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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-13936: Kezia Dugdale (Lothian)

Scottish Labour

Date lodged: 18 January 2018

To ask the Scottish Government, in light of the Equality and Human Rights Committee report, Disability and Universities, what its position is on whether disability should be considered a core indicator with regard to contextualised indicators in university admissions.

Answered by: Shirley-Anne Somerville 31 January 2018

As for any group of learners, we must consider the specific access barriers that students with a disability face to identify the most appropriate interventions that can assist them. Scottish Government analysts will shortly convene a group of key stakeholders to look at measures, in addition to the Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation, to support our work on access.

The use of contextualised admissions is just one of a range of methods to support those from underrepresented groups to access higher education. The Commission on Widening Access considered the barriers faced by those from socioeconomically deprived backgrounds and those with a care experience. It concluded that access thresholds were justified and had the potential to increase the participation for these two groups of learners.