Institute of Epidemiology & Health Care


Office for Students uses UCL research to identify risk to equality of opportunity for young carers

19 February 2024

The Office for Students has added Young Carers to its Risk Register, citing UCL IEHC research.

Photograph of a group of 9 people at the workshop, standing at the front of a seminar room.

UCL Institute of Epidemiology and Health Care academics Dr Baowen Xue, Dr Rebecca E. Lacey, Dr Giorgio Di Gessa and Professor Anne McMunn have provided the evidence needed to add Young Carers to the Office for Students Risk Register.

Many students do not experience equality of opportunity in higher education. This is true across the three main stages of a student’s higher education journey: access, participation and progression.

The Equality of Opportunity Risk Register from the Office for Students identifies 12 sector-wide risks that may affect a student’s opportunity to access and succeed in higher education.

The register outlines a variety of risks, from application success rates to mental health. It is used by higher education providers across the country to consider how they can mitigate risks to certain groups of students.

The UCL IEHC team behind the research also recently ran a successful workshop with young adult carers and Carers Trust. The workshop explored how young adult carers can best be supported and will be used to develop recommendations for policymakers and third-sector organisations.

Professor Anne McMunn said, “Our work tells us that young adult carers are disadvantaged in education and employment. It’s encouraging to see the Risk Register working to prevent this.