Scottish universities told they ‘should favour’ less well-off students

The BBC is reporting that claims that Scottish universities should consider admitting students from deprived backgrounds whose grades are lower than their more affluent counterparts.

The Commission on Widening Access said there was an “undeniable case for change” on the issue.

But it acknowledged the move would be “divisive”, with concerns that middle-class students could be displaced.

The commission was set up by the first minister last year.

It was tasked with advising the Scottish government on how best to achieve its goal of ending the big gap between the number of students from wealthy and deprived backgrounds going to university.

The commission’s interim report said there had been “steady progress” on the issue over the past decade. 

But it stressed that “very significant socioeconomic inequalities” remained which were “unfair, unsustainable and detrimental to Scotland”, and said the country had a moral and economic duty to tackle the issue

The report said it had been suggested that admitting students from deprived backgrounds with lower grades could have a detrimental impact on the academic excellence of Scotland’s universities. 

But it stated: “There is increasingly strong evidence that with the right support, bright students from deprived backgrounds can enhance, rather than jeopardise, academic excellence…”

The commission’s final report is expected to be submitted next year…

More at: Universities ‘should favour’ less well-off students


Read or download the report in full:

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Interesting approach being taken with the recommendations in this report from Scotland. 

Would you like to see a similar approach to that being suggested in England with more disadvantaged students given lower offers to widen access?

Please tell us why/why not in the comments or via Twitter…


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Categories: Higher Education, Policy and Scotland.


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