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Awarding gaps

This page acknowledges the existence of awarding gaps and provides a basic summary of what the University is doing to remove them.

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What you need to know

Everyone at the University of Nottingham is a valued part of our community and it is our ambition to help you succeed, regardless of background or circumstance.

In February 2019, data from the Department for Education showed that students from minority groups (based upon age, ethnicity and socio-economic backgrounds) across the UK were awarded fewer first and upper-second class degrees than white, middle class students.

We have been actively trying to remove these gaps in a number of ways, including:

    • Greater research into the experiences of students
    • Exploring the impact of assessment design and practice upon different student groups
    • Establishing a reverse mentoring scheme by which students from minority groups can inform and influence staff
    • Regularly reporting data on attainment gaps to academic departments
    • Improved student representation on groups and committees
    • Increased support and awareness training for all

For more information about the Department for Education's findings in 2019 (and the subsequent report produced by the Office for Students), please consult the following:


EDI Teaching Toolkit


Advance HE have supported a number of Universities to take a fresh look at their approach to embedding equality, diversity and inclusion in the curriculum. They defined these terms as follows:

Equality:  ensuring that individuals are not treated less favourably than each other; 

Diversity:  recognising and respecting differences;

Inclusion: enabling individuals to achieve their full potential. 

For more information about these definitions, please consult the following:

Advance HE - Equality, Diversity and Inclusion



One of the areas identified for development at the University of Nottingham was supporting staff with inclusive staff- student conversations, leading to the production of a specialised toolkit:

EDI Teaching Toolkit

The toolkit was developed by two students employed via the Student Engagement Associates Programme, with support and over-sight from the lead academic (Fiona McCullough).Team members included students and academics, as well as staff representation from the Educational Excellence team and Professional Development. 

This resource, which will be updated annually, has pulled together best practice in the area of EDI and is intended to help upskill staff in relation to student conversations which can include potentially difficult issues (for example, as a module or personal tutor). 

If you have any problems or queries specific to the Toolkit, please send an email to the project's lead academic  Email

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If you have any problems or queries relating to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, please send an email to the dedicated EDI mailbox  Email
This page was last updated on 03 June 2021 at 12:08 (GMT)