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Date Name

DLHE: three quarters of graduates in employment

This year’s annual Destination of Leavers from Higher Education in the United Kingdom report from HESA finds that this year’s annual 71 percent of 2013/14 UK and EU leavers were working either in the UK or overseas six months after graduation.

HEA recommends GPA for UK institutions

Emily Lupton examines a new report from the higher education academy which recommends that UK institutions adopt an ‘internationally recognisable’ grade point average (GPA) system.

The 2015 SNP Manifesto

In their 2015 General Election manifesto published today, the SNP confirms that they will support the lowering of fees across the UK.

A national licence would set back the Open Access cause

Responding to the recent HEPI paper on Open Access by David Price and Sarah Chaytor, Adam Tickell and Michael Jubb argue that the proposed national licence for UK research is unworkable and unaffordable and could substantially set back the Open Access cause.

HEPI report defends student mobility

A report released today by HEPI questions to whom does the higher education budget in Wales belong, particularly the Welsh portable fee grant, as well as exploring the high costs for students from Northern Ireland and Scotland who chose to study in England, and whether or not students from the UK should be able to take funding into the EU.

The changing student experience

When the present English tuition fee regime was being planned, there were plenty of voices from inside universities warning that it would change the nature of the relationship between students and their universities for the worse. Students would, it was feared, become customers rather than partners in an academic enterprise – has this happened? Claire Callender and Paul Temple discuss their new research on the changing student experience.

Record highs for university applications

Almost 600,000 students applied to university in 2015, a 2 per cent increase on the year before. More young people from disadvantaged backgrounds are applying to higher education but there are less applications from older age groups and the gap between men and women applying to university continues to rise.

Part-time student numbers plummet

As HESA release its data from the 2013/14 academic year, part time students have been shown to drop significantly and the proportion of graduates receiving first and second class degrees have increased substantially. Emily Lupton rounds up the latest data.

Theresa May’s war against higher education continues

On Sunday Theresa May informed the press of her intention for the Conservative Party’s next manifesto to include a pledge to kick out foreign students as soon as they graduate and introduce a shift to a ‘zero net student migration’ level. Rather than being able to apply for other visas while still in the UK, foreign graduates would have to go home and apply to return. Universities would have to enforce this, risking fines or losing their sponsorship licence if they failed to take sufficient steps to enforce it. Tom Bailey takes a closer look at this idea and where it came from.

Record highs entering HE but gender gap widens

Today UCAS released their End of Cycle Report for 2014 and this year, for the first time ever, over half a million students entered higher education. More students are entering higher education from disadvantaged backgrounds and closing the class gap but simultaneously, the gap between men and women entering higher education is getting wider.

Rankings, data, tables and spin

Nothing brings out the creative instincts of universities like a new set of research assessments. After 24 hours of rankings, tables and spin, John O’Leary looks at the new data from HESA which allows us to measure intensity and reflect on the true state of the research rankings.

REF 2014 Sector Results 2 – Intensity

Here we published the first all-important measure of research ‘intensity’ across the sector which is calculated by measuring the percentage of eligible staff entered in to the REF. This is drawn from the HESA data released after the REF results which showed the total full-time equivalents (FTE) of staff identified as eligible to be submitted to the REF 2014 by HE provider and REF Unit of Assessment.

REF 2014 Sector Results 1

Wonkhe has crunched the numbers and here is a ranking of UK higher education institutions based on their grade point average from the 2014 REF.

The REF: fascinating, flawed and essential

As the 2014 REF results are published, Mark Leach looks at where they sit in the wider effort to fund and support research. With so much on the table in spending review negotiations in the next few years, the next steps will prove critical in shaping the future of the REF exercise and the research base it supports.

REF results marred by fears over grade inflation

As the 2014 REF is published, widespread concerns are expressed in the sector that a level of grade inflation has artificially skewed the overall results. This has led to fears, from lots of different corners of the sector, over the for the future of the exercise itself and the funding that underpins it. John O’Leary brings together the sector and funder reactions to the 2014 REF results.

£6bn package for science and innovation

Today the Government’s Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) unveiled their Science and Innovation strategy. This sets out the Government’s priorities for investment and support up to to 2021. A total of £5.9billion capital is committed to support science and innovation from 2016-21.

Universities and the Counter-Terrorism and Security Bill

As a Committee of the Whole House of Parliament considers the Government’s Counter-Terrorism and Security Bill today, Pam Tatlow looks at its deep implications for universities, the new powers over HE that it gives the Home Office and why the whole sector needs to pay attention to the political debate and passage through Parliament of this landmark piece of legislation.

Balancing the deck

From ‘personality’ vice chancellors, to faltering governance structures, senior leadership teams in universities have plenty of internal challenges. However, balancing the team based on an honest appraisal of strengths and weaknesses will likely provide a solid foundation to build on.

Speaking a common language

As UK universities gird themselves for publication of the first Research Excellence Framework results, Stevie Upton reflects on the difference between US and UK approaches to policy making and thinking and how academics write for policy makers – with lessons to learn for wonks on both sides of the Atlantic.

Open Access: what is going on?

There are conflicting policies on Open Access (Open Access) from the Research Councils, Government and the funding councils which has led to some confusion. Neil Jacobs, Head of Scholarly Communications Support at Jisc and the Jisc representative on the Open Access Implementation Group takes at the state of the open access agenda.

The Imperfect University: Governance goings on north of the border

There seem to be governance problems all over UK higher education at the moment. Arguably though some of the biggest governance challenges are currently being faced by institutions in Scotland. One of Mike Russell’s final acts as Education Secretary in the Scottish Government was to launch a consultation on proposals for change to university governance.

Understanding the unthinkable post-2015 cuts

The Autumn Statement confirmed the Chancellor’s plans to make further substantial cuts in the next Parliament. Around £4bn will likely have to come out of the budget for Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. Julian Gravatt thinks the unthinkable about what this means for HE, research, science and skills.

Higher Education Calendar [BETA]

The always up-to-date higher education calendar covering events, reports, news, consultations and more. The calendar is still under development and will improve as we do some further work to the data and its delivery.

Closing the complaints gap in higher education

Following the second report from Which? on students’ experiences of higher education, Louisa Darian, Policy Adviser at Which? talks about students as consumers alongside the complaints at higher education institutions and explores the ways in which the system could improve.

Autumn Statement: Pain, sorcery and a rabbit called Tim

On the day the Chancellor has made his Autumn Statement for 2014, Andy Westwood reviews the statement and its implications for policy across higher education, science and beyond – both today and over the next Parliament which is set to see further deep cuts and real pain across Government spending.