Low completion rates put OU on a collision course with the regulator – Fxsad

Low completion rates put OU on a collision course with the regulator

The Open University’s low completion rates are expected to put it at odds with the English regulator.

Figures obtained by a Freedom of Information request show that the specialist adult education provider – the UK’s largest academic institution with an enrollment of around 150,000 students – successfully graduates just over 20 per cent of its intake on average.

In the year Of students who started modules in 2013-14, 21 per cent were marked as complete, 7 per cent were still studying, 22 per cent less and 51 per cent said they had “dropped out”. 2012-13 and 2014-15.

For the first time, it is understood that the completion rate of undergraduate students is high – the highest number in the university – in the last four years by 33 percent and 37 percent in the most recent year.

These figures are still below the recently introduced threshold for students by the Office of Students, which is set at 40 per cent, which it expects providers of part-time undergraduate courses to meet.

The regulator has lowered this threshold from 55 percent and has indicated that it takes context into account when evaluating suppliers that perform below the benchmark. The part-time limit for “other undergraduate” courses remains at 55 percent.

But the controversial new condition — where institutions could be stripped of their registration or face other sanctions — raises questions about how it would apply to nontraditional institutions like OU, said Ormond Simpson, a university adviser and former director. Academic guidance and student support center.

“I was totally committed to the O.O. and the ceremony, and I’m saddened that it could be under threat from the OFS,” he said.

Although Mr. Simpson agreed that the OU had a responsibility to improve its graduation rate, which had previously been too high, its open admissions policy — which allows students to take courses with no prerequisites — and could take students. The six to 10 years to get a degree made it difficult to interpret the data.

He also pointed out that new government guidelines introduced in July require all university course advertisements to include comparable information on dropout rates.

The university’s secretary of state, Dave Hall, said the comparison between the institution and other universities is “challenging” given the student body, where half come from low socioeconomic groups and 63 percent are first-generation. Students.

“Our unique model allows students to pause and resume their studies at any time in most cases, and this is not reflected in student performance metrics,” he added.

Mr Hall said the OU “plays a vital role in social activism in the UK” and would continue to work with the OFS to ensure this “special role in higher education is recognised”.

Jean Arnold, director of quality at the Office for Students, said outcome measures are “part of the evidence we use to monitor higher education providers” and judgments about whether a provider is compliant are made “after considering the context”. It’s working.”

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