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Title: Widening participation and a student ‘success’ assemblage: the materialities and mobilities of university
Authors: Wainwright, E
Chappell, A
McHugh, E
Keywords: Widening participation;Student experience;University;Mobility;Materiality;Assemblage
Issue Date: 22-Nov-2019
Publisher: Wiley
Citation: Population, Space and Place, 2019:e2291 (11)
Abstract: This paper takes an assemblage approach to extend knowledge and understanding ofwidening participation (WP) in the United Kingdom. We reflect on the identificationand experiences of a WP student population—how this population has been markedout, labelled, and considered through policy and intervention, alongside the material-ities and mobilities that shape the lived experiences of these students. Using ques-tionnaire findings, narrative interviews, and photo diaries, it draws on a 12‐monthstudy at a London university to explore the factors that have enabled final‐yearundergraduate students from a WP background to stay the course and complete theirprogramme of studies. Our arguments are shaped by the geographical and educa-tional literatures on materialities and mobilities. We bring these together to sketchout a student success assemblage comprising wide‐ranging elements that we framearound identity, support, and resources. Assemblage draws attention to the multiplic-ity of human/non‐human relations that shape student experience and students'capacities for success. Assemblage intersects with university precisely through afocus on experience and, as we suggest, takes on a particular inflexion for studentsfrom a WP background. This underpinning ontological basis to studying WP enablesus to view the university, student experience, and success as being continually pro-duced and reproduced, and coconstituted between the human and non‐human. Uni-versities should attend to student assemblages to better understand the experiencesof and support needed by underrepresented groups in higher education.
ISSN: 1544-8444
Appears in Collections:Dept of Education Research Papers

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