Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Addressing male higher education progression: A profile of four successful projects

an article by Neil Raven (Loughborough University) published in Widening Participation and Lifelong Learning Volume 14 Number 2 (Summer 2012)


Despite recent progress in widening participation, males from poorer backgrounds remain less likely to progress to higher education than their counterparts from more affluent families or, indeed, than females from the same backgrounds as them.

It is a subject that has received a considerable amount of attention in recent years, featuring in government surveys, news reports and academic studies.

Although a seemingly intractable problem when viewed at the level of UK-wide trends, this article profiles four innovative projects that have enjoyed local success in tackling the low progression rates to higher education of males from poorer backgrounds.

While these projects vary in scale, content and approach, and are located in different parts of the country, they are shown to have shared a number of characteristics that underpin their individual success. Having explored each of these characteristics in turn, the article concludes by suggesting that these findings, and the lessons that can be drawn from them, should be of value to researchers and policy makers, as well as the practitioners who oversee initiatives aimed at widening participation.

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