The Federal Government's Higher Education Participation and Partnership Program (HEPPP) aims to ensure that Australians from low Socio-Economic-Status (SES) backgrounds who have the ability to study at university have the opportunity to do so. The Federal Government provides funding to assist universities to undertake activities and implement strategies that improve access to undergraduate courses for people from low SES backgrounds, as well as improving the retention and completion rates of those students.


UOW has developed an Access & Participation Enabling Plan for Student Equity: A Framework for the Implementation of HEPPP 2018-2020 that has been provided to the Federal Government to detail how HEPPP will be implemented at UOW.

UOW is committed to ensuring the access and success of students from diverse backgrounds at our institution and that is why from 2018 to 2020, UOW has developed a refined approach to the implementation of HEPPP. The approach for the next three years will include:

Student equity program fund

Long term strategic programs to reach UOW’s goal of greater than 21% of the domestic undergraduate cohort consisting of students from low SES backgrounds. These programs include:

  1. Outreach (pre-access) programs: These programs provide a whole of institution approach to pre-access (outreach) activities to schools and communities within UOW’s geographical footprint;
  2. Access programs: Contextualised access initiatives and pathways programs for school leavers and non-school leavers;
  3. The Transition & Retention Project: Scaling up existing successful transition and retention activities to add value to the existing support mechanisms in place at UOW. This is underpinning by the Achieving Purposeful Transitions Framework and Action Plan.
  4. Equity scholarships: Development and ongoing implementation of a best practice model for the dissemination of equity scholarships that meet best practice and improve student retention;
  5. UOW’s Re-Engagement Strategy: The development and embedding of a re-engagement strategy that supports the re-entry of equity students who have exited from the institution;
  6. Completion & Transition Out: Design and implement programs that increase student accessibility to opportunities that will increase their employment beyond University
Student equity project grants

Short term competitive project grants to encourage research and evaluation, innovation and providing targeted funding to where it is needed. In 2019, the following grants were funded:

Designing and implementing an evaluation framework for a ‘whole of institution’ approach to the ‘transition, retention, completion and transition out’ of equity cohorts. Associate Professor Steven Howard
Maths Support David Hartley
Regional Counselling Adam McCrae
Equity Scholarships Nhan Nguyen

More information

For further information, please visit the Federal Government’s website

UOW's Access & Participation Plan for Student Equity 2018-2020