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Read our excellent home learning, home study, distance learning and professional workplace study course reviews.

I am delighted to recommend Mr. Gordon Spencer from Durham Open Learning Centre, whose exceptional support and guidance were instrumental during my ILM Level 7 Diploma for Executive and Senior Level Coaches and Mentors. Gordon's insightful feedback, empathetic approach, and profound expertise created a supportive environment that encouraged my growth as a coach. His commitment to my success and ability to inspire self-reflection helped me refine my coaching style and enhance my effectiveness. I am truly grateful for his unwavering support and highly recommend him as a dedicated and inspiring coach supervisor.

Sunil Naphray
Executive Coach / Trainer / Assessor / IQA / IEPA

I have just been awarded Level 7 Certificate in Senior and Executive Coaching. I found Gordon's support invaluable: he was very generous with his time - we had countless conversations over a year covering topics from how to use an online library, over the subtleties of assessment criteria, to the content of Churchill's letters to his wife Clementine. A senior leader in education and mother of two smallish children, I really appreciated Gordon's flexibility: we had tutorials during holidays, in the evenings, mornings, whilst I was in Wales, London, Portsmouth, Italy... Owing to this, the course became an intellectual exit for me from the pandemic - thank you, Gordon, for preserving my sanity!

Violeta Fabiani
Head of School
Chestnut Grove Academy


Just a quick note to say thank you for all of your support and help to get me trough the CIPS level 6 exams. You were always happy to speak to me, calm me down and explain business strategy - again!

Your help defiantly made this time much easier to bear.

Thank you again and all the best for the future.

Helen Simeon

Senior Buyer Siemens

Energy Limited

I have just achieved the CMI L7 Certificate in Professional Consulting with the support of Gordon Spencer. Gordon's coaching approach and our discussions were very helpful, and I found the experience enjoyable and valuable for learning and reflection. As a tutor myself, I appreciated the time taken by Gordon and the sharing of his wealth of experience.

If I do decide at later date to carry on to the Diploma I would definitely take this through Durham Open Learning College and with Gordon as my tutor. I would certainly recommend them to anyone wishing to undertake these types of vocational qualifications.

Renée Raper 
MSc, CMgr FCMI, Chartered FCIPD Chartered Manager

I appreciate the support and guidance received from Gordon in Durham during my study. He was responsive, professional and patient. Gordon taught me on how to interpret and analyse assignment questions, how to structure the answer, and more importantly, he gave explanations with real case studies. Hence, I strongly recommend prospective students to choose Durham. As for the qualifications of CMI, it has broadened my vision and provoked my thoughts in management issues, plus the study journey has sharpened my writing and analytical skills. So, it is rewarding and worthwhile to study with CMI.      

Keith Zhao, FCII

When I first set out looking for a training provider for my NVQ Level 5 Health & Safety Diploma I was advised by colleagues who had previously taken the qualification to choose carefully.
After talking to several companies I contacted Gordon at Durham Open Learning and was immediately impressed. My decision to go with them proved right, the knowledge and support has been excellent throughout. Gordon often made time for me at weekends and out of hours to fit around my own busy workload.
I would recommend them to anyone I come across in my career as the best value for money together with a friendly approach, always going that extra mile.

Brian McCormack MIET
Technical Compliance Manager

I would definitely recommend this route of education. Distance learning allowed me to complete an NVQ Diploma level 7 in Strategic Management and Leadership whilst continuing my role as Maintenance and  Payment Manager. Gordon provided exceptional support and replied to any queries that I may have had very promptly. The Portal provided me with all the tools and information that I required. It was also very easy to use which is helpful for us more mature students.
Self commitment is important but I found this a more relaxed way of achieving further education. There were no tight deadlines and I could work it around my busy times at work.

Gordon provided a very high standard of mentoring and Coaching and allowed me to think outside of the box.
A very professional organisation that I would recommend to anyone wanting to further their education whilst in full time employment.
Malcolm Williams
Maintenance and Payment Manager
Environment, Housing and Leisure
North Tyneside Council

After initially enrolling with an alternate company that provided me with very poor support, it was refreshing to have enrolled with Durham Open Learning Collage. The course I completed was NVQ Level 4 Supply Chain Management. Gordon provided an outstanding level of support and without him I would not have completed the course due to the situation I was left in by my previous training provider. My only regret is that I did not find Durham Open Learning Collage sooner. Gordon’s knowledge and expertise was second to none. I would highly recommend Durham Open Learning College and any training I undertake in the future will hopefully be with this Collage. Thank you for all the support Gordon, it is much appreciated.
Paul Worsley MCIPS
Technical Buyer
AVL United Kingdom LTD

I have recently completed my NVQ Level 4 in Supply Chain Management. This was my first time studying for a long distance qualification but Gordon made it really easy for me. Due to unfortunate circumstances I found myself left with a very small time frame to complete it, however Gordon provided exceptional help and support and I will be forever grateful for that.

Laura Pickles
Purchasing and Procurement
Durham County Council

I have recently completed my NVQ Level 4 Supply Chain Management via Durham Open Learning, after an unfortunate circumstance I found myself in with my former college. The help and support provided by Gordon was second to none, I have no hesitations in recommending him for anyone wishing to study an open leaning qualification. Gordon went above and beyond to help with the problem and issues I encountered all in a timely manner to ensure I met the deadline, sincerely grateful for all your help.

Vicki Chadwick-Olusanya
Senior Buyer


I recently completed the NVQ Level 4 in Supply Chain Management via Durham Open Learning College. It was my first time studying long distance for a qualification and I found it very straight forward to complete. The portal was excellent and allowed me to easily submit evidence for review and track my progress. Thank you to Gordon for supporting me through each unit. 

Louise Chase
Procurement and Contracts Manager
Consortium Procurement

I would recommend Durham Open Learning College to anyone who wants to study for a NVQ in Diploma in Supply Chain Management. This was my first experience at distance learning and a NVQ process.  The support network supplied by Durham Open Learning College and especially my tutor Gordon was exceptional and he was always available to discuss, give direction and provide practical support. Without this support I believe I would have struggled to complete the course in a timely manner. All work submitted was marked quickly and where required professional feedback was given by Gordon in support of achieving the qualification.

The course itself was supported by a Quals Direct portal which is an excellent system to record and monitor progress throughout the NVQ I was extremely impressed with both the qualification set up and the college and would not hesitate to recommend.

Philip Clarke
Procurement Supervisor 
Harsco Rail Ltd UK

I highly recommend the NVQ Level 5 in Occupational Health and Safety, City and Guilds qualification.  The tuition provided by Gordon at Durham Open Learning College was delivered open and relaxed.  I found this a very positive experience.  I enjoyed the 1:1 interaction that Gordon provided on each section, explaining the requirements.  All course work is checked in a timely manner and allows you to progress at your own speed.  I completed the course in a short period of 5 months whilst working full time.  Thank you for the support and encouragement.

Joanne H Keilloh
Group QHSE Coordinator

I have recently completed my NVQ 5 Diploma in Occupational Health and Safety Practice and wouldn’t hesitate to recommend the services of Durham Open Learning. From the very start of my studies I have received first class support from Gordon Spencer who I have found to be extremely knowledgeable and able to communicate and explain how best to tackle the Diploma. Support is provided via regular Skype Meetings but more importantly for me via telephone and email which Gordon always replied promptly. I found the overall course content very interesting and know it has helped me develop as a H&S professional. I have and will continue to recommend Durham Open Learning and Gordon to my collegues.

Paul Sheffield
Senior HSE Engineer

I was recommended by a colleague to study with Durham Open Learning College . As an experienced Health and Safety Advisor in the oil & gas industry I was keen to further develop my skills and knowledge as well as work towards chartered membership of IOSH. The webpage was very easy to upload data to my electronic portfolio which is an excellent method for collating evidence. Feedback from my tutor Gordon Spencer during the course was outstanding and his knowledge, flexibility and experience was a key factor in my achieving the qualification. I have since recommended three more colleagues to study with Gordon due to the fact how good the course was structured.

Lee Stothart
  HSE Advisor

Gordon has been my tutor at Durham Open Learning College for the past year and a half. Gordon has steered me through an incredible learning journey while finishing my Level 7 Executive Coaching and Mentoring Programme. He has been incredibly patient and an invaluable help to me. His coaching style, advice and support has kept me on course.

He is professional, knowledgeable and provides great insights into the world of coaching and mentoring. He is personable and fun! He provides endless support sessions and pushes you to be your best you. A genuine person with your best interest at heart.

I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Gordon and Durham Open Learning College to anyone thinking of their professional and personal development in a self driven way.

   Donna MacPhee


I have recently completed my NVQ Level 5 in Occupational Health and Safety with Durham Open Learning College.  I had been advised by a fellow colleague that he had had a very good experience using Durham and that Gordon was excellent with regards to help, assistance and guidance.  From the minute I started, Gordon was extremely supportive, breaking down the course into sections and explaining the requirements of each section and module.  He was always available when I required his help and regularly made contact with me to check on progress and answer any questions I had.

I completed my NVQ within a 7 month time frame due to other commitments at work and family time, which restricted the amount of time I could spend on the course material.  I would and have, recommend Durham Open Learning College to anyone who is looking to improve their qualifications and knowledge as they offer a very professional, flexible and no pressure service.

Thanks for all your help Gordon!

Andy Patterson
Regional Safety Officer


I came to Durham Open Learning College on the recommendation of a colleague and have been more than satisfied with my learning experience. I have tried distance learning in the past and found support and structure to be lacking but this was not the case at all here. Gordon is a very knowledgeable and supportive tutor who provided me with just the right amount and sort of guidance for each step of my qualification. At no time did I feel I was stuck or left to figure things out myself but neither was I overloaded with help I did not need. I was particularly pleased that I was able to work flexibly and not to a specific timetable as this allowed me to fit my studies around other priorities in my life and Gordon was very patient when it took me longer to complete units than I had anticipated because something had come up. Overall, as an adult learner in a professional environment, I found Durham Open Learning College provided me with everything I needed to obtain my qualification in a way which worked for and suited me. I wouldn’t hesitate to undertake additional learning with them in the future.  

Sam Pullinger
Senior Procurement Manager
Hampshire County Council


Gordon has been my tutor at Durham Open Learning College for the past two years and he has steered me through a fantastic learning journey while finishing my Level 7 Executive Coaching and Mentoring Programme. Gordon has been an invaluable help to me during the course and is always on hand to discuss issues and provide motivation to get past learning blockages. He is professional, knowledgeable and provides great insights into the world of coaching and mentoring.  Above all he is a genuinely nice guy and very easy to get on with.  One of the best parts of the course has been our regular interactions and support sessions.

I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Gordon and Durham Open Learning College to anyone thinking of their professional and personal development.

Andy Whitehead 

I have just completed my Level 3 in Information, Advice & Guidance at Durham Open Learning College. This was my first time studying for a long distance qualification, so I was more used to face to face classroom based learning. Gordon made things really easy for me. He was flexible in his availability to help guide me through each of the units and replied to my email queries promptly. He was very knowledgeable in my chosen units and was able to relate the criteria to my line of work. Thank you Gordon, I would recommend Durham Open Learning to anyone.

Saima Ali
College Admissions Advisor

Having identified through professional development that this type of course would benefit me and the clients I work with I researched many other courses and this one fitted my needs adequately in terms of learning style, cost and simplicity of accessing. My course tutor Gordon Spencer was very supportive throughout the course, from initial signup and to receipt of certificate and at no point did I feel under any sort of pressure. It is suggested that the leaner has access to Skype to help facilitate the potential barriers around distance learning, however with my company unable to offer this service I was only able to use telephone contact with Gordon. This did not in any way hinder my ability to complete the course as Gordon was able to clearly talk me through as appropriate and, if necessary, remotely connect to my computer. When I made a telephone call to Gordon without an appointment he always answered and if unable to speak at that time would arrange a call back at a particular time and would be available at this time. 

A good professional service.

Brett Lewis
CRO Housing - Youth Support Team

Once I had decided to follow the nvq route, I had to shop around for a course provider. Looking around I discovered that some providers were charging £900-1000 more than Durham open learning and as I was funding myself decided to give them a try. After speaking with Gordon who painstakingly took the time to explain the format of the course and what was required, I was then able to start gathering my evidence and preparing my personal statements with Gordon's expert help and encouragement along the way. This was not just through the regular phone sessions but at anytime I got stuck or needed a little direction on what evidence was required to satisfy the learning outcome. Once I was on my way I had completed all of the learning outcomes in a matter of months and have just received my certificate. 

Even paying the higher prices to other course providers, it is hard for me to imagine how they could compete with the level of support, service, advice and value that I received from Gordon and Durham open learning college whom I would and have wholeheartedly recommended to others. The speed at which I was progressing through the course was a major factor in me gaining my promotion.

Thanks again Gordon!

Barry Kelly
Associate Director
Venture Compliance Ltd

I recently completed my Level 5 Health and Safety Diploma through Durham open learning with the guidance of Gordon Spencer. I found Gordon to be very approachable throughout, Gordon helped me gain a clear understanding of the course requirements and technical knowledge was always only one phone call away. I completed the module within a very short period of time which would not be possible without the co-operation of Gordon who without doubt matched my hard work. Thanks Gordon.

Jack Cooksey
Carillion PLC
Sellafield LTD

Having just completed CMI Level 5 in Coaching and Mentoring I have to extend my gratitude to Gordon at Durham Learning College. His guidance, patience and support undoubtably made a huge difference enabling me to complete the course with confidence. He was always available - responding to my queries quickly and keeping me on track. 

I would recommend Durham Learning College to anyone considering completing a qualification to add to their portfolio - they provide the support and encouragement we all need to keep us going as we unravel and understand the complexity of our chosen subject.

Eileen Martin
H&C Regional Director

Massive thank you to Gordon at Durham opening learning for helping me to achieve my NVQ Level 5 Diploma. To all of you reading this I never thought that this would of been possible!
After trawling the internet for weeks on end for a genuine distance learning provider I can safely say they are the best, Gordon sent over a demonstration package for me to have a trial go at and spent time on the telephone, making sure I was happy with everything. I have had an poor experience of a distance learning in the past with another training provider, which cost me rather a lot of money and time, as this was the company driver.
Durham Opening Learning provide a professional, positive and inspiring service and I would have no doubt in recommending them, to anyone. Whilst you must have the commitment and self-motivation to complete the courses yourself, he will give you the push and focus in the right direction.

Rachel Moran

Gordon has helped me along with this NVQ level 5, and gone into some depth with what evidence I have needed and information required when answering questions. I came to Durham College due to the price of their online course, and found it so simple to get online, use the evidence submitting software and using joinme. Gordon’s not afraid to use up to date technology when it comes to getting students evidence together. He’s made me feel at ease with the course, and no question has ever been a silly one, You can ask him almost anything. He's quick to reply and always courteous. 

Cerisa Bond

I embarked on enrolling for the level 5 diploma with hesitation as I had not studied at this level in the past, after speaking with Gordon he put my concerns to rest and gave me the confidence to enroll. As an added bonus I found that I did not have to pay the course fee until Gordon was satisfied that I would be able to manage the course requirements. Throughout the course I have had excellent support from Gordon who is very knowledgeable and was able to guide me through each module requirement. Overall I would not hesitate to recommend Durham Open Learning College for those who are seeking to further their knowledge.

John Scott

I was researching online courses for Operations Management/Logistics and came across Durham Open Learning College website.

I had previously completed online course work related courses but I required both quality and flexibility for my choice of course. My main concern was the support available working around shift working. I viewed the DOLC website courses detailed and selected a Level 3 IOM course in Operations management.

I contacted Gordon Spencer and discussed the content and support available. I was immediately assured of the quality and support avaialable during the period I would be studying. The guidance and support received both by telephone and email were superb. The advice given by Gordon allowed me to plan and complete work around shifts with confidence. I completed the course in plenty of time for submission and received an award of a Grade A for my qualification.

From the first contact with Gordon to the awarding of the qualification, the quality of the support was invaluable and timely. Durham Open Learning College is outstanding in all aspects. I would highly recommend all students talk to Gordon regarding any course from DOLC.

Graeme Swinney

Production Operator

I have recently completed my Level 5 NVQ Diploma in Occupational Health and Safety Practice and would like to say a big thank you to Gordon at Durham Open Learning College. As I work offshore in the Oil & Gas industry, I was concerned as to how I would find time to study for the Diploma. When I had my first meeting, via Skype, Gordon ensured me he was very flexible and would work with me when I was available. The level of flexibility, support and professionalism via: Skype, email and telephone I received throughout was outstanding. I have absolutely no hesitation in recommending Durham Open Learning College to anyone considering open learning.

Chris Shepherd
Barge Supervisor
Offshore Oil & Gas

I would like to thank you personally for helping me complete Unit 5 of my CIPS Level 3 qualification in such a short period of time. Having studied units 1-3 with another distance learning provider, who will remain nameless here (but one which I would definitely not recommend),  and Unit 4 as self study due to a lack of support from the previous provider, I wanted to study my final unit with an organisation who could provide the support and guidance needed in order to allow me to achieve the best possible result from my studies.  My faith in distance learning providers was very low at the time we had our initial discussions.  Your organisation was highly recommended to me by an ex-work colleague, Julie Davitt, who was also a student of yours.  It was through the initial chats we had that you restored my faith in distance learning. Before enrolling with you for the unit, I was very impressed with the thoroughness of our discussions and the fact that you were extremely understanding relating to my other commitments.   –  especially when during our initial discussion my children were playing noisily in the background!  I explained from the outset that I only wanted to study one unit of the qualification with you – and appreciate that you were flexible enough to allow me to do this.  Your advice relating to CIPS exam centres in the north-east was also very much appreciated. The support given during the assignment submission period was second to none.  I cannot thank you enough for the guidance and constructive criticism given.  All feedback was professional and was done in a timely manner – and always well within the agreed deadlines. I was also extremely impressed when you recorded our telephone conversation relating to assessment techniques and emailed it to me shortly after the conversation took place.  This allowed me to listen to it on a number of occasions to ensure that I made correct use of all the points you advised on.  I have never worked with a training provider who has done this, and can definitely say what a fantastic idea this was!  I think that CIPS should be made aware of this technique as it is such a great learning tool. Once again Gordon, please accept my thanks for being so supportive during the course of my studies.  I will be in touch in the New Year to confirm the grade awarded by CIPS.  I will also, without doubt, have no hesitation in recommending your company to my friends, colleagues and employer.

Vicky Alderson

I have carried out NVQ type qualifications before but the NVQ Level 5 Diploma in Occupational Health and Safety Practice but this was by far the best. The regular support was outstanding and the help was always there when required. I would like to thank Gordon who made this a very smooth process. Would highly recommend!

Kelly Slack
HS&E Advisor

I had wanted to complete the NVQ Level 5 Diploma in Occupation Health and Safety Practice for some time.  However because of time and budget constraints I was not able to do so.  I was then given the opportunity to complete the qualification via distance learning.  I researched the providers available before deciding on Durham Open Learning College.  I was really apprehensive about doing a course of this level via distance learning.  I was also worried because Durham Open Learning College were the most inexpensive of all of the providers I researched.  After speaking to Gordon Spencer I was informed I would be using Skype and Quals Direct throughout the course,  I had not used either before.  I should not have worried, Gordon was at the end of the phone at all times to help me when necessary.  Using Skype, and uploading my work to Quals Direct was so easy to do.  However, I don’t think I would have completed the course without the help of Gordon, his help and advice were invaluable.  I would recommend the Durham Open Learning College to anyone wanting to complete any course.
Bev. Miller
Health and Safety Advisor

Embarking on any NVQ can be a daunting decision to make.  My dilemma was either to start a NEBOSH Diploma or use the experience I already have and start a NVQ5 OHS.  A friend of mine highly recommended that I get in touch with Gordon, straight away Gordon put me at ease and explained how NVQ's had changed since they were first introduced.  Gordon's guidance and support throughout my tenure was 100 percent.  My NVQ5 OHS was completed within 5 months due to the flexibility and attention to detail Gordon gives you prior and during the course.  There are a number of NVQ providers; however, there is only one provider that I recommend to anyone...."Gordon".

Keith Graham
Offshore Safety Manager

I undertook my Supply Chain Management Course with Durham Open Learning and I found the whole experience exceptional. The level of knowledge of the tutors was of an extremely high standard and they were on call at extreme parts of the day and night to offer in depth support and advice, which when self-studying was a massive positive. The IT infrastructure was very effective but also very easy to use. I cannot recommend the college highly enough and would not hesitate to use them again.

Martyn Smith
Food & Drink Category Buyer

I have just completed the NVQ Level 4 in Supply Chain Management through Durham Opening Learning College. Gordon guided me through the whole study by providing regular telephone conversations and emails to support me throughout the study. I was able to ask questions which we then discussed further, and I was also able to send my assignments to him for feedback before submitting. I feel more confident and I can complete the whole NVQ in 5 months. I would not hesitate and have already recommended Durham Open Learning College to other people. Thank you very much Gordon.  
Xiaobin Xu
Purchasing & Sourcing Administrator
Thomas Swan & Co Ltd. UK

My name is Waseem Khan I have recently taken My NVQ Level 5 IOSH Diploma with Durham Open Learning . This was the first time I have done any course on line, my tutor was Gordon Spencer and I can honestly say that the amount of time effort and the flexibility he provided speaking to me at all hours was superb. It was never too much and no matter how many times I called he was always the same patient, honest and great to work with. Always making time to speak with me and guide me through. I would not have managed to complete this course in the time that I have, had it not been for the amount of time and effort Gordon gave me. I would recommend him as a tutor to anyone he was top class. I look forward to taking more courses with him in the future. Thanks again for being such an excellent tutor.

Sgt 1017  Waseem Khan    

I researched this course with many other providers some much more expensive and I am so pleased I chose Durham Open Learning College. I just received confirmation of my full MCIPS all down to the great support from Durham Open Learning. Gordon guided me through the whole NVQ4 in Supply Chain Management. He provided continued regular guidance and flexible contact times including evenings and weekends to enable me to fit my NVQ around my work and family life. Recorded telephone conversations helped support me throughout the process and his responses were fast and this enabled me to complete the whole NVQ in 6 months. Thoroughly recommend Durham Open Learning College. Many thanks Gordon.

Tracy Davies
Procurement Team Manager
Adult Services Procurement Team
Hampshire County Council

I contacted Durham Open Learning College on the recommendation from a colleague who had recently completed his NVQ Level 5 Diploma in Occupational Health and Safety. As an experienced Health and Safety Advisor in the offshore oil industry I was keen to further develop my skills and knowledge as well as work towards chartered membership of IOSH. The course itself was excellent and I particularly liked the electronic portfolio which is an excellent method for collating evidence. The support and guidance provided by the tutor Gordon Spencer during the course was outstanding and his knowledge, flexibility and experience was a key factor in my achieving the qualification. I was extremely impressed with both the college and tutor and have no hesitation in recommending them to any potential candidates who may wish to attain this valuable qualification.

Derek Robson
Offshore HSE Advisor
Nexen Energy ULC

I have just completed Level five in Health Safety Management, I entered into this with some trepidation on the amount of work and knowledge needed to gain the qualification, however from the very beginning the support I received gave me the extra confidence to apply myself in the manner required, as during the course work all the support I needed was a phone call or an e mail away, the flexibility of the tutorial staff was in my opinion second to none, and will gratefully acknowledge the fact that even when one of the tutors was on holiday it was no issue for him to liaise with me, nothing ever seemed too trivial when contacting the tutors for advice, I have no hesitation whatsoever in recommending Durham Open Learning College.
James Casey
HSE Manager
JJO plc.

I have just completed the NCFE Level 5 NVQ Diploma in Occupational Health and Safety Practice through Durham Opening Learning College. I have undertaken and completed study in a number of countries around the world and whilst I do not usually provide testimonials to be published on the provider’s web site I believe it is appropriate that I do so on this occasion. In effect I openly thank Gordon (Director of Training) for his unerring support and quality of service that has been absolutely first class. If the reader is thinking of doing a course of study and it is available through Durham Opening Learning College, based on my experience, you will have chosen wisely if you proceed.
Andrew Harrod
Brisbane, Australia

NVQ Level 5 Diploma in Occupational Health & Safety - If there are course providers offering the attention to detail and the gratifying positive learning experience that Durham Open Learning College provides, then the industry is so much the better for it. If you strive to be a better practitioner through, reciprocated commitment, planning, review and goal structured success, then Gordon and the team at DOLC are absolutely the first choice. I have no reservations in offering this testimonial, to a service that exceeds first class.
Illya Kautai - GradIOSH
HSEA Manager
Nationwide Distribution Services

I would like to say a big thank you for the support and time that you have given to me on the NVQ Level 5 Health and Safety course that I have just finished. At my age of 47 years I did not know what to expect however once we had our first meeting on Skype I knew I was doing the right thing by starting the course, You went over everything and explained the procedure of the course and what was needed to complete the course and to obtain my qualification. Sir, I know this may sound a little silly coming from a 47 year old however this has been the best course that I have ever done and thanks to you I have completed it within the allotted time frame. To me this course has given me a better understanding of not only Health and Safety but a new look on how I conduct myself with others with regards to Health and Safety, I feel more confident and complete knowing the time I have spent doing this has made me a better Health and Safety Manager for my company and for that Sir I am very grateful. I have no hesitation in recommending you to my colleagues and my company and should I be asked if I know of any good Health and Safety training course providers your name will be on the top of that list. This has not only been a great pleasure but an honour as well learning from someone that gives the right information and support when needed. Again Sir, Thank You.
Kevin V Coleman
HSEQ, Welfare & Security Manager
Brookfield Multiplex Middle East & Asia

Having just recently completed the City & Guilds Level 5 NVQ Diploma in OHS, I would like to say a big thank you to all at Durham Open Learning College especially the programme facilitator Gordon for an excellent opportunity to confirm my abilties. The whole experience was excellent, being mature and new to distance learning I was not entirely sure how it was going to be, especially as this is a high level qualification. Athough it was a challenging course, I can attest to the high standards of academic related mentoring, constant availability of my assigned course facilitator and an always helpful IT support. Those being just some of the key reasons why I have no hesitation recommending this course and Durham Open Learning College to fellow H&S practitioners.

Anthony Nolan
Health and Safety Manager
Mauritan Copper Mines

I was really apprehensive about using a distance learning course and can honestly say I will definitely go back to Durham Open Learning College in the future as my first point of call when considering any future courses. They made everything so accessible, with timely responses and a choice of appointments, explaining the Quals Direct system to me step by step whilst I was logged into the system. The delivery and content of the course as well as the support and service I received was second to none. Gordon explained the modules to me and we went through the modules one at a time. I was able to raise any queries and ask questions which we then discussed further. I was also able to send my assignments to him for feedback before submitting and even completed the course ahead of schedule. I would not hesitate and have already recommended Durham Open Learning College to other people.
J Paddey

I would have no hesitation in recommending Durham Open Learning College to anyone wanting to achieve a professional qualification without the commitment of having to attend college each week. Having begun my studies with an alternate provider and receiving very little support and guidance, my faith in distance learning was extremely low. I enrolled with Durham Open Learning College to study the final unit of my CIPS Level 3 qualification by work based assignment. The advice and help given by Gordon during my studies was exceptional, resulting in achieving a distinction at 91% for my assignment. It was the little things that made such a difference, for example contacting me outside of office hours, recording telephone conversations for playback and the Skype access...... I would like to thank Durham Open Learning College for their support, guidance and professionalism - and will definitely be studying with this College in the future!!
V Alderson

I am grateful for your outstanding assistance and the support from Durham Open Learning a brilliant course as it’s arranged in a very clear and knowledgeable structure and it’s very easy for students to use. Open Learning’s advantage is that it lets the candidate choose the right time and place for them to study. The tutor’s feedback on the candidate’s assignment is also very useful and practical. I’d like to say a massive thank you Durham Open Learning and everyone who helped me. Looking forward to enrolling on my next course I would recommend Durham Open Learning to anyone wishing to gain qualifications within health and safety.

Roy Humphrey
EHS Focal Point ( Scott Platform)
Nexen Petrolium U.K. Ltd.

Having completed my NEBOSH General Certificate worked in the field for some time I decided to go on to study Diploma in Occupational Health and Safety Practice. What became a major decision factor for me was either to do NEBOSH Diploma or NVQ Level 5 Diploma. After careful consideration and consultation with my career mentor he advised that I opt for the NVQ Level 5. My mentors advice was based on the fact that I already hold MSc and other certifications that all theoretical and going in for NVQ Level 5 that is work based would help enriched my experience and also enable me build my knowledge in the health and safety profession as I aim toward CMIOSH. My research led me to Durham Open Learning College, as I was looking for a training institution that would not offer me the course but rather put into it that dedication and commitment having read in the past that many training institution have failed students in the past. As I begun the course I learnt a lot and also developed lot of confidence in the profession. I started the course immediately after my appointment as health and safety lead officer with Harpenden Mencap. My major assignment with the organisation at the time was to review and develop the management system for the organisation. I discussed the task with Gordon, my assessor who told me he is always available not only for the course but any issues from business that I would need his guidance on. I have to say that the course was delivered with highest quality beyond what I expected. Gordon was so committed and dedicated. He was there for me every time I needed any support in the course. Within few months of study I gathered so much confidence that I was able to put that on my CV. The leadership guide provided by Durham Open Learning College and the quality of delivery of the course in my view is second to none. In my experience NVQ Level 5 diploma in Occupational Health and Safety Practice is a very demanding programme however the quality of training received from Gordon and his team and guidance provided made the course more interesting and easy to build up the needed portfolios. I was happy I chose Durham Open Learning College for my course very grateful for what I have benefited from going the direction I took.
Henry Egya Bonuah
IMS Advisor

I would recommend Durham Open Learning College to anyone who wants to embark on the NVQ Level 5 diploma in Occupation Health and Safety Practice. This was my first experience of the NVQ process and what a pleasant and enjoyable experience it was! I have worked within the H&S field for a number of years so this qualification was a practical, flexible and attractive option for me as it fully utilised my working experience, which a more conventional method of learning would not have done. I found this an excellent course and it proved invaluable in not only updating my earlier qualifications but also expanding my knowledge even further as well as providing me the required membership to IOSH. The support and guidance provided by Durham Open Learning College was second to none, providing a fast and informed response to any queries raised and remaining patient, supportive and thorough in ensuring my full understanding of all topics. I was extremely impressed with both the qualification and the college and would not hesitate to recommend.
Louise Watmough GradIOSH
Health and Safety Advisor

I would like to take this opportunity to commend Mr Gordon Spencer, for all his time and support throughout my NVQ 5 journey. Our monthly meetings were structured and informative, with further support via Email or phone. Many thanks for all your support Gordon, you are highly recommended by me, and hope to contact you for future courses.
James Swales
Health and Safety Rep.
Heineken UK

I decided to study with Durham as not only were they competitively priced, but really understood what customer support is. Having worked in Health and Social Care for all my career completing a manager's qualification was daunting, Gordon made the whole process simple, had no end of advice and never once doubt I would succeed. I would recommend the e learning portfolio as you can see your achievements as you work through your award.
Jen Keefe
ILM NVQ Level 5 Management Diploma

We are a group or Safety Reps within Heineken who are studying for Level 5 Occupational Health and Safety. The E Portfolio and the excellent tutor support we have received mean we can easily fit this in around our roles within the company.
Nigel Blanthorne
Safety Rep.
Heineken UK