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This unit explains the general principles of signal transduction and specifically, how even the simplest organisms can detect and respond to events in their ever-changing environment. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and linked PDF are not supported by all ePub readers.
 
In our everyday lives we use we use language to develop ideas and to communicate them to other people. In this unit we examine ways in which language is adapted to express mathematical ideas. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and linked PDF are not supported by all ePub readers.
 
How can you analyse children and their development? This unit allows the learner to analyse how children's cognitive shills develop over time. You will also learn about how various different investigative methods have developed over time and how different techniques can produce different results. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some f ...
 
Pictures speak louder than words. But how can you use diagrams to help you? This unit looks at how diagrams can be used to represent information and ideas about complex situations. You will learn how to read, draw and present diagrams to help illustrate how ideas or processes are connected. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature ...
 
Tables and charts are a great way to present numerical information in a clear and concise form. This unit explains how to use the Windows calculator to carry out basic operations and calculate percentages. You will then learn how to use charts and tables to represent and interpret information. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feat ...
 
How do children fit in to our society? This unit will help you to understand the issues surrounding children's rights as well as examining the implications of seeing children as citizens. You will also explore the meaning of childhood and analyse children's needs. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and l ...
 
This unit looks at how telescopes and spectrographs are designed to improve our ability to observe the universe. You will examine how different technologies have been developed over the last four hundred years to enable us to look deep into space. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and linked PDF are not ...
 
Textiles in Ghana carry a far greater importance than you might expect. This unit will help you to understand how textiles can carry an assortment of meanings and values, including wealth, status and office. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and linked PDF are not supported by all ePub readers.
 
Effective communication is the key to a successful presentation. This unit will provide you with a systematic approach to develop the necessary skills. It is important to understand that effective presentation skills can be practised and learned. It is the content of your presentation, and the simple delivery of clear and reasoned arguments, which will help you to achieve your objectives. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection ...
 
Do you find fundraising difficult? Are others around you making your role as a fundraiser more difficult than it need be? This unit will help you to understand your role by analysing a variety of issues about the fundraising and the dilemmas and problems that organisations involved in winning resources and support are likely to face. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. ...
 
This unit explores how information contained in DNA is used, explaining the flow of information from DNA to RNA to protein. Also introduced are the concepts of transcription (as occurs between DNA and RNA) and translation. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and linked PDF are not supported by all ePub re ...
 
Earthquakes shake the ground surface, can cause buildings to collapse, disrupt transport and services, and can cause fires. They can trigger landslides and tsunami – in short, earthquakes can be very destructive. In this unit you will look at why, where and what happens when they occur and also at how earthquakes are assessed qualitatively and quantitatively. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources ...
 
Does prison work and what purpose does it serve? This unit allows you to listen to a discussion surrounding the purpose efficacy and regulation of prisons. Does prison benefit those serving the sentence or simply satisfy a public demand? This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and linked PDF are not supported ...
 
When you consider that the global annual consumption of primary energy increased more than ten-fold during the 20th Century, the importance of planning future energy supply becomes clear. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and linked PDF are not supported by all ePub readers.
 
This unit is aimed at teachers who wish to review how they go about the practice of teaching maths, those who are considering becoming maths teachers, or those who are studying maths courses and would like to understand more about the teaching process. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and linked PDF ar ...
 
The Egyptians are known for being ahead of their time in comparison to some civilisations that came after them. This unit looks at how the Egyptians solved mathematical problems in everyday life and the technology they used. An understanding of this area has only been possible following the translation of the Rosetta Stone. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published ...
 
Where does the structure of our body come from? This unit looks at the structure of cells and how proteins are used by both animals and plants to create a framework for cellular growth. You will also learn how a material as fine as spider silk can exceed the strength of steel. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio ...
 
This unit introduces the topic of vectors. The subject is developed without assuming you have come across it before, but the unit assumes that you have previously had a basic grounding in algebra and trigonometry, and how to use Cartesian coordinates for specifying a point in a plane. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such ...
 
From diamonds to dynamite everything involves a chemical reaction. This unit introduces you to the concepts and principles that underpin chemistry at the molecular level. Everyday experiences are used to help you to understand the more complex issues. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and linked PDF are ...
 
Teaching assistants are an important resource in education. This unit looks at how this role has developed over time. You will also explore why this workforce is predominately female and why there is a marked under-representation of minority ethnic assistants. Finally you will explore what the future hold for this paraprofessional role. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open Universit ...
 
How do we learn? Understanding ‘how’ is the key to learning more effectively. This unit looks at the three main categories of theories: the acquisitive, constructivist and experiential models of learning. There is no right way to learn but developing an active approach will ensure that you are open to new ideas. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0. ...
 
Businesses are increasingly making explicit their committment to dealing with ethical concerns. This unit explores the business case for an ethical approach to human resources management and examines whether a more 'human-centred' approach can bring dividends, and how an ethical approach fits within an organisation's strategy. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Publish ...
 
This unit looks at the issues of order and disorder. Can the way these issues are represented change your view of a city? Taking Glasgow as an example, you will look at the problem of crime and how misrepresentation can easily occur. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and linked PDF are not supported by ...
 
This unit looks at Babylonian mathematics. You will learn how a series of discoveries have enabled historians to decipher stone tablets and study the various techniques the Babylonians used for problem-solving and teaching. The Babylonian problem-solving skills have been described as remarkable and scribes of the time received a trainng far in advance of anything available in medieval Christian Europe 3000 years later. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, p ...
 
Using the US and Mexico as the main example, this unit examines how inequalities in access to material wealth can lead to border tensions. You will also learn how many developed economies are now reliant on immigrant labour to perform jobs that their own citizens do not want to consider. How equal is the globalised world? This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ...
 
Mentoring, observation and interviews are three important strategies in developing student teachers. This unit, which gives a flavour of The Open University's flexible PGCE course, introduces student–teacher centred strategies both inside and outside of the classroom involving mentors, pupils, tutors and others to develop student teachers' professional skills and understanding. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open edu ...
 
This unit is concerned with macroevolution – the patterns and processes of evolution above the species level. A crucial consideration in macroevolutionary studies is that of the evolutionary relationships (phylogeny) of the organisms in question. The unit begins with an introduction to the scope of macroevolutionary studies and illustrates methods of reconstructing phylogeny, from both morphological and molecular data. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, p ...
 
This unit is aimed at geography teachers, or those with an interest in studying or teaching geography. This unit looks at the contribution that geography can make in the education of young people and the characteristics and purpose of geography as a subject. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and linked ...
 
Looking at the theme of surveillance as a multifaceted everyday practice, this unit will show you the value of using audio visual material in your learning. It will show you how to develop the skills you need to make the most of learning from DVDs. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and linked PDF are no ...
 
This Unit looks at how units if inheritance are transmitted from one generation to the next. First you will look at what happens to the chromosones of animals and plants during the process of sexual reproduciton. Then you will examine how genes are transmitted in particular patterns from generation to generation. These two approaches combine to illustrate how the patterns of inheritance can be explained by the behaviour of chromosomes during sexual reproduction. This study unit is just one o ...
 
The body has traditionally been treated as a biological object in psychology. However, is there more to our bodies than that? Some psychologists recognise that we relate to other people and the world about us through our body. This unit explores the theoretical perspective on embodiment: the phenomenological psychological perspective. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. ...
 
What does it take to become a critical practitioner in social work? This unit will guide you through some important concepts. An understanding of ‘critical perspectives’ will help you take a positive and constructive approach to problems that arise in social work practice. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, vi ...
 
What is your experience of work and what did you learn from this experience? This unit will enable you to reflect upon what you have learned from work and support you in improving how you learn at work. It will encourage you to think critically about work-based learning and review your own professional knowledge and skills. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published ...
 
Sexuality and parenthood encompass some of the most ordinary and yet most profound experiences that life has to offer. In this unit, we look at how attitudes to parenthood and sexuality and the links between the two have changed, with specific reference to the fertility decline that began in the mid-nineteenth century. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in eP ...
 
It is hard to think of a part of the world that has not been touched by globalisation. From ‘Big Macs’ in Moscow to Blockbuster video in Beijing the world seems less distant and twenty-four-hour-a-day news makes foreign places more familiar. This unit examines the dimensions of globalisation and the processes that connect people together. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open Univers ...
 
‘Tough on the causes of crime.’ A famous phrase, but what is crime? This unit examines how we as a ‘society’ define crime. You will look at the fear that is generated within communities and what evidence is available to support claims that are made about crime rates. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video an ...
 
What affects the atmospheric and ocean flows? This unit explores the mechanisms that are important; the most rapid carrier is the wind. The basic principle of global atmospheric circulation is simple: warm air rises and cold air sinks. How does this principle affect the atmosphere and flow of water in practical terms? This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePu ...
 
This unit lays the foundation of Newtonian mechanics and in particular the procedure for solving dynamics problems. The preresquisite skills needed for this unit are the ability to solve first and second-order differential equations, a knowledge of vectors, and an understanding of the concept of a force This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, ...
 
This unit will give you an opportunity to think about some of the key concepts and methods of the discipline of Religious Studies. You will meet examples of different forms of religious practice and belief, mostly from Britain and India. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and linked PDF are not supported ...
 
In this unit, we describe the theory of evolution by natural selection as proposed by Charles Darwin in his book, first published in 1859, On The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or The Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. We will look at natural selection as Darwin did, taking inheritance for granted, but ignoring the mechanisms underlying it. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open e ...
 
Models are mechanisms for communication. This unit looks at what a model is and what the process of modelling is about. The techniques discussed here are applicable to a wide range of systems and have one thing in common: they are all commonly used diagramming techniques. The five techniques are: data flow diagrams, use case modelling, activity diagrams, entity–relationship diagrams and state machines. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, ...
 
The fascinating phenomenon of superconductivity and its potential applications have attracted the attention of scientists, engineers and businessmen. Intense research has taken place to discover new superconductors, to understand the physics that underlies the properties of superconductors, and to develop new applications for these materials. In this unit you will read about the history of superconductors, taking a brief look at their properties. You will also learn about modelling the prope ...
 
Improvisation and composition are words frequently used in the western world to describe the creation of music. But are they really two distinct processes, or are they aspects of the same phenomenon? In this unit we will explore the relationships between the two using examples of Asian music to help us clarify the concepts. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published ...
 
What is a person? This unit examines this philosophical question concerning the nature of personhood. You will examine whether a ‘person’ is the same as a ‘human being’, and look at whether it is our free will that in the end defines us as a ‘person’. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, some feature such as audio, video and linked PDF are ...
 
This unit looks at the methods that have been developed by organisms for the uptake, transport and storage of iron: a process made more complicated by the insolubility of its oxides and hydroxides. You will examine iron storage in mammals, including humans, is achieved by ferritin, which stores iron as a hydrated iron (III) oxide – an example of biomineralisation. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resou ...
 
Computers are all around us: in cars, kitchen scales, digital cameras, etc. But how do they store the data they hold? This unit will help you to understand how the data in a computer represents something in the outside world. You will also explore how ASCII code and Unicode are used to control data. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, som ...
 
Are you interested in English language education? This unit examines the use of language as a cultural tool which allows humans to become involved in a two-way process of constant change. The unit will help those within the teaching environment to relate theoretical discussion to professional practice. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Published in ePub 2.0.1 format, ...
 
Music is created to be performed, in most cases for an audience, whether in a concert hall, at a street fair or through a radio. But how those listeners receive a piece or style of music influences future music production. This unit explores how audience reception, changing social situations and technology impact musical performance. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. ...
 
What is systems thinking and practice? The essence of systems thinking and practice is in ‘seeing’ the world in a particular way, because how you ‘see’ things affects the way you approach situations or undertake specific tasks. This unit will help you to learn about the problems of defining a system and meet some of the key concepts used in systems theory: boundary, environment, positive and negative feedback, etc. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part ...
 
Energy from sources other than fossil and nuclear fuels is to a large extent free of the concerns about environmental effects and renewability that characterise those two sources. Each alternative source supplies energy continually, whether or not we use it. This unit considers one of these alternative sources, geothermal energy derived from the interior heat of the Earth, and the potential for this alternative to supplant fossil and nuclear fuel use to power social needs fast enough to avoi ...
 
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This unit is concerned with macroevolution – the patterns and processes of evolution above the species level. A crucial consideration in macroevolutionary studies is that of the evolutionary relationships (phylogeny) of the organisms in question. The unit begins with an introduction to the scope of macroevolutionary studies and illustrates methods …
 
What is your experience of work and what did you learn from this experience? This unit will enable you to reflect upon what you have learned from work and support you in improving how you learn at work. It will encourage you to think critically about work-based learning and review your own professional knowledge and skills. This study unit is just …
 
How do children fit in to our society? This unit will help you to understand the issues surrounding children's rights as well as examining the implications of seeing children as citizens. You will also explore the meaning of childhood and analyse children's needs. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenL…
 
This unit looks at the methods that have been developed by organisms for the uptake, transport and storage of iron: a process made more complicated by the insolubility of its oxides and hydroxides. You will examine iron storage in mammals, including humans, is achieved by ferritin, which stores iron as a hydrated iron (III) oxide – an example of bi…
 
This unit introduces the topic of vectors. The subject is developed without assuming you have come across it before, but the unit assumes that you have previously had a basic grounding in algebra and trigonometry, and how to use Cartesian coordinates for specifying a point in a plane. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on Learnin…
 
Does prison work and what purpose does it serve? This unit allows you to listen to a discussion surrounding the purpose efficacy and regulation of prisons. Does prison benefit those serving the sentence or simply satisfy a public demand? This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open …
 
What is systems thinking and practice? The essence of systems thinking and practice is in ‘seeing’ the world in a particular way, because how you ‘see’ things affects the way you approach situations or undertake specific tasks. This unit will help you to learn about the problems of defining a system and meet some of the key concepts used in systems…
 
Tables and charts are a great way to present numerical information in a clear and concise form. This unit explains how to use the Windows calculator to carry out basic operations and calculate percentages. You will then learn how to use charts and tables to represent and interpret information. This study unit is just one of many that can be found o…
 
Are you interested in English language education? This unit examines the use of language as a cultural tool which allows humans to become involved in a two-way process of constant change. The unit will help those within the teaching environment to relate theoretical discussion to professional practice. This study unit is just one of many that can b…
 
This unit is aimed at teachers who wish to review how they go about the practice of teaching maths, those who are considering becoming maths teachers, or those who are studying maths courses and would like to understand more about the teaching process. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a coll…
 
Looking at the theme of surveillance as a multifaceted everyday practice, this unit will show you the value of using audio visual material in your learning. It will show you how to develop the skills you need to make the most of learning from DVDs. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collecti…
 
This unit is aimed at geography teachers, or those with an interest in studying or teaching geography. This unit looks at the contribution that geography can make in the education of young people and the characteristics and purpose of geography as a subject. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, …
 
This unit looks at the issues of order and disorder. Can the way these issues are represented change your view of a city? Taking Glasgow as an example, you will look at the problem of crime and how misrepresentation can easily occur. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educ…
 
Textiles in Ghana carry a far greater importance than you might expect. This unit will help you to understand how textiles can carry an assortment of meanings and values, including wealth, status and office. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The…
 
‘Tough on the causes of crime.’ A famous phrase, but what is crime? This unit examines how we as a ‘society’ define crime. You will look at the fear that is generated within communities and what evidence is available to support claims that are made about crime rates. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of Op…
 
Improvisation and composition are words frequently used in the western world to describe the creation of music. But are they really two distinct processes, or are they aspects of the same phenomenon? In this unit we will explore the relationships between the two using examples of Asian music to help us clarify the concepts. This study unit is just …
 
The body has traditionally been treated as a biological object in psychology. However, is there more to our bodies than that? Some psychologists recognise that we relate to other people and the world about us through our body. This unit explores the theoretical perspective on embodiment: the phenomenological psychological perspective. This study un…
 
Music is created to be performed, in most cases for an audience, whether in a concert hall, at a street fair or through a radio. But how those listeners receive a piece or style of music influences future music production. This unit explores how audience reception, changing social situations and technology impact musical performance. This study uni…
 
What does it take to become a critical practitioner in social work? This unit will guide you through some important concepts. An understanding of ‘critical perspectives’ will help you take a positive and constructive approach to problems that arise in social work practice. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part…
 
Effective communication is the key to a successful presentation. This unit will provide you with a systematic approach to develop the necessary skills. It is important to understand that effective presentation skills can be practised and learned. It is the content of your presentation, and the simple delivery of clear and reasoned arguments, which …
 
In our everyday lives we use we use language to develop ideas and to communicate them to other people. In this unit we examine ways in which language is adapted to express mathematical ideas. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University…
 
It is hard to think of a part of the world that has not been touched by globalisation. From ‘Big Macs’ in Moscow to Blockbuster video in Beijing the world seems less distant and twenty-four-hour-a-day news makes foreign places more familiar. This unit examines the dimensions of globalisation and the processes that connect people together. This stud…
 
In this unit, we describe the theory of evolution by natural selection as proposed by Charles Darwin in his book, first published in 1859, On The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or The Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. We will look at natural selection as Darwin did, taking inheritance for granted, but ignori…
 
This Unit looks at how units if inheritance are transmitted from one generation to the next. First you will look at what happens to the chromosones of animals and plants during the process of sexual reproduciton. Then you will examine how genes are transmitted in particular patterns from generation to generation. These two approaches combine to ill…
 
Using the US and Mexico as the main example, this unit examines how inequalities in access to material wealth can lead to border tensions. You will also learn how many developed economies are now reliant on immigrant labour to perform jobs that their own citizens do not want to consider. How equal is the globalised world? This study unit is just on…
 
How can you analyse children and their development? This unit allows the learner to analyse how children's cognitive shills develop over time. You will also learn about how various different investigative methods have developed over time and how different techniques can produce different results. This study unit is just one of many that can be foun…
 
When you consider that the global annual consumption of primary energy increased more than ten-fold during the 20th Century, the importance of planning future energy supply becomes clear. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Pu…
 
Energy from sources other than fossil and nuclear fuels is to a large extent free of the concerns about environmental effects and renewability that characterise those two sources. Each alternative source supplies energy continually, whether or not we use it. This unit considers one of these alternative sources, geothermal energy derived from the in…
 
This unit will give you an opportunity to think about some of the key concepts and methods of the discipline of Religious Studies. You will meet examples of different forms of religious practice and belief, mostly from Britain and India. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open …
 
Earthquakes shake the ground surface, can cause buildings to collapse, disrupt transport and services, and can cause fires. They can trigger landslides and tsunami – in short, earthquakes can be very destructive. In this unit you will look at why, where and what happens when they occur and also at how earthquakes are assessed qualitatively and quan…
 
The fascinating phenomenon of superconductivity and its potential applications have attracted the attention of scientists, engineers and businessmen. Intense research has taken place to discover new superconductors, to understand the physics that underlies the properties of superconductors, and to develop new applications for these materials. In th…
 
This unit looks at how telescopes and spectrographs are designed to improve our ability to observe the universe. You will examine how different technologies have been developed over the last four hundred years to enable us to look deep into space. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collectio…
 
How do we learn? Understanding ‘how’ is the key to learning more effectively. This unit looks at the three main categories of theories: the acquisitive, constructivist and experiential models of learning. There is no right way to learn but developing an active approach will ensure that you are open to new ideas. This study unit is just one of many …
 
Pictures speak louder than words. But how can you use diagrams to help you? This unit looks at how diagrams can be used to represent information and ideas about complex situations. You will learn how to read, draw and present diagrams to help illustrate how ideas or processes are connected. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on L…
 
What is a person? This unit examines this philosophical question concerning the nature of personhood. You will examine whether a ‘person’ is the same as a ‘human being’, and look at whether it is our free will that in the end defines us as a ‘person’. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a colle…
 
Do you find fundraising difficult? Are others around you making your role as a fundraiser more difficult than it need be? This unit will help you to understand your role by analysing a variety of issues about the fundraising and the dilemmas and problems that organisations involved in winning resources and support are likely to face. This study uni…
 
Businesses are increasingly making explicit their committment to dealing with ethical concerns. This unit explores the business case for an ethical approach to human resources management and examines whether a more 'human-centred' approach can bring dividends, and how an ethical approach fits within an organisation's strategy. This study unit is ju…
 
This unit explores how information contained in DNA is used, explaining the flow of information from DNA to RNA to protein. Also introduced are the concepts of transcription (as occurs between DNA and RNA) and translation. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational res…
 
Sexuality and parenthood encompass some of the most ordinary and yet most profound experiences that life has to offer. In this unit, we look at how attitudes to parenthood and sexuality and the links between the two have changed, with specific reference to the fertility decline that began in the mid-nineteenth century. This study unit is just one o…
 
Teaching assistants are an important resource in education. This unit looks at how this role has developed over time. You will also explore why this workforce is predominately female and why there is a marked under-representation of minority ethnic assistants. Finally you will explore what the future hold for this paraprofessional role. This study …
 
What affects the atmospheric and ocean flows? This unit explores the mechanisms that are important; the most rapid carrier is the wind. The basic principle of global atmospheric circulation is simple: warm air rises and cold air sinks. How does this principle affect the atmosphere and flow of water in practical terms? This study unit is just one of…
 
Models are mechanisms for communication. This unit looks at what a model is and what the process of modelling is about. The techniques discussed here are applicable to a wide range of systems and have one thing in common: they are all commonly used diagramming techniques. The five techniques are: data flow diagrams, use case modelling, activity dia…
 
The Egyptians are known for being ahead of their time in comparison to some civilisations that came after them. This unit looks at how the Egyptians solved mathematical problems in everyday life and the technology they used. An understanding of this area has only been possible following the translation of the Rosetta Stone. This study unit is just …
 
This unit looks at Babylonian mathematics. You will learn how a series of discoveries have enabled historians to decipher stone tablets and study the various techniques the Babylonians used for problem-solving and teaching. The Babylonian problem-solving skills have been described as remarkable and scribes of the time received a trainng far in adva…
 
This unit lays the foundation of Newtonian mechanics and in particular the procedure for solving dynamics problems. The preresquisite skills needed for this unit are the ability to solve first and second-order differential equations, a knowledge of vectors, and an understanding of the concept of a force This study unit is just one of many that can …
 
Mentoring, observation and interviews are three important strategies in developing student teachers. This unit, which gives a flavour of The Open University's flexible PGCE course, introduces student–teacher centred strategies both inside and outside of the classroom involving mentors, pupils, tutors and others to develop student teachers' professi…
 
From diamonds to dynamite everything involves a chemical reaction. This unit introduces you to the concepts and principles that underpin chemistry at the molecular level. Everyday experiences are used to help you to understand the more complex issues. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a colle…
 
This unit explains the general principles of signal transduction and specifically, how even the simplest organisms can detect and respond to events in their ever-changing environment. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, part of OpenLearn, a collection of open educational resources from The Open University. Publis…
 
Computers are all around us: in cars, kitchen scales, digital cameras, etc. But how do they store the data they hold? This unit will help you to understand how the data in a computer represents something in the outside world. You will also explore how ASCII code and Unicode are used to control data. This study unit is just one of many that can be f…
 
Where does the structure of our body come from? This unit looks at the structure of cells and how proteins are used by both animals and plants to create a framework for cellular growth. You will also learn how a material as fine as spider silk can exceed the strength of steel. This study unit is just one of many that can be found on LearningSpace, …
 
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