University of Edinburgh Widening Participation
Introduction to the background to and initiatives of Widening Participation (WP) at the University of Edinburgh.
What is Widening Participation?
Widening Participation (WP) to higher education is a strategic priority for the UK and Scottish governments, the higher education sector in general and the University of Edinburgh in particular.
WP aims to address the discrepancies in the take-up of higher education opportunities between different social groups.
We therefore work to raise aspirations and educational attainment among prospective students from under-represented groups, to:
- prepare them for higher education
- ensure success on their programme of study
- improve their employment prospects
- open possibilities for postgraduate study
- give them opportunities to return to learning throughout their lives
Who is it aimed at?
- lower socio-economic groups
- low-participation schools and neighbourhoods
The University is engaged with prospective students, their families and advisers in a wide range of Widening Participation awareness and aspiration raising projects and activities aimed at students who are:
- first generation to consider higher education
- from low socio-economic groups
- attending schools of low progression
- living in low-participation neighbourhoods
- mature students from the above groups
The University of Edinburgh believes that diversity is educationally as well as socially desirable, enriching the educational experience for all.
We therefore seek to attract a wide range of applicants from different social, cultural and educational backgrounds.
We work with schools or colleges where relatively few students progress to higher education and those who will be first generation of their families to go to university.
With widening participation at the heart of our agenda, we will deliver an outstanding student experience.
Widening Participation is now one of six strategic themes of the University’s Strategic Plan:
The strategic themes of particular relevance to Widening Participation are:
- Enhancing our student experience
- Engaging with our wider community
- Promoting equality, diversity, sustainability and social responsibility
- Stimulating alumni relations and philanthropic giving
Find out more about our activities and projects here: