Student news

Date published: 21 September 2012

This Sunday over 20 graduating students will mark an important milestone for online learning.

Being the first to complete Curtin University's Bachelor of Education (Primary) through Open Universities Australia (OUA), they prove that it's possible to become qualified for a practical career such as teaching, after studying online.

Traditionally, it is thought that practical degrees such as a Bachelor of Education are only suitable to on-campus students. In this case, OUA and Curtin University have now demonstrated that online learning can provide the same enriching, quality education to a broad range of students.

The high calibre of the graduating OUA students has impressed both academics and professionals within the industry.

Val Morey, Course Coordinator of the Bachelor of Education (Primary) at Curtin University said the practical degree was successfully delivered online with no differentiation between on-campus students and those who studied online.

"These OUA students were required to test their theoretical knowledge in classrooms just as their on- campus counterparts.

"We are very excited to have received overwhelmingly positive feedback from the schools where our students completed their internships. Principals and mentor teachers were impressed in terms of the theoretical knowledge and understanding our students possess, as well as their competence with lesson planning," says Ms Morey.

According to OUA CEO, Paul Wappett, these online Curtin University graduates are every bit as motivated, as resourceful, and as talented as students from more traditional learning models.

"Online education has come a long way in the past ten years, and whereas practical disciplines like education used to shy away from any form of learning model other than face-to-face, it's clear that students across all disciplines can now receive a high quality, rigorous, practically-oriented degree through online study.

"This is a reflection of the amount of innovation that Open Universities Australia and its partner providers are making into online learning outcomes for as many Australians as possible. We are very proud of these graduates, and we are very proud of Curtin University," says Mr Wappett.

Tammy Riley, mother of two from Adelaide is one of the students who will successfully graduate on Sunday after four years of study.

Although she lived just minutes away from a university campus, working full time and caring for two children meant she never entertained the thought of fulfilling her study dreams.

Online study was a clear choice and provided her with the same high quality education she may have missed on-campus.

"I feel extremely confident that the knowledge gained during my degree has equipped me well for my first teaching role. I don't think sitting in a lecture theatre would have prepared me any better than the online environment did.

"I feel very confident that I am a quality candidate when applying for roles now and in the future," says Mrs Riley.

About Open Universities Australia - leading online learning

Owned by seven of Australia's premier universities, OUA is the national leader in quality online tertiary education. Enrolling more than 200,000 students since 1993, OUA provides access to over 1400 units and 170 qualifications taught by more than 20 leading Australian universities and tertiary education providers.

For further information, please contact:
Prue Dimond
PR & Sponsorship Officer
Open Universities Australia
Ph: 03 8628 5014
E: prue.dimond@open.edu.au