The OfS has published new figures that show reduced use of ‘enhanced monitoring’.
The average number of conditions of registration subject to enhanced monitoring for higher education providers registered with the Office for Students (OfS) has fallen from 1.3 in November 2019 to 0.3 last month. This represents a significant fall in the burden the OfS places on the universities and colleges it regulates.
Enhanced monitoring occurs when the OfS asks a higher education provider for more frequent or detailed information than normal. It is used where the OfS feels a university or college is at risk of breaching a condition of registration.
The OfS applied enhanced monitoring to many universities and colleges when it first registered providers in 2018 and 2019. This was to protect the interests of students and taxpayers during a period of change in the higher education regulatory system.
Now that the regulatory environment is more established, the OfS has committed to limiting its use of enhanced monitoring. The OfS recently concluded an exercise to review and, where appropriate, remove enhanced monitoring for individual providers. Enhanced monitoring remains in place where it is necessary to protect the interests of students.
Work to minimise this burden will continue. The OfS is involved in the recently announced Higher Education Data Reduction Taskforce (HEDRT) aiming to improve the efficiency of data collections. As the OfS reviews its approach to access and participation plans it will consider the opportunities for reducing the burden of this process for universities and colleges.
Minimising the burden it places on providers, while maintaining the ability to effectively regulate, is a goal for the OfS under its new strategy.Find out more about how we measure regulatory burden