it can be used successfully in formal settings, but what about informal learning ? We also have experience of using the virtual microscope in the OpenScience Lab, a FutureLearn MOOC, and an nQuire activity, where the challenges are greater because we face a requirement for some level of knowledge before the microscope becomes something more than pretty pictures.

  •  11.20 – 11.35      Break 
  • 11.35  -  12.05  Effective Use of Technology: Mobile language learning across informal and formal settings - Valerie Demouy, (FELS)

As the use of mobile devices is becoming more widespread in distance learning, we still have relatively little information on how students use them in conjunction with their studies at the Open University. This presentation reports on the results of a survey ran over 8 of our language modules and interviews with some participants. The primary aims of the project is to find out how mobile devices feature in language learning habits and to explore students’ motivations and behaviours regarding the use of mobile devices to learn the language they are currently studying. 

  •  12.05 – 12.20 Discussion and finish


This event has been recorded, and is available to OU staff on Stadium


If you have any queries or wish to suggest a future event, please email

Details of future eLC events will be made available nearer each session and can also be found along with details of previous events, slides, notes and/or recordings on Cloudworks.


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