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SCAPP: Scotland's Community of Access and Participation Practitioners

What is SCAPP?

SCAPP (Scotland’s Community of Access and Participation Practitioners) aims to provide a practitioners’ network to support the development and professionalisation of a strong widening access and participation community in Scotland and by doing this embed, enhance and support effective practice in Scotland.


Events and getting involved

  • Join our mailing list by emailing
  • Follow us on twitter
  • Come to our events:


Ideas for Online Outreach during COVID-19

Please find below details of a webinar – Ideas for Online Outreach during COVID-19 which is being hosted on 2 April by Brightside, providers of online mentoring for young people, to share ideas and best practice in relation to online outreach.

Brightside are keen to get the perspectives of as many practitioners as possible so please share with anyone who you know may be interested in participating in this event.

Any queries please contact event organisers.


In these challenging and unprecedented times, young people need support and guidance with their education and career journeys now more than ever. We are here to help our partners, and others, as much as we can to continue to have an impact on the young people we are committed to supporting.

We want to find ways for WP practitioners to stay connected and share ideas and best practice, particularly in relation to working online as a way of continuing WP and outreach activity. With that in mind, we invite all of you to join a Brightside webinar on Zoom, which you can access remotely, to share your experiences, ideas and plans, and support each other across the sector. Brightside will also talk about what we’re doing with some of our partners at the moment to help you generate ideas to take back to your own institutions and to offer as much help as we can at this time.

The session will take place on Thursday 2nd April–2:00pm-3:30pm.

To register your attendance please click  here





For supporting your students and Service Users

Young Scot

Young Scot, the national youth information and citizenship charity for 11-26 year olds, offers very useful information not only about the coronavirus Young Scot Corona but also about general support, employment and voluntary opportunities and much more. Young Scot


For latest updates on Corona Virus and how it may affect applications please see UCAS website

For You

If you find you have time on your hands it might be an opportunity to learn British Sign Language. BSL are offering on-line “pay-what-you-can” courses ranging from £5 for full time students or those on low-no income, £10 for a Key Worker to £35+ which covers cost of enrolment for you and contributes to helping someone elses’s enrolment.

British Sign Language courses

For everyone

Mind the mental health charity have a very comprehensive website about the coronavirus and how to keep well for physical and mental health including activities to keep you occupied and tips on working from home. Worth a read

Working from home and leading a team

Whether you are leading a team, or are part of a team, and now find yourself at home interacting with everyone at a distance, Maren Deepwell has pulled together a really useful and readable guide to working from home and how to manage teams at a distance. While there are lots of blogs and reflective essays appearing all over Linked In, Facebook, etc, I found this one quite useful and straightforward

Keep on learning

Thanks to Gill Ryan from OU Scotland for supplying the following information:

As the schools and colleges close, and third sector and community learning projects end face to face contact, the OU have had a few enquiries about online learning opportunities. If you are an open learning champion, or if you would like to spend some time developing or enhancing your knowledge and learning, now would probably be a good time to share with colleagues, learners and networks some of the free learning available on OpenLearn as well as FutureLearn and OpenLearn Create. If you’re looking for something in particular that would be helpful, please get in touch and the OU can help you find it.



SCAPP's Five Priorities

1. Networking

Provide opportunities to collaborate, discuss and share practice, resources and skills. Identify and work with, existing communities of practice across Scotland to ensure a positive impact on the learner journey.

2. Training and Development

Develop and enhance practice by creating, identifying and promoting training opportunities. Develop working groups, activities and training linked directly to elements of the Fair Access Toolkit and other relevant resources.

3. Evaluation and Research

Work with research to ensure practitioners have access to up-to-date evidence to inform their work. Share practice in the effective use of evidence to improve implementation and evaluation strategies.   Support the collation of national and regional data to better track and target relevant groups.

4. Quality Standards

Ensure quality of practice by supporting and promoting the alignment of practice with evidence. Explore the development of a formal accreditation process to endorse and value the work of practitioners and to assist in raising the status of Widening Access and Widening Participation.

5. The Toolkit

The Toolkit is intended to support practitioners to plan and evaluate engagement and approaches. The practitioners’ network will have a key role in informing the content and contributing to the Toolkit, as well as championing its use.


Development Coordinator Appointed

Muriel Alexander took up the position of Development Coordinator on 6 January 2020. We would like to extend our thanks and appreciation to Dr Katie Monk for the work that she did to establish SCAPP and to take planned activities forward.

Muriel has worked at a number of universities in Scotland in a range of roles encompassing widening participation and lifelong learning, admissions, articulation and student recruitment and more recently worked at Forth Valley College to coordinate the range of Partnership degrees between the college and various university partners. Please get in touch with Muriel if you have anything that you would like to discuss with respect to SCAPP. Muriel can be contacted at or

SCAPP Logo Designer Recognised

SCAPP’s logo has been designed by a recent graduate of Glasgow School of Art, Colette Kerr.  We are thrilled that Colette’s talents have been recognised and she has been invited to exhibit at the prestigious New Designers in London this Summer.  She has also been included in the graduate directory that Wallpaper* produces.

Who can join?

The network is open to all and will have an emphasis on supporting those directly engaged in delivery of widening access and participation to higher education. Amongst others, we welcome school leadership and teaching staff; careers advisors; college and university widening access/participation teams; access researchers and those working in the third sector.

Contact  if you wish to join

History of SCAPP

The Framework Governance Group tasked a Short-Term Working Group (STWG) of WP practitioners to create a community of practice in Scotland for the widening access and participation sector. In doing this, they sought to build on the work of existing networks, their volunteers and their experience which were operating locally and nationally for years, (for example, the SHEP Network and its Practitioner Best Practice sessions; the SWAP practitioner groups). After agreeing a range of aims and objectives, the STWG sought funding from the Scottish Funding Council to create a Development Coordinator (DC) post so that SCAPP could be managed and grow to support everyone across the sector in Scotland. Part of the DC role will be to develop a sustainable membership model going forward so that a practitioners across the sector can continue to have a strong professional network to support them in their work. SCAPP will be led and shaped by its members.