Students researching the student experience of ethnic minority students


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  • OFFA = Office for fair access>3% is a red flagSimilar to national pictureWe are not red flagged (as yet) on good completion because the target for BME is far lower than all other OFFA groups
  • Completion rate gap is about 10%
  • Yes this is useful for the student CV but asking them to do institutional work means we should pay them.
  • Unjustified, unhelpfulExtremely talented students
  • Challenged my thinkingThey have challenged my thinking from both their student and their background perspective. They have help me clarify my ideas and message and what we want to do. They have helped in shaping the interview schedule.Generated useful ideasTwo heads are better than one, as they say! I would not have come up with all the ideas that we have generated as a team. This has been particularly helpful in recruitment of participants.Have different contactsThe students are very much connected to different networks than I am. This haas proven helpful in recruitment but going forward this could be extremely useful in driving the implementation and future phases of the project. Effectively, we have a ‘steering group’ of interested people who can guide how the project goes forward.
  • Students researching the student experience of ethnic minority students

    1. 1. Students researching the student experience of ethnic minority students Suneela Ahmed, PhD student, Urban Design Neil Currant, OCSLD Dianne Regisford, PhD student, Social Sculpture
    2. 2. Outline • Background to why we are doing the project. • The role of student researchers in the project. – Why get involved? – Personal benefits? – Benefits to the project. • Discussion
    3. 3. Background • The university is more than 3% below OFFA (Office for Fair Access) target for completion rates for BME students. • BME students are less likely to get a 1st or 2.1 (at Brookes we calculated around 45% less likely, trying to take account of other factors) • By 2016 we risk being more than 3% below our OFFA target for BME ‘Good’ completion.
    4. 4. FT U/G Home students From FE % of BME 49 % of White % of BME with good completion 37.3 50.8 % of White Attainment with good gap completion 73.5 22.7% From other 51 62.7 62.2 73.1 10.9% 14.8 83.8 88.6 4.8% 9.1 41.3 62.8 21.5% 32 46.6 66.5 19.9% Of known 10.7 Tariff over 400 Of known 14.6 Tariff below 200 Unknown 47.7 tariff Table 1: Proportion of BME and White students entering Brookes and gaining good degrees based on entry tariffs and where they last studied (combined data for 2009-11)
    5. 5. Project • To investigate the BME student experience • Combining APTT (Academic Performance Tracking Tool) data with qualitative interviews. • What sort of place is Brookes for BME students?
    6. 6. Approach to qualitative data collection • Employ student assistants to recruit and interview participants - generic student assistant job description (pioneered by Berry O'Donovan) • Why? – To reduce the power distance to get honest, open stories. Built into the research design.
    7. 7. A word on ethics • The ethics committee had some concerns about using students as researchers and doing the interviews for institutional research.
    8. 8. Benefits to the project • • • • Challenge staff perceptions / thinking Generate ideas Different Contacts Different Skills
    9. 9. Why I am involved - Suneela • Research literacy • “As a teacher every year I have felt that literature and theories on architecture of the third world is very limited- thus the course contents have a western tilt- both in terms of content and theory. The question about overcoming this problem has been a burning issue for me personally for the last eight years.” “I hope to gain practical experience of doing qualitative interviews which will benefit in my research degree studies.” Academic literacy
    10. 10. Why I am involved - Suneela • Personal interest “being an international student in the UK currently, and having done my Masters from Australia where again I was an international student and being a socialist at heart it is but natural that I sympathize and can relate to issues BME students face.”
    11. 11. Dianne
    12. 12. Discussion points • The value of / engagement of student researchers • ‘Paying’ for engagement? • The institutional position on student researchers (ethics?)