Taught course

The languages of crises (online short course)

Open University · Faculty of Wellbeing, Education and Language Studies

Entry requirements

There are no entry requirements for this course.

The course is made up of five units and you’ll need around 25 hours to complete the course. You can begin at any time during the life of the course and study at your own pace.

Months of entry


Course content

The COVID-19 pandemic is a global crisis such as most of us have never experienced before. Throughout this short course, you’ll explore the role that language and culture play in how people manage and respond to crises. The COVID-19 pandemic will be our case in point, but you’ll also explore other crises. You’ll learn about key linguistics and intercultural concepts and how people have engaged with humour, art and language change within the contexts of crises.

After successfully completing this short course, you’ll receive a digital badge. This can be shared on social media, added to email signatures or act as a certificate.

You will learn:

  • the complexity of concepts of culture and language change and use and their potential impact on how people manage and respond in crisis situations
  • about the systemic inequalities and how they affect communities and individuals in global crises
  • to interpret, evaluate and negotiate perspectives and practices of your own and others’ cultures in times of crisis
  • to gather, evaluate, read and share reliable information
  • to identify characteristics of private and public discourse in times of crisis
  • to use digital tools and platforms to engage with artistic responses to global crises
  • to use Voyant Tools to evaluate reliable information in crises.

Fees and funding

UK students
International students

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • CPD
    0.25 months
    • Online learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

The Open University