Teaching on the telly is still key as OU marks milestone

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THE OPEN University celebrated 40 years on the BBC this week.

Since the first broadcast, more than 7,000 television and 4,000 radio programmes have been produced as part of the Open University and BBC partnership, with more than 300 million viewers tuning in 2009/2010 alone.

Nowadays, OU academics are usually found behind the scenes providing expert advice and guidance on the topics being featured, with household names such as Richard Wilson, James May, Kate Humble, Neil Oliver, Theo Paphitis and Evan Davis in front of the camera or microphone.

Dr Sally Crompton, head of the OU’s open broadcasting unit, said: “The university’s partnership with the BBC provides a unique way to combine academic expertise and high quality production.

“TV, Radio and online content brings education to millions of people and, while it has evolved from late night programmes to mainstream television, it is still central to what the OU does, making learning accessible.

“Through our partnership with the BBC, we stimulate people’s curiosity, open up access to new learning opportunities, transfer knowledge across a wide range of areas and we look forward to working together in the future.”