Widening participation: Supporting the transition of non-traditional groups to higher education

Professor Miriam David, Institute of Education, University of London

Monday 19 October 2009

Jointly presented by the National Centre for Student Equity in Higher Education and The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre

Audio recording available here (mp3 format - 27MB)


This presentation draws on the research findings from a suite of 7 UK projects on Widening Participation in Higher Education, funded by the UK government.

It will commence with short presentations from two high schools in the Adelaide area, Fremont-Elizabeth High School and Christies Beach High School that focus on transitions of non-traditional student groups to higher education.

Miriam will then focus on both quantitative and qualitative evidence about the diverse transitions to higher education, amongst a wide range of students. Consideration will also be given to the diversity of higher educational institutions and their policies and practices, to show how inequality persists for both individuals and institutions. Nevertheless, there are opportunities for developing critical, inclusive or 'connectionist' pedagogies, which would engage socially diverse students in a range of subjects and settings.


Professor Miriam David
Professor Miriam DavidMiriam E. David, AcSS, FRSA is Professor of Sociology of Education and interim Director of the ESRC's Teaching & Learning Research Programme at the Institute of Education University of London. She has been a Professor for over 20 years, with a world class reputation for her research on social diversity, gender and inequalities in education, including lifelong learning and higher education. She was chair of the Council of the Academy of Social Sciences (AcSS) from 2005-2009, a member of the UK Economic & Social Research Council's Research Grants Board and the Governing Council of Society for Research in Higher Education (SRHE). Formerly she served on the boards of, inter alia, British Sociological Association, Social Policy Association, Feminist & Women's Studies Association and Gender & Education Association. She is co-editor (with Philip Davies) of 21st Century Society journal of the Academy of Social Sciences and an executive editor of British Journal of Sociology of Education and previously Journal of Social Policy (1992-1999).

The National Centre for Student Equity in Higher Education
The Centre has been established by the Australian Government to produce and disseminate knowledge about the inclusion in higher education of socially and economically disadvantaged groups, and to facilitate dialogue and exchange among relevant researchers, practitioners and policy makers. It also provides advice on student equity policies and practices to institutions and systems across all education sectors.

Sponsored by:
University Aspirations Project:
A UniSA project funded by the Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR)

National Centre for Student Equity in Higher Education, UniSA  

While the views presented by speakers within the Hawke Centre public program are their own and are not necessarily those of either the University of South Australia or The Hawke Centre, they are presented in the interest of open debate and discussion in the community and reflect our themes of: strengthening our democracy - valuing our cultural diversity - and building our future.

Areas of study and research

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