Strategic Plan 2016-2021
We are proud to present the University strategy for 2016-2021. The key principles for the future development of Bucks are articulated here with a renewed commitment to the success of our students and our status as an ‘anchor institution’ in the regional economy.
The strategy is built around three core aims relating to our education offer, our engagement in the research and enterprise agendas and the quality of our people and organisation. These different strands highlight our priorities, but it will be our coherent delivery of all three strands that will strengthen and enhance our position in the higher education sector.
Student Protection Plan
When you accept an offer and register for Bucks programme, we fully expect to be able to deliver that programme through to the completion of your studies. However, certain circumstances may mean that it is no longer possible for that programme to continue to be delivered as initially intended. Student Protection Plans are intended to provide assurance to current and future students that higher education providers have in place appropriate arrangements to protect the quality and continuation of study for their students.
Our Student Protection Plan (with its appended Risk Register) has been approved by the UK Government's higher education regulator, the Office for Students (OfS).
- Identifies a range of scenarios that may impact on students at either the University or at one of its educational partners
- Analyses the probability of each scenario occurring and the level of impact on a student or cohort of students
- Identifies how the University manages and mitigates the risk associated with each scenario to prevent it from occurring, and
- Confirms how the University will respond to protect the interests of its students should one such scenario occur.
The following guiding principles have underpinned its development and accord with those set out in our Terms and Conditions of Admission. That the University:
- Will make every effort to ensure that the programmes it offers to students are delivered as validated
- Accepts that it may be necessary to make changes to its provision to maintain currency and validity
- Will seek to minimise disruption to students
- Will consider the specific impact of changes to its provision by assessing its impact on the student population, including any perceived differential impact on particular stakeholder groups, e.g. its widening participation population
- Will endeavour at all times to keep students appropriately informed with regard to changes that may be necessary and will bring these to their attention as soon as possible
- Will inform the Office for Students of events, not including the closure of an individual course, that require the implementation of the provisions of this Plan.
The Plan is owned by Council, our Governing Body, which has responsibility for assuring the effective governance of the University and ensuring that it meets statutory and other legal obligations. It will be reviewed and updated as necessary on an annual basis.
Access and Participation Plan
Access and Participation Plans set out how higher education providers will improve equality of opportunity for underrepresented groups to access, succeed in and progress from higher education. These Plans are regulated by the Office for Students (OfS) which has a statutory duty to promote equality of access to, and participation in, higher education in England.
Underrepresented groups include: students from areas of lower higher education participation, lower household income and/or lower socioeconomic status groups; some black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) students; mature students; disabled students; care leavers; carers; people estranged from their families; people from Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities; refugees; and children of military families.
Buckinghamshire New University’s 2020-24 Access and Participation Plan has been approved by the Director for Fair Access and Participation and applies to students starting at the University from the 2020-21 academic year until the 2024-25 academic year.
It includes our ambitions to improve equality of opportunity for all students to access, succeed in and progress from higher education, what we plan to do to achieve that ambition, the targets we have set, and the investment we will make to deliver the plan.
We are proud to attract a highly diverse student intake and are significantly above the sector average in our numbers of mature and Black, Asian and minority ethnic students. The diversity in our student body reflects our long-standing and highly successful work to reach out to underrepresented groups in higher education; to provide an environment and form of education that meets their needs; and to support them into high levels of graduate employment. Building on our success, and consistent with our mission, we are developing our widening participation work still further in order to pioneer routes into higher education for the hardest-to-reach communities.
Accessing Higher Education:
- Increase the rates of access for students from the areas of lowest higher education participation.
- Increase in the proportion of students declaring a disability.
- Increase in the number of students declaring care-leaver status.
- Adopt a new and ambitious focus on groups where equality may be harder to achieve (with a focus on young carers, children from military families, and students identifying as being from Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities.
- Maintain high levels of equality in relation to access for all groups.
Succeeding in Higher Education:
- Close the small attainment gap between BAME and White students; between students from the most deprived and least deprived areas; and between male and female students. (Attainment is measured in terms of those who achieve a 1st or 2.1 degree award vs other classification).
- Nurture an academic community to which students feel they belong to ensure strong retention for all learners.
Successful employment after Graduation:
- Improve the rates of highly skilled employment for students from the areas of lowest participation; young students; and for BAME students.
- Increase the opportunities for all students to enter highly skilled employment or further study.