Institute for Academic Development
Institute for Academic Development

Promoting support to succeed and progress, by evaluating student experiences that nurture an environment of inclusivity.

Promoting support to succeed and progress, by evaluating student experiences that nurture an environment of inclusivity.

School:  GeoSciences

Team Members:  Rachel Hunt, Clare Barnes, Kay Douglas, Andy Cross, Neil Speirs, Tom Clemens, Krithika Srinivasan, Niamh Shortt, Anthony Newton, Andrew Dugmore, Susan Orr, Katy McPhail

Abstract

Our education system is tasked with addressing (and redressing) the consequences of disadvantage – the roots of which lie in wider social disadvantage and marginalisation. Important University-wide programmes exist which aim to increase access to HE (eg LEAPS, Pathways to the Professions, Contextualised entry, outreach and bridging programmes, ACES). The challenges faced by disadvantaged students do not stop after entering HE, indeed when considering broader concepts of belonging, they perhaps increase as students encounter additional barriers at key transitional points in their university experience.

This PTAS application therefore aims to contribute to two of the supportive strands of the University Widening Participation (WP) Strategy: ‘support to succeed’ and ‘support to progress’. In order to contribute to these supportive strands, this project aims to gain cultural insights from both the School of GeoSciences and wider University practice in order to devise, test and recommend key points of intervention to create an inclusive institutional culture. By co-developing our research with students, we contribute a novel bottom-up approach to deepening our understanding of creating a more inclusive University culture where students from diverse backgrounds thrive and feel a sense of belonging.