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By Ted Fleming, Andrew Loxley, Fergal Finnegan

This ebook explores the entry and participation matters current inside of larger schooling in eire. It examines coverage, pedagogy and practices when it comes to widening participation and files the growth and demanding situations encountered in furthering the ‘access time table’ during the last 20 years. entry has turn into a vital part of ways better schooling knows itself and the way it explains the worth of what it does for society as a complete. enhancing entry to schooling strengthens social harmony, lessens inequality, promises the longer term power of tertiary associations and guarantees monetary competitiveness and suppleness within the period of the “Knowledge dependent Economy”. providing a coherent, serious account of modern advancements in Irish better schooling and the results for Irish society as an entire, this publication is vital for these concerned either in learning the sphere and in larger schooling itself.

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Extra resources for Access and Participation in Irish Higher Education

Sample text

A new national plan for equity of access to HE (HEA 2015e) covering the period 2015–19 addresses a number of key issues, which include the following: developing a broader definition of the meaning of disadvantage; taking a system-wide approach to access; consideration of future options concerning part-time students and their fees; addressing financial barriers to accessing HE; strengthening links between HE institutions and disadvantaged communities; increase student voice in access measures and mainstreaming access measures across HE (DG EAC 2015, p.

This policy discourse draws deeply on our hopes for a more just and egalitarian way of living (Field and Schuller 1999; Fleming 2011). The fact that the state, backed by the OECD and the European Union (CEC 2000; OECD 2008), claims that by enhancing the store of “human capital” we can also improve economic competitiveness, makes these ideas seem at once visionary and pragmatic. So much of the public appeal, and ultimately the worth, of lifelong learning, and access policies, rest on the claim that we can tackle deeply rooted inequalities through education.

The evidence from quality assurance agencies suggests that their role in increasing access is extremely limited, and that a focus on access and admissions is far from being the norm. While quality assurance agencies may examine some issues related to admissions systems, they generally do not do so from a perspective of ensuring that the system is fit for the purpose of widening access. CHANGED UTTERLY? But a more troubling picture lies behind these ambitions and successes. Economic inequality continues to have an enormous influence on participation rates and students of all ages from disadvantaged and lower socioeconomic backgrounds face considerable obstacles to attending third level education (HEA 2014b).

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