Department for Culture Media & Sport: Diversity within Arts icon

Department for Culture Media & Sport: Diversity within Arts

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) aims to ensure Britain is one of the world’s most creative and exciting places to live, visit and do business with.  As part of this, DCMS is committed to encouraging participation and ensuring the pathways into the cultural sectors are better defined, signposted and supported, especially for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds. The recently published Culture White Paper recognised this and Higher Education (HE) is an important route into arts professions through visual arts, dance, drama and music programmes offered by a range of institutions, including specialist Conservatoires and Drama Schools. Recent work carried out by CFE Research indicates that the participation gap within HE is reducing. However, evidence from a recent rapid literature review by DCMS indicates that the participation gap may be particularly pronounced for certain HE arts programmes.  This had led DCMS to commission CFE research to undertake a detailed high-level analysis of HE data, derived from UCAS and HESA, to gain a deeper understanding of what barriers disadvantaged groups face within the arts disciplines and at what point barriers occur.

Dr Sarah Tazzyman image

Key project contact

Dr Sarah Tazzyman

Sarah has a wealth of evaluation experience and policy knowledge in the field of higher education with particular expertise in access and participation, part-time learning, financial support, doctoral study, and science education. Her research portfolio at CFE involves a range of longitudinal, mixed-methods evaluation projects including the national impact evaluation of the Office for Students’ Uni Connect programme, which aims to reduce the gap in higher education participation and support young people to make informed decisions about their future education. Sarah’s work informs HE policy makers, providers and other sector bodies including the National Strategy for Access and Student Success.