University of the Philippines Open University

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University of the Philippines
Open University
Unibersidad ng Pilipinas
Bukás na Unibersidad
Motto Honor and Excellence
Established 1908 (system)
1995 (campus)
Type Distance Learning Institution
National, Research University
Chancellor Grace J. Alfonso, PhD
President Alfredo E. Pascual, MBA
Location Los Baños, Laguna, Philippines
Hymn U.P. Naming Mahal
(U.P. Beloved)
Nickname Fighting Maroons
Mascot U.P. Oblation
Affiliations ICDE, AAOU, PSDL
UP logotype.svg

The University of the Philippines Open University (U.P.O.U.) is a public distance learning institution and research university headquartered at Los Baños, Laguna. It was established on February 23, 1995 as the fifth constituent university of the University of the Philippines System. Its mandate is to provide education opportunities to individuals aspiring for higher education and improved qualifications but were unable to take advantage of traditional modes of education because of personal and professional obligations.

U.P.O.U. provides quality higher and continuing education to Filipinos through the distance education system. Its mission is to give its students formal qualification, as well as to develop in them the discipline and capability to become lifelong learners who are at home in today's knowledge society.

The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) has declared the U.P.O.U. as the National Center of Excellence in Open Learning and Distance Education in recognition of its achievements in this field and its vital role in pushing the frontiers of learning in service to the Filipino nation.

The U.P. Open University aims to:

  • Offer through open and distance learning degree and non-degree programs that are responsive to the needs of learners and of the society of which they are a part;
  • Develop a system of continuing education to sustain professional growth and promote lifelong learning;
  • Develop and adapt delivery systems appropriate to distance learners;
  • Provide leadership in the development of open learning and distance education expertise in the country and in the appropriate use of information and communication technologies of education; and
  • Make instructional packages accessible to various publics through collaborative arrangements, institutional agreements, and other appropriate mechanisms.

Mode of Teaching & Learning[edit]

U.P.O.U. delivers its programs and courses through distance education (DE). In this mode, teachers and learners are separated by time and space. Learners study in an independent self-learning style using specially designed learning materials and resources. Teaching and learning is mediated through the use of technology like print, audio, video, and the internet. Students interact with their instructors and each other through virtual classrooms, email, and web conferencing. Almost all U.P.O.U. courses are offered through online learning mode, making them accessible to learners from different parts of the country and the world. . . . .

Faculties of Studies[edit]

U.P.O.U. has three faculties of studies (or colleges), each headed by a dean:

Faculty of Education (FEd)[edit]

The Faculty of Education (FEd) covers the following range of areas of study: general education, alternative education, language and literacy education, science and mathematics teaching, social studies education, and distance education.

Faculty of Information & Communication Studies (FICS)[edit]

FICS offers degree programs in communication, information systems, computer science, and multimedia studies.

Faculty of Management and Development Studies (FMDS)[edit]

FMDS offers a range of postgraduate programs in R&D management, environment and natural resources management, land valuation and management, public management, social work, nursing, hospital administration, and public health as well as non-formal programs in entrepreneurship, health, and land valuation.

Academic Programs[edit]

The U.P. Open University offers the following degree programs:

Undergraduate Programs[edit]

  • Associate in Arts
  • Bachelor of Arts in Multimedia Studies
  • Bachelor of Education Studies

Graduate Certificate Program[edit]

  • Graduate Certificate in ASEAN Studies
  • Graduate Certificate in Distance Education (within the Master of Distance Education)

Post-Baccalaureate Diploma Programs[edit]

  • Diploma in Social Work
  • Diploma in Computer Science
  • Diploma in International Health
  • Diploma in Research and Development Management
  • Diploma in Environment and Natural Resources Management
  • Diploma in Land Valuation and Management
  • Diploma in Science Teaching
  • Diploma in Math Teaching
  • Diploma in Language and Literacy Education for Teachers
  • Diploma in Social Studies Education

Master's Programs[edit]

  • Master of ASEAN Studies
  • Master of Social Work
  • Master of Development Communication
  • Master of Distance Education
  • Master of International Health
  • Master of Land Valuation and Management
  • Master of Public Health
  • Master in Hospital Administration
  • Master of Arts in Nursing
  • Master of Public Management
  • Master of Environment and Natural Resources Management
  • Master of Arts in Education (Language and Literacy Education)
  • Master of Arts in Social Studies Education
  • Master in Information Systems

Doctoral Programs[edit]

  • Doctor of Philosophy in Education (Biology Education, Chemistry Education, Physics Education, Mathematics Education)
  • Doctor of Communication

Non-formal Courses[edit]

The U.P.O.U. offers several non-formal courses and certificate programs. These are:

  • Caring for the Special Child
  • Caring for the Elderly
  • Community Mental Health
  • Health Research Methods
  • New Enterprise Planning
  • Online Teaching and Learning
  • Organic Agriculture
  • Personal Entrepreneurial Development
  • Introduction to E-Commerce
  • Professional Teaching Certification
  • Simplified Accounting for Entrepreneurs
  • Continuing Professional Education Program on Land Valuation

U.P.O.U. Headquarters[edit]

The U.P.O.U. Headquarters is located in Los Baños, Laguna, close to the International Rice Research Institute. Set against the picturesque view of Mount Makiling, its main administrative and annex buildings house the main offices,including the Office of the Chancellor (OC), the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs (OVCAA), the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration (OVCFA), and the Faculties of Studies Offices. The Center Center for Digital Learning (CCDL) Auditorium is also in this complex.

A major landmark in the U.P.O.U. Headquarters is the U.P.O.U. Oblation sculpture that stands in the Oblation Plaza in front of the main building. It is basically a replica of National Artist Guillermo Tolentino's U.P. Oblation, which depicts a man facing upward with arms outstretched, symbolizing selfless offering of oneself to the country. UPOU’s Oblation stands on a pedestal with a ribbon-like flag swirling around the pedestal and the Oblation. This gives an effect of the flag lifting the Oblation into greater heights and gives it the boundless reach that is symbolic of UPOU's prime objective of widening access to UP quality education. It was designed and executed by University Artist and UPOU Chancellor Dr. Grace J. Alfonso in 2005. The UPOU Oblation statue also provides a stately background to the Oblation Plaza where the annual commencement exercises are held.

The University also maintains a satellite office at the National Computer Center Building in Diliman, Quezon City.

Learning Centers[edit]

The U.P.O.U. has several Learning Centers in strategic locations in the country. These Centers are the venues where students can conduct and seek advice on the following transactions, activities and procedures:

  • application for admission
  • registration
  • student orientation
  • distribution of course materials
  • dropping of subjects
  • filing leave of absence
  • examinations
  • accessing library materials
  • face-to-face tutorials (if available)
  • tutorials on basic computer and internet literacy

Learning Centers are mostly located in other U.P. campuses and state universities in selected regions of the country.

To serve the student support needs of offshore students, the University has created the Virtual Learning Center, where all transactions and procedures are conducted and communicated online.


U.P.O.U. conducts research in distance education (DE) and the disciplines it currently offers.

The University has spearheaded research in open and distance learning in the country. Its research in this area has delved into the following topics: DE learner profile, learning styles, and learner performance; online teaching and learning; virtual learning environments; computer-mediated collaborative learning; gender and distance education; pedagogical approaches in distance education; DE program evaluation; and management of DE.

In addition, the University has also pursued research in the following discipline-based areas: education, information and communication technology, multimedia, communication, organization and management, public policy, environment, health, and development studies. Many of these discipline-based studies have been externally funded.

Past and Present Students[edit]

  • Eliza Pineda - Bachelor of Arts in Multimedia Studies; actress
  • Toni Gonzaga - Bachelor of Arts in Multimedia Studies; singer, actress, television host
  • Sharon Cuneta - Associate in Arts student; singer, actress, television host; wife of Senator Francis Pangilinan
  • Sarah Geronimo - Associate in Arts graduate; singer, actress, dancer, Asia's Popstar Royalty
  • Jackielou Blanco - Associate in Arts student; actress, bodybuilder, fitness instructor; daughter of singer Pilita Corrales and wife of actor Ricky Davao
  • Gerardo Gambala - Master of Public Management graduate of 2007; former Captain of the Philippine Army; Valedictorian, Philippine Military Academy Class of 1995; the leader of the soldiers who staged the Oakwood mutiny; mistah (classmate) of Senator Antonio Trillanes IV
  • Richard Gomez - Associate in Arts graduate of 2009; actor
  • Rachelle Ann Go - Associate in Arts student; singer
  • Joanne Zapanta-Andrada - Graduate, Master on Development Communications student, Phil. National Red Cross Governor, fashion model, newspaper columnist, Presidential consultant
  • Juan Nanagas - graduated MPH; former PGH director; doctor
  • Jejomar Binay - Diploma in Environment and Natural Resource Management graduate, former Makati City Mayor, Vice President of the Republic of the Philippines
  • Miguel Zubiri, Graduate, Master in Environment and Natural Resources Management, Senator, Republic of the Philippines
  • Catherine Untalan, Graduate, Master of Environmental and Natural Resources Management, Miss Earth Philippines
  • Kris Psyche Resus,Associate in Arts student; former Miss Philippines Earth 2010
  • Emmerie Dale Cunanan,Associate in Arts student; former 2nd Runner-Up Turismo Filipina 2008, Miss Philippines Earth-Water 2010
  • Ramon Manuel T. Nisperos,New Enterprise Planning, Personal Entrepreneurial Development and Introduction to E-Commerce; UPOU FMDS Professor [1]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]

Preceded by
University of the Philippines campuses by foundation
February 23, 1995 (5th)
Succeeded by