Regulating higher education

The Office for Students has a directorate dedicated to regulating universities and colleges.

The directorate is the gateway for universities and colleges looking to:

  • enter the market in higher education
  • receive powers to award degrees
  • receive the right to use ‘university’ in their names.

It also monitors universities and colleges registered with the OfS to make sure they meet our conditions of registration.

Key responsibilities of the Regulation directorate

The OfS aims to ensure that English higher education is delivering positive outcomes for students, past, present and future.

Overall, we do this by focusing on two main areas: quality and standards, and equality of opportunity.

This means we oversee universities and colleges that should give every student – whatever their background – the opportunity to access, succeed in and progress from higher education.

The Regulation directorate is at the heart of this work. Among its many activities, it investigates and assesses how far universities and colleges offer high quality to their students. It also develops and implements reforms to Regulation.

What skills do you need?

We need people who are committed to protecting students’ interests. They should understand decision-making and how it applies to our work as a regulator.

You will need to plan and manage your workload and cope with competing and changing demands in a proactive and flexible way.

You will collaborate with people at all levels, so you will provide leadership while building positive working relationships.

Why join?

Impact. Influence. Career development.

Life is never dull at the OfS. Everything we do makes a difference and helps to make sure that universities and colleges offer a high quality experience to every student. Our work is always varied, interesting and rewarding.

When you join, we will give you all the support and opportunity you need to develop with us.

Typical roles

We are not currently recruiting for roles in the Regulation department. Typical roles in the department are:

  • Senior Officer: you will lead on several assignments while managing your own workload. This will cover everything from registering higher education providers, improving the systems that deliver services to them, implementing policy reforms and delivering funded programmes.
  • Manager: you will lead your own work areas, managing and supporting the work of your team to deliver results. Day-to-day, you will develop and implement policy reforms to improve quality and standards, and equality of opportunity. Plus, you will investigate and assess compliance with our conditions of registration and intervene in the interests of students.


Published 19 December 2023

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