Can we widen participation in higher education during the Covid-19 pandemic?

16th July 2020 : 14:00 - 15:00

Category: Webinar

Research Group: Higher Education

Speaker: Stephen DesJardins, University of Michigan (US). Peter Scott, UCL Institute of Education. Pedro Teixeria, University of Porto. Claire Callender (Chair), UCL Institute of Education and Birkbeck

Location: Online

Convener: Simon Marginson

Audience: Public

Seminar Abstract


Predictions abound about the effect of Covid-19 on the number of local students who will enrol in higher education in 2020/21. Rarely discussed is the socio-economic backgrounds of these students. Will some of the changes universities have introduced in response to Covid-19 such as ‘test-blind’ admissions exacerbate or ameliorate existing inequalities in access to higher education? This webinar will explore how such policies and others might help or hinder widening higher education participation from a UK, US, and European perspective.


About the speakers


Stephen L. DesJardins is a Co-Investigator on CGHE’s social and economic impact of higher education research programme.

 Peter Scott is Commissioner for Fair Access in Scotland and emeritus Professor of Higher Education Studies at the UCL Institute of Education. Previously he was Vice-Chancellor of Kingston University and before that Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Professor of Education at the University of Leeds. While a member of the board of the (former) Higher Education Funding Council for  England, he chaired HEFCE’s strategic committees first on widening participation and later learning, teaching and quality assurance.

 Pedro Teixeira is Associate Professor at the Department of Economics (University of Porto) and Director of CIPES (Centre of Research on Higher Education Policy).

 Claire Callender is Deputy Director of the Centre for Global Higher Education, and leads CGHE’s social and economic impact of higher education research programme.