Monthly update

Read our monthly update - a roundup of news, blog posts, reports and web updates published on our site.

Please click on the + sign for each month. (Each month is retrospective.)

2020

Read this month's digital update

News

University access improving, but big challenges remain – OfS chair

Office for Students highlights need for fairness for all students with centre assessed grades

Office for Students responds to A-level results

OfS appoints 10 new student panellists

Impact of coronavirus on projects supporting student mental health: sharing of emerging practice

Blog

Tackling harassment, hate and sexual misconduct on campus

Publications

Data collection to inform funding for 2021-22

Impact of coronavirus on OfS Mental Health Challenge Competition

Release of 2019-20 Office for Students data checking tools

Independent report: Safeguarding Catalyst Fund projects evaluation: Final report (round three, religious-based hate crime)

Uni Connect programme: An update from the Office for Students - new letter for partnerships

Web updates

Coronavirus

Student guide: FAQ on confirming your university place for 2020-21

Provider guide: update to time-limited condition of registration FAQ

Mental health support: new online platform Student Space launched by Student Minds, part funded by the OfS

Regulation and the Register

Monthly bulletin of regulatory activity: July 2020 bulletin published

Access and participation

Postgraduate courses in artificial intelligence and data science: start dates for courses added

Fee limits: fee limits for 2021-22

Data and analysis

Data verification: 2019-20 data checking tools sample data verification queries

Data checking tools: 2019-20 technical documentation for:

Student numbers data: 2018-19 data updated

Corporate and general

Student panel: details of new panel members

Board papers: papers from the July 2020 meeting published

TRAC website

TRAC guidance for 2019-20 returns published

Events

Individualised Learner Record (ILR) training webinars: A series of webinars covering key data fields for higher education students in the ILR. Recordings, slides and questions and answers now available:

Higher Education Students Early Statistics 2020-21 (HESES20) data return training webinars: We are holding a number of online training webinars on how to complete the HESES20 data return:

Read this month's digital monthly update

News

OfS proposes tougher measures to protect students if universities run into financial trouble

Lower A-level grades from unconditional offers lead to higher dropout rates, warns regulator

Student satisfaction stable as data continues to highlight need for clear communication

Briefing note published on higher education outreach during the pandemic

Registration decisions July 2020

Regulator bans controversial ‘conditional unconditional’ offers during pandemic

‘Three months to make a difference’ for disabled students

Blog

Innovating for learning
Dr Claire Gordon and Dr Colleen McKenna have written a blog post highlighting the benefits of student engagement in learning and teaching design.

The power of storytelling
Ben Hunt, Senior Officer in Student Information, Advice and Guidance at the Office for Students, reflects on three lessons (and five questions) from his three roles in higher education.

How the Office for Students is supporting LGBT+ students
OfS Senior Equality and Diversity Officer Josh Callander discusses our activities to support LGBT+ students and our future ambitions.

Our approach to publishing this year’s National Student Survey
Richard Puttock introduces this year’s NSS, explaining the steps taken to ensure its reliability.

Publications

Regulatory notice 5: Condition Z3 Temporary provisions for sector stability and integrity

Consultation on the integrity and stability of the English higher education sector: Analysis of responses and equality impact assessment

Consultation on student protection directions

Impact of coronavirus on OfS Mental Health Challenge Competition

Coronavirus briefing note: Supporting disadvantaged students through higher education outreach

National Student Survey 2020: Analysis of the impact of the coronavirus pandemic

Update on the Office for Students’ approach to regulation and information about deadlines for data returns

Final evaluation of programme for innovations in learning and teaching projects

Digital provision of information, advice, guidance (IAG) and outreach: list of third party providers delivering IAG and outreach during the pandemic

Data analysis of unconditional offers: Update

2019-20 data checking tools - forthcoming release of data checking tools for:

  • 2019-20 Higher Education Statistics Agency Student data
  • 2019-20 Higher Education Statistics Agency Student Alternative data
  • the Education and Skills Funding Agency’s 2019-20 Individualised Learner Record.

Web updates

Protecting students if universities close: information for students about our new consultation on student protection directions

Coronavirus

Provider guide: information and FAQs about the new time-limited condition of registration

Student guide: FAQs on the time-limited condition of registration and new page on how to complain

New case studies on: 

Regulation and the Register

Monthly bulletin of regulatory activity: June 2020 bulletin

Accounts direction: clarification on the requirements of the accounts direction

Refused registration decisions: reasons for refusal published for four providers

Promoting equal opportunities

Effective practice: updated pages to show best available access and participation practice

Support for postgraduate research students: summary of a workshop on widening participation in postgraduate research

Funding for providers

Recurrent funding for 2019-20: update to Annex A reflecting further funding allocations

Recurrent funding for 2020-21: update to Annex A reflecting further funding allocations

Annual funding technical guidance and data: updated sector tables for 2019-20 and 2020-21

Provider payment dates: grant payment dates for academic year 2021-22

Data and analysis

Official statistics: updated Higher Education Students Early Statistics (HESES) and Higher Education in Further Education Student (HEIFES) survey data

Student numbers: updated 2018-19 and 2017-18 data

Analysis of Access to Higher Education Diplomas and integrated foundation year courses: publication and annex updated following a correction to the completion rates reported

Data checking tools: section updated with information on the 2019-20 data checking tools

Skills and employment

Improving outcomes for local graduates - new case studies

Student information and data

National Student Survey: 2020 results and data

Corporate

Key performance measures: KPM 10 (students responding positively to the NSS question on overall satisfaction) updated

Board papers: May 2020 board papers

OfS board: register of interests updated

Transparency - transparency data published for:

  • spending over £25,000: June 2020
  • procurement card spending over £500: June 2020
  • senior staff travel and expenses: 2020-21 Q1.

Business impact target reporting: summary statement for non-qualifying regulatory provisions 21 June 2019 - 12 Dec 2019

Read this month's digital monthly update

News

Briefing note published on supporting disabled students during the pandemic

Supporting graduate employability during the pandemic

Supporting postgraduate research students during the pandemic

Briefing note published on supporting prospective students during pandemic

Be clear to students on how courses will be taught, regulator says

New funds to boost student mental health through pandemic

Office for Students responds to HESA graduate outcomes survey

Supporting Black, Asian and minority ethnic students – event video published

Office for Students responds to HEPI/Advance HE student survey

Registration decisions

Applications open for OfS student panel

Apply now – new courses in artificial intelligence and data science

Care leavers more likely to drop out of university

Sir Michael Barber highlights achievements of OfS, as he agrees new digital role

Office for Students publishes annual report and accounts for 2019-20

Blog

Supporting Black, Asian and minority ethnic students during the coronavirus pandemic

Applicants and students need clarity about next year's provision

Why we need a student panel

Publications

Coronavirus briefing notes -

Guidance for providers about student and consumer protection during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Update on the OfS’s approach to regulation and information about deadlines for data returns

Annual report and accounts 2019-20

Annual TRAC 2018-19: Sector summary and analysis by TRAC peer group

Differences in student outcomes: further characteristics

Letter from Sir Michael Barber, Chair of the Office for Students, to Robert Halfon MP, Chair of the Education Select Committee

Web updates

Coronavirus

New case studies for:

Student mental health

Supporting postgraduate research students

Information, advice and guidance

Graduate employment

Coronavirus provider guide: funding for student mental health

Regulation and the Register

Regulatory activity: May 2020 bulletin

Student and consumer protection during the coronavirus pandemic: student page and provider FAQs

Data and analysis

Official statistics: section restructure and new ad hoc statistics release schedule

TRAC data: published data 2018-19

Student numbers: 2018-19 and 2017-18 data updated

Promoting equal opportunities

Supporting Black, Asian and minority ethnic students during the coronavirus pandemic: event recordings

Teaching

Teaching Excellence and Student Outcomes Framework (TEF): future of the TEF

Funding for providers

Postgraduate conversion courses in data science and artificial intelligence: information for prospective students

Student information and data

National Student Survey: update on 2020 results publication date

Corporate

OfS board: scheme of delegation updated

Student panel: apply to be on our student panel

Transparency: gifts and hospitality register 2019-20 updated

Transparency: data on spending over £25,000 and procurement card spending over £500 April 2020

Read this month's digital monthly update

News

Briefing note published on supporting international students during the pandemic

Briefing note published on needs of students without family support during pandemic

Office for Students response to Russell Group Pathways for Potential report

Regulator warns of penalties for recruitment practices that undermine student interests and stability of higher education

OfS announces decisions on 2020-21 teaching grant budget

OfS announces recurrent funding for 2020-21

Improved data resources provide more clarity on equality gaps

Publications

Coronavirus briefing note: international students

Coronavirus briefing note: students without family support

Payment of annual OfS registration fees 2020-21: Technical guidance for providers

Unistats 2020: timetable and arrangements for the submission and publication of data

Analysis of Level 6 and 7 apprenticeships

Consultation on the integrity and stability of the English higher education sector

Regulatory notice 1: Access and participation plan guidance - updated

Updates to information supporting access and participation plans

Implications of the coronavirus pandemic for OfS funding

Recurrent funding for 2020-21

Guide to funding 2020-21

Terms and conditions of funding for 2020-21

Funding for 2019-20 and 2020-21: OfS board decisions and outcomes of consultation

Prevent monitoring requirements during the coronavirus pandemic

National Student Survey 2020: Publication of data

Web updates

Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Provider guide to coronavirus: information on the time-limited condition of registration proposal

Coronavirus: case studies

Regulation and the Register

Regulatory activity: March and April 2020 bulletins

Data and analysis

Supplying data: COVID-19 exceptional guidance for the 2019-20 Individualised Learner Record and HESA collections

Access and participation data: dashboard and resources updated

Student numbers: 2017-18 and 2018-19 data updated

Post-collection outputs - student premium technical documents and method documents for:

Student information and data

Unistats collection and dataset: timetable for the 2020 data collection

Promoting equal opportunities

Postgraduate research students: how we support PGR students

Funding for providers

Recurrent funding: funding for 2020-21

Funding: recurrent grant 2020-21 technical guidance and sector tables

Corporate

Board papers: March 2020 board papers

OfS board: register of interests updated

Transparency data: data published for the following:
• Spending over £25,000: February and March 2020
• Senior staff travel and expenses: 2019-20 Q4
• Board members' expenses: April 2019 - March 2020
• Procurement card spending over £500: February and March 2020.

Read this month's digital newsletter

News

Briefing note published on supporting student mental health during pandemic

Briefing note published on student accommodation during pandemic

Funding boost for students to work with business and communities

Funding boost for new courses in artificial intelligence and data science

Higher education regulator urges fairness for students in admissions

Maintain good courses and credible qualifications for students during pandemic, says regulator

Publications

Coronavirus briefing note: student accommodation

Coronavirus briefing note: supporting student mental health

Guidance for providers about quality and standards during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Moratorium on unconditional offer-making

Further extension to moratorium on unconditional offer-making

Project monitoring: An update

Coronavirus (COVID-19): update on support and information

Web updates

Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Coronavirus student guide: frequently asked questions updated

Coronavirus provider guide:

Funding for providers

Postgraduate conversion courses in data science and artificial intelligence: details of funded projects

Funding awarded for projects to explore the impact of student involvement in knowledge exchange

Data and analysis

Annual release of equality and diversity data about students

Student numbers: 2017-18 and 2018-19 data updated

Post-collection outputs:

Data amendments: Updated panel schedule and dates for submitting amendments to the panel

Corporate updates

OfS key performance measures: 

OfS business plan: update on 2020-21 business plan

Remuneration and Nominations Committee: register of interests updated

Read this month's digital newsletter

News

Office for Students sets out slimmed down regulatory requirements during coronavirus pandemic
The Office for Students has announced that it is refocusing its regulatory requirements on universities, colleges and other higher education providers to prioritise the response to the current coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Universities must pause unconditional offers for two weeks in student interest, says regulator
Nicola Dandridge responds to the announcement that universities should stop making unconditional offers or amending existing offers to students for two weeks.

OfS responds to further details on grading following cancelled exams
Nicola Dandridge has responded to the Secretary of State’s statement on arrangements for students whose exams have been cancelled.

New independent commission aims to boost support for disabled students
A new independent group formed to challenge universities and colleges in England to improve support for disabled students has met for the first time.

Registration decision
The Office for Students has refused the registration application of London Vocational College Limited following a rigorous process of assessment and evaluation.

New funding competition to support student mental health
A new £1 million funding competition has been launched by the Office for Students which aims to improve support for students with mental ill health.

OfS seeks views on approach to monetary penalties
The Office for Students has set out its proposed approach to the use of a monetary penalty where a university, college or other higher education provider is judged to have breached a condition of registration.

Blog

The Disabled Students’ Commission: transforming disabled students’ experience
Professor Geoff Layer, Chair of the DSC, has written a blog post exploring the work of the DSC and the key issues they'll address.

Around the world (of admissions) in 80 days
Yinbo Yu from the UK Council for International Student Affairs has written a blog post exploring international students' experiences of the English higher education admissions system.

A to Z of admissions
The Office for Students is reviewing the higher education admissions system in England and wants to hear your views. Hilary Jones explains why the OfS is undertaking this review and how you can get involved.

Student mental health: joining the (intersectional) dots
Chris Millward announces the launch of a new funding competition and discusses the need for intersectional approaches in targeting support for mental health among students.

Publications

Formula capital funding for 2020-21
This publication summarises our allocations of formula capital funding for the financial year 2020-21 (1 April 2020 to 31 March 2021).

Regulatory requirements during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic
including guidance on reportable events
A letter with more detailed information about the regulatory requirements we have suspended and the specific information we need from providers.

Uni Connect programme: An update from the Office for Students
Next steps for Uni Connect partnerships during the coronavirus pandemic

Update from the Office for Students on coronavirus (COVID-19)
This letter shares our planned approach to coronavirus with providers. It also provides important updates on reporting requirements and consultations.

Funding competition: Using innovation and intersectional approaches to target mental health support for students
Please note: this competition is paused during the coronavirus pandemic.

Consultation on the Office for Students’ approach to monetary penalties
Please note: this consultation is paused during the coronavirus pandemic.

Web updates

Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Landing page collating guidance for providers and students

Provider guide to coronavirus: information for providers and questions and answers

Student guide to coronavirus: information for students and questions and answers

Our expectations of providers in terms of unconditional offer-making

Healthcare students in the coronavirus pandemic: guidance for medical, nursing and midwifery students

Letters from the Minister of State for Universities

Funding for providers

Annual funding: updated sector tables showing additional funding allocations for 2019-20

Recurrent funding for 2019-20: update to Annex A reflecting further funding allocations

Formula capital funding for 2019-20: update to Annex A reflecting further funding allocations

Mental health funding competition: information for bidders and frequently asked questions

Regulation and the Register

Refused registration decision: London Vocational College Limited

Monthly bulletin of regulatory activity: February 2020 bulletin

Student wellbeing and protection

Harassment and sexual misconduct consultation:

Data and analysis

Post-collection outputs: information on 2018-19 ILR, HESA and HESA AP post-collection outputs

Promoting equal opportunities

Disabled Students' Commission: group membership and secretariat

Corporate updates

Consultations: new page listing open and closed consultations

Gender pay gap: summary of gender pay gap data as at 31 March 2019

Transparency: January 2020 spending over £25,000 and procurement card spending over £500 data

Student panel: October 2019 meeting minutes

Read this month's digital newsletter

News

Admissions review to ensure a ‘system which works for all students’
A major review poses fundamental questions for the future of higher education admissions.

Registration decisions
The Office for Students has refused the registration applications of Acculearn Training Limited, Blackpool College Limited and Kensington Education Foundation Limited following a rigorous process of assessment and evaluation.

OfS approach to disruption caused by industrial action
A reminder of our approach to the protection of students’ interests in the event of industrial action at universities and colleges.

Less than half of part-timers think feedback is acted on by staff, but overall student satisfaction consistently high
New analysis of National Student Survey data highlights variations in how different student groups have responded to the survey.

Office for Students urges students to help shape higher education regulation
The Office for Students has set out a new approach to ensuring that students help shape the regulation of higher education in England.

Office for Students responds to HESA statistics
Chris Millward, Director for Fair Access and Participation, comments on HESA's latest widening participation statistics.

Office for Students awards funding to support University Mental Health Charter
The Office for Students has announced £95,000 in funding awarded to Student Minds for the next stage of the recently launched University Mental Health Charter.

Universities and colleges show compliance with Prevent duty
A series of review meetings with selected universities and colleges has found evidence of higher education providers complying with requirements of the Prevent duty.

Blog

The evaluation challenge: understanding what works in access and participation
Two new reports add to a growing body of knowledge about the impact of access and participation activities and identify ways to overcome the challenges of evaluation.

The OfS is ramping up its student engagement work
Martha Longdon discusses the OfS's approach to student engagement and the launch of our new strategy.

Becoming a healthcare student in my forties
OfS-commissioned research made recommendations for promoting greater gender balance in nursing and healthcare courses. Rupert Maclaren, a student in diagnostic radiography tells his story.

Looking beyond: celebrating the value and diversity of apprenticeships
National Apprenticeship Week 2020 encourages us to ‘look beyond’ old preconceptions of apprenticeships. Dr Brooke Storer-Church discusses the increasing importance of degree apprenticeships to a diverse and inclusive higher education offer.

Publications

Consultation on the higher education admissions system in England
The Office for Students is reviewing the admissions system in English higher education. We would like to hear your views on the current system and on proposed future options.

Students - experts in their own experience
Our strategy for engaging students from 2020 to 2023.

The National Student Survey: Consistency, controversy and change
Our latest Insight brief looks at the last 15 years of the National Student Survey, and considers how the survey can maintain its relevance for the next decade.

Understanding the impact of the financial support evaluation toolkit: Analysis and findings
Findings from higher education providers who have used the toolkit.

Data use for access and participation in higher education
This report looks at how data is currently used in targeting, monitoring and evaluating access and participation work.

Prevent duty monitoring framework: Year one evaluation
This document sets out the findings and recommendations from an evaluation of the first year of implementation of the OfS’s strengthened and risk-based Prevent monitoring framework.

Prevent review meetings: 2019 programme findings
This report presents findings from the 2019 Prevent review meetings programme, split by theme.

Proposed changes to terms and conditions of funding for 2020-21
The Office for Students will be updating its terms and conditions of funding for 2020-21. We would like to hear your views on the proposed changes.

Web updates

Data and analysis

Student numbers: 2018-19 data published and 2017-18 data updated

HESES: HESES19 data released

Regulation and the Register

Refused registration decisions: Acculearn Training Limited, Blackpool College Limited and Kensington Education Foundation Limited

Monthly bulletin of regulatory activity: January 2020 bulletin

Student wellbeing and protection

Admissions review: short guide to the consultation

Student information and data

National Student Survey: routine update to 2019 NSS results

National Student Survey: sector-level characteristic analysis

Corporate updates

Board papers: papers from the 28 January 2020 board meeting

Quality Assessment Committee: register of interests updated

Miscellaneous

Student spotlight: new mailing list for students

Get involved as a student: how students can get involved in our work and why

Coronavirus: advice for higher education providers from the government

Read this month's digital newsletter

News

Universities pledge to reduce equality gaps dramatically within five years
The access gap at England’s most selective universities will almost halve in the next five years if universities meet ambitious new commitments.

The Office for Students welcomes projected cut in ‘strings attached’ unconditional offers
The OfS responds to UCAS' End of Cycle 2019 report.

Health and education sectors can unlock recruitment potential by promoting gender balance in healthcare
New research encourages greater gender balance in nursing and healthcare.

Office for Students respond to HESA statistics
The Office for Students has commented on HESA's Higher Education Student Statistics for 2018-19.

Consultation on implementing savings to teaching grant budget
The Office for Students invites responses to its consultation on implementing savings in academic years 2019-20 and 2020-21.

Robust complaints procedures required for students reporting harassment and sexual assault
The Office for Students has published its proposed set of expectations on how universities and colleges should deal with reports of harassment and all forms of sexual misconduct.

Teaching grant budget for 2020-21 set out
The Secretary of State for Education has written to the Office for Students to set out details of the teaching grant budget for the financial year 2020-21.

Blog

Universities are in the business of transforming lives
Our most recent Insight event focused on mental health among students, and harassment and sexual misconduct in higher education. Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, Amy Norton, reflects on the event.

British students’ secret weapon against sexual misconduct in higher education
One of the most influential people in the history of Title IX, the US anti-discrimination law, Dr Ann Olivarius discusses the Equality Act 2010.

Publications

Transforming opportunity in higher education
This report analyses access and participation plans submitted by higher education providers to the Office for Students for the period 2020-21 to 2024-25.

Male participation in nursing and allied health higher education courses
The Office for Students commissioned research to raise awareness of the study and career opportunities that nursing and allied health offer men.

OfS Challenge Competitions: bidding guidance
This guidance is for higher education providers submitting bids for funding under OfS Challenge Competitions.

Consultation on implementing savings in academic years 2019-20 and 2020-21
The government’s grant to the Office for Students to fund recurrent teaching in higher education providers is reducing by £58 million in financial year 2020 21. This publication sets out proposals for how we may make savings in our allocations to providers.

Forward look note to registered providers
This note gives an overview of key OfS activities and publications coming up between January and June 2020.

Consultation on harassment and sexual misconduct in higher education
Our proposals set out expectations for universities and colleges to follow and how the Office for Students will regulate harassment and sexual misconduct affecting students in higher education providers.

Regulatory advice 8: Guidance for providers about condition of registration F1: transparency information
This regulatory advice has been updated to help providers to prepare to meet our requirements in respect of the collection and publication of transparency information from 2019-20 onwards.

Guidance for providers on submitting the transparency return 2020
This technical guidance must be read in conjunction with Regulatory advice 8.

Web updates

Data and analysis

Young participation by area: postcode look-up now includes Northern Irish postcodes

Official statistics: 2019 medical and dental students survey intake results

Transparency return 2020: data collection tool updated

Transparency data updated:

  • spending over £25,000 - December 2019
  • senior staff expenses 2019-20 - Q3
  • procurement card spending over £500 - December 2019

Student numbers 2017-18: monthly update

Regulation and the Register

Monthly bulletin of regulatory activity: December 2019 bulletin

Promoting equal opportunities

Access and participation: 2020-21 access and participation plan data

Our approach to access and participation: the impact of our approach

Addressing Barriers to Student Success: new case studies from the University of Exeter and Kingston University

Student wellbeing and protection

Harassment and sexual misconduct consultation: provider guide and student guide

Value for money: new provider guide and student guide

Prevent duty: timeline of activity updated

Student information and data

Uni Connect: new website for students, parents, carers and teachers

Corporate updates

Guidance from government: letter from the Secretary of State on the teaching grant budget for 2020-21

Risk and Audit Committee: register of interests updated

KPMs: specification for KPM 13

Read this month's digital newsletter

News

England’s universities world class, but pockets of poor provision letting students down

The Office for Students has launched its first annual review, offering a wide-ranging assessment of the higher education sector in England.

Blog

The Office for Students responds to ‘Social mobility and elite universities’

Chris Millward responds to HEPI's report on social mobility and elite universities.

Publications

English higher education 2019: The Office for Students annual review

This annual review sets out our assessment of the current state of English higher education, and reflects on the OfS’s progress to date in implementing a new regulatory approach which places students at its heart.

Regulatory advice 17: variation and revocation of degree awarding powers

This regulatory advice sets out guidance about how and under what circumstances the Office for Students (OfS) might vary or revoke a provider’s degree awarding powers (DAPs) authorisation.

2018-19 access agreements and student premium funding: Guidance on how to complete your monitoring return

This document sets out the information that we require from higher education providers that had an access agreement approved by the Office for Fair Access (OFFA) for 2018-19 and from providers that received student premium funding from the Office for Students for 2018-19.

Web updates

Skills and employment

Apprentices' stories - Holly's story

Data and analysis

Student numbers 2017-18: monthly update

Regulation and the Register

Monthly bulletin of regulatory activity: November 2019 bulletin

Promoting equal opportunities

NCOP phase two: learner population estimates

Corporate updates

Risk and Audit committee: register of interests updated

Remuneration and Nominations Committee: terms of reference updated

OfS board: board proceedings and code of conduct updated

Transparency data:

  • Procurement card spending over £500 - October 2019 and November 2019 data
  • Spending over £25,000 - October 2019 and November 2019 data

UK Healthcare Education Advisory Committee: June 2019 minutes and advisory letters

2019

Read the digital newsletter

News

Students with unconditional offers more likely to drop out
New analysis reveals that young people who receive unconditional offers before getting their exam results are more likely to drop out in their first year of university.

Regulator requires action by 65 per cent of English universities and colleges in student interest
A new report from the Office for Students analyses over 500 applications to join the OfS Register.

Sustained collaborative engagement with young people boosts their confidence to progress to higher education
Sustained collaborative partnerships of universities, colleges, schools and local agencies are developing young people’s confidence in their ability to progress successfully into higher education.

Office for Students responds to the Equality and Human Rights Commission report on racial harassment
Nicola Dandridge, chief executive of the Office for Students, gives her response.

New guidance published for registered higher education providers
The Office for Students has published new guidance for all registered higher education providers.

Going to university almost halves disability job gap
Going to university almost halves the gaps in employment rates between disabled and non-disabled people, compared to those who only have GCSEs – although significant gaps remain – a new report from the Office for Students shows.

Office for Students publishes value for money strategy
The strategy builds on previous research by the OfS and identifies key priorities for ensuring value for money for both students and taxpayers.

£13 million in bid to boost digital skills
£13 million is being made available to boost the number of skilled graduates in artificial intelligence and data science technologies over the next three years.

New plans demonstrate greater ambition in tackling equality gaps
Over 100 universities and colleges have now had their ambitious new plans to tackle gaps between students from different backgrounds approved.

Blog

Sustained outreach makes the difference
Chris Millward discusses the impact that the National Collaborative Outreach Programme (NCOP) is having, and looks at the next steps for the programme.

Tackling incidents of hate, harassment and sexual misconduct in higher education
Nicola Dandridge discusses the devastating impact that harassment, hate crime, and sexual misconduct can have on students, and the OfS’s role in driving improved prevention and support.

Virtuous circles: developing AI and data science courses to meet the needs of employers, students, and universities
The Office for Students has launched a competition to boost the numbers of artificial intelligence and data science graduates. Bill Mitchell emphasises the centrality of employer engagement and a credible student proposition to the design of course curricula.

Next steps for the National Student Survey
As the National Student Survey approaches its 15th year, there are plans for taking an in-depth look at its impact to date and outlining proposals for the biggest overhaul since its introduction.

A disabled student’s insight: Contextualising statistics
Statistics and analysis are important tools in helping us work towards equity in education and equality of opportunity for disabled students. It’s also vital we understand and listen to their lived experiences.

What value for whose money?
Student fees and public money fund higher education providers, but what should students and taxpayers get in return?

Supporting disabled students to succeed
Following the launch of a campaign to recruit members for the Disabled Students' Commission, Chris Millward explains the background to the new body, what it will do, and why it is needed.

Future proofing UK business for a digital future: how flexible learning can help close the digital skills gap
There is little doubt that technology is developing faster than the UK workforce is able to adapt to it. Josie Fraser of the Open University argues that a new approach to employee training and development is required.

Publications

We've published three reports exploring the impact and perceptions of the National Collaborative Outreach Programme (NCOP):

OfS registration process and outcomes 2019-20: key themes and analysis
We have published a sector-level analysis of the registration process and outcomes in the Office for Students’ first year of operation.

Data analysis of unconditional offers: Update
Our analysis of whether applicants placed through an unconditional offer are more or less likely to continue with their studies after the first year.

The National Student Survey 2020
This publication sets out the arrangements for the National Student Survey (NSS) 2020 and the action required from all participating universities, colleges and other higher education providers by 28 November 2019.

Regulatory advice 9: Accounts direction
This accounts direction sets out the information that providers are required to include in their audited financial statements. It applies to financial statements prepared by registered providers for accounting periods beginning on or after 1 August 2019.

Compliance with the 2017-18 accounts direction
Observations, compliance and areas for improvement

Regulatory advice 14: Guidance for providers for the annual financial return
This regulatory advice and guidance sets out the information that a provider is required to submit as part of its annual financial return to the Office for Students (OfS).

Regulatory advice 15: Monitoring and intervention
This guidance document provides further information for registered providers on monitoring and intervention.

Regulatory advice 16: Reportable events
This guidance document provides further information for registered providers on reportable events.

Beyond the bare minimum: Are universities and colleges doing enough for disabled students?
Our new Insight brief highlights the potentially life-changing impact of higher education for disabled people. It challenges universities to go above and beyond ‘reasonable adjustments’ to lead the way on creating a more inclusive society.

Value for money strategy, 2019 to 2021
The strategy sets out how the OfS will ensure higher education providers deliver value for money for both students and taxpayers.

Funding allocations updated for a small number of providers:

Artificial intelligence and data science postgraduate conversion course funding
This document provides guidance to providers on bidding for funding to develop postgraduate conversion courses in artificial intelligence and data science.

Web updates

Promoting equal opportunities

NCOP: new case studies in word

NCOP: new case studies in film

Access and participation

Access and participation plans: 68 plans published

Fee limits: accelerated degrees

Data and analysis

HESES19 supporting documents: completing the HESES19 workbook, appendices and sample tables

HESES19 training materials: playlist of guidance videos

HESA alternative provider student data checking tool: HESES18B comparison FTE estimation technical document and rebuild instructions

Student numbers 2017-18: monthly update

Skills and employment

Postgraduate conversion courses in artificial intelligence and data science: how to apply for funding, FAQs and resources

Funding for providers

UK Healthcare Education Advisory Committee (UKHEAC): membership updated

Annual funding: 2019-20 sector tables update

Knowledge exchange

Knowledge exchange funding competition open forum: slides from the event

About the OfS

Board papers: September 2019 board papers

Transparency: gifts and hospitality data - April 2019 - September 2019

Read the digital newsletter

A full list of what we published in September is below.

News

Highly selective universities must follow through on promises to improve access, regulator warns
Universities with the some of the highest entry requirements, including Oxford and Cambridge, have published ambitious new plans to improve access for students from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Parents need more support to help their children make good decisions about university
New polling highlights common misconceptions held by parents of children who are currently making decisions about higher education.

Registration decision
The Office for Students has refused the registration application of Newham College of Further Education, following a rigorous process of assessment and evaluation.

Office for Students publishes data on changes in healthcare student numbers
The data breaks down the numbers of students starting nursing, midwifery, and allied health courses from 2016-17 to 2017-18.

Office for Students responds to HEPI report on racial inequalities
The Office for Students has responded to the Higher Education Policy Institute's report.

Better data can help close equality gaps
New experimental statistics on interactions between demographic characteristics could offer important insights on equality of opportunity for different groups of students.

Engaging students in knowledge exchange: £10 million ‘what works’ competition
Universities and Science Minister Chris Skidmore has announced a £10 million competition to help boost the benefits to students of getting involved in knowledge exchange activities.

Blog

Student engagement – you might not notice it, but it matters
OfS student panellist Sam Dedman discusses what student engagement is and how students can make an impact at a national level by taking part in our student engagement survey.

Putting student experiences at the forefront of higher education regulation
Cassie Agbehenu, our Student Engagement Manager, reflects on the development of the OfS's student engagement strategy.

The importance of information – a cautionary tale
Emma Maskell, our Head of Student Engagement and Information, reflects on her own, less-than-exemplary information experiences as a student and teacher.

The Office for Students’ new regulatory order
Susan Lapworth, our Director of Competition and Registration, describes arrangements for students at providers who have applied for registration but do not yet have a final decision.

Making a positive difference: Mature students and health education
Mature students are turning away from nursing and specialist healthcare courses. Ed Hughes discusses how we need to work together to make sure they're supported.

Publications

Higher Education Students Early Statistics survey 2019-20 (HESES19)
This document provides guidance on funding rules and definitions for the Higher Education Students Early Statistics (HESES) survey 2019-20, known as HESES19.

Forward look note to registered providers
An overview of OfS events, publications and data submission deadlines over the next six to eight months.

Medical and Dental Students survey 2019
The Medical and Dental Students survey 2019 (MDS19) asks higher education providers in the UK to provide data on the intake of medical and dental students in the 2018-19 and 2019-20 academic years.

Other web updates

Data and analysis

Associations between characteristics of students (ABCS): experimental statistics and methodology

Changes in healthcare student numbers: analysis and interactive charts

Student numbers 2017-18: monthly update

Regulation and the Register

Guidance from government: supplementary guidance to the OfS

Monthly bulletin of regulatory activity: August 2019 bulletin

Refused registration decisions: Newham College

Student information and data

Discover Uni: new student information website

Unistats data: guide for providers updated

National Student Survey: frequently asked questions updated

Unistats widget: updated guidance for linking to Discover Uni

Disabled Students' Commission: information on the new strategic group

Student wellbeing and protection

Prevent: accountability and data returns 2019 - guidance and FAQs

Teaching

TEF: Year Four workbooks and maps updated

Corporate updates

Deadlines, events and publications: upcoming OfS activities between September 2019 and April 2020

Transparency data: spending over £25,000 - August 2019

Transparency data: senior staff expenses 2019-20, Q1 data

OfS board: register of interests updated

Quality Assessment Committee: register of interests updated

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A full list of what we published in August is below.

News

OfS responds to CMA statement on student debt sanctions
The Office for Students has welcomed the announcement from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) that the University of Liverpool has changed its student debt penalty policy.

Students at the heart of our work
The OfS is inviting anyone with an interest in higher education to share their ideas on how we should engage students in our work.

Degree apprentices are positive about their career prospects, according to new exploratory research
New research looks at degree apprentices’ motivations for following the alternative route through higher education.

New team to help outreach partnerships find out what works
The OfS is funding a team to help universities and colleges around the country generate stronger evidence of the impact of their work to reach out to disadvantaged young people.

OfS receives full powers
The Office for Students' full powers came into force on 1 August.

Blog

Discovering Uni: planning your higher education journey
Emma Maskell, Head of Student Engagement and Information at the OfS, talks about our new student information website.

Motivating factors
Dr Brooke Storer-Church, Skills and Employability Manager at the OfS, discusses a new report on the motivations of degree apprentices.

Publications

Degree apprenticeships: Motivations research

Data collection to inform funding for 2020-21: Responses to feedback and confirmation of approach

Regulatory advice 8: Guidance for providers about condition of registration F1: transparency information (2018.52)
- updated to reflect minor changes 

Updates to web pages

Data and analysis

Data verification: sample data verification queries

ILR training webinar: questions and answers

ILR data checking tool: technical guidance released

HESA student data checking tool: technical guidance released

HESA alternative provider data checking tool: technical guidance released

Student numbers 2017-18: monthly update

Official statistics: statistics release schedule updated

HESES: seminar days - how to complete HESES tables for 2019-20:
Tuesday 10 September 2019 - London
Tuesday 1 October 2019 - London
Tuesday 8 October 2019 - Manchester

Regulation and the Register

Refused registration decisions: Spurgeon's College

Monthly bulletin of regulatory activity: July 2019 bulletin

Degree awarding powers: orders made by the OfS

About the OfS

Get involved: how should the OfS engage students in its work?

Our board and committees: scheme of delegation updated

OfS Directors: register of interests updated

Income and expenditure budgets: income and expenditure budgets for financial year 2019-20

Access and participation

Access and participation effective practice: supporting people with criminal convictions

Access and participation plans: fee limits for 2020-21

Student wellbeing and protection

Prevent: recording of accountability and data return evaluation webinar

Student information

Unistats: changes to the Unistats dataset and the replacement of the Unistats widget

Skills and employment

Events: Developing new conversion courses in data science and artificial intelligence

Other related updates

Charity Commission: updated guidance about exempt charities

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A full list of what we published in July is below.

News

Student satisfaction rises but universities should do more to improve feedback
Students in the UK are more satisfied with their courses, according to this year’s National Student Survey (NSS). However, many universities and colleges still have plenty of room to improve.

OfS Annual report and accounts 2018-19
The Office for Students has published its 2018-19 annual report and accounts.

Statement on De Montfort University investigation
OfS statement on the formal investigation into matters at De Montfort University.

Office for Students responds to higher technical qualifications review
The OfS responds to the Secretary of State for Education’s announcement of a review of Level 4 and 5 qualifications.

New member applications open for UK Healthcare Education Advisory Committee
The OfS is seeking exceptional individuals with the expertise and vision to contribute to the development of healthcare education and research across the UK.

New OfS analysis shows continuing upward trend in award of top degrees
The Office for Students has updated its analysis on degree classifications, and finds that 13.9 percentage points of first class degrees awarded are unexplained.

Registration decisions
The Office for Students has refused the registration applications of ABI College Limited and Waltham Forest College, following a rigorous process of assessment and evaluation.

Blog

Getting to grips with grade inflation
Our director of competition and registration, Susan Lapworth, sets out the findings from our new report on degree classifications.

The Spice Girls are back and so is the NSS
Benjamin Hunt, student engagement adviser at the Office for Students, talks about the positive impact the National Student Survey can have on campus.

Publications

Annual report and accounts 2018-19
The report covers the OfS’s first year of operation, and our progress to date in delivering against our regulatory objectives.

Financial and student number data collection
Seeking views on the collection of data from registered providers.

Data collection to inform funding for 2020-21: Notification of changes
This document provides notification of changes that we intend to make to the collection of data to inform funding for 2020-21.

Analysis of degree classifications over time
Changes in graduate attainment from 2010-11 to 2017-18.

Findings of student learning gain research:
Independent evaluation of the OfS’s learning gain pilot projects
Independent research into the National Mixed Methodology Learning Gain project (NMMLGP)
Higher Education Learning Gain Analysis (HELGA)

2018-19 data checking tools
This document notifies providers of the forthcoming release of the Office for Students data checking tools.

Updates to web pages

Data and analysis

Official statistics: update to the access and participation dataset

Key performance measures: KPM 10 (students responding positively to the NSS question on overall satisfaction) updated

HEIFES18: frequently asked questions

HESES18: frequently asked questions

Student numbers: updated data

ILR training webinar: recording and slides

Regulation

Monthly bulletin of regulatory activity: June 2019 bulletin

Access and participation

Effective practice: new guidance on student engagement and consultation

Skills and employment: note exploring links between access and participation and civic university agreements

About the OfS

Board papers: July 2019 board papers

Our board and committees: scheme of delegation updated

Remuneration and Nominations Committee: new independent member and register of interests

Provider Risk Committee: updated terms of reference

Transparency: business impact target reporting - summary statements

Transparency data: OfS spending over £25k - June 2019

Student information and data

Unistats: New training webinars for further education colleges

Funding and funded projects

Supporting mental health and wellbeing for postgraduate research students: details of funded projects

UK Healthcare Education Advisory Committee (UKHEAC): March 2019 minutes and advisory letters

Medical and dental target intakes: targets for 2019-20

Other related updates

TRAC: guidance for 2018-19 returns

Charity Commission: Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) setting out an agreement of the relationship between the Charity Commission and the Office for Students

Government guidance on leaving the EU: 
The government has updated its guidance to help the higher education sector prepare in the event of no deal being reached

Read the digital newsletter

A full list of what we published in June is below.

News

Innovation, partnership and data can help improve student mental health in new £14m drive
The scheme is designed to spark a step-change in mental health support across the sector.

‘Welcome progress’ but more to do to tackle hate crime and sexual harassment on campus
Universities must build on recent progress to ensure that all students can feel and be safe on campus.

Nicola Dandridge: fair access and good outcomes are not a zero sum game
Our chief executive, Nicola Dandridge writes for The Times.

Office for Students announces results of TEF 2019
This year’s TEF results have been published – focusing on excellence in teaching and student outcomes across higher education.

Monitoring report finds high compliance with Prevent duty
Evaluation of 2017-18 reports show universities and colleges are demonstrating due regard to the Prevent duty.

Virtual reality tool leads new drive to train next generation of health specialists
The tool is one of several innovative projects awarded funding by the Office for Students.

Blog

Student mental health: now is the time for change
PhD student Katie Tyrrell, a member of the OfS mental health Challenge Competition panel, talks about her personal and academic experience of mental ill-health.

Publications

OfS fees: Payment of annual OfS registration fees and initial fees: Technical guidance for providers (OfS 2019.23).

Evaluation of student safeguarding projects: Catalyst for change: Protecting students from hate crime, sexual violence and online harassment in higher education
Two independent evaluation reports from Advance HE and our summary of the progress made (OfS 2019.24).

Prevent evaluation report: Prevent monitoring accountability and data returns 2017-18: Evaluation report (OfS 2019.22).

National Collaborative Outreach Programme: Phase two guidance (OfS 2019.25)

Official statistics

Updated HESES/HEIFES survey data

TEF 2019 outcomes

Update to the access and participation dataset

Other web updates

Access and participation effective practice: new guidance on -

Access and participation: glossary

Conference on protecting students from hate crime and harassment: conference materials

Monthly bulletin of regulatory activity: May 2019 bulletin

National Student Survey 2018: new data visualisations

OfS Challenge Competition - achieving a step change in mental health outcomes for all students: details of funded projects

OfS student panel: minutes from the December 2018 meeting and updated terms of reference

Quality Assessment Committee: register of interests updated

Strategic Interventions in Health Education Disciplines (SIHED) challenge fund: second round of funded projects

Student numbers: updated data

Student safety and wellbeing: resources developed from the first two rounds of student safeguarding Catalyst funding

Supplementary guidance to the OfS from the Secretary of State for Education: guidance on the government’s priorities for our work

Transparency data:

Transparency return 2019: Attainment technical document

Read the digital newsletter

A full list of what we published in May is below.

News

OfS announces initial recurrent grants to providers for 2019-20
The Office for Students is funding higher education providers for teaching, outreach and to enable students to succeed.

No place like home – new fund to boost local graduate opportunities
The Office for Students has awarded £5.6 million to projects based in universities and colleges across England to boost opportunities for graduates who seek work close to home.

Radical changes needed to ensure university admissions identify potential, not just exam results
Young people from more advantaged neighbourhoods are still nearly six times more likely to attend the most selective universities in England despite a significant growth in the use of contextual offers.

Blog

In praise of POLAR
POLAR is, and will continue to be, a powerful tool in the drive for fairer access, argues OfS principal analyst Maggie Smart.

The graduate employment paradox – and how thinking locally might unlock it
Charlie Ball, from the Higher Education Careers Services Unit, explains the effects of prevailing assumptions about students.

Building a ‘no excuses’ fair access culture: A personal and professional journey
Dr Kedra Bishop explains the University of Michigan's approach to access and participation.

Talent is everywhere, but opportunity is not
The OfS's inaugural Insight event focused on access and participation, with experts drawn from a range of backgrounds sharing their expertise. OfS Director for Fair Access and Participation Chris Millward reflects on the day.

Publications

Insight brief: Contextual admissions: Promoting fairness and rethinking merit

Funding for providers: Guide to funding 2019-20 (OfS 2019.18)

Funding for providers: Recurrent funding for 2019-20 (OfS 2019.17)
Initial allocations of recurrent funding to higher education providers

Annual TRAC 2017-18: Sector summary and analysis by TRAC peer group (OfS 2019.21)

Also see: Annual TRAC 2017-18: Sector summary and analysis by TRAC peer group

Unistats 2019: Timetable and arrangements for the submission and publication of data (OfS 2019.19)

Preparing for degree study: Analysis of Access to Higher Education Diplomas and integrated foundation year courses (OfS 2019.20)

Updated guidance: Submitting the transparency return 2019 - updated to clarify that only UK-domiciled students should be included in the transparency return

Official statistics

Equality and diversity statistics

Access and participation: Updated dataset

Annual TRAC 2017-18: Sector summary and analysis by TRAC peer group

Also see: Analysis of TRAC 2017-18 sector aggregate data

OfS key performance measures: KPMs 1 and 2 updated

Other web updates

OfS Challenge Competition: Industrial Strategy and skills - Details of funded projects

Transparency return 2019: Data collection tool - compiles the aggregate data that providers are required to submit. Plus FAQs.

Data amendments: Updated information, including terms of reference and panel schedule

Annual TRAC data 2016-17: Analysis by TRAC peer group - revised statistics

Recurrent funding: Funding for 2019-20

Post-collection outputs: Updated technical documentation published for - ILR, HESA, HESA AP

Conditions of registration: Monitoring of registered providers

Data and analysis: Benchmarking - current approach, methodology and guiding principles

Unistats: Timetable for the 2019 Unistats data collection

Transparency: April's data on spending >25k

Read the digital newsletter

A full list of what we published in April is below.

News

Office for Students says higher education in ‘reasonable financial health’ but warns of ‘over-ambitious’ student number forecasts

Higher education in England is in reasonable financial health but universities and colleges should avoid over-ambitious student number forecasts in their future planning, the OfS warns in a new report.

Consultation on Quality Assurance Agency fees

The Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA) has published a consultation on the fees it will charge in its capacity as the designated quality body.

New guidance on university title applications

The Office for Students has published guidance setting out the process for English higher education providers that wish to use either ‘university college’ or ‘university’ title as part of their name.

Publications

Financial health: Financial sustainability of higher education providers in England (OfS 2019.14)

Independent research: Evaluation of a scheme to develop pilot engineering and computing conversion masters' courses

Regulatory advice 13: How to apply for university college and university title (OfS 2019.08)

Student information: Summary of OfS strategy on student information, advice and guidance (OfS 2019.15)

What we do: OfS Business plan 2019-20 (OfS 2019.16)

Official statistics

Access and participation: Update to dataset

HESES and HEIFES survey data: Update for 2018-19 academic year

Student numbers 2017-18: Data on the number of full-time equivalent higher education students at registered providers

Continuation and transfer rates: Latest data and findings on the study activity of full-time undergraduate students

Other updates

Prevent duty - Prevent review meetings: Webinar video - what to expect under PRM programme

Regulation: University title or university college title - information updated

Data: Post-collection outputs
Data from Individualised Learner Record (ILR) returns
Data from HESA student returns

Access and participation plans: 2020-21 webinar videos

  • Support for small, specialist and new providers
  • Target setting
  • Evaluation
  • Assessment of performance

Access and participation plans: Frequently asked questions updated

POLAR: Frequently asked questions created

OfS national conference on learning gain: Download conference materials

Board papers: 26 March 2019 meeting

Transparency:

Request to access your personal information: Updated Personal data request form

Read the digital newsletter

A full list of what we published in March is below.

News

Supporting students to succeed: OfS allocates £1.4 billion for 2019-20
The Office for Students is funding higher education providers for teaching, outreach and student success.

New data reveals university performance on access and student success
The new data shows where the gaps between the most and least advantaged groups of students lie.

Office for Students comments on latest HESA non-continuation data
The Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) has released data on how many students continue their courses.

Make degree apprenticeships a force for social mobility, says the Office for Students
Degree apprenticeships are growing significantly and offer a route to increased social mobility, but more work is needed to realise their potential.

Office for Students responds to HEPI policy note on the financial health of universities
The Office for Students responds to a new survey of student attitudes to the financial health of their university.

Blog

Evidence for impact on access and participation
We've issued our first guidance under our new approach to access and participation, setting out how we expect higher education providers to make a step change through the targets they set themselves and the activities they deliver.

Mental wellbeing: let’s find new ways to support students
When we talk with students about the issues that worry them most, mental health consistently tops the list.

Publications

Insight brief: Degree apprenticeships: A viable alternative?

National Student Survey: Publication of NSS 2019 data (OfS 2019.09)

Funding for 2019-20: Formula capital funding (OfS 2019.13)

Funding for 2019-20: Terms and conditions of funding (OfS 2019.12)

Funding for 2019-20: Outcomes of consultation on terms, conditions and methods (OfS 2019.10)

Funding for 2019-20: OfS board decisions (OfS 2019.11)

Transparency condition: Guidance for providers on submitting the transparency return 2019

Independent research: Research on recruitment of mature students to nursing, midwifery and allied health courses

Independent research: Understanding effective part-time provision for undergraduates from underrepresented and disadvantaged backgrounds

Official statistics

Access and participation data dashboard

Update to OfS key performance measures:

Other updates

Student wellbeing and protection: Mental health information including resources

National Collaborative Outreach Programme: Two new case studies published

Financial sustainability: Report on understanding the impact of income cross-flows

Calculating student numbers: Overview of method and technical document updated

Transparency: Spending data, February 2019

Read the digital newsletter

A full list of what we published in February is below.

News

New ‘What Works’ centre to help universities cut equality gaps
A new independent centre funded by the Office for Students (OfS) is set to help universities meet challenging targets to eliminate equality gaps in higher education within 20 years.

OfS appoints new student panellists
Five new students will join our student panel for 2019.

OfS publishes first annual analysis of senior staff pay
Newly published data and analysis around senior pay can act as a benchmark, helping universities to reduce senior pay where necessary.

OfS comments on HESA widening participation performance indicators
HESA has released measures of how the UK higher education sector is performing.

New members sought for UK Healthcare Education Advisory Committee
The UK Healthcare Education Advisory Committee (UKHEAC) is looking for new members with the expertise and vision to contribute to the development of healthcare education and research across the UK.

Government guidance on leaving the EU
The government has published guidance to help the higher education sector prepare in the event of no deal being reached.

Publications

Independent research: Understanding and overcoming the challenges of ethnicity targeting 

National Collaborative Outreach Programme: Call for proposals to deliver phase two of the programme in Leicestershire and Northamptonshire (OfS 2019.01)

Funding for 2019-20: Consultation on terms and conditions and method (OfS 2019.02)

Regulatory notice 1: Access and participation plan guidance (OfS 2019.05)

Regulatory advice 6: How to prepare your access and participation plan - effective advice (OfS 2019.06)

Independent research: Standards of evidence and evaluating impact of outreach

Other updates

OfS board: Papers from meeting on 28 January 2019

HESES and HEIFES: Release of survey data relating to academic year 2018-19

Addressing barriers to student success: Case study from University of Leeds

Official statistics release: Senior staff remuneration

Read the newsletter

A full list of what we published in January is below.

News

Universities must avoid using unconditional offers to put pressure on students, says Office for Students
The Office for Students has warned universities and other higher education providers that indiscriminate use of unconditional offers is akin to pressure selling and could put them in breach of consumer law.

Independent reviewer of TEF asks for views
Dame Shirley Pearce, who is leading the independent review of the Teaching Excellence and Student Outcomes Framework (TEF), has invited views from all with an interest in the TEF.

We invited applications to our student panel
The panel advises the OfS, and ensures that students’ interests are reflected in everything we do.

Publications

Unconditional offers: Serving the interests of students?
The steep rise in the numbers of unconditional offers made by universities and colleges to students applying to study with them has come under the spotlight in recent months amid concerns that it is having a negative impact on students. 

Release of intake numbers from medical and dental survey (Official statistics)

Analysis of degree classifications over time (OfS 2018.54): Overview of populations added as supplementary information

Other updates

TEF Year Four: Metrics and contextual data published (Official statistics)

TEF Year Four: Data now includes participants from devolved administrations (Official statistics)

Data amendments: Error summary sheet for aggregate data updated

Regulatory notice diagrams: Visual summaries added for Regulatory notice 3 and Regulatory notice 4

Transparency: Data published for December 2018 (spending over £25,000)

Student panel: Meeting minutes published

Data amendment panel: Dates added for error submission and meeting of next panel

TEF Year Four: Training video added for provider submissions

Addressing barriers to student success: Case study from New College Durham

Read the newsletter

A full list of what we published in December is below.

News

Office for Students: universities must eliminate equality gaps

The Office for Students has challenged all universities to eliminate the gaps in access and student success within 20 years.

Office for Students calls for ideas to support innovation in healthcare education

The Office for Students is inviting funding bids from universities and colleges for innovative projects which will support and enhance provision in nursing, midwifery and allied health subjects.

Office for Students responds to UCAS end of cycle report

Chris Millward comments on slow progress in narrowing gaps in access to higher education.

Office for Students responds to Sutton Trust report: Access to advantage

Chris Millward responds to new research on gaps in equality of opportunity.

Blog

Engaging students in the TEF

Student representation and engagement is one of the most important, and most unique, concepts that we work with.

Publications

Analysis of degree classifications over time: Changes in graduate attainment (OfS 2018.54)

A new approach to regulating access and participation in English higher education: Consultation outcomes (OfS 2018.53)

Understanding the evaluation of access and participation outreach interventions for under-16-year-olds (Independent research)

Regulatory Advice 8: Guidance for providers about condition of registration F1: transparency information (OfS 2018.52)

Strategic interventions in health education disciplines 2019 challenge fund: Innovations in recruitment to and delivery of healthcare courses (OfS 2018.51)

Other updates

Our new approach to access and participation: Our approach and ambitions

Outreach interventions for under-16s: New guidance and development tool

Complaints and notifications: Process has been updated

Official statistics: HESES and HEIFES survey data relating to academic year 2018-19 will be released on 5 February 2019

NSS: Evaluating the updated survey

Data checking tools: Future releases page added

TEF Years Two and Three: Updates to TEF outcomes – merger added

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