Tag Archives: black and ethnic minorities

253 – MoRKSS: black and minority ethnic student retention and success – Manny Madriaga, Farhana Ahmad, Alan Donnelly

This paper will feedback on an aspect of a Higher Education Academy (HEA) – funded project at Sheffield Hallam University called MoRKSS (Mobilisation of Research Knowledge for Student Success). Sheffield Hallam University is one of eight institutions in England funded by the HEA to seek interventions to address the issue, particularly with student engagement in mind. This project attempts to examine the issue of gap attainment between white and black minority ethnic (BME) students in the institution, where there is a difference in ‘good honours’ (first or 2.1) achievement in studying for first degrees. Nationally, the difference is 18.4% (Equality Challenge Unit 2011). This paper presentation will share preliminary findings from one aspect of this MoRKSS project, where a research instrument, informed by Kuh’s work on student engagement, has been employed to gauge social and academic integration of particular courses where there is a disproportionate amount of BME students (Sims 2007). Student researchers were recruited to partner in the research design, analysis of data and conduct one-to-one interviews with students on the courses of study. Given the sensitivity and significance of this project, this presentation will also be an opportunity for ‘student’ researchers to share their experiences of being a part of this endeavour. It is hoped that the research findings from this project will be mobilised to inform change within the institution, as well as ignite questions for the rest of the sector.  This paper covers two strands of this conference: supporting students and course identity.