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  5. Understanding factors influencing BAME students’ achievements within Engineering and Innovation

Understanding factors influencing BAME students’ achievements within Engineering and Innovation

Project leader(s): 
Carol Morris and Rachel Slater
Theme: 
Faculty: 
STEM
Status: 
Current

Students from BAME groups appear to perform less well than their white counterparts across all modules in E&I. We intend to develop a clear picture of the data for modules and qualifications within the E&I BoS before examining in more detail reasons for differences in achievement across various groups.

Phase 1:

Numbers of BAME students on individual modules varies across the curriculum and we will, initially, look at students on stage 1 and 2 modules to see if we can establish any patterns. We intend to examine the data at both module and qualification level to determine whether assumed prior knowledge, or recommended order of study, influence outcomes of BAME students compared to their white counterparts.

We also intend to examine VLE engagement in both BAME and white students.

As numbers are low across BAME groups it will be possible to examine other data – such as PEQs, socio-economic, age and employment status for these students and compare with similar groups of white students. Assumptions are often made that BAME students belong to low PEQ and low SEC groupings and this may not be the case.

This phase would also include a literature review. This review will help to benchmark the situation for BAME students across the HEI sector as a whole, develop our understanding of BAME uptake of both STEM and distance learning within this context, and consider strategies for improving the outcomes for BAME students.

Phase 2:

This phase would consist of surveying students followed by individual interviews with BAME and white students to understand their motivations and aspirations for studying at the OU and identify any differences between the groups that could influence curriculum and delivery.

Phase 3:

This phase would consist of an audit of module materials and websites in E&I looking at language and image and any relevant findings from Phase 2 with the aim of informing production module teams of strategies which could improve outcomes for students from BAME groups.

Carol Morris and Rachel Slater poster (PPTX)

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