Senior Phase (S4 S6)

Senior Phase (S4 S6)

Dumbarton Academy

Senior Phase (S4 – S6)

Subject Information Booklet

Open University

YASS Supplement for S6 Students.

Young Applicants in Schools

Run by The Open University in Scotland, for students in S6, Young Applicants in Schools Scheme (YASS) courses offers motivated and able students a chance to study a range of university level modules in school alongside their other studies.

What is YASS?

The Scheme gives S6 students in Scotland the opportunity to study at higher education level without leaving friends and family behind. Study fits around school work and social lives, encourages independent learning and builds confidence. YASS was first developed in Scotland in partnership with Highland Council in 2007/08 and has grown substantially since then. In 2012/13 over 570 students in S6 from over 100 schools in Scotland took part.

In a recent survey of YASS students, 92% of respondents stated that they found the content of the modules interesting and 85% agreed that taking the YASS module would help boost their CV or application to higher education. In addition, 88% of respondents believed that participating in YASS had helped them develop and improve.

The scheme explained

YASS is designed to bridge the gap between school and full-time university and help able and motivated students stand out from the crowd. YASS is a unique opportunity for S6 students in Scottish schools to bridge the gap between school and full-time university through independent learning.

“YASS modules admirably supplement the range of traditional award-bearing courses and units that any one school can offer in the Sixth Year. This flexible alternative gives students a taste of University-style work, and an opportunity either to specialise and deepen their knowledge and skills in one particular area or to initiate study in a new field. The means of delivery promotes student responsibility for their own learning, which is at the heart of Curriculum for Excellence.” OU statement

Is YASS for everyone?

No, YASS isn’t for everyone. It works best for students who are not only academically able, but who are motivated and committed too, and able to cope well with independent learning. Before they consider the scheme, students need to be aware of the extra study requirements. For example a 30-point module can demand up to 12 hours of independent study each week, you will be responsible for organising your own learning. YASS courses are in depth and focussed and a good option for those looking to add to their academic qualification. They are not for everyone so you should discuss this with your Guidance teacher if you are interested in this option.

A drive to succeed

Applicants should be able to demonstrate genuine motives for wanting to study at university level with The Open University. These are likely to include a passion for a particular subject, the desire to gain an additional qualification or learn at a higher level, positive family experiences of The Open University or a keenness to experience a university workload.

More choice, more options

You will be required to commit to an option column in school (5 periods) and approximately 5-10 hours of work per week for the duration of the course out of school. You may only choose to do one OU course during your sixth year. All course materials and tutoring arrangements are provided by the OU. Students will be required to attend regular progress meetings with the school OU course coordinator. Where possible you will identify slots on your school timetable to undertake the course work, in the library or possibly in rooms of a course related faculties, this will require negotiation on an individual basis.

Each module has credit points (10, 15, 30 or 60) which indicates the amount of credit you can count towards an Open University qualification and how many hours it might take you to study. A rough guide is that each credit point requires 10 hours of study (a 10 point course will require 100 hours). Shorter modules normally require up to 10 hours of study a week, while a longer one can require up to 16 hours a week.

Modules can last from 10 weeks to 40 weeks and are clearly structured with timetables and deadlines. Please check the details for any courses you are interested in taking. Some carry on after you will have left school so check carefully the details of any course you are interested in. However, studying with the OU gives you some flexibility to decide when and where you study.

Modules are offered in a wide range of subjects, see the information below. Each module offered through YASS is at level 1, equivalent to SCQF Level 7 (Adv. Higher level) and the first year at a traditional university.

Please note: these credit points are higher education (CATS) points and not part of the UCAS tariff.

Pupils will be required to sign an OU contract confirming their commitment to fulfilling the requirements of the course. Funding and Applying Funding at present is provided up to £200 through the Scottish Funding Council (SFC). This will cover 10 and 15 point courses. The advice from the OU is to register as soon as possible for courses as demand for places may be greater than the funding available Application forms are available through Guidance. Return the completed form to your Head of House; please do not try to complete an application online as the forms have to go through the school. Follow the checklist and notes documents making sure you tick the box for SFC funding grant on the reverse of the form. Please ensure the forms are legible and you include a valid email address. Given the time commitment required 30 or 60 point courses should only be considered after careful consideration of the workload and will require you to self-fund the balance of the cost above £200. A meeting will be arranged to further discuss YASS courses with all interested later this term. For further information or if you are not sure if YASS courses are suitable for you please speak to your Head of House or Yearhead. Students are asked to consider this option carefully, before making their choice of module and registering for it.

Information about the YASS courses available is given below in the YASS Senior Option Choice Booklet Supplement. This is available on the school website

Further details about a module, including future enrolment dates, tutor support and assessment, can be also be found on the OU website at:

Eligibility,Further information and enrolment

Students will NOT be automatically accepted.School co-ordinators will be contacted by an Open University Academic Advisor to discuss each application before students are accepted onto the YASS programme.

30 point modules run from October to June and will only be offered to academically able, self-motivated students who can commit up to 12 hours study per week and have demonstrated genuine motives for wanting to study at university level with The Open University.

Open University modules can vary in their duration and can run once, twice or more frequently during the year. When you click on a module title below it takes you to the full module description; here you can see when the module starts next, the fee and assessment information. It’s important to check the closing dates for applications on each module, as they can vary. The method of delivery can also varyfrom course to course: for instance, some modules are entirely online others are not. Please make sure you select ‘Scotland’ from the drop down list in the module description to make sure you see the appropriate module fee for students in Scotland

What can I study?

YASS courses are available in the following areas. Some information about each module is given below

  • Arts
  • Business and management
  • Education
  • Engineering and technology
  • Environment
  • Health and Social Care
  • Languages
  • Law
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Social Sciences
  • Sport

The arts past and present (60 Credits)

This broadly-focused module introduces you to university-level study in the arts across a range of subject areas - art history, classical studies, English, history, philosophy, music and religious studies. It is structured around four themes, in order to guide you through some of the basic concerns of arts subjects: Reputations; Tradition and Dissent; Cultural Encounters; and Place and Leisure. Your studies will range from poetry to string quartets, and from sculpture to short stories – across a wide variety of cultures and historical periods. This key introductory OU level 1 module is also a useful means of acquiring the key skills required for further study of arts and humanities subjects.

English for academic purposes online (30 Credits)

This completely online module aims to develop the communication skills you need for successful academic study in English. Throughout the module, you will work with a wide range of texts from different subject areas. By exploring different subject areas you will develop the academic English that is most relevant to your study. You will use your knowledge and experience as you explore ways of reading and writing academic texts. You will also develop your academic listening and speaking skills in an online environment.

An introduction to retail management and marketing (30 Credits)

The retail industry is highly dynamic and innovative, which means it is very engaging to study . This module looks at how retailing has developed, how retail outlets operate and how retailers apply retail marketing techniques. During your studies you will consider contemporary factors that affect retailing: globalisation; the impact of ever-changing technology; and social and ethical issues. This module is designed for retail industry employees wishing to develop a career in management, and anyone interested in working in the retail sector, or simply wanting to know more about the world of retailing.

Introduction to bookkeeping and accounting (10 Credits)

This short module caters for people who want a good grounding in double-entry bookkeeping and the production of basic financial statements as well as anyone who wants to proceed to professional qualifications as bookkeepers, accounting technicians or fully qualified accountants. You’ll gain practical skills in Excel spreadsheets and double-entry bookkeeping, both manual and computerised, as well as knowledge and understanding of the essential principles, concepts, ethics and limitations that underpin bookkeeping and financial accounting. This module is a recommended preparatory module for our Professional Certificate in Accounting. It has a choice of start dates, and you decide how long to take over your studies, from twelve up to twenty-four weeks.

Professional communication skills for business studies (30 Credits)

Personal and corporate success in business relies on effective communication.Professional communication skills for business studieswill help you acquire skills to distinguish you from your peers. This practical introductory OU level 1 module will empower you to undertake more insightful case-study analysis, write successful essays, and produce influential documents. From proposals to company reports, you’ll work with a wide range of texts from business studies modules and the wider business world, deepening your subject knowledge while developing your written communication skills – helping you to succeed in the field of business studies and business in general.

Engineering the future (30 Credits)

This key introductory OU level 1 module examines the range of human activity that is ’engineering‘, from design concepts to the manufacture of products. It introduces the context in which engineers operate – addressing such areas as product safety standards and patent law – as well as looking at current engineering practice. It considers some of the developments in engineering methods and applications that will shape the future. The module is ideal if you are considering studying engineering at higher levels and wish to acquire more specialised skills. It is also a good introduction to engineering if you simply have an interest in what it is and how it is practised in modern society.

Technologies in practice(30 Credits)

This module provides an opportunity to sample some of the key areas in computing and information technology. You will be introduced to three topics as tasters for your future studies and career: networking, Linux and robotics. Studying these topics will enable you to develop essential skills if you are considering future employment in the computing and IT industry. You will be applying what you learn to develop a portfolio, to demonstrate your skills and understanding in these areas to potential employers. By studying this OU level 1 module you can also begin to explore where your future career ambitions or interests might lie.

My digital life(60 Credits)

While you’re learning about tomorrow's technology why not help create it?My digital lifetakes you on a journey from the origins of information technology through to the familiar computers of today, and on to tomorrow’s radical technologies. You'll get hands-on experience of the ubiquitous computing approaches that will become increasingly common over the next decade. You'll also learn about the profound social and technological changes associated with information technology – changes that will affect every one of us. This key introductory OU level 1 module will help you prepare for these changes – think of it as an online survival kit for the twenty-first century.

Design thinking: creativity for the 21st century(60 Credits)

This key introductory OU level 1 module, packed with learning innovation, will change your way of seeing and solving complex problems for ever. Through a mix of academic and practical work you’ll develop an understanding of design, acquire new designing skills and build a portfolio of design projects as a strong foundation for future study or work experience. This online module looks at common principles of design and ways of thinking that lead to ideas and creative solutions. Within aspecially created virtual design studio you’ll complete many hands-on activities and interact with your fellow students online as you experience a completely different way of learning.

An introduction to health and social care(60 Credits)

We all depend on care services at some time in our lives – at home; in hospitals, clinics or GP surgeries; in community and residential settings. This key introductory OU level 1 module provides an authoritative overview of health and social care, with real-life case studies taking you deep into the experience of receiving care and working in care services. It has also been written for those new to university study and will help you develop the learning skills needed for degree study. Whether you’re involved in care work (paid or unpaid), use services yourself, or simply have a general interest, this module will help you to build knowledge and understanding, develop skills, and prepare for further study.

Understanding the autism spectrum(15 Credits)

Autism is a spectrum of conditions characterised by social, communicative, sensory-motor and cognitive difficulties. The social and psychological consequences can be profound. This 20-week module provides an accessible introduction to the autistic spectrum, principles and problems of diagnosis, and biological and psychological approaches to explaining underlying causes. Approaches to care, education and therapy, and issues concerning social support, legal rights and wellbeing of individuals on the autism spectrum are explored. The module is especially relevant to educators, learning support workers and healthcare professionals; parents, siblings, care-givers and able people on the autism spectrum; and all those with an interest in the psychological and health sciences.

Topics in health sciences(30 Credits)

This module gives an overview of two medical conditions that present a major global health problem; cardiovascular disease and cancer. Many of us will encounter these medical conditions either through professional involvement in health, or through affected family members or friends. Your study of cardiovascular diseases will develop your understanding of heart and circulatory diseases, and the anatomy and physiology of the cardiovascular system. Cancers result from defects in cell proliferation, so you’ll study the properties of cells, how they divide and how tumours are formed and spread. Both topics consider risk factors and methods of detection, treatment and prevention worldwide.

Ouverture: intermediate French(30 Credits)

Ouverture: intermediate Frenchfollows on fromBon départ:beginners’ French(L192). It revises and consolidates the knowledge of French you already have and teaches more advanced language in the context of French-speaking societies and French culture. Study resources – including printed module books and online interactive activities – are carefully designed to develop the four language skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing. They provide clear learning objectives, guidance and model answers. This key introductory OU level 1 module also teaches good study skills and language-learning strategies.

Auftakt: intermediate German(30 Credits)

Auftakt: intermediate Germanfollows on fromRundblick: beginners’ German(L193). It revises and consolidates the knowledge of German you already have and teaches more advanced language in the context of German-speaking countries and communities. Study resources – including printed module books and online interactive activities – are carefully designed to develop the four language skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing. They provide clear learning objectives, guidance and model answers. This key introductory OU level 1 module also teaches good study skills and language-learning strategies.

En rumbo: intermediate Spanish(30 Credits)

En rumbo: intermediate Spanishfollows on fromPortales:beginners’ Spanish(L194). It builds on your existing Spanish knowledge and teaches more advanced language in the context of Spanish and Latin American society and culture. Study resources – including printed module books and online interactive activities – are carefully designed to develop the four language skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing. They provide clear learning objectives, guidance and model answers. This key introductory OU level 1 module also teaches good study skills and language-learning strategies.