Can standards drop? Social inclusion agenda and academic standards

Mahsood Shah, Chenicheri Nair

    Research output: A Conference proceeding or a Chapter in BookConference contributionpeer-review


    The social inclusion policies are implemented in the higher education sector to provide access and opportunity for all groups of people irrespective of their social class to participate in higher education. Such policies ensure that every citizen has access to elite education which enables them to succeed and improve their life chances. The renewal of quality assurance in Australian higher education with focus on academic standards and government’s aspiration to increase the proportion of disadvantaged students by 2020 in tertiary education raises the question on the extent to which social inclusion policies could lower academic standards. This paper argues that contemporary trends such as increased student diversity; changing pattern of student participation in higher education; preparedness of many students for tertiary education; and new modes of learning will continue to grow and it is not necessary that such changes will lower academic standards. The authors provide a case of an Australian university with success in the social inclusion agenda with positive outcomes with access and participation and comparable academic outcomes.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationCreating an inclusive learning environment: Engagement, equity, and retention. Proceedings of the 21st Annual Teaching Learning Forum
    EditorsRoger Atkinson, Clare McBeath
    Place of PublicationWestern Australia
    PublisherTeaching and Learning Forum
    Number of pages9
    Publication statusPublished - 2012
    EventTeaching and Learning Forum - Perth, Australia
    Duration: 2 Feb 20123 Feb 2012


    ConferenceTeaching and Learning Forum


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