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Geography and WP at Exeter Richard Jones. WP at Exeter – University schemes HEFCE- target - 19% of student intake HEFCE- target - 19% of student intake.

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Presentation on theme: "Geography and WP at Exeter Richard Jones. WP at Exeter – University schemes HEFCE- target - 19% of student intake HEFCE- target - 19% of student intake."— Presentation transcript:

1 Geography and WP at Exeter Richard Jones

2 WP at Exeter – University schemes HEFCE- target - 19% of student intake HEFCE- target - 19% of student intake Currently – 14% Currently – 14% WP activities – run through the School liaison office. WP activities – run through the School liaison office. –Campus day visits –Mentoring programme – undergraduates visit promising students – year 10 and 11. –Subject master-classes – English. Easter classes on GCSE topics for ~ 100 yr 10 students – high achievers from disadvantaged backgrounds. –Summer schools – two weeklong residential programme – sample campus life and courses offered. –Development of Bursary scheme for local students – depending on variables fees in 2006 – (£2000 for 100 students).

3 Geography at Exeter 2003 – 2004 – places on offer 2003 – 2004 – places on offer BA = ABC (300 pts) – A in Geography BA = ABC (300 pts) – A in Geography BSc = ACD (260 pts) – A in Geography + Science BSc = ACD (260 pts) – A in Geography + Science Gave out 1002 offers Gave out 1002 offers Entry requirements were raised in 2003 with the introduction of an A in Geog to try and combat over application + perceived drop in the standard of applicants. Entry requirements were raised in 2003 with the introduction of an A in Geog to try and combat over application + perceived drop in the standard of applicants.

4 Identifying WP students….. Based on Social Class – determined by post-code, house type (?) and school. Based on Social Class – determined by post-code, house type (?) and school. Comparatively high entry requirements are somewhat problematic. Achieving / maintaining standards. Comparatively high entry requirements are somewhat problematic. Achieving / maintaining standards. On average still reject outright ~ 8 WP applications. On average still reject outright ~ 8 WP applications. Aside from Campus visits – Geography does not currently participate in any of the University WP schemes. In part due to a lack of demand! Aside from Campus visits – Geography does not currently participate in any of the University WP schemes. In part due to a lack of demand! Classification carried out by central admissions – they attach a blue form to UCAS application and send them out to admissions tutors.Classification carried out by central admissions – they attach a blue form to UCAS application and send them out to admissions tutors. If suitable candidate – lower offer B in Geog or at the very least invited for Interview. If suitable candidate – lower offer B in Geog or at the very least invited for Interview.

5 School entrants % - State school sector 58% - State school sector 8% Mature 8% Mature 1% Ethnic minorities 1% Ethnic minorities 12% Lower Social class 12% Lower Social class Below University average – and well below HEFCE standards – no sign of improvement. Below University average – and well below HEFCE standards – no sign of improvement. WP Geography intake…… 2003

6 Under-recruit from the South West, Under-recruit from the South West, Majority of students from SE - < 1% from north! Majority of students from SE - < 1% from north! WP Geography intake…… Cornwall ~ 260k population - 26 applications. Cornwall ~ 260k population - 26 applications. Dorset ~ 460k population - 29 applications, Dorset ~ 460k population - 29 applications, Somerset ~ 645k population - 30 applications, Somerset ~ 645k population - 30 applications, Devon ~ 1m population - 44 applications. Devon ~ 1m population - 44 applications. In comparison Surrey ~ 1.01m population - 92 applications Surrey ~ 1.01m population - 92 applications

7 Interestingly, it is not just our entrants who tend to come from predominantly privileged communities, but also our applicants. For 2002 – 2003 over 70% of both applicants and entrants came from wards with lower than average levels of deprivation (using the new DETR Index of Multiple Deprivation, 2000). Therefore little point in simply devising mechanisms of positive discrimination in favour of those from socially disadvantaged backgrounds.

8 Why so few WP students ???.. Huge Image problem – that puts WP students off Huge Image problem – that puts WP students off –Oxbridge types / Durham of the south –Rich student body – Staff vs Student car park Lack of Ethnic minorities in the SW as a whole Lack of Ethnic minorities in the SW as a whole Currently no black / Asian Geography – 1% ethnic intake = Chinese postgraduates As recruitment has never been a problem – and fact that research is THE main focus of the dept– never been any incentive to make WP a priority until recently. As recruitment has never been a problem – and fact that research is THE main focus of the dept– never been any incentive to make WP a priority until recently. Limited links with local colleges / schools……… Limited links with local colleges / schools………

9 Located across the road from university Located across the road from university th formers – large % of which classed as WP students th formers – large % of which classed as WP students. Majority of Geography students that go onto take a Majority of Geography students that go onto take a Geography degree in SW – Plymouth. Never consider Exeter – too posh. Geography degree in SW – Plymouth. Never consider Exeter – too posh. No formal links until recently between the two institutions No formal links until recently between the two institutions

10 Teaching & WP Dedicated tutors – task is to guide WP students through early stages of University. Extra support sessions individual / group Dedicated tutors – task is to guide WP students through early stages of University. Extra support sessions individual / group But task hampered by fact that not allowed to know who the WP students are…..!!! Data protection act. But task hampered by fact that not allowed to know who the WP students are…..!!! Data protection act. Fieldwork – problem area for WP students. Fieldwork – problem area for WP students. –New Zealand – Student contribution =£1200 –Cumbria – Student contribution = £60 WP students excluded from International experience!! WP students excluded from International experience!! The perception that it is the WP students that bring with them the various issues / problems….but not always the case! The perception that it is the WP students that bring with them the various issues / problems….but not always the case!

11 Answers…..? Student ambassadors Identify students within our present undergraduate cohort who have come from target schools Identify students within our present undergraduate cohort who have come from target schools Schools in the South West identified as having either a low HE progression rate, or which are under-represented at Exeter – and recruit them as student ambassadors. Schools in the South West identified as having either a low HE progression rate, or which are under-represented at Exeter – and recruit them as student ambassadors. These students paid to go back to their schools to demonstrate that Geography at Exeter is both an attractive proposition and a realistic aspiration. These students paid to go back to their schools to demonstrate that Geography at Exeter is both an attractive proposition and a realistic aspiration. If requested Staff to follow up with additional talk. If requested Staff to follow up with additional talk. Is it working? Is it working?


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