TUNDRA classifies local areas across England according to the young participation rate in higher education.
TUNDRA uses data-linking to track cohorts of 16 year old state-funded mainstream school pupils in local areas in England who completed their GCSEs (Key Stage 4) in the summer of 2010 to 2014. It matches them to higher education records for academic years 2012-13 to 2017-18 when they would have been 18 or 19.
The young participation rate for each local area is calculated based on cohorts of state-funded mainstream school pupils completing Key Stage 4 at aged 16.
If individuals in the cohort are found to be in higher education two or three years later at age 18 or 19 they are considered to be young participants.
To calculate the young participation rate for each local area, the number of young participants is divided by the original number of Key Stage 4 pupils in the area.
Each local area is ranked according to its young participation rate and assigned approximately equally across five groups (quintiles), where quintile one areas have the lowest participation rates and quintile five areas have the highest participation rates. The quintiles used in the classification apply to the local area and not to each individual.
In 2020, we have made small updates to the TUNDRA methodology to address the way in which duplicate records are handled. The TUNDRA classification based on MSOAs has been updated and is now called TUNDRA MSOA.
Note that the generic TUNDRA methodology was developed based on MSOAs, so that all documentation which does not explicitly refer to MSOAs or LSOAs implicitly relates to MSOAs.
See full details of the TUNDRA methodology