Staffordshire University will be working with Advance HE and six university partners on a new project which aims to reduce racial inequalities.
We’re delighted to have been appointed by TASO as evaluators on this new phase of the project which will help universities to make real progress on this very important issue.
Earlier this year Staffordshire Centre of Learning and Pedagogic Practice (SCoLPP) published a report which analysed what universities were doing to tackle the ethnicity degree awarding gap.
The gap refers to the significant difference in the proportions of students from marginalised ethnic backgrounds being awarded a first or upper-second class undergraduate degree when compared to white students.
The research, led by Dr Sally Andrews, was carried out for the Centre for Transforming Access and Students Outcomes in Higher Education (TASO).
It revealed that interventions to address the achievement gap tended to be inadequately detailed and it was unclear how they reduce the gap. The report also recommended that providers develop robust Theories of Change which clearly links activities to targets and objectives.
Following an open call in the summer, six higher education (HE) providers have been selected by TASO to work on a new phase of the project that will develop Theories of Change and evaluation plans designed to tackle the ethnicity degree awarding gap.
The following six HE providers will work closely with Staffordshire University and Advance HE who have been jointly appointed as the independent evaluator on the project.
- Birmingham City University
- Loughborough University
- Manchester Metropolitan University
- University of Law
- University of Southampton
- University of York
Dr Sally Andrews said: “We’re delighted to have been appointed by TASO as evaluators on this new phase of the project which will help universities to make real progress on this very important issue.”
Theories of Change will be developed for a wide range of interventions being delivered by the partner HE providers, which involve:
- Adapting assessment practice
- Developing curricula
- Financial support
- Harnessing student voice
- Peer mentoring
- Placement and careers support
- Skills development
- Using learner analytics
TASO aims to publish these Theories of Change and evaluation plans as prototypes for the sector to use in Spring 2024.