Driving new approaches
In October 2018 we launched a £6 million Challenge Competition to help higher education providers, working with students, students’ unions and partners such as the NHS and charities, to generate new approaches to mental health issues.
We have announced 10 successful projects which will start work in June 2019. The projects cover a variety of innovative approaches to improving student mental health outcomes and includes more than 50 partners from a wide range of organisations.
See the projects funded by this competition
To support the mental health and wellbeing of postgraduate research students, we’re working with Research England to deliver 17 projects, with a combined £1.5 million investment.
Research and guidance
We have funded guidance to help university leaders prevent student suicides, published in September 2018 by Universities UK and Papyrus, the UK's national charity dedicated to the prevention of young suicide.
We are also working to increase understanding of graduate wellbeing outcomes. Our 2018 study on the personal wellbeing of graduates looks at differences between groups of graduates 40 months after graduation.
We are working to create a new independent evidence and impact exchange. Expected to launch in spring 2019, the exchange’s work will include evidence and tools about effective ways for universities and colleges to improve mental health and wellbeing.
Our wider work
The charity Student Minds, with OfS support and funding, is developing a University Mental Health Charter together with Universities UK (UUK), the National Union of Students and AMOSSHE, the student services organisation. The charter aims to make student and staff mental health a priority throughout a university or college, recognise good practice and improve student mental health outcomes.
The OfS is also a member of UUK’s Mental Health in HE Advisory Group which is shaping and supporting UUK’s programme of work to improve mental health in universities.