Annual Report - 2022/23

The University’s Widening Access Team supports the achievement of the University’s civic, access and social mobility ambitions through the creation and delivery of a number of significant outreach programmes for learners currently under-represented in higher education. These programmes are highlighted throughout the Annual Report.

2022/2023 A Year in Review

In 2022/23 there has been: 

8,979Learner engagements
3,497learners attending 69 on-campus events
5,368learners engaged in 116 school/college sessions

The Widening Access team

The team works closely with schools within Derby City and Derbyshire to engage young people, improve their attainment, support their achievement and raise their awareness of HE and alternative progression opportunities. 


Widening Access Strategy

Our Widening Access strategy ensures we focus on the needs of local cohorts, working collaboratively with local schools and other organisations, to address very challenging, entrenched, social mobility issues within Derby City and Derbyshire. We take a research and evidence-based approach to our work and have a robust evaluation structure that underpins our activity. Reflection is embedded throughout using theories of change and logic models to map out success and impact measures and ensure effectiveness.

Increase participation and equitable outcomes for under-represented groups .

  1. To develop long-term strategic widening access collaborations and partnerships .
  2. To support the achievement, and raise the attainment and awareness, of target groups to address patterns of under-representation in higher education. 
  3. To support the achievement of University’s Access and Participation and Civic ambitions.
  • Students/ parents/carers
  • Schools and colleges
  • University staff
  • Union of Students
  • Government
  • Local councils/LEPS
  • Other HEIs
  • Uniconnect / Collaborative partnerships
  • Employers
  1. Progress to Success Framework  
  2. Primary Explorers Programme 
  3. Skills/attainment development 

Widening Access theory of change


Increase participation and equitable outcomes for under-represented groups.

Immediate outcomes


  • University Strategic Framework
  • Institutional Success Measures
  • Access and Participation Plan
  • Civic University Agreement
  • Widening Access Strategic Plan
  • Equality, Diversity, Inclusivity and Wellbeing (EDIW)
  • Safeguarding 
  • General data protection regulations (GDPR)
  • How We Work
  • Research
  • TOCs
  • Evaluation
  • Evidenced based practice
  • Conference papers
  • Publications
  • Progress to Success Framework
  • HE Can programme
  • Think, Reflect, Succeed
  • Primary Explorers programme
  • Derby Scholars
  • Rise High
  • Mentoring pilot

Case Studies

Over the next few sections, you can learn about some of our key activities in more depth through a series of case studies that highlight the success of our widening access work, providing good evidence of the lasting impact on local young people.