Higher Education Participation and Partnerships Programme (HEPPP)

What is HEPPP?

The Higher Education Participation and Partnerships Programme (HEPPP) provides Australian Government funding to assist universities to improve access, participation and completion rates of students from low socio-economic status (SES) backgrounds.

HEPPP has three components:

  • The Participation and Partnership funds, both allocated by formula, to support programs that assist students from low SES backgrounds to access, succeed in, and complete higher education; and
  • The National Priorities Pool, a small quantum of competitive grant funds to support Commonwealth priorities, such as raising the access of low SES students in regional Australia.

What is HEPPP at La Trobe?

The Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic)(DVCA) has responsibility for HEPPP, and the Centre for Higher Education Equity and Diversity Research (CHEEDR; formerly known as The Access and Achievement Research Unit) oversees the University’s HEPPP funds on behalf of the DVCA.

La Trobe uses HEPPP funding to support major equity initiatives across the University, including: the School Partnerships Program; a collaborative Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) project with secondary schools (UniBridges); College outreach programs; and scholarships. All major HEPPP projects are rigorously evaluated, and have contributed to the University already meeting its Future Ready target of 20% of the undergraduate cohort being from low socio-economic status backgrounds.

HEPPP-funded projects

School Partnerships Program

The School Partnerships Program collaborates with 32 low socio-economic status schools to deliver activities that provide extra curriculum support, academic preparation, and awareness of university courses and future careers.

UniBridges

This program aims to increase the interest and achievement of students from low socio-economic status backgrounds in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). This aim is promoted by delivering thematic curriculum across a cluster of secondary school subjects.

Succeed Program (Academic Early Warning System)

The Succeed Program (Academic Early Warning System) is a University-wide communication and referral strategy designed to identify and engage commencing undergraduate students at risk of disengagement.

Peer Learning Advisers (PLAs)

PLA’s provide academic information, maths and literacy advice, and basic resume checking to students.

Equality and Diversity Centre (EDC)

The EDC promotes equal participation of all students and staff of La Trobe and fosters an environment free of discrimination and harassment.

The Centre for Higher Education Equity and Diversity Research (CHEEDR)

The Centre (formerly the AARU) leads research, analysis and evaluation to inform University strategies for improving access and achievement levels of under-represented students.

The Centre also regularly conducts evaluations of major HEPPP-funded programs and also provides an advisory role, including provision and analysis of relevant institutional data, and consultation with program managers on the development of methodologies for internal program evaluations.

Equity Support Scholarships

Equity Support Scholarships are awarded on the basis of educational disadvantage to support students.

Student Mobility Assistance Scholarships

The Student Mobility Assistance Scholarship is awarded on the basis of financial disadvantage to assist low socio-economic status students participating in an overseas exchange.

Care Leaver Bursary

The Care Leaver Bursary is awarded to all commencing, domestic undergraduate students at the University who spent time in formal out-of-home care (i.e. foster care, residential care, kinship care, ward of the State).

Bursaries for Students from Refugee Backgrounds

To assist students from refugee backgrounds starting university, all eligible commencing undergraduate domestic students who are from refugee backgrounds will receive a bursary which is valued at $500.

College of Science, Health and Engineering HEPPP-funded projects

SHE Outreach

SHE Outreach aims to stimulate interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) disciplines, particularly for students from low socio-economic status and regional schools.

SHE Subject Support Tutor Program

This is a discipline and course-specific academic support program for academically under-prepared students. The Program includes one-on-one or small group support for students requiring additional explanation of subject content, and monitoring of student engagement in order to follow-up with students who show early signs of difficulty.

SHE Employability Bursaries

Awarded on the basis of financial disadvantage to assist low socio-economic status students with the costs associated with placements undertaken as part of their course.

College of Arts, Social Sciences and Commerce HEPPP-funded projects

ASSC Outreach

ASSC Outreach seeks to increase aspirations and capabilities of students from low socio-economic status and regional schools by providing high quality enrichment opportunities and curriculum support in ASSC related studies.

ASSC Subject Support Tutor Program

This is a discipline and course-specific academic support program for academically under-prepared students. The Program includes one-on-one or small group support for students requiring additional explanation of subject content, and monitoring of student engagement in order to follow-up with students who show early signs of difficulty.

ASSC Employability Bursaries

Awarded on the basis of financial disadvantage to assist low socio-economic status students with the costs associated with placements undertaken as part of their course.

Evaluations

  • School Partnerships Program (SPP)
  • College of Science Health and Engineering (SHE) outreach program
  • ‘VCE Plus’ program
  • UniBridges
  • Succeed Program (Academic Early Warning System)
  • Tertiary Enabling Program.

Planning for 2017

The Department of Education and Training confirmed HEPPP funding allocations for 2017 on 31 October 2016.

The Office of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) has worked with the Centre for Higher Education Equity and Diversity Research, College Pro Vice-Chancellors, the Executive Director of Educational Partnerships and Quality, the Executive Director of Student Services and other senior staff to establish 2017 HEPPP priorities and budgets.

All HEPPP projects are assessed against Commonwealth eligibility criteria and the University’s strategic objectives.