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Bristol Futures Open Courses

Wednesday 24-01-2018 - 09:00

A free, flexible and progressive university module that’s light on time and that enriches your main course - sounds good right?

We’re really excited to tell you about the new Bristol Futures Open Courses. We’ve been developing them with the University, and our students - they’re powerful, and they’re free and available now to any Bristol students or staff.

The courses - in Innovation & Enterprise, Global Citizenship and Sustainable Futures  - run several times a year and are flexible so you can complete your studies at your own pace. You can sign up now to be the first students to take these free courses. The first courses start on 5th February 2018.



The University of Bristol's open online courses build upon the Bristol Skills Framework and together form the FutureLearn programme 'Unleash Your Potential'. You’ll discuss themes, and ideas on equality, climate change, religion and social justice with experts. Each course runs for four weeks, with roughly three hours of study per week.

Bristol SU’s reps and officers have been closely involved - our reps have helped shape the content of the courses and our Undergraduate Education Officer, Mason Ammar, has been working to ensure students come away from the courses with a tangible piece of recognition to cite in their professional futures.

What’s more, they’re written and taught by students - at least in part.


We caught up with Eleni Michalopoulou, a Chemistry PhD student who is running a section of the Sustainable Futures course.

How and why did you get involved?

I got involved through the Sustainable development unit where I teach Science and Sustainability and after the encouragement of Chris Willmore who was the previous unit director. The reason why I got involved was because Bristol Futures is an amazing and very novel initiative that gave the teams involved, and myself, the opportunity to rethink and redesign several aspects related to teaching and learning. We got to work with some amazing people, from the teams supporting the project to experts in a variety of disciplines, and that experience alone has been priceless.

What’s special about these courses?

In my eyes, everything is special about these courses! They will give our students an opportunity to explore different walks of life, themselves, the people around them, society, systems, and through this journey they are at the same time exposed to a series of academic but also personal and professional skills. Even the teams that created the courses had such a diverse background (ages, genders, disciplines, cultures) that the result was bound to be something truly unique.

Why should students sign up to do them?

Well first of all, the courses are fun! But, apart from that, we have tried to create an environment where skills, fact based knowledge, self reflection and personal development can be delivered as effectively and as efficiently as possible. The courses are a place where you can think, you can imagine, you can learn and reflect, interact with others and become part of an active and vibrant community.


You can sign up through Blackboard to take these free courses. Find out more at: 



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social justice, Religion, climate change, free, Course, online, FutureLearn, Bristol Futures,

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