The Open University & WEA Logos

Arts & Humanities at The Open University:

Education for Employment

In association with The Open University, the WEA present an innovative series of lectures on the Arts and Humanities. During June 2021 five free lectures will be hosted by the WEA and presented by Open University lecturers who are experts in their field.

The subjects on offer are Classical Studies, Philosophy/Ethics, English Literature, History and Art History. Alongside these sessions, participants will also learn about the transferable and work-related skills that students of the Arts and Humanities develop, which are highly valued by employers. These include how to become an independent learner; the ability to think critically and analytically; the potential to be more innovative and creative; the ability to work effectively with others and skills in writing clearly and effectively. These sessions will allow you to explore and decipher ideas, texts, buildings and artworks that will help deepen cultural experiences and open up career opportunities.


Dr Michael Beer

Michael graduated from the OU with an MA in Classical Studies in 2004, and after completing his PhD in Classics at the University of Exeter, worked for the OU as an Associate Lecturer, teaching modules in Roman History and Greek and Roman Myth. In 2013 he was awarded the position of Research Affiliate in the Department of Classical Studies. He is currently tutoring the OU module ’Discovering the Arts and Humanities’. Michael is an Honorary Research Fellow in the Department of Classics and Ancient History at the University of Exeter, where he has taught Latin, Roman social history and Augustan architecture. He has written and published on a number of topics. His research interests include food in the Greek and Roman World, cultural identity, Greek cultural interaction with Rome, late republican Rome and early imperial period, Roman Egypt.

Classical Studies: The Legacy of Roman Architecture

Tuesday 8th June at 11.00am

Monica Scammell

Monica Scammell has been an Associate Lecturer with The Open University for twelve years, teaching Arts and Humanities at first level and the third level module ‘The Renaissance Reconsidered’. She is a subject specialist in Art History. Monica’s first degree, taken at The Open University, was in Humanities with Art History. She then went on to do an MA in Art History at the University of Bristol, specialising in the 19th century reception of the Renaissance and curating an exhibition of Tudor portraiture with the National Portrait Gallery. Monica also works at a local stately home, runs classes in Art History for a local group and volunteers for the National Trust.

Art History: ‘Horrid Spectres’ and ‘Rejected and Outraged Shapes of Beauty’

Thursday 10th June at 7.00pm

Dr Bethan Michael-Fox

Dr Bethan Michael-Fox, SFHEA, FRSA is an Associate Lecturer for The Open University teaching a range of English literature and language courses as well as interdisciplinary modules at different levels. Beth is an Honorary Associate in the School of English and Creative Writing at The Open University and is also undertaking a 3 year Visiting Research Fellow role at the University of Bath's Centre for Death and Society, alongside a 2 year Early Career Researcher Fellowship at the University of Winchester. She also works as the Editorial Officer for the academic journal Mortality and runs the social media for the academic journal Revenant. Her research and publications focus on popular and unpopular cultural representations, in particular of death and the dead.

Philosophy: Death and the Dead in the Cultural Imagination

Wednesday 16th June at 7.00pm

Tina Fox

Tina has worked as an Associate Lecturer for The Open University for fourteen years, teaching a range of modules. She currently teaches two Level 1 Arts and Humanities modules and an Access to Higher Education module. She enjoys working with students as they begin their academic journey and work through the early stages of study, as they develop confidence, new skills and new subject knowledge. Tina has a degree in English Literature from the University of Sheffield and a Masters degree in Victorian Studies from Birkbeck College, London University. She also has qualifications in teaching Further and Adult Education.

‘The Song of the Shirt’ - Victorian Poetry and the Working Poor

Friday 18th June at 11.00am

Dr Pam Walker

Dr Pam Walker has taught with The Open University for ten years on Arts and Humanities modules. She is a medieval and early modern historian but with interests in all historical periods, and the history of fashion. Her PhD research was on medieval women’s dress as depicted on funeral monuments. She has taught history and art history at the Universities of Bristol, Manchester and Exeter and at Bath Spa University. As well as teaching, she has worked in the museum and heritage sector for fifteen years, most recently as curator at the Clark’s Shoe Museum in Somerset but also at M-Shed in Bristol; The Fashion Museum in Bath and for Art UK. She is particularly interested in how controversial museum objects are displayed and interpreted.

History: Why are the Benin Bronzes controversial?

Saturday 19th June at 2.00pm

Students studying.