Hellenic Open University

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Hellenic Open University
Ελληνικό Ανοικτό Πανεπιστήμιο
Hellenic Open University logo.jpg
Established 1992
Type Public
Chancellor Charalampos Kokotsis
Vice-Chancellor Panagiotis Giannopoulos
Academic staff
25 permanent, almost 1,250 with annual contracts
Administrative staff
Undergraduates 17,786
Postgraduates 13,330
Location Patras, Greece
Campus 10,565 m²
Website www.eap.gr

The Hellenic Open University (Greek: Ελληνικό Ανοικτό Πανεπιστήμιο - ΕΑΠ) is a multi-school public university run by the Greek State. The institution, which is based in Patras, is unique in the Greek context in that it exclusively provides distance education at both undergraduate and postgraduate level.


The Hellenic Open University was founded in 1992 in Patras, but remained defunct until 1997 at which time legislation was enacted (Act 2552/97) regarding its operation. The first cohorts of students were admitted in 1999. Further legislation amended the operation of the university by further specifying inter alia its scope, admissions, tuition and academic recruitment procedures (Article 14 of Act 2817/2000, Article 3 of Act 3027/2002 and Article 13 of Act 3260/2004).

Academic Profile[edit]

HOU is organised in four schools:

The School of Applied Arts offers only postgraduate degrees, while the other three schools offer both undergraduate and postgratuate degrees.

Undergraduate programs[edit]

University Degrees are provided by the undergraduate programs of study and are distributed in the afforementioned schools as shown below:

School of Humanities

School of Social Sciences

School of Science and Technology

Postgraduate programs[edit]

Postgraduate Master degrees of nominal value are also offered in various subjects such as

School of Humanities

School of Social Sciences

School of Science and Technology

School of Applied Arts


In 2008, it was estimated that around 25,000 students were registered in the HOU.[1] Older data suggests that the majority of them are mature students (over 35 years old).[2] Admissions take place randomly through a strict and predefined algorithm evaluated and assured by the district attorney,[3] Nearly one out of ten applicants is granted a place at the university.[1][4] Attrition levels are high:[5] for instance, out of more than 500 students who registered in the Natural Sciences program in 2000, only 8 had graduated by the end of 2006.[2]

Teaching staff[edit]

The University offers its courses through 1.358 professors most of which teach relevant courses in Greece's public universities. .[6] In addition to their teaching role, the staff of the university produce research which primarily focuses on issues of distance education, according to the university mandate. In terms of research output, the tenured academics of the university published 188 articles between 2002 and 2006 in peer-reviewed journals, including the ones affiliated to the university. Including self-references, these articles had generated 233 citations as recorded on the ISI Web of Knowledge. Using the ratio of citations per publication as a criterion of research quality, the university ranked at the 15th place out of 64 research institutions in Greece.[7] Formal self-evaluations and external reviews and evaluations, which are mandated by legislation (PL 3374/2005) for all public tertiary institutes, have been taking place in the HOU for the last years[8]

Awards & Reputation[edit]

HOU is the sixth largest public university in Greece with 16317 active students[9] and every year accepts thousands of entry applications by Greek and national students[10] which infers Greek's approval of its high level of education.

Furthermore, the reputation of the MBA program offered by the University is continuously increasing, with latest achievement the recognition of E-xcellence Associate in Quality awarded by the European Association of Distance Teaching Universities (EADTU) and it is now included in the list of the Qualified institutions. In addition to the above the HOU's School of Arts was awarded an Excellence by the National Ministry of Education[11] for its Pervasive Computing Games.

All universities providing distance study, have faced controversy concerning the level and quality of their studies – a stage, incidentally, that the open universities operating in other countries also passed in their first stages.[12] Due to the above, HOU is viewed with skepticism by Greece's academic community,[13] despite its legal recognition, awards, acceptance and reputation. However, such concerns are unwarranted. Not only does research show that DE offers certain students a sound pedagogical alternative,[14] HOU’s tutors and academic community are also members of Greece’s traditional university community. Moreover, the course writers hired by HOU to write its course and learning materials also work as course writers at traditional universities[13]


  1. ^ a b Katsikas, Christos (August 28, 2008), "Ανοικτό Πανεπιστήμιο: 72.000 υποψήφιοι για 7.200 θέσεις", Ta Nea (Athens, Greece)  .
  2. ^ a b Nanouris, Dimitris (December 17, 2006), "Το ΕΑΠ σε αριθμούς", Ελευθεροτυπία (Athens, Greece)  .
  3. ^ "HOU Admissions, 2012". Hellenic Open University. Retrieved 18 June 2013. 
  4. ^ Oikonomou, Anastasios (January 29, 2007), "Π. Σιαφαρίκας: Κοινωνική ανάγκη το Ελληνικό Ανοικτό Πανεπιστήμιο", Kathimerini (Athens, Greece) 
  5. ^ Vergitis, Dimitris and Panagiotakopoulos, Chris (2002), "Student Dropout at the Hellenic Open University:", The International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning 3 (2), ISSN 1492-3831, retrieved 2008-06-22 
  6. ^ "HOU Statistics, 2013". Hellenic Open University. Retrieved 18 June 2013. 
  7. ^ Webometrics Greece, June 19, 2013 
  8. ^ Hellenic Quality Assurance Authority 2012 Report p. 24
  9. ^ "National University Statistics, 2009". Ministry of Education. Retrieved 18 June 2013. 
  10. ^ "HOU Statistics of Application per program, 2013". Hellenic Open University. Retrieved 18 June 2013. 
  11. ^ "Fun in Numbers (FinN)". Hellenic Ministry of Education. Retrieved 18 June 2013. 
  12. ^ Keegan, Desmond (1996). Foundations of Distance Education. 
  13. ^ a b Koustarakis, G; Panagiotakopoulos, C. and Vergidis,. "A Contribution to the Hellenic Open University: Evaluation of the pedagogical practices and the use of ICT on distance education". The International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning 9 (2). 
  14. ^ Shachar, Mickey; Yoram Neumann (2003). "Differences Between Traditional and Distance Education Academic Performances: A meta-analytic approach". The International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning 4. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 38°12′23″N 21°45′54″E / 38.20639°N 21.76500°E / 38.20639; 21.76500