BSc in Mathematics (Honours)

The Open University

Program Description

BSc in Mathematics (Honours)

The Open University

BSc in Mathematics (Honours)

Mathematics is indispensable to modern life. It enables us to predict the growth of markets, model airflow in a jet engine, calculate accurate drug doses and create 3D computer graphics. This degree will take your understanding of the concepts and theories of mathematics – and how they are applied in the real world – to an advanced level, and enhance your career prospects in a huge array of fields.

Key features of the course

  • Option to choose a gentle start if your skills are a bit rusty
  • Plenty of practice with essential methods and tools
  • Provides opportunities to use mathematical software
  • Contributes to membership of the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications (IMA)

Educational aims

This degree introduces you to mathematical concepts and thinking, and helps you to develop a mathematical approach. Our aims are that you should achieve:

  • familiarity with the essential ideas of pure mathematics (particularly analysis, linear algebra and group theory), with the opportunity also to become acquainted with some of: number theory, mathematical logic, combinatorics, geometry, topology
  • ability to apply the main tools of applied mathematics (particularly Newtonian mechanics, differential equations, vector calculus, numerical methods and linear algebra), with the opportunity also to meet some of: advanced calculus, fluid mechanics, advanced numerical analysis
  • ability to model real-world situations and to use mathematics to help develop solutions to practical problems
  • ability to follow complex mathematical arguments and to develop mathematical arguments of your own
  • experience of study of mathematics in some breadth and depth
  • understanding of some of the more advanced ideas within mathematics
  • development of your capability for working with abstract concepts
  • ability to communicate mathematical ideas, proofs and conclusions effectively
  • ability to work with others on mathematical modelling problems and their validation
  • skills necessary to use mathematics in employment, or to progress to further study of mathematics
  • ability to use a modern mathematical computer software package in pursuance of the above aims.

You will also have the opportunity to develop knowledge of, and the ability to apply, some important concepts and techniques of Statistics.

Teaching, learning and assessment methods

Knowledge, understanding and application skills, as well as cognitive (thinking) skills, are acquired through distance-learning materials that include specially written module texts, guides to study, assignments and (where relevant) projects, and specimen examination papers; through a range of multimedia material (including computer software on some modules); and through feedback from tutors on your assignments.

You will work independently with the distance-learning materials, but are encouraged (particularly at OU level 1) to form self-help groups with other students, communicating face to face, by telephone, by email or by online forums. Students will generally be supported by optional tutorials and day schools, which you are strongly advised to attend whenever possible.

Written tutor feedback on assignments provides you with individual tuition and guidance. Modules at higher levels build on the foundations developed in recommended pre-requisite modules at lower levels.

Some OU level 1 modules have an examination, as do most modules at OU levels 2 and 3. Generally, these permit you to bring and use the module handbook, thus reducing the need for memorisation and concentrating on your ability to apply concepts and techniques and express them clearly and coherently. For each individual module, you must pass both the continuous assessment and the examination (or end-of-module assessment) in order to obtain a pass. At OU level 2 and above, your pass will be graded, and the grades will contribute to the determination of the class of Honours degree that you are awarded.


We believe cost shouldn’t be a barrier to achieving your potential. That’s why we work hard to keep the cost of study as low as possible and have a wide range of flexible ways to pay to help spread, or even reduce, the cost. Fees for study commencing in academic year 2014/2015 are:

  • Fees are paid on a module-by-module basis – you won't have to pay for the whole of your qualification upfront.
  • If like most OU students studying part time, you study an average of 60 credits a year – you’ll study for six years to complete a degree. Our typical fee for 60 credits is £2,632.
  • Our current fee is £5,264 – based on 120 credits of study – which is equivalent to a year's full-time study.
  • The total cost of your chosen qualification currently starts from £15,792 based on our current fees.

NB: Prices are subject to change.

How long does it take?

  • Part time – 6-8 years
  • Full time – 3 years
  • Time limit – 16 years

Career relevance

There are some careers for which a degree in mathematics and/or statistics is specified. These include teaching, statistical work (including actuarial work), operational research and development, and some areas of computing.

Other career areas directly related to mathematics include:

  • engineering
  • accountancy
  • banking
  • bioinformatics
  • insurance
  • tax
  • investments
  • stockbroking/trading
  • retail
  • economics
  • market research
  • pensions
  • quantitative analysis/risk analysis.

Entry requirements

There are no formal requirements to study this degree. You will however need to be proficient in English, to an IELTS standard of 6.0. If you are unsure you will be able to take a free English test as part of the registration process.

Read more about this programme on the Open University website here

This school offers programs in:
  • English
The Open University

Last updated October 23, 2017
Duration & Price
This course is Online
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Aug. 2018
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Full time
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United Kingdom - Milton Keynes, England
Start date: Aug. 2018
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Aug. 2018
United Kingdom - Milton Keynes, England
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