Published: 10 March 2021
What is the Office for Students criteria for underrepresented students?
An individual or household’s social and economic position can be represented through indicators such as income, education, occupation and how this compares to others. Students from more advantaged backgrounds often benefit from more effective information from schools, parents/carers and broader networks. Students from more disadvantaged backgrounds, who may not have the same support at home and through their networks, are less likely to have access to effective information and guidance. Universities are encouraged to consider a variety of measures and indicators to develop an understanding of underrepresentation in their own context. These groups can relate (but are not limited) to:
- Those living in areas of low Higher Education participation, or from lower household income or lower socioeconomic status
- Those from black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) groups
- Mature students
- Those with disability status
- Care leavers
Equality gaps also exist with the following groups:
- People estranged from their families
- People from Gypsy, Roma and Traveller Communities
- Children from military families
- White males from economically disadvantaged groups
- Family measures: parent/carer education (for example, families with no prior experience of higher education) or occupation
- Household measures: household income and free school meals eligibility
Download the Office for Students (OfS) Regulatory notice 1, Access and Participation Plan Guidance (.pdf) for more information.
This information was correct at the time of publication, please note the criteria is subject to change.