Access and Participation Statement

1.  Overview

This Access and Participation Statement is written to provide potential and existing London School of Business and Management (LSBM) students with a clear and transparent account of the ways in which, with regard to under-represented and disadvantaged students, we:

  • Provide fair access to all our courses.
  • Promote, encourage and develop the potential of students to succeed in their higher education studies and to proceed to graduate-level employment or postgraduate study.

Widening access to students who may otherwise struggle to enter higher education and then supporting them to succeed is something that we plan for, implement and then evaluate as part of our overall commitment to social mobility, student wellbeing and success.  The diverse nature of our academic community is valued as an important asset to the educational experience we provide.  The insights and learning of our graduates, educated in the midst of this diversity, is, we recognise, one of the important contributions we can make to the wider society in which we live.

During our last full review by the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) in October 2015, the QAA affirmed the steps being taken to improve the oversight of equality, diversity and inclusiveness.  At the same time, the QAA commended us for the enhancement of our student learning opportunities.

2.  Our commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion

We value diversity within our academic community and the huge range of experience and perspective that this brings.  This is affirmed within our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Policy and evidenced by our commitment to training in this area, the development and implementation of an Inclusive Curriculum and the creation of a very proactive Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Team with a broad representation from both staff and students.  An appreciation of diversity and the equitable treatment of all are among our core values, underpinning our success as a community of scholars and servant leaders. 

We are a Stonewall Diversity Champion, the UK’s leading best-practice employers' forum for issues relating to sexual orientation and gender identity equality, diversity and inclusion.

We are also recognised as a Disability Confident Committed Employer by the government’s Disability Confident scheme, which promotes fair, equitable and just practices in the recruitment and retention of staff who live with disabilities or long-term medical conditions.  This commitment to disability rights is also evident in our approach to students and potential students.

3.  Fair access to our courses

We are committed to providing fair access to higher education for those who demonstrate the ability to succeed on their chosen course.  Through our Admissions Policy, and its application, we focus on those with the ‘potential to succeed’. 

We admit students onto our courses in accordance with our Admissions Policy and in full compliance with our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Policy (see Section 2 above).  Our Admissions Team undertake compulsory Equality, Diversity and Inclusion training.  They also complete training in Unconscious Bias which is delivered by Supporting Professionalism in Admissions (SPA).

We deliver undergraduate courses in accounting, business and law.  All our courses lead to a University of Northampton degree.  These are three types of full-time course in each of the three discipline areas:

3-year course

This course is delivered over two semesters per year, with students having a three-month summer break.

2-year accelerated course

This course is designed for students who want to complete their study in the shortest time possible, thereby limiting the size of any loan they may need.  This course is delivered over three semesters per year, with students having a six-week summer break.

4-year course that includes a Foundation Year

The Foundation Year is an integral part of the degree and therefore funding is available through the Student Loans Company.  Our Foundation Year allows students who do not have the requisite qualifications for direct entry to a degree to gain access through successful completion of the Foundation Year.  The focus in Semester 1 of the Foundation Year is the essential study, research, and interdisciplinary knowledge and skills required to proceed to degree study.  In Semester 2, students specialise in their chosen discipline area.  Upon successful completion of the Foundation Year, students who perform well have the option of transferring onto a 2-year accelerated course.

These three different types of course enable us to make an offer of a place to the vast majority of applicants.  For example, applicants without any formal qualifications may be admitted onto our 4-year degrees which include a Foundation Year, subject to passing our internal assessments and an academic interview.

4.  Partnerships and outreach work

Through the outreach work we undertake with local schools and communities, we proactively promote equal and fair access to higher education to under-represented and disadvantaged potential students. 

Currently we are working in partnership with Leyton Sixth Form College (LSC) in East London.

Under this partnership, we have put in place a number of initiatives for LSC students. We designed and delivered a tailored masterclass programme in October-November 2016 for Year 13 LSC students studying BTEC Level 3 qualifications. The aim of the programme was to provide students with: more information about how to apply for a university degree; guidance on the difference between Further and Higher Education; and an opportunity to attend a taster session delivered by our lecturers in either accounting, business or law.

LSC students can further benefit from the partnership through an exclusive scholarship scheme, the Leyton-LSBM Scholarship Award, that provides for a 50% tuition fee reduction.  There are two scholarship places available each year for LSC students. 

We have also introduced a new Travel Bursary Scheme. LSC is our first academic partner to join the scheme. The Travel Bursary Scheme offers all LSC students who live in Zones 2 to 6 a bursary that is equal to the cost of a bus/tram season ticket.

5.  Application and enrolment data

Our staff and students are diverse.  As individuals and a community, we thrive on difference seeing the contribution that this brings to our understanding of our being.  Many of our students are mature learners, who balance their studies with part-time work, caring for children and/or other members of their family, as well as making valuable contributions to their communities.

The following admissions and enrolment data for our September 2016 entry, which takes into account some of the 9 Protected Characteristics[1], further demonstrates that we attract a very diverse range of applicants (and students).

Age

 

21 and under

22-25

26-35

36 and over

No information

Applications

25.0%

16.5%

25.5%

29.5%

3.5%

Enrolled

25.6%

16.5%

25.6%

32.1%

0.2%

Gender

 

Female

Male

Other

Prefer not to say

No response

Applications

40.8%

48.9%

0.1%

0.8%

9.4%

Enrolled

47.4%

52.2%

0.0%

0.2%

0.2%

Sexual orientation

 

Bisexual

Gay Man

Gay Woman/

Lesbian

Hetero

 

Other

Info

Refused

No response

Applications

1.4%

0.3%

0.2%

35.4%

1.7%

5.9%

55.2%

Enrolled

3.4%

0.6%

0.4%

78.0%

3.4%

11.6%

2.5%

Disability

 

With a disability

No known disability

No response

Applications

5.1%

86.9%

8.0%

Enrolled

5.1%

94.7%

0.2%

With regard to this data, many applicants do not disclose a disability, specific learning difficulty or long-term health condition at the application or enrolment stage.  The proportion of students who declare a disability increases after the course has started.  Of our total student body, 19% have declared a disability, specific learning difficulty or long-term health condition and are being supported by our full-time Disability and Student Welfare Advisor (see Section 7 below).

Ethnicity

 

Arab

Asian

Black

Other

White

No response

Applications

1%

8%

16.5%

3.5%

13.8%

57.2%

Enrolled

2.1%

18.1%

35.9%

6.9%

29.8%

7.2%

Religious belief

 

Buddhist

Christian

Hindu

Muslim

Sikh

No Religion

Applications

1.5%

52.5%

4.6%

30.4%

0.5%

5.9%

Enrolled

0.0%

54.9%

2.6%

32.0%

0.5%

10.0%

6.  Student success

We are strongly committed to providing students with a high quality educational experience which enhances both their academic and human development.  Our Student Success Strategy sets out the steps we take to provide students with the necessary support to succeed.

Our definition of student success is:

The successful student is one who examines the nature of their character and discovers therein something of their unique style of being in the world.  The successful student uses this self-knowledge to appreciate the value of life: their own and the lives of others.  From this appreciation of value, the successful student engages in both their own learning and their own creative capacity, building an academic and professional profile which reflects the potential of the life they occupy.  As an academic community, our success is wholly related to the care and nurture of this process in all our students, believing, as we do, that retention and course completion are profoundly linked to the students’ appreciation of the potential they offer to the world.

Our Teaching, Learning and Assessment (TLA) Strategy is a critical component of how we develop and empower our students to succeed.  The overarching aim of the TLA Strategy is to enhance teaching and learning, and student engagement.  The TLA Strategy (the embraced philosophy of which is Servant Leadership) has at its core:

  • The development of independent and critical learners.
  • The provision of an educational experience that enables all our students to achieve their full potential.
  • The development of responsible citizens who will make valuable contributions to society.

7.  Students with a disability

Our Disability Policy affirms our strong commitment to equality of opportunity in our provision for all students. 

Our internal procedures require an Equality Impact Assessment to be carried out at the design stage of a new course, to ensure reasonable adjustments are made in the case of students with a protected characteristic.

We work to support and empower students with physical disabilities, sensory impairments, specific learning difficulties, special psychological needs and medical conditions which may have an impact on their day-to-day activities and their opportunity to take part in all aspects of our academic and social programmes.  We make reasonable adjustments when a student with a disability, specific learning difficulty or long-term health condition may be placed at a substantial disadvantage in comparison with other students.  Adjustments may include specific examination arrangements and adjustments to assessment practices. 

Support for students (and staff) who live with disabilities and long-term medical conditions is channelled at an operational level through our full-time Disability and Student Welfare Advisor.

8.  Academic support

To enable our students to achieve their full potential, we provide additional academic support as follows:

Centre for Academic Support and Enhancement (CASE)

Through our Centre for Academic Support and Enhancement (CASE), our academic English tutors provide 20 minute academic skills surgeries in which they provide students with one-to-one feedback on their spoken or written academic English.  With written work, students have the option of submitting their assessed pieces of work for either written feedback by email or oral feedback on a one-to-one basis.  Written feedback includes detailed written comments, explanations, and (colour-coded) suggestions for improvement.  Face-to-face feedback is used to discuss, clarify, and reinforce written feedback, and to provide feedback on presentations. 

Personal Academic Tutors

All students are allocated a Personal Academic Tutor (PAT).

PATs are members of our academic staff who act as points of contact for students who may need guidance and support in relation to their studies, particularly if personal problems are infringing upon their academic success.  PATs can give students information on the options they have in relation to their academic progression and refer them to staff within our Student Engagement and Success (SES) Division who can offer more specialist help. 

Peer Assisted Learning

Peer Assisted Learning (PAL) is an internationally recognised scheme based on research indicating that students benefit academically from peer teaching.  Our trained and accredited members of staff train students to lead supplementary study sessions for students at a lower academic level.  

We are part of a global network of higher education institutions which support the role of peers (i.e. fellow students) in augmenting the learning experience of its students.  Staff within LSBM are accredited facilitators of Peer Assisted Supplementary Study (accredited by the National PASS Centre at the University of Manchester) and they train experienced students to lead study sessions for students who are encountering course material for the first time.  These study sessions are offered in addition to regular classes and are focused on helping students to master the material they study during lectures, workshops and seminars.  Over 40 years of research by the global PASS headquarters at the University of Kansas shows that Peer Assisted Study has a very positive effect on academic performance. 

Digital literacy

We are committed to providing a high quality education and a holistic learning experience for our students.  This is, in great part, being accomplished by embedding the development of student Digital Literacies (DL) throughout all we do.

Our definition of DL is taken from JISC (formerly the Joint Information Systems Committee):

The capabilities which fit someone for living, learning and working in a digital society.

We continuously explore and integrate a range of DL initiatives into our teaching practice.

We enhance and personalise the student experience through a reliable IT infrastructure, and are committed to creating an educational environment where students are in control of their experience and engagement with their studies.

At the heart of our DL agenda is our Learning Technology team, whose work in training, support, and the embedding of our Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) spans all our teaching and learning activities.  Our Learning Technology team works collaboratively, where necessary, with our Disability and Student Welfare Advisor.

9. Pastoral support

Pastoral support is coordinated through our Student Engagement and Success (SES) Division to ensure that throughout their studies, students are engaged and successful.  SES provides advice on housing, finance, disability support and career development. 

Our approach to pastoral care is rooted in the Servant Leadership ethos which pervades our day to day functioning as an academic community.  Student wellbeing is promoted through a number of activities:

Student Hub

Staff and Peer Advisors who work in the Student Hub are trained to signpost students to important resources which support their wellbeing, including mental health organisations and religious chaplaincy services.  Staff and Peer Advisors are always on hand to offer a friendly word and share their knowledge of what help and support is available to students. 

Student Success Advisors

Student Success Advisors work with students to promote engagement on their chosen programmes of studies.  They contact students who show signs of disengagement and offer advice on achieving success.  The SES Division within which they work hosts a number of activities throughout the academic year which promote the wellbeing of our students.  For example, our Peer Engagement Groups provide an opportunity for students who are struggling to meet and form links with students who have been successful.  Very often the friendships formed in these groups act as powerful incentives for students to stay focused and experience that sense of belonging which is an important ingredient of every successful education.

10.  Employability

Our employability agenda has been designed to ensure, upon graduation, our students are equipped to enter and succeed in the graduate employment market.

Professional accreditation

Our courses are professionally focused and include activities that lead to awards that prepare students for professional careers.  Our accounting courses include the maximum ACCA and CIMA exemptions.  Our law courses are recognised by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, Bar Standards Board and the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx).  Accounting students are provided with free student membership of CIMA and ACCA.  Law students have the option of completing a Level 3 Introductory Certificate in Financial and Management Accounting that is awarded by ACCA.

Personal Development Planning (PDP)

Academics work closely with students, professional bodies and with our Student Success Advisors to ensure all our students have the opportunity to develop employability skills.

Personal Development Planning (PDP) is supported by subject specialist PDP Co-ordinators and embedded within each of our courses (meaning that it forms a part of specified modules).  PDP assists students to:

  • Identify and achieve their career goals, and to develop skills that make them competitive for better jobs.
  • Improve their key transferable skills competence, which will enable them to reach their full academic potential.
  • Develop them into a reflective and strategic learner and practitioner, a skill which will assist them throughout their personal life and career.

Students keep a record of their employability skills on a PDP template as evidence for future job applications.  In addition, students are encouraged to carry out an analysis of their personal strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) so that they can focus on their strengths, find ways of reducing their weaknesses, make the most of the opportunities available to develop themselves, and be aware of the threats they face e.g. a graduate filled labour market.

General graduate employability skills

The development of general graduate employability skills is organised through our Student Engagement and Success (SES) Division and events are posted on the website and the Virtual Learning Environment.

The SES Division provides a wide range of information, advice, guidance, training and workshops for students on how to start and develop their careers.  Students can talk to a Student Success Advisor who specialises in employability matters.  Work experience is essential for securing graduate-level employment and the Student Success Advisors can help students to seek and obtain work experience, internships and placements.

Extramural lectures

Our location in the centre of London’s university district provides a stimulating context for student learning. Our extramural lecture series offers students access to talks and presentations by accomplished professional bodies, industry speakers, CEOs and academics from other places of learning and from fields beyond students’ own particular subject area.

By attending these extramural lectures, students discover how their own studies can relate to the wider world and how their learning can be enhanced by exposure to the ideas of others. 


[1] The 9 Protected Characteristics are age, gender, gender reassignment, disability, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sexual orientation.  We do not capture data in relation to marriage and civil partnership or pregnancy and maternity.

 

 

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  • 1 Malet Street, London, WC1E 7JN.