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Access Partnership Programme Supporting Access into Higher Education


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Contents

Welcome

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University of Bedfordshire Access Partnership Programme

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Access Partnership Programme (APP)

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Access Partnership Associate Scheme

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Years 4 - 6, Sowing the Seed

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Years 7-11, Reach your Goal

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Years 12-13, Your Next Step to Uni

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Summer Schools

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Uni-que Support for You and Yours

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Access Students

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Foundation Degree Students

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Specialist Programmes

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Find out more: To find out more about these activities and how we can support your school/sixth form or college, please contact the Schools Liaison Team at: schoolsliaison@beds.ac.uk. Access Partnership Team: Steve Kendall Director of Widening Participation Tel: 01582 743450 Email Access team at: access@beds.ac.uk

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Welcome

We have designed this programme to support your learners’ attainment and progression. We want to build a partnership with you to achieve this.

transforming lives supporting transitions creating success

www.beds.ac.uk >> The University of Bedfordshire >>

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University of Bedfordshire Access Partnership Programme It is a matter of the highest strategic importance to the University that we maintain and improve upon our strong track record for widening access. Our key groups for wider access are learners from the local area; from the lower socio-economic groups, from neighbourhoods with low rates of participation in higher education, from black and minority ethnic groups that are similarly under-represented and from vulnerable groups such as young people leaving care. We seek to widen access to higher education for learners with disabilities and recognise this as a key feature of our widening participation strategy. The promotion of higher education opportunities is part of our responsibility as a University. We are the only University in Bedfordshire recruiting significant numbers of undergraduate students and the only higher education option in many local towns. Our contribution to widening participation is therefore of critical importance and we will work with schools, colleges, local authorities, careers services and others to promote the benefits of participation in higher education. We work successfully with other providers of higher education, especially those in our locality and region, to develop a coherent approach to widening participation practice, to ensure that what we do has the maximum impact. By so doing, we seek to increase opportunity, build cultural capital, raise skills and enhance employability. To these ends we have designed the Access Partnership Programme, described in this brochure. The Access Partnership Programme has a number of key elements. These are:

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Sowing the Seeds – Years 4, 5, and 6 A ‘primary school’ engagement programme, focused on primary age learners in the schools most local to the University’s main campuses. This will aim to establish, at an early age, the aspiration to participate in higher education. Reach your Goal – Years, 8, 9 and 10 A learner engagement framework for schools. This will take the form of a coherent, progressive programme of activity for learners, comprising taster days, support for year 9 option choices and Aim 4 Your Future days, helping year 10’s think about career pathways, Your Next Step to Uni – Years 12 and 13 A learner engagement framework for schools and colleges, comprising advice about UCAS, student finance and preparing for University life, opportunities for student shadowing and summer schools. There is a specific version of this part of the programme designed for Access Students. Access Partnership Associate Scheme – Years, 8 to 13 A mentoring programme for learners in schools and colleges which will allocate learners to an undergraduate ‘Associate’ who will support learners to progress through school or college and into higher education. This brochure introduces the various elements of the Access Partnership Programme and invites you and your learners to participate. I hope that you will find it useful and I look forward to working with you.

Steve Kendall Associate Dean, Partnerships and Director of Widening Participation

www.beds.ac.uk >> The University of Bedfordshire >>

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Access Partnership Programme (APP) The Access Partnership Programme (APP) is a University of Bedfordshire initiative that builds upon the success of the Aimhigher Learner Progression Framework. The purpose of the APP is to ensure the continued provision of Widening Participation outreach activities for partner schools and colleges. The programme has been designed to support learners through the key transition phases within the compulsory and post-compulsory educational sectors. The main focus will be to continue to work on raising young people’s awareness and aspirations towards further and higher education, in an effort to complement their career interests and life goals. The continued development of relationships with schools and colleges will allow the creation of bespoke activities to meet the needs of individual institutions and their respective learners. In addition to learner engagement, the APP will support parents, teachers and other stakeholders in response to the changing education landscape.

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• Sowing the Seed Event

Years 4–6

Years 7– 11

• Aim 4 Uni Days – Years 8 –10 • Year 9 Options • Access Partnership Associate activities • Targeted Summer Schools

Year 13

• • • • •

• Pilot Mentoring Scheme • E mentoring

FD / UG

Summer Schools PAD PALS Careers talks Motivational talks Networking events

• Access Event • Access Summer School

Access

• BREO training • E mentoring • Access associate activities • Student shadowing • Uni visits/lectures

Making a successful UCAS application Preparing for university life Student Finance & Money Matters Information, Advice & Guidance on HE Finance, Options & UCAS • Access Partnership Associate activities • Student Shadowing • Targeted Summer Schools • • • •

Year 12

• Considering and Experiencing HE • Vocational Days • Subject Specific & Targeted Summer Schools • Access Partnership Associate activities

Access Partnership Programme

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www.beds.ac.uk >> The University of Bedfordshire >>

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Access Partnership Associate Scheme Our trained Access Partnership Associates are a part of all our outreach activities, in schools, colleges or university campuses. The Associates are undergraduate students and their experiences provide a vital insight to our learners. The Associates inspire through their dedication, passion and positive attitude to guide learners with their future plans. All Associates are CRB checked. They attend regular training and briefing meetings to ensure they are fully prepared for each activity, both within the University and out in the schools or colleges. We encourage them to work as a team, to provide advice to each other, share their good practices and knowledge, and use these skills to become reflective individuals. By attending Continuing Professional Development (CPD) sessions, our Associates develop great life and employability skills which can enhance their CV and job prospects. Our Associates will support the Access Partnership Programme in a variety of ways; through small group work, targeted activities, student shadowing, presentations, and e-mentoring.

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www.beds.ac.uk >> The University of Bedfordshire >>

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Sowing the Seeds APP: Years 4, 5 and 6 Primary School Programme This unique programme is an opportunity for students in Primary schools to find out about life at their local University. The aim of the day is to introduce the concept of University to students through a day of fun and interactive activities. By sowing the seeds at an early age the aim of this event is raise awareness and aspirations to allow students to recognise future pathways into University. Students spend the day at the University interacting and participating in key events within various departments of the University. This is a 3 stage programme Stage 1: Key members of the Access team will attend the participating school delivering an interactive assembly to students and their parents/carers. Stage 2: Students will then take part in a campus visit to the University. Parents/carers are invited to attend. Stage 3: Access Partnership Associates visit the school and complete an interactive evaluation session and lesson plan with the participating students. Agenda for the day: Campus visit: In teams and working with an Access Partnership Associate, students will take part in team building activities, the Uni Quiz and draw a typical student. Students take part in an interactive tour of the University of Bedfordshire with departments leading sessions. Lunch and refreshments are provided by the University of Bedfordshire. After lunch students create a t-shirt design and make a presentation about their experiences of University. Students then graduate from the University of Bedfordshire, with each student receiving a graduation certificate.

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www.beds.ac.uk >> The University of Bedfordshire >>

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Reach your Goal APP: Years 8, 9 and 10 The following activities have been developed to provide support for students in years 8, 9 and 10. Aim 4 Uni Day Our Aim4Uni days will bring together students from a range of partner schools and provide an opportunity for them to spend a day at the University exploring what a university is like, whilst raising awareness of the opportunities it can provide. Participants will have the chance to tour the campus and interact with our Associates. Each Aim4Uni day has been themed to accommodate the different year groups; • Year 8 – introduction to university and raising awareness of higher education • Year 9 – subject specific/linked to GCSE option choices • Year 10 – ’Aim 4 your Future’ day focusing on future career and study options Access Partnership Associate Scheme Our Access Partnership Associates, who are all current students at the University, deliver 6–10 week programmes with targeted groups of learners focusing on raising aspirations and also provides a peer mentoring service. This programme is delivered on a rolling basis throughout the academic year and can also be followed up with an optional university visit for the learners who have completed the scheme. Note: All our Associates are fully trained and have current CRB checks. Year 9 Options We deliver assembly presentations highlighting the significance and importance of option choices and GCSE performance in relation to post-16 progression. Parents’ Evenings The Access Partnership team provide assistance with GCSE requirements and grades relating to university entry for the university’s degree level courses.

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www.beds.ac.uk >> The University of Bedfordshire >>

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Your Next Step to Uni APP: Years 12 and 13 The following activities have been developed to provide support to students in years 12 and 13 who are looking to progress and prepare for the next step of University life. The decision to go University is one of the most important decisions a young person will have to make. These activities are designed to provide the latest information, advice and guidance to students who are considering applying to higher education. Making a successful application From considering University through to making an application can be a challenging time for a young person. The University of Bedfordshire has designed interactive presentations in the following areas of: • Considering University • Personal Statements • Next Steps to University • Student Finance Preparing for University life Moving to University can be one of the most exciting and daunting experiences for young people. These activities and interventions have been specifically designed to help students with the transition into University life. The University of Bedfordshire can offer the following interactive presentations: • Student Life • Ready, Study, Go… • Making the most of Uni • Money matters All presentations can be delivered at the sixth form/college or as part of a campus visit to the University.

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Student Shadowing For students who may be unsure of what course to study at University, or who wish to find out more about specific courses. We offer a unique opportunity to shadow an undergraduate student. Students will shadow our student Associates to lectures, receive a tour of the campus and have the opportunity to receive an honest description of University life from a student who is living it, and experiencing it, for real. This opportunity will be available by request only and places may be limited. Access Partnership Associates will be leading this programme.

www.beds.ac.uk >> The University of Bedfordshire >>

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Your Next Step to Uni APP: Years 12 and 13 Year 12 Summer Schools Try before you buy. Students in year 12 will have the opportunity to attend a free of charge three-day non-residential summer school at the University of Bedfordshire. The summer schools will be offered in four subject areas and will provide an opportunity for students to participate in interactive lectures and seminars, meet other students from sixth forms and colleges, and find out about the practical next steps to applying to higher education. For students this is a chance to: 1. Meet with under graduate students. 2. Decide if University is for them for them 3. Confirm their University course choice. Places are limited. Students apply direct to the University of Bedfordshire. Specialist Taster Days The University of Bedfordshire can offer a wide range of subject taster days which allow students to participate in interactive lectures and seminars, meet students currently studying the course, and find out about the next steps to applying to higher education. Specialist taster days are delivered by course lecturers and provide an overview of the key subject areas offered at degree level. Vocational Days – From University to Employment Vocational Days allow students to participate in a series of taster subject lectures and seminars which focus on career opportunities. The basic outline of the day is as follows: • Welcome • Subject specific lectures • Students’ Union talk • Campus tours • Q&A session • Student finance • Your next step to University

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The aim of the day is to inform students of their career options and demonstrate the value that adegree brings in terms of career progression and opportunities. Support for Parents/Open Evenings The Access Partnership Team can offer assistance with parents/open evenings at sixth forms/colleges, by providing students and their parents/carers with further information about a range of subjects, from admissions to student finance.

www.beds.ac.uk >> The University of Bedfordshire >>

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Uni-que support for you and yours! We aim to provide support to your learners to help them get to where they would like to be, but no partnership could be complete without the relationship we have with parents/carers and teachers. You are key to helping young people make right decisions about their future. Our team recognises this and seeks to help you help them, by providing various supporting activities. Support for Teachers The following outlines the activities that will complement the Access Partnership Programme. • Attending training days to provide awareness of the range of activities we are offering • Delivery of bespoke events through the year from key providers including UCAS and Student Finance England Support for Parents/Carers The following will encourage conversations that will help with the progression into Higher Education. • Campus visits for Parents • Attendance at Parents evenings (on request) • Information about Open days • UCAS parents workshops • Student Finance presentations We can also offer a bespoke service depending on your requirements.

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www.beds.ac.uk >> The University of Bedfordshire >>

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Progressing to an APP: Foundation degree students The following activities have been specially developed to provide support for current University of Bedfordshire Foundation Degree students considering the top-up option into the final year of a University of Bedfordshire honours degree. Access Partnership Associate Scheme Our Associates, who are all current students at the University, can deliver 6–10 week programmes with targeted groups of students, focusing on raising aspirations toward the final year of study on honours degrees, and can also provide a peer mentoring service to ease transition for those considering topping-up. This programme can be delivered on a rolling basis throughout the academic year and can also be followed up with an optional university visit for the learners who have completed the scheme. Motivational Talks Using members of the Access Partnership Team, we are able to deliver small group presentations to help motivate and engage students who are at risk of underperforming or withdrawing from academic courses. These presentations draw upon the personal experiences of the Access Partnership team (including the Associates) in an effort to encourage students to overcome some of the barriers that may impact on their studies, thus helping to improve retention. Networking Event For final year Foundation Degree (FD) students deciding to top-up to the final year of the honours degree, the Access Partnership Team are providing an opportunity for FD students to meet and network with their peers from other partner institutes, undergraduate students and academic staff at a social BBQ event. This experience will help to integrate student’s with others who they will find themselves working with during the third year of their respective honours degree course.

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Student Shadowing Foundation Degree students will be offered the opportunity to shadow an undergraduate students, to get a taste of a typical day at University. This opportunity will be available by request only and places may be limited. E-Mentoring Programme (Pilot Project) This brand new facility offers partner college students the opportunity to access one-to-one mentoring support delivered by a specialised team of Associates. Professional & Academic Development (PAD/Pals) This service provides access to some of the University’s more experienced undergraduate students, who can offer the following support to student’s academic studies: • time management • completing assessments • academic study skills • referencing • using resources • effective reading • making themed notes These sessions can be delivered using various combinations of activities in an effort to meet the needs of student groups. The skills they develop within these sessions will prepare them for the transition into the final year of the honours degree. BREO/Blackboard Training This session is aimed at staff and students who are interested in learning more about the University’s Visual Learning Environment. Participants will be guided through the processes that enable users of the system to navigate and customise their BREO/Blackboard accounts.

www.beds.ac.uk >> The University of Bedfordshire >>

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Work Placement Opportunities The Careers and Employment Service at the University can offer Foundation Degree students work placement opportunities. The Access Partnership Team can arrange for presentations to be delivered to students and staff on how to access the Careers Portal. University Taster Visits The University of Bedfordshire would like to welcome all of its Foundation Degree students by providing subject specific taster days and workshops. These events are developed in collaboration with faculty departments and the Access Partnership Team, providing practical and theoretical opportunities linked to key areas of study. Taster days will follow the following format: • Welcome • Subject specific lectures • Students’ Union talk • Campus tours • Learning Resource Centre visit • Library searches • Academic workshops • Student ID logins • Q&A session with final year undergraduates • Refreshments These sessions are designed to assist students in completing their Foundation Degree studies and to prepare them for the transition into the final year of the corresponding honours degree. Guest Lectures There are opportunities for some of the University’s academic staff to deliver specialist presentations that link in with Foundation Degree units. The topic areas covered would require negotiation with the respective faculty or department. Careers and Progression Talks This is aimed at both full-time and part-time students who are studying on a Foundation Degree. This session will outline the range of opportunities that are available to students on completion of their academic studies.

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www.beds.ac.uk >> The University of Bedfordshire >>

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Progressing to an University Degree APP: Access Students The following activities are on offer to adult returners to education to support them with key decisions about what and where to study, and assist in making a successful transition to undergraduate level studies. UCAS Process and Student Finance We can offer a range of presentations and workshops on the UCAS process, including personal statements, and provide information about student finance including the new fee structure and support available. Please contact us if you would like to discuss this further. We are happy to provide bespoke sessions on these topics, upon request. Becoming an Independent Learner This activity includes a presentation and supplementary workshop delivered by our Access Partnership Associates, covering information and advice on developing effective study skills for Higher Education such as time management, researching, plagiarism and the use of the University of Bedfordshire’s Virtual Learning Environment (Breo/Blackboard). Student Life Our ‘Making the most of university’ presentation provides Access students with information on the support services available at universities and the range of activities and opportunities on offer in Higher Education to enhance their employability and help them build skills and experience to compete effectively in a competitive graduate job market. Access Partnership Associate Scheme Our Associates who are all current students at the University, can deliver 6-10 week/flexible programmes with groups of students to help with preparing for the transition to university and also provide a peer mentoring service. Student Shadowing Access students will be offered a unique opportunity to shadow an undergraduate student to get a taste of a typical university day. This opportunity will be available by request only and places may be limited.

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Access Summer School This unique Summer School offers Access students who are soon to join the University of Bedfordshire a chance to get up to speed with some of the key areas they will need to ease progression to the first year of their undergraduate course. This will include using our Virtual Learning Environment (Breo/Blackboard), use of the LRC and subject related sessions.

www.beds.ac.uk >> The University of Bedfordshire >>

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Specialist Programmes

APP: Specialist The University is keen to support progression to higher education for all who are able to benefit, including those learners who may face additional barriers or who come from communities with low participation in higher education. We therefore offer a range of additional support to care leavers, learners with disabilities or those at risk of disengagement from the education system. We aim, so far as is possible, for all learners to participate in the Access Partnership Programme, but we recognise that some may require additional support. To this end we offer the following additional programme elements: Collaborative Working The University works collaboratively with other agencies such as local authorities and specialist providers to establish collaborative approaches. For example, the established steering group for young people in care and leaving care brings together key providers who meet regularly. By involving children in care and care leavers it allows the group to gain a real understanding and knowledge of the key issues that students face. Pre-entry Support From primary level to adult learners the University offers a range of support to help young people decide their next step. Sessions include: • Taster visits • Support of local led community events • Finance talks • Pre entry guidance to social workers/foster carers and key care providers • Support to attend open days • Transitional mentor support to University A Taste of University – bespoke summer schools These summer schools welcome learners to the University of Bedfordshire and provide an insight into the facilities and resources that are on offer to degree students. For some, this is the first time they have set foot in a higher education establishment and this helps to break down barriers and misconceptions for those with no family tradition of university study.

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Summer schools can involve the following elements: Careers & Progression Talks This component of the summer school activity aims to explore the post-16 options and aspirations of the group, looking at areas such as apprenticeships, vocational studies, the world of work, work experience and degree level studies. Positive Role Models Using the Access Partnership Associates provides a valuable resource for engaging with learners from a diverse range of backgrounds. The Associates work closely with young people to challenge some issues associated with peer pressure and address some of the myths and misconceptions on the value of education. Cultural and Personal Identities Working with creative and inspirational members of the community, the young people are encouraged to question the origins of their cultural heritage. Exploring aspects of music, art, history and politics, learners are taken on a journey of self discovery. Visiting historical landmarks, investigating literature and debating current affairs provides a rich environment for all participants to explore new boundaries. Self Expression Working collaboratively with FE colleges and other providers the University uses creative arts such as music technology, photography, dance and drama to enable learners to explore the issues they confront and to showcase their talents and abilities.

www.beds.ac.uk >> The University of Bedfordshire >>

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Access Partner Programme