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Working Class Heroes – Not Welcome in HE?

Aurora Brief Reviews No. 05 March 11 2019

March 2019

NEON, a UK organisation supporting widening access to higher education, has published a report on “Working Class Heroes” to improve understanding access to higher education for white students from lower socio-economic backgrounds. It shows that over 50% of universities admit less than 5% of white students from the low participation neighbourhoods (LPN), or conversely, that relatively few universities take the lion’s share of the UK’s widening access aspirations. Most LPN students attend “post-1992” universities, and many universities are still less than ambitious in formulating targets related to white students from LPN in their Access and  Participation Plans. According to the report, neither the University of East Anglia nor the University of Aberdeen are in the top 10 with most LPN acceptances. Aberdeen is – for some reason – not in the list at all. UEA has 310 of LPN acceptances (8% of total acceptances). The highest acceptance proportion in the UK is from Teesside (28%) while Oxford and Cambridge have 3% and 25 respectively.

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