The National Co-ordination Team for Widening Participation and Access to Higher Education



WP Events for your diaries

14- 16th January 2015, Celebrating and Exploring Self-Improvement, North of England Education Conference, Manchester

In its 111th year the North of England Education Conference (NEEC) – the UK’s leading annual education conference – is heading home to Manchester. It will focus on celebrating and exploring self-improvement through the key themes of Innovation, Sustainability and Employability. The conference will showcase best practice, innovation and research in education. It will promote self-improvement from the perspectives of the individual pupil, the educator, the institution and the system as a whole; and it will link education to positive life chances and the employability of young people. Further information:<

24 February 2015: The Future for undergraduate and postgraduate taught tuition fees,

Central London

With Higher Education funding expected to be a major point of debate at the coming General Election, this seminar will be a timely opportunity to bring together key policymakers and stakeholders to discuss the future of arrangements for tuition fees for undergraduate and postgraduate taught courses in England. It will be informed by the recent outcomes of the House of Commons BIS Select Committee Report into student loans which called for Government to urgently review the student loans system.

Further information:

25-27 February, 2015: The Social Dimension in European Higher Education, Vienna

The conference aims at creating a discursive forum for peer learning in the field of the social dimension, fostering interchange between 3 spheres – researchers, policy makers and practitioners who will share and exchange their experiences and knowledge, in order to create a fruitful mutual learning environment. Expected 500 participants from various countries within the Bologna area.

Two of the main data providers on the socio-economic situation of students, will present their most recent results: EUROSTUDENT a Synopsis of indicators, comprising results from the fifth round of the project with comparisons of student data from 30 EHEA countries; PL4SD the enhanced database of measures as well as results from 3 PL4SD Country Reviews. Our conference is the ideal place to make efforts for the improvement of the social dimension visible in a broader European context.

Please find our call for contributions, including present measures and activities you undertake to improve the social situation of students, so others can learn and benefit from your experience and knowledge as you may from theirs. Please submit an abstract of around 500 words to until September 15, 2014 presenting your contribution and the relevance of the topic to the conference.

Further information:

5 March 2015: Women in the workplace – next steps for policy and best practice, London

This timely conference will examine the further action that can be taken – including options for policy in the next Parliament – to maximise women’s contribution to the economy, and to further improve gender equality in the workplace. Delegates will also consider the impact of key reforms including flexible working and the introduction of shared parental leave, and possible future developments. Further areas for discussion include careers education, particularly how best to increase female participation in apprenticeships and STEM subjects, and steps that can be taken to increase the number of women in senior positions and on company boards.

Key speakers include: Jo Swinson MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Women and Equalities; and Sharron Pamplin, HR Director, UK & Europe, Atkins; Sally Brett, Senior Equality Policy Officer, TUC; Gillian Howard, Employment Lawyer; Carole Kitching, Principal, Newcastle College and Professor Simonetta Manfredi, Director, Centre for Diversity Policy Research and Practice, Oxford Brookes University. Further information:

5th March 2015: Tackling student welfare issues and improving student retention, Westminster Higher Education Forum, Central London

Delegates at this seminar will discuss ways that universities can tackle student non-continuation rates, focusing particularly on tackling welfare issues. It follows the release of the HEFCE and OFFA joint National Strategy for Access and Student Success, which called for universities to increase their focus on retention as part of a move towards support throughout the ‘whole student lifecycle’. This event is CPD certified.

Professor Les Ebdon, Director, Office for Fair Access; Mark Fiander, Strategy and Innovation Director, Money Advice Service and Colum McGuire, Vice President, Welfare, NUS have agreed to deliver keynote addresses at this seminar. Further information:

21 May 2015: Developing the higher level vocational education system and the next steps for Higher Apprenticeships, London

This conference will provide a timely opportunity to discuss the future for higher level vocational education in England. It follows the Government’s call for engagement in the creation of elite National Colleges, intended to help the development of high level technical skills in those industries or sectors where there is an identified skills gap. Delegates will examine key challenges for creating these colleges and the steps that can be taken to encourage further engagement from employers in the development of their workforce’s skills. Further sessions will assess the future for Higher Apprenticeships and the role that universities can play in the delivery of higher level vocational education, including the lessons that have been learnt from the UK Commission for Employment and Skill’s report Forging Futures.

Keynote speakers include: Professor John Coyne, Vice-Chancellor, University of Derby and Commissioner, UK Commission for Employment and Skills; Neil Bates, Group Chief Executive Officer and Principal, Prospects College of Advanced Technology and Peter Seddon, Senior Policy Adviser, Knowledge Exchange & Skills Policy, and Helen Thorne, Director of Policy and Research, UCAS. Further information:

1st – 3rd July 2015: FACE 2015 Annual Conference, the University of South Wales, Treforest campus.

The 22nd FCE Annual Conference provides a platform for its members, non-members and students to participate in plenary sessions and workshops, with an opportunity to network with like-minded colleagues in a friendly and professional environment. An important role for FACE is to facilitate the exchange and dissemination of information and practices in Lifelong Learning and Continuing Education. By promoting collaboration and innovation between providers and practitioners FACE aims to support and encourage a socially inclusive framework for Lifelong Learning, challenging exclusion and fostering full participation. Conference themes include: Crossing boundaries through partnership working; Routes out of poverty through lifelong learning; Learning journeys and careers; Lifelong learning for local, regional and national developments; and Part-time and full-time learning.

The University of South Wales (USW) is a leading provider and proponent of Widening Access and Lifelong Learning opportunities in Wale, formed in 2013 by the merger of the University of Glamorgan and the University of Wales, Newport and now has 33,000 full and part-time students.  This includes 6141 enrolments within FE colleges in England and Wales – one of which (Merthyr College) is integrated within the University.
Further information:

20-24 July 2015: ‘Working for disability equality in Higher Education – the global
perspective’, NADP International Conference, Manchester

The conference will provide a global perspective, focusing on disabled student support from pre-entry to University or College and onto successful transition into employment.

Support systems and services around the world are often recognised as being of a high quality, however, there is still much to learn and develop.  This conference will enable delegates from the global community to come together and share knowledge, practical skills and good practice in the provision of support for disabled students.

Keynote speakers include: Scott Lissner (Chair of AHEAD), Ann Heelan (AHEAD Ireland) and Nicole Ofiesh (Independent Learning Consultant and Stanford University).

NADP wishes to invite submissions for workshop presentations based on the
conference theme from any interested parties. To submit an abstract for consideration, please complete the submission form attached to this email and return to no later than Friday 30th October 2014
Further information:




Access to Higher Education Summit, 23 October 2012
Access to Higher Education Summit, 28 November 2011