Building Bridges: The Story Behind Australia’s Largest Widening Participation Collaboration

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Whiteford, Gail
Cairnduff, Annette
O'Donnell, Catherine
Cavanagh, Jane
Tregale, Ruth
Stoddart, Jude
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Mahsood Shah, Gail Whiteford

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2017
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The story of Bridges to Higher Education, in which a consortium of five large Australian universities joined together in collaboration with numerous stakeholder groups to offer a comprehensive suite of programs aimed at widening the participation of those groups underrepresented in higher education in Australia, is one with many salient lessons. In the first section of this chapter, we chart the story “behind the scenes” of the Bridges phenomenon, its purpose and governance arrangements. In the following section we present data as to reach and impact of Bridges based on a 3-year multimethod evaluation. In closing, we reflect on the lessons learned through the development and implementation of Bridges programs and consider future directions.

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Bridges, Pathways and Transitions: International Innovations in Widening Participation

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Medical and Health Sciences not elsewhere classified

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