The University of Southampton
DiversityPolicies and guidance

Introducing Equality Assessments

The University of Southampton is required by law to ensure fair treatment in employment, study and service delivery. We must ensure that we are not inadvertently discriminating against people, that we are providing equal treatment and that we have taken a range of needs into account.

Introduction

Equality Assessments (EAs) are a systematic way of helping us to improve the quality of what we do alongside aiding legal compliance, and to integrate equality into our mainstream work. For example we can explore how we structure the institution, the way we recruit and promote staff, and the way we treat students, and visitors.

It is useful to think of an EA as a form of quality assurance, making sure that the University is a fully inclusive environment. As such, in addition to our legal duties, there is also a compelling business case for carrying them out.

"The quality of an assessment is not measured by the number of pages produced but by the quality of the analysis, the action taken as a result, and the outcomes achieved through implementation." - ACAS

You may sometimes see EAs referred to as Equality Impact Assessments (EIAs or EqIAs).

Scope and boundaries

Every substantial activity (for example policies, major procedures and larger projects) should be examined in relation to its impact on equality. But this effort should be proportionate. Not all activities warrant the same level of detail, and some will clearly have higher priority or risk than others.

Timing

An EA of a new activity should always start as early in the planning and development process as possible. This helps to ensure that there is adequate time to make adjustments identified in the EA, and often draws in elements such as user consultation that would happen anyway.

Ongoing activities (for example, established policies) should undergo an EA as they come up for review.

Ownership

Each EA is carried out and owned by the faculty or professional service group (PSG) concerned, or in some cases a joint stakeholder team. This taskforce may include representatives from other parts of the University or even outside. It is important that the work is shared across the team rather than left to one person.

The EA team is responsible for preparing and writing up the assessment, managing actions and ensuring it remains fit for purpose. The team should also upload completed EA documents to SharePoint.

Diversity team

The Diversity team oversee the guidance and training of the EA process, assisting in areas such as:

Find out more

These web pages provide a range of resource to help with carrying out EAs:

You can find completed University of Southampton EAs on the internal SharePoint site.

Easy-read guide

A law about making things better for people from different groups (external publication - .pdf download)

Useful Downloads

Need the software?PDF Reader

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.

×