The Guardian homeBy Lucy Jolin. The OU pioneered the distance learning form and is still the UK’s main provider – in 2013/14, there were 210,005 UK-based students studying for both undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in the UK, of which 150,255 were with the OU. But other UK universities are starting to see the potential of online courses that can offer all the academic rigour and support of a face-to-face degree without the inflexibility – to students all around the world. More...