Widening participation

LSE is committed to recruiting the best possible students with the highest academic and intellectual potential, regardless of their economic or social background. Students who consider applying to LSE should be assured that we do not discriminate when selecting students; LSE's only aim is to recruit students who will gain the most from three years of LSE undergraduate study. 

Our Student Marketing & Recruitment and Widening Participation Teams offer a range of activities for schools and colleges in the UK and overseas, such as campus visits and school talks. Many of these are open to all, regardless of sector or location. 

However, we do recognise that not all applicants are afforded the same educational opportunities. To this end, in addition to our ongoing general recruitment activities, LSE has been involved with a number of widening participation and access initiatives since 1998, with the aim of raising the aspirations of school and college students. These schemes are not just aimed at increasing the number of applications to LSE, but are aimed at encouraging students to apply and fulfil their potential at the best university for them.  

The WP team worked with over 2,700 school students in the academic year 2016-2017 and looks forward to continuing to expand our offering to school students, their parents/carers, teachers and advisers during 2017-18.

Our WP activity is specifically targeted based on criteria known to affect participation in higher education. To find out more about each widening participation programme, including targeting criteria, please use the links on the left of the page, or take a look at our Widening Participation brochure.

If you work in a school/college and would like to add your contact details to our database to ensure we send you information about any relevant activities, please click here and complete our online form

The work of the WP Team is an integral part of the Access Agreement, helping to ensure that young people from non-traditional backgrounds are encouraged to apply to university. To view our Access Agreements from 2015-16 onwards, approved and monitored by the Office for Fair Access (OFFA) - an independent public body that regulates fair access to higher education – please clink on the relevant year below. All Access Agreements from 2006 onwards are available via the OFFA website.

As part of our wider commitment to support students at any level, please find further details of LSE bursaries, scholarships and other financial information here.


Pathways to Law expands to reach London students from Year 10 to Year 13

Following a successful bid the LSE Widening Participation Team is delighted to have been selected to deliver the Pathways to Law programme for a further four years. 

Pathways to Law aims to support bright state school students who are interested in law.  LSE will once again join 11 other universities across the country to deliver the Sutton Trust’s flagship legal access programme.  Building on the success of the programme which currently supports students in Years 12 and Year 13, the new phase will expand to work with Year 10 and Year 11 students.  By reaching students at an earlier age, the programme will introduce students to law as well as providing them with the information, advice and guidance needed to support them in making informed decisions about their future.  

Students attending LSE’s Pathways to Law programme next year will take part in lectures delivered by LSE Law Department academics and will visit key legal institutions including the Supreme Court, Inner Temple and the Royal Courts of Justice. They will also have the opportunity to shadow current LSE undergraduate law students, take part in a legal work experience placement, participate in personal statement and student finance sessions and receive advice on academic skills such as critical thinking, essay writing and research, as well as taking part in workshops on networking and personal branding. 

Since its launch in 2007, LSE has worked with over 650 students on the Pathways to Law programme with many going on to study Law and related degrees at LSE and other Russell Group institutions.  From the current Pathways to Law cohort 10 students are holding offers to study at LSE next year.

Kirsty Wadsley, Head of Widening Participation at LSE, said: “We are thrilled to have been selected to continue to run the Pathways to Law programme, many thanks go to the staff across LSE for their continued support of the Programme and contribution to our latest successful bid. We look forward to not only welcoming a new cohort of Year 12 students to LSE next year but also commencing work with younger students as part of the Phase IV developments. It is of continued importance that we reach academically gifted pupils from a young age who may, as a result of their educational background and experience, not think that law is accessible to them.  We hope the Phase IV cohorts will find LSE’s programme both informative and enriching, and will go on to be the next generation of lawyers.”

Dr Joseph Spooner from the LSE Law Department said: “We are delighted to have been awarded the opportunity to continue our role on the Pathways to Law programme. The Law Department is proud of its diverse student body and is committed to extending participation ever more widely, recruiting the best possible students with the highest academic and intellectual potential, irrespective of background. The Pathways to Law programme advances these values and is a wonderful means of introducing talented students to the possibility and promise of a legal education and career. We look forward to welcoming new students next year. We hope they find the programme rewarding and enjoy the Department’s Pathways to Law events as much as members of the Department enjoy participating.” 

Sir Peter Lampl, Chairman of the Sutton Trust and of the Education Endowment Foundation, said research had shown there is still a significant social mobility issue within the legal sector and that greater access to a wider pool of diverse talent would also deliver benefits to employers.

A recent Pathways to Law participant said: “I really loved the opportunities and insight Pathways to Law has offered me. It's been able to give me clarity in what I'd like to do at university and as a career, and how to get into that career. It's really helped to cement my future, build a strong foundation and has enabled me to create connections that'll benefit me in the future”. 

More on LSE’s Pathways to Law programme here.