Skip to content

Toggle service links


Applications available for downloading will be linked from this page.

Some of the apps will be available via the Apple iTunes Application Store or the Android Market and others will be available for direct download for use by Open University staff either as a finished applications or as prototypes to aid our testing.

OU Anywhere


OU Anywhere is an app for students of The Open University available on both iOS6 and Android version 4 and above. If you are a Level 1 or 2 student and starting a module in 2013 you can now access your printed books as ebooks and your CDs and DVDs as downloadable files for use offline. Level 3 content will be delivered later in 2013 and Post Graduate content in 2014.

Download App: iTunes Android

Chinese Characters First Steps


Learning to read and write Chinese characters presents two challenges to both non-native learners as well as Chinese children who first start learning characters:

  • The complexity of characters, as an average character consists of about 12 strokes
  • Matching characters with their pronunciation, pinyin and the meaning

This new version of Chinese Characters First Steps tackles these two challenges on one screen to help you learn, recognize and remember the most frequently used 400 plus characters in a systematic, friendly and fun way. Rather than having a textbook, audio device, dictionary and a notebook to write, you get the stroke-by-stroke writing, the native-speaker pronunciation, pinyin, English definition and instructions in one interactive experience.

These 400 plus characters are introduced in the Open University's Beginners' Chinese module 第一步 Dì yī bù (L197) and drawn from the most commonly and frequently used word list published by the Ministry of Education of PRC (China). By combining them, you will learn a further 230+ useful words and phrases. For example, you learn the three single-character words for 'red' (红 hóng), 'green' (绿lǜ) and 'light' (灯dēng), which put together make up the word 'traffic lights', which you will find in one of the word search puzzles.

There are 20 lessons which chronologically build upon each other.

Each lesson has 4 sections:

  • Writing Practice
  • Listening Test
  • Reading Test
  • Word Search

In the iOS version the first lesson with 20 characters and related activities is included free to give you a taste of what this app can do. The other 19 lessons are available via in-app purchase by tapping the 'upgrade' button.

The Android version consists of 20 characters and related activities only at the moment. The app is available for free on the Android Market.

Download App: iTunes Android

Our Story


Reading, even in the digital age, is probably one of the most important skills that children acquire. It can be an important source of pleasure which also develops vital language and social skills. It is fundamental to most school activities, it can also open up new worlds and give access to the wealth of human knowledge.

This app that has been developed by child psychologists and other specialists at The Open University enables young children to take part in fun games which can help develop interests and skills that will be relevant to them when they start to read.

Download App: iTunes Android

Pop Art Me


Pop Art Me from The Open University – transform yourself into a work of art!

Take a photo from your photo album or camera and choose whether you want to see it as a Cubist, Impressionist or Pop Art work of art.

Click the descriptions to learn more about each of the movements.

Within each art style you'll be able to adjust the image to your liking – tools include brush size, contrast, detail and colour sliders.

And once you've created your piece you’ll be able to share it via email, the online gallery or upload it to Facebook.

Download App: iTunes

PhotoFit Me


Would you be a good eyewitness?

Now is your chance to find out with this free app from The Open University.

Create a PhotoFit of yourself, your friends or take our celebrity challenge and re-create the face of a famous person. When you are finished you can send to a friend, share the picture on Facebook or view it in the gallery.

By seeing how tricky it is to create an accurate PhotoFit through piecing together features like a jigsaw, you'll appreciate why The Open University has helped the police to develop a new system to describe suspects. This new approach uses the whole of the face reflecting the way our brains work – making it easier to recall individual faces. Want to learn more? The Open University's 'Introducing the Social Sciences (DD101) course' is a great place to start. It's an ideal introduction to discovering more about psychology, social policy, criminology and other fascinating areas.

Download App: iTunes Android



Keep up-to-date with information from around The Open University with the OU News app.

This application makes the latest OU news available from Platform (the OU's student and alumni community site), the OU press team, the OU Twitter accounts as well as providing access to the latest videos from the OU's YouTube channel.

Download App: iTunes Android

Virtual Microscope


Rock samples from a new Open University course in Geology are shown in this demonstration of the Virtual Microscope.

Students on the course learn how to identify the spectrum of common rock-forming minerals and the geological processes that lead to their formation. This application allows you to examine examples of common igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary rocks. You can see minerals such as olivine, plagioclase feldspar and garnet both in hand specimens and with a polarising microscope.

We have also included a famous meteorite that was found in Antarctica in 1984. Chemical analysis suggests that it is a fragment of rock from Mars, and NASA scientists startled the world in 1996, when they reported they had found evidence within it of primitive bacterial life.

Geologists study minerals and rock microtextures using microscopes fitted with two polarising filters. Light is passed through very thinly sliced rock allowing individual minerals to be identified by their unique optical properties when viewed in plane polarised light (PPL), or between crossed polars (XPL). A rotating specimen stage is an essential attribute of the petrological microscope, displaying changes in colour and colour intensity as the minerals come into alignment with the polarised light.

Download App: iTunes Compatible with iPod Touch 3rd Generation, iPhone 3Gs, iPhone 4 and iPad.



Help us create a map of Britain's trees with this Treezilla app. The system also calculates the environmental benefits ('ecosystem services') provided by trees, for example how much pollution they remove from the air.

Move the dot onto an aerial photo of the area and that's it the tree is mapped.

You can then measure the tree size and identify it, this information is used to automatically calculate the ecosystem services.

The system also allows you to add lots more information about the tree such as pests and diseases, tree condition, pavement damage etc.

All the information is searchable.

If the information has already been added then you can see the identity and other information about trees in your local area.

Get together with friends to turn your town into an arboretum!

Download App: iTunes

Devolve Me


Ever wondered what you would've looked like as an early human? Well now's your chance to find out with The Open University's Devolve Me app...

Simply upload your photo and see yourself travel back through the evolutionary timeline. As well as offering you a glimpse of how you would've looked at key points in man's evolution, you can also see yourself hurtle back through history using our handy slider.

When you've done, why not share the result with your friends? Be prepared for amazement and amusement in equal measure!

If you haven't got a photo handy, you can use one of ours by clicking the 'Need Photo?' button… while it's not an exact science, it's a lot of fun.

Find out more about studying courses such as 'Darwin and Evolution' and 'Exploring Science' at The Open University -

Download App: iTunes

OU Voice


The Open University Voice application allows students (registered users only) to do spoken language homework, assessments and review feedback from their teachers using the Learnosity Voice system.

To get an access code to the Open University Voice application you must be studying an appropriate Open University course and have received instructions on usage. Note: this is not the same as your normal username.

OU Voice uses the iPod/iPhone to enable language students and teachers to interact on a one to one level. Our service:

  • Makes it practical for students to practice Oral and Aural skills
  • Is efficient and effective for teachers as they can listen to each student individually at a time that suits them
  • Can be used for homework assignments or "In-class assessments"
  • Once Learnosity Voice has synchronised with the Internet it then can be used in an offline mode and synchronised when an Internet connection is available

For further information, please visit

Download App: iTunes *Registered users only*

OU Alive


Bring your Open University Undergraduate Prospectus to life with the OU Alive app.

OU Alive reveals videos of real students talking about their experience of studying with the OU. Find out how they found the time to study, the support they received, how they funded it and the effect it has had on their lives and careers.

See the OU's world-changing research come alive right on the page – relive the thrilling Rosetta mission and the Philae comet landing, explore individual parts of the brain and make a volcano erupt!

Simply scan any page with the 'Scan Page' icon by holding your device over the entire page and the augmented reality objects will appear. You can interact with the objects by tapping on them or swiping to rotate them or move the prospectus and follow them through your device.

Find out more about studying with The Open University and OU research by following links in the app.

Download App: iTunes Compatible with iPod Touch 3rd Generation, iPhone 3Gs, iPhone 4 and iPad.

OU Brainwave


Brainwave is a free, research focused psychology app from The Open University and Reed.

We've taken five tasks from the world of psychology research and turned them into quick, fun, mobile phone/tablet games. Each game is designed to test a different facet of cognitive ability:

  • Super snap (Working memory)
  • Track (Split attention)
  • React (Vigilance)
  • Spin (Spatial processing)
  • Hotspot (Learning)
By playing the games, you will build up a profile of your performance across the day – your 'Brainwave' - charting how your cognitive performance varies across the day and finally answering whether you are actually a 'morning' or 'evening' person.

Your scores will also be anonymised and uploaded to the research team at The Open University. Here, they will be combined with scores from all the other users of the app in order to research how circadian rhythms and time-of-day affects cognitive performance.

To see whether you are a morning or evening person, download the app now!

Download App: iTunes

Core Research Mobile


CORE is a system that aims to facilitate free access to scholarly publications. CORE provides access to millions of scholarly articles distributed across many Open Access repositories.

This application is a CORE mobile client for iPhone and iPad. The application makes it possible to search for scholarly publications available in CORE completely free of charge. The publications can be downloaded and stored on your device, for example in iBooks.

One of the main characteristics of CORE is that it enables searching for metadata and full-text content that is available as Open Access.Commercial publishers are charging high fees for providing access to content the creation of which has been paid by the taxpayer. CORE aims to work as a catalyst for change. Does it sound familiar that you discover an article you would like to read, but cannot access it unless you pay a fee? This does not happen with CORE. While this means that CORE does not index full-text content for which a subscription is needed, it also means that all searchers for content are satisfied and all content is readily available.

We believe in free access to information. The mission of CORE is to:

  • Support the right of citizens and general public to access the results of research towards which they contributed by paying taxes.
  • Facilitate access to Open Access content for all by targeting general public, software developers, researchers, etc., by improving search and navigation using state-of-the-art technologies in the field of natural language processing and the Semantic Web.
  • Provide support to both content consumers and content providers by working with digital libraries and institutional repositories.
  • Contribute to a cultural change by promoting Open Access.

Download App: iTunes



The HUNT app from The Open University allows you to bring your Hunt poster to life and explore our extra content.

Interact with our 3D Augmented Reality cube:

  • Access new footage to learn more about cheetahs
  • Slo-motion footage demonstrating unique cheetah physiology
  • Animation revealing skeleton of cheetah running at top speed
Behind the scenes with the scientists …
Watch four short films and hear from the series scientists in the field. The first film is about studying Biology and taking it forward as a career and the other three films reveal how making the programmes in this series helped to uncover new animal behaviours and provided insight into ongoing research studies.

Academic Excellence …
At the OU we lead on cutting-edge scientific research that changes lives and makes a difference. Our academics are some of the world's leading experts in their field, who apply their passion for research and science when preparing study materials, which means that you get to learn from the best. Follow links to find out more about our academics who worked on The Hunt series.
Explore The Open University … Follow links to our free learning resource website OpenLearn – the home of free learning.
  • Extend your interests further and discover a wealth of information and resources
  • Browse our extensive list of free courses, there's something for everyone
  • Delve through audio and video collections on a range of fascinating topics
[Note: augmented reality performance may be affected on some older devices e.g iPad 2, iPhone 4s]

Download App: iTunes Android