Access Academy: Mind the (attainment) gap – How can we narrow the attainment gap and will this lead to greater HE participation?

Access Academy Training

  • Date


  • Time

      10:00 am - 4:00 pm

Within the Office for Students (OfS) ‘Consultation on a new approach to regulating equality of opportunity in English higher education’ the OfS states that it expects ‘providers to address in their plan the key sector-level priority on raising pre-16 attainment in schools through the development of strategic partnerships with schools.’

It is clear that both the Government and the Office for Students in England are emphasising the importance of improved attainment to facilitate widening access to higher education and expect higher education institutions to put interventions in place to achieve this, but do what exactly do we mean by “attainment”, why exactly do individuals’ levels of attainment differ to such an extent and how can higher education contribute to its improvement? These are crucial questions that we must answer in order to be effective in our efforts and meet the expectations of the government and the regulator.

NEON is pleased to announce, due to popular demand, that it is repeating its four-part, online, access academy course focussing upon raising attainment. This course is designed to allow participants to investigate and debate theoretical approaches around attainment and consider how these may underpin their practice with schools.

The course will enable participants to:

  • Define what is meant by “attainment” and how this differs from “ability”;
  • Reflect upon the purpose of higher education and debate the importance of prior attainment in relation to higher education admissions;
  • Understand theoretical explanations of why certain groups do not reach the same levels of attainment as others;
  • Consider the progress made in the United Kingdom in raising attainment, specifically in disadvantaged communities;
  • Reflect upon widening access practice and the theoretical positions that underpin that practice;
  • Critically evaluate approaches to raising attainment and consider their strengths and weaknesses;
  • Apply their understanding of attainment to their own local area and their organisations’ activities.

The course will take place on the following dates:

  • Tuesday 12th December 2023
  • Wednesday 13th December 2023
  • Wednesday 10th January 2024
  • Thursday 11th January 2024

If you are unsure if your organisations is a NEON member, please check here.

Regrettably, it is not possible to book on to individual sessions. Delegates must book the complete four session suite. If a PO number is required this must be provided at the time of booking.