Learn about The Open University

The Open University is a global leader in higher education able to reach every adult in the United Kingdom - and many others across the world.

About the Open University

In 1969 one ambition changed the world, giving anyone, anywhere the power to learn. Established by the Royal Charter (pdf 235kb) and globally recognised, The Open University has pioneered distance learning for over 50 years, delivering exceptional teaching and outstanding support to students across the UK and the world.

Our mission is to make learning accessible to all, and together we’ve already helped over 2 million students to realise their ambitions.

Professor Tim Blackman

Our Vice-Chancellor

Meet Professor Tim Blackman, Vice-Chancellor here at The Open University. Tim is a highly respected academic as well as the University’s chief executive and is incredibly proud to be leading the institution.

The ceremonial mace


Find out about Governance at the University as defined by Royal Charter, including its officers, committees and procedures.

Roaming space robot

Teaching and research

See how our OU-style open learning works from course development through to delivery to our students.

Graduate celebrating recieving her award

Policies and reports

Learn about The Open University, its history and mission.

Find out where your fees go.

Hand writing a report

Annual reports

Read the story of our year through our Financial statement 2022 (pdf 2.7mb).

a tree canopy


We are dedicated to creating and sharing knowledge and learning to realise social and environmental justice. Read our sustainability policies, statements, reports and guidance.

Walton Hall building

Find us

The Open University has its headquarters at Walton Hall in Milton Keynes, which is 80km north of Central London, midway between Oxford and Cambridge, and just off the M1 motorway, linking it to Birmingham and the north of England.

Want to visit our campus, try finding out more by reading our Milton Keynes campus page