Biology’s undergraduate strategic outreach report

We are aware that our undergraduate degree course does not embody as diverse a cohort of students as we’d like to see represented in our subject matter. As such, we worked with Dr Tanesha Allen (a recent DPhil student of ours) to conduct a strategic outreach report that delved into analysing the barriers faced by some in choosing to study biology at school and/or university. The aim of the report was to improve access and equity for our MBiol course for both BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) and state school students.

Dr Allen analysed UK-wide data and spoke extensively to our current student body and local teachers in order to understand where barriers stood and how we could best counter them.  A key finding of the report showed that a perceived lack of career opportunity prevented many candidates from applying to a biology degree course, and as such a strong recommendation from the report is that we work more closely with our alumni community to build career and mentorship opportunities.

Since the publication of this report in December 2020, we are delighted to welcome Hannah Austyn to the Communications and Engagement team. A core focus of Hannah’s role is to work with our alumni community to work on implementing the suggested actions of the report. To get in touch with Hannah, please email:

To read Dr Allen’s report, please click here, and find the appendix here.