Access and Participation

We are a modern university with nearly two centuries of delivering Higher Education and widening participation. Work on access and participation is central to our strategic plan.

Our vision is to transform lives by delivering an outstanding educational experience. Our aim is to create prosperity and opportunity in the communities we serve. Our main priority is the success of our students. Our strategic plan outlines our wish to be recognised as an exemplary and inclusive university of opportunity.

As we recruit many students from the local region, we ensure we provide a large portfolio to support all student aspirations.

As we recruit many students from the local region, we ensure we provide a large portfolio to support all student aspirations.

We offer over 350 undergraduate courses, covering the full spectrum of:

  • Arts
  • Humanities
  • Social Sciences
  • Business, Science
  • Engineering
  • Health.

In line with our Mission, most of these have Foundation Year to support students with fewer UCAS points. This significant and diverse portfolio is key to our Mission.

Access and Participation Plan (APP)

Access and Participation Plans address key student characteristics, including deprivation, young and mature students, ethnicity, and disability. These characteristics are addressed throughout the different stages of the student lifecycle:

  • Access – profile of students entering
  • Continuation – students continuing from year one to year two
  • Completion – tracking students through the later stages of their studies
  • Attainment – degree outcomes, students achieving a first or upper-second class degree
  • Progression – students progressing into managerial or professional employment, further study or other positive outcomes.


All educational interventions are evaluated in one or more ways.

These evaluations allow us to know if the intervention is achieving what was intended. They also allow us to assess if there are any unexpected positive or negative effects of the intervention.

All interventions are underpinned by a Theory of Change (ToC) model. Evaluation strategies are designed to tell us whether these models are correct. The models are based on evidence drawn from the academic and professional literature, and on an analysis of UCLan’s internal data.

All interventions have a process evaluation. This is to check the initial implementation of the process and to identify any areas for improvement. Process evaluations produce a simple one-page report card.

In more extensive or expensive interventions, evaluations take place at appropriate points to assess the progress of the intervention against expected benchmarks. This allows us to also identify any emerging unanticipated effects.