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Degree Timeframes - The Open College of the Arts | Distance Learning Degrees and Courses
To find out more details about the transfer to The Open University see A New Chapter for OCA.

Degree Timeframes

Studying a part-time, undergraduate course with the Open College of the Arts is a great way to achieve your goals while maintaining a work-life balance. Study at your own pace and complete a degree between 6 and 9 years, scheduling study around other commitments such as work or childcare.

When can I start?

OCA accepts enrolments for our BA (HONS) courses all year round, so you can start at a time that suits you. You don’t need to wait for a specific intake month, simply complete the online enrolment form and indicate your preferred start date!

If you are funding through Student Finance, the tuition fee loan application process can take between 4 – 6 weeks. To help keep your study plans on track, we recommend applying for Student Finance at least six weeks before your preferred start date, but don’t worry if your funding application isn’t approved in time. We’ll keep your enrolment pending until you receive your outcome and then get you enrolled straight away.

How long is the course?

Our part-time degree courses can be completed between 6 and 9 years so you can take control of your studies.

The degree is structured into three levels (instead of three years) so you’re able manage study around other commitments. Complete each level in up to three years and the degree overall in up to nine years. Course units have individual time frames based on their credit value; a 40-credit unit is completed within twelve months, and a 60-credit unit within eighteen months.

How many study hours do I need?

To complete within the maximum timeframes you’ll need to dedicate around 10 study hours per week. If you have more time available you’ll likely complete sooner.

You can change the pace of your studies to suit your needs, however if you have a goal in mind as to when you want to complete the course then we’d recommend following a schedule. Students study on a unit by unit basis but you’re welcome to overlap them slightly. As students can enrol and study all year round you can plan your own breaks.

What if something happens?

The longer timeframes offered aim to account for most delays but understandably, sometimes there are unexpected mitigating circumstances that affect your ability to study. In these instances, students can apply for an extension or deferral. We encourage students to seek support as early as possible in such circumstances.