TM111 and MU123 books arrive

brown gift box with pink ribbon
Photo by Plush Design Studio on Unsplash

My books for TM111 and MU123 arrived yesterday and today respectively! There’s nothing quite as exciting yet intimidating as the delivery of two heavy cardboard boxes packed full of textbooks, two days in a row.

Sometime in advance, the StudentHome page of the Open University website posts an estimated dispatch date for the study materials for each module. This varies between modules and often changes over the course of the month leading up to dispatch.

Originally, my books for TM111 were scheduled for dispatch on 7 September with a note warning it could take up to 10 days until delivery. Similarly, my books for MU123 were scheduled for dispatch on 5 September.

Even in the worst-case scenario, they would arrive before both modules start on 5 October. However, the earlier they arrive, the earlier I can begin studying and give myself a much-needed head-start. While the module website will open on 10 September, with electronic copies, I am used to and prefer studying from a real book.

As it turned out, the Open University surpassed itself. I woke up yesterday morning to a text from Yodel, telling me that they would be delivering my Open University parcel later that day. Yodel had sent me an email too, with a tracking link to their website.

I checked StudentHome to discover that the books for TM111 were on their way, having been dispatched the previous day. A full four days ahead of schedule and next day delivery to boot. There was no change to the estimated dispatch date for the books for MU123.

I attribute it to unbridled excitement at starting my first year at the Open University, but I regularly checked the tracking link throughout the day. I certainly got a buzz out of the anticipation and, going by the comments on the Facebook groups, I’m not the only one. In fact, I feel that this alone is a compelling argument for the Open University to keep providing physical copies of study materials.

My books eventually turned up about two in the afternoon. According to the tracking data on the Yodel website, my delivery slot was about halfway on the driver’s route of about 90 stops. It looked like it was going to be a long day for the Yodel driver. Surely, there can’t be that many people studying TM111 in my local area. If so, for the face-to-face tutorials, they’re going to need a bigger room.

It was a case of déjà vu today. Although I had checked StudentHome quite late yesterday evening, there was no indication that they had dispatched my books for MU123. Nevertheless, I received an email from Yodel with a tracking link this morning, though curiously no text alert. Maybe they felt bad about waking me up two days in a row.

Anyway, the Open University were spot on with their estimate of delivering my books for MU123. It turns out they were dispatched yesterday but StudentHome had only been updated this morning. As with TM111, StudentHome included the same Yodel tracking link that I received by email and/ or text.

The Yodel driver was on fire today, turning up with my books for MU123 around midday, a full two hours earlier than yesterday.

Through the Facebook groups, I’ve come across a few people in my local area studying TM111 and MU123. Looks like we were all on the same delivery route!

I am now the proud owner of two heavy (3-4kgs) brown cardboard boxes emblazoned with the Open University logo. The only way that the whole process could have been improved is if they had been gift wrapped with a bow on top.

But it’s a long way and several TMAs to go until Christmas, so it’s probably about time I open the boxes and see what’s inside.

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