Courses open for booking much earlier with the OU but “subject to availability”

It appears that the OU are allowing a number (all?) of courses to be booked somewhat earlier than normal. Apparently gone too is the nonsense that was pre-registration which didn’t actually reserve a place as you might think. Combine that with the appearance of the phrase “subject to availability” beside all of the reservation buttons and it seems prudent to be booking courses somewhat earlier than usual.

The first impact of that for me was booking a place on the final run of SD329 (Signals and perception) which starts next February. A brilliant course by all accounts and one which is equally relevant to the three degree strands which I’m notionally running with at the moment (life sciences, chemistry and psychology). Ordinarily I’d not have been able to book that until around September (ie six months in advance).

More importantly, the second impact of that much earlier booking time is that the residentials for 2012 open for booking in late June rather than mid-October. Ordinarily that would be an easy choice as I need SXR376 (infectious diseases) for life sciences and it’s a really interesting one too. However, having signed up for S205 I could do SXR344 (drug design) which is the chemisty counterpart to SXR376 and looks really interesting too and one that I’d have gotten around to the following year were it not for 2012 being the final year for all the level 3 science summer schools.

To top it all, apparently there’s a major price increase on its way for courses starting in 2013. That’s encouraging people to rejig their plans to include any 60 pointers much earlier. Fortunately that doesn’t appear to affect me as by then I should only have two 30 pointers remaining.


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