Widening and Increasing Equality of Access and Participation in STEM

A significant strand of the Programme’s work was in seeking to enhance the ways in which universities worked with schools and colleges to increase and widen participation within the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines. This involved building upon the work of the four pilot projects (for example, a series of 36 case studies can be read in the Menu of Activities report), but also through new outreach and public engagement initiatives, established at a local level through the Programme’s university partners. The outcomes of this work are described in the National HE STEM Programme final report

A number of publications produced by the Programme as outputs from the projects and activities undertaken are available for download below.

 Resource Description
How to finance and run a Royal Society (or indeed any other) exhibition Developed by Chris Budd at the University of Bath, this guide presents an accessible overview of how to plan, prepare and deliver an interactive STEM exhibition. 
Collaboration between HEIs: An outreach practice guide This short guide brings together advice, hints and tips from a variety of collaborative projects to help higher education institutions build their own multi-institution outreach projects.
An evidence-based approach to improving transition, induction and retention This guide has been designed to help STEM faculties, schools, departments, programmes and modules to use data and evaluation to inform and implement an effective strategic approach and associated interventions to improve student transition, induction and retention into higher education.
An introductory guide for students considering studying a STEM subject in higher education A student focused guide which introduces some of the opportunities available at university and the reasons for considering a STEM subject and career. 
Enhanced transition and induction to HE STEM programmes This guide offers STEM programme teams the opportunity to work through a series of key themes in order to evaluate their provision of transition and induction support to first year undergraduate students. The nine themes considered derive from work on the Higher Education Retention and Engagement (HERE) project. 
Towards a framework for effective transition This guide draws on the existing literature and ties together examples of good practice into a framework for transition based upon six key factors.
Improving STEM student transition, retention and success in higher education This guide focuses on ‘social engagement’ - that is, the interactions between students and their peers and between staff and students – and the very important contribution this makes to the student experience, and thereby to retention and success.
Improving transition: The curriculum development perspective This guide considers the importance of the higher education curriculum in terms of how it is delivered, how students engage with it, how they are supported, and how delivery may be facilitated to enhance student success.
Optimising the part-time experience In many key respects the transition and retention needs of part-time students are substantially different from those of their full-time counterparts. This guide discusses these issues and recommends approaches to the transition, induction and retention of part-time students in higher education.
Encouraging gender equality in STEM The Guide has been designed to be used as a starting point for teaching and professionals in both higher and further education institutions by providing ideas to support, attract and retain female staff and students in STEM disciplines. The information in this booklet is based upon a research project undertaken through the Programme.
Maths @ Work Days A comprehensive university guide to designing and planning hands-on maths workshops for school and college students delivered by employers.
What can I do with my maths degree? Careers advice for maths undergraduates A short guide aimed at helping students identify career opportunities following the study of a mathematics degree. Although written for undergraduates, it is also useful for A-level students.
What makes a mathematics degree work for part-time and mature students? This report presents an evidence based model of the factors that need to be taken into account in order to make a mathematical sciences degree attractive and structurally appropriate for mature and part-time learners.
Generating Genius: Working in partnership with universities to widen participation This booklet shares the experience of Generating Genius and presents the methodology developed for working with talented secondary school students from homes where there has been no tradition of higher education. It also offers an insight into establishing successful partnerships with schools, universities and corporate sponsors. 
How to add STEM careers information to university outreach A short series of ‘10 top tips’ on how universities can embed careers advice and guidance successfully within their outreach activities.
Support for careers professionals working with women and girls in sciences, engineering and technology This guide is for careers professionals working with schools, in further and higher education and with adults. The tips and case studies will provide ideas to help support girls and women wanting to access and progress in the SET sectors.
Maths at University A guide written for students which provides information on how to apply and study for a mathematics degree. It explores what to expect when studying mathematics at university, the differences between courses and universities and the opportunities that studying such a degree offers.

Student involvement in STEM activities: A guide to good practice


This guide, developed through a National HE STEM Programme project compares a number of STEM communicator schemes that use undergraduate ambassadors.  It includes tips for starting up, running and sustaining schemes, drawing from the experience of participants at a Programme workshop.

Delivering effective STEM public engagement This booklet showcases examples of the different types of scheme whereby higher education institutions use student ambassadors to support outreach and enrichment activities.