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About The Open University’s unique partnership with the BBC

More than 50 years co-producing inspirational content bringing learning to life for millions of people

For over half a century, The Open University and the BBC have been working in partnership to provide a unique public service offer covering all four nations of the UK.

It began in the early 1970s as an innovative mission to provide access to learning at scale via late night lectures beamed into people's homes; at that time it was a revolutionary form of delivery for those who wanted to study at a higher education level.

The OU/BBC partnership has continued to adapt with the changing times and still inspires learning from a range of co-produced and award-winning content. So whether you have been amazed by the majestic beauty of Blue Planet II, blown away by the awesome recreations of space in The Planets, or fascinated by the moving stories in Hospital, the OU/BBC partnership offers you an intimate view of the world to feed your curiosity.

It’s not all just about TV programmes. We also co-produce a range of content across radio, podcasts, digital and social.

The Open University has a vast range of academic expertise and whatever partnership content we are co-producing benefits from our experts' specialist knowledge. OU academics consult throughout the entire production process.

This website is where we invite you to continue the learning journey you started with us. Whether you heard about our partnership via radio programme, digital campaign, or encountered our co-productions on iPlayer or BBC Sounds, this is where you can dig deeper into the subject matter and find more of the expertise that goes into our collaboration.

To find out more, please visit out our FAQ section .

Our priority subject areas are influenced by OU teaching and learning, and include:

- Arts and history
- Business, management and law
- Education and languages
- Health, wellbeing and social care

- Technology including, engineering, maths and computing
- Science and nature
- Social sciences including psychology
- Current affairs 

Overview of recent projects

BBC 1 Logo
Greta Thunberg: A Year to Change the World
A Perfect Planet
The Truth About...
BBC 2 Logo
Forensics: The Real CSI
Secret Science of Sewage
The Detectives
Trump Takes on the World
Cornwall: This Fishing Life
BBC 3 Logo
BBC 4 Logo
Write Around the World
BBC Ideas Logo
How limits can boost your creativity
How to be a good sporting parent
The power of quiet leadership
Is it time to reassess our relationship with nature?
Four tips from elite sport you can use in everyday life
BBC Inside Science
All in the Mind
The Bottom Line
Bad People

Getting involved

BBC Commissioning

For more information about how BBC / OU commissioning works, we recommend visiting the BBC’s commissioning website.

More information

If you’re interested in speaking to us about broadcast partnership opportunities, please do so with the details here.

For more general enquiries, please see our contact page.


Contact the Broadcast Team

Broadcast & Partnerships, The Open University

Pick a subject

Inside the bank of England still - gold reserves

Money, Business & Law

The world of corporations, the economy, and the law that keeps the world turning.

Hospital still, BBS series. Copyright: Label 1

Health, Wellbeing and Sports

Putting a finger on the pulse of our shared health, mental welfare and physical fitness. 

BBC School TV Series

Education, Development and Languages

Discover more about how we learn, grow and communicate together.

Satellite image of Earth

Nature & Environment

Pole to pole and everything in-between. Our natural world and how it's changing. 

Train in tunnel, The Fifteen Billion Pound railway BBC

Science, Technology, Engineering & Maths

Space, robotics, amazing inventions and the formulas that control them.

Secrets of the museum Copyright © Simon Lloyd for Blast! Films

History & the Arts

Explore the people, culture, events and civilisations that have helped to shape the world around us. 

Forensics: The Real CSI, BBC - a CSIO assesses a car

Society, Psychology and Criminology

The inner-workings of our minds and behaviours in society.

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View all

All our co-productions. All in one place

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About our BBC partnership

For over 50 years The Open University and the BBC have worked together; co-producing hundreds of hours of programming and bringing learning to life for millions. Find out more about our unique partnership.

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