Welcome to the Faculty of Wellbeing, Education and Language Studies

Organised as three Schools, the Faculty works across a range of disciplines including Education, Childhood and Youth, Health and Social Care, Youth Work, Social Work, Languages and Applied Linguistics, Nursing, and Sport and Fitness. We take an innovative approach to teaching and learning, developing collaborative partnerships with employers and other institutions, and engaging in cutting-edge, action-oriented and internationally recognised research.

Find out more about our Faculty


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Study with us

The Faculty of Wellbeing, Education and Language Studies offers 17 undergraduate and five postgraduate degrees as well as a wide range of certificates and diplomas, across nine subject areas in the fields of health and social care, education, sport and fitness, and languages and applied linguistics. We also offer short courses in languages and international culture, and apprenticeships in the key areas of nursing, advanced clinical practice, and social work. Our qualifications are developed by practice-based experts, including teachers and health care professionals, and informed by our internationally recognised and award-winning research.

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Our research

The key focus of our research is enabling communities to realise their potential, lead healthy, fulfilling lives, create inclusive societies, and thrive in the context of global change and uncertainty. Driven by the OU’s social mission, and inspired by the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals, our research covers the span of life from the cradle to the grave. A key characteristic of our research is its interdisciplinary and practice-based approach. We harness the expertise and insight of our diverse research specialisms to help support change and impact policy, not just across the Four Nations, but also further afield in our global development work

Research in WELS
Shot of a young child's arm holding on to an elderly person's hand by the little finger. The older arm wears a brown leather watch with a gold buckle. The background is distorted greenery,

Welcome to the Faculty of Wellbeing, Education and Language Studies

WELS news

Gaia stands in front of an old cathedral. The text next to her reads: My tutor was so patient. She understood my determination and wouldn't see me give up. I could really tell she was loving her job. Gaia Marsiglione, BA (Hons) Language Studies

“I didn’t give up thanks to an incredible tutor who loved her job”

When a self-confessed “crazy choice” threatened to derail hopes of Gaia completing her Language Studies degree, an Open University (OU) tutor stepped into cheer her on and across the finishing line.

4th June 2024
A globe on top of an open book

New research will explore colonial influences on social protection in Tanzania and Ivory Coast

The Centre for the Study of Global Development (CSGD) has been awarded a grant by the German government to develop a framework study and two country case study papers on social protection and overcoming colonial continuities. The research project aligns with the German Ministry of Development Cooperation’s broader interest in understanding historical path dependencies and the role of colonialism within them.

29th May 2024
Portrait photograph of Professor Victoria Cooper. She has long blonde hair and is wearing a black top. She is stood in front of a sandstone wall in a field.

New Professor of Childhood Studies

Dr Victoria Cooper has been promoted to Professor of Childhood Studies, in recognition of her research expertise focusing on children’s voice, and her extensive teaching experience throughout her career and within the School of Education, Childhood, Youth and Sport (ECYS).

24th May 2024
A table with learning materials from the 3MPower project

How online teacher development in rural Bangladesh has improved students’ learning

The Mobile Learning for Empowerment of Marginalised Mathematics Educators (3MPower) project has published three new policy briefs based on their research on how teachers in rural schools in Bangladesh use online learning for their professional development. 

22nd May 2024
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