Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What qualifications do I need for your courses?
  2. What type of computer will I need for your courses?
  3. How should I submit the assignments?
  4. What happens if I can't meet the deadlines?
  5. Will I have to sit any exams?
  6. What happens if I don't pass the course?
  7. What do I do if I need help with the assignments?
  8. I can't get a piece of software to work...
  9. Are there any lectures or other onsite classes to attend?
  10. I want to become an Astronomer, will this course qualify me to become one?
  11. Can I contact the other people on the course?
  12. Since I have started the course my circumstances have changed. Can I transfer to a later course?

 

 

Question: What qualifications do I need for your courses?
Answer: Due to the maths element of the course, we usually require our students to have GSCE / O-level Maths or Science. This is not a strict requirement, and if you do not have either of these qualifications but you are capable of doing the maths, which is mainly algebra and basic trigonometry, then you can enrol onto the course. Some courses may have additional requirements, please check each course page for further information.

 

Question: What type of computer will I need for your courses?
Answer: You will need a computer, ideally running Windows or a Windows emulator, with a reasonably up-to-date web browser. The majority of the courses will also work on an Apple Mac or Linux but please check each course page for more details regarding this.

 

Question: How should I submit the assignments?
Answer: Assignment submissions are submitted via the internet. In exceptional circumstances it may be possible to accept posted submissions. We can deal with most of the common word processor and image files, but it is helpful to know in advance if you have any specialised software.

 

Question: What happens if I can't meet the deadlines?
Answer: Contact your tutor. Providing you inform us in good time, we will try to extend any of the deadlines if you are unable to meet them due to other commitments.

 

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Question: Will I have to sit any exams?
Answer: All courses will have a variety of assemssments and are likely to include online multiple choice tests. There will be a practise test available on-line in the months prior to the assessed test.

 

Question: What happens if I don't pass the course?
Answer: Your tutor will contact you with information regarding possible options. This will usually involve either the re-submission of coursework or the submission of a new assignment.

 

Question: What do I do if I need help with the assignments?
Answer: Contact your tutor. You will have been given their name and email address with your initial package of materials and you can always leave a message on the voice mail.

 

Question: I can't get a piece of software to work...
Answer: There are many different computer configurations and settings so it is possible that the software won't run correctly first time. Contact your tutor or ask on the forums for possible solutions.

 

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Question: Are there any lectures or other onsite classes to attend?
Answer: No, this course is available world-wide and contact will be via email and forums. However, we do have a number of astronomy public lectures that take place at the University. These will be announced through the forums. 

 

Question: I want to become an Astronomer, will this course qualify me to become one?
Answer: No - professional astronomy is a highly competitive field - even for PhD graduates. These courses will be useful at a general interest level for groups such as amateur astronomers and for professional development for groups such as school teachers, science educators and planetarium/science museum workers. If you do laready have an undergraduate degree in an appropriate subject, you may be interested in our distance learning MSc courses.

 

Question: Can I contact the other people on the course?
Answer: Yes. There will be a discussion forum set up for all the people on the course and you will be emailed about this as soon as it is set up.

 

Question: Since I have started the course my circumstances have changed. Can I transfer to a later course?
Answer: If you wish to defer please discuss this with your tutor. You will need to fill in a Notification of Personal Mitigating Circumstances form which we will send to you if requested. 

 

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