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Podcast: Racism, grad premium, criminals, VFM

This week on the podcast we dive into the EHRC’s report on racism, scrutinise the graduate premium, and chat about value for money
This article is more than 2 years old

News and analysis of higher education from our leading team of wonks.


This week on the podcast we dive into the EHRC’s report on racism at British universities, scrutinise HESA’s report on the graduate premium, discuss the new initiative to help people with criminal convictions access HE and examine HEPI’s report into education in prison.

Plus there’s a chat about quality and value for money, a cracking correlation quiz and Hidden History looks at “free” Masters degrees at Oxford.

With Richard Eyre, Chief Programmes Officer at the Brilliant Club; Nick Hillman, Director of the Higher Education Policy Institute; and Debbie McVitty, Wonkhe’s Editor.

Items this week

Yes, but does it correlate?

DK has whiled away a happy hour this week playing with the new Universities UK guidance on presenting institutional financial information to students. There’s a number of categories in each pizza graph, and UUK specifies the contents of each category quite carefully. He’s plotted the “government research income” category, against the “teaching and research expenditure” category. But is there a correlation?

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Yes, there is – a surprisingly robust r squared of 0.94, although this dips to a less startling 0.54 if you remove the Russell Group. Goverment research income covers QR and related funding, alongside research council income, central government, local authorities, health authorities, and tax credits. Teaching and research expenditure includes academic staff costs and other related expenditure.

He’s added total income as the size of the marker. Data is taken from the HESA finance record, and is UK wide, and where the data doesn’t exist he’s not plotted it.

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