Access and participation report cites University strengths

The Russell Group has launched a new report on Access and Participation, featuring the University of Liverpool.

Pathways for Potential levels challenges at the 24 Russell Group universities, the regulator and government to do much more to improve access.

It shares lessons learned, progress made, and a ten-year plan for the journey ahead as the group continues to work to improve access to top universities for under-represented groups such as white working-class boys, care leavers, and ethnic minorities.

The report identifies a need for targeted support for different cohorts of students, and cites a University of Liverpool initiative as an exemplar of good practice in this area.

It highlights the University’s work with a local Somali and Yemeni community group to build successful relationships with prospective students through their Fast Trackers initiative, observing that previous participants entering the university are now working as mentors for the next generation of students, acting as positive role models and embedding the project further within the community.

The report states that: “Universities are well-placed to work with smaller cohorts in their cities and regions, which may not yield large volumes of prospective students but can have a profound impact on the progression of individual groups of learners within the local community.”

In the report’s section concerning access and participation plans, the University of Liverpool is named as one of fourteen English Russell Group universities to have set specific targets to improve access, continuation, attainment and/or progression for students with a disability.

The report highlights the University of Liverpool’s prioritising of mental health, noting that the University is working with the local NHS Trust to provide additional staffing, training and support for students.

Professor Gavin Brown, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Education said: “At the University of Liverpool we strongly believe that anyone with the potential to benefit from higher education should have the opportunity to do so and we are continually working to reach under-represented groups and to enable our current and future students to succeed. This commitment means that we are consistently in the top 3 of the Russell Group for the percentage of UK students recruited from neighbourhoods with low participation. The Pathways to Potential report will help to inform this central part of our mission and guide new initiatives in the future.”

You can read the full report here.