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  5. Understanding awarding gaps for disabled and black LHCS students at Level 1

Understanding awarding gaps for disabled and black LHCS students at Level 1

Project leader(s): 
Carol Midgley and Jane Loughlin

The proportion of disabled and BAME students on an individual module presentation can be relatively low, so although awarding gaps are a persistent feature, they tend to be variable and difficult to analyse. It is clear that there is a consistent gap in retention between black/ white students and between disabled/ non-disabled students (particularly those with mental health issues, see data below) for the three large population 60-credit Level 1 modules that are compulsory in the qualifications supported by LHCS:

  • SDK100 - compulsory in Q71 Health Sciences (and hosted by LHCS)
  • S111 and S112 - both compulsory in Q64 Biology and Chemistry pathways, R58 Biology and R59 Chemistry (S111 is hosted by SPS and S112 by EEES)

What is proposed here is a detailed exploration of assessment scores, retention, and VLE engagement (as an indicator of passive withdrawals) for completed presentations of these modules, and of the intersection with demographic analytics data to help identify the main factors contributing to retention and awarding gaps for specific groups of disabled students and BAME students. The aim is to help improve our understanding of the student profiles and the timing in the modules where focussed/personal support could be most effective. This study will form the basis for a separate follow-up study to investigate the extent to which individual circumstances might impact on retention, which would likely involve student surveys and qualitative analysis of follow-up interviews or focus groups. In the longer term this improved understanding would feed into both L1 module and SST initiatives to help close awarding gaps for these groups of students.

Carol Midgley and Jane Loughlin poster (PPT)