Higher Education in Further Education: Students Survey 2000-01
This electronic version of the document contains the body of the document only. The full document with annexes and the sample tables are also available - see below.
1. This document asks further education colleges (FECs) to complete a survey of students on recognised courses of higher education (HE).
2. The data collected on the Higher Education in Further Education: Students Survey 2000-01 (HEIFES2000) are intended to be compatible with those returned on the Higher Education Students Early Statistics Survey 2000-01 (HESES2000), which we collect from higher education institutions (HEIs). However, because of differences in the way FECs have traditionally returned data, identical returns are not possible. As we further develop our relationships with FECs we hope to be able to align the two surveys.
3. The data will:
4. This document provides:
5. Information contained in the annexes will help colleges to complete the survey.
6. Survey data, on disk with a hard copy, should be returned by 28 November 2000. Disks will be dispatched to colleges by the beginning of November 2000.
The HEIFES2000 survey
7. HEIFES2000 and HESES2000 will be used to inform our allocation of teaching funds for 2001-02. HEIFES2000 should be completed by all FECs with students on directly funded recognised courses of HE.
8. HEIFES2000 splits students into those countable on or before 1 November 2000 and those countable after that date.
9. Coverage of the HEIFES2000 survey is given in Annex E. Definitions of when activity should be counted are in Annex F. Annexes G to M explain how to record different categories of activity.
10. All activity that meets the criteria set out in Annexes E and F should be reported, even if it will not be used directly to allocate funds. For example, the HEFCE will not support students ordinarily resident outside the EU, but these students should still be included in the Island and overseas column on the tables.
11. For allocation purposes we source various information from the July 1999-2000 FEFC ISR17, in particular, we expect we will be using the following fields:
Incomplete records may result in a lower allocation of funding than would otherwise be the case.
Data collection and verification
12. Enquiries about this survey should be addressed to Hannah Falvey (tel 0117 931 7478, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org). There is a web page featuring answers to frequently asked questions and examples of completed HEIFES returns. The web page will also contain any amendments or clarifications that need to be made after the circular and disk are sent out. It can be found on the HEFCE web-site, www.hefce.ac.uk, under Questions, HEIFES frequently asked questions. The web page is updated regularly and colleges are expected to look here for guidance before and during completion of their HEIFES return. We will use an e-mail list of HEIFES contacts, in order to notify colleges of any significant changes or updates. We will not use this simply to notify of changes to the web-site.
13. A computer disk, containing an Excel workbook to be completed for HEIFES2000, will be dispatched directly to college contacts by the beginning of November 2000. Notes on the disk are at Annex P.
14. The disk contains a number of validation checks, detailed in Annex O, and we will carry out further checks when we receive it. Once the returned data have been validated by us, colleges will be contacted and asked to verify their returns. We may refuse to revise allocations once data have been verified.
15. Survey data, on disk with a hard copy, should be returned to:
Returns may be made by e-mail to email@example.com, but the disk and a hard copy should still be sent to the above address.
16. Returns should be received no later than Tuesday 28 November 2000: data need to be returned by this date to ensure that we can announce the 2001-02 allocations by March 2001.
17. Where a college fails to return data on time, without prior authorisation, or the returned data are not accurate, we may not be able to include their activity in our funding allocations for 2001-02; or we may use our own estimates of student activity in making allocations.
18. We will audit HEIFES2000 data. Colleges should therefore keep an adequate audit trail recording how the data were derived. This is especially important where colleges are including estimates or making judgements, for example, the basis for forecasting non-completions should be recorded. Colleges must ensure that estimates are reasonable and have sufficient supporting data. Signed and dated registration and enrolment forms for students should be available for inspection.
19. As part of our audit process, we will compare HEIFES2000 data with a variety of other data, most notably the July 2000-01 FEFC ISR20 data, as these become available. We may make retrospective adjustments to funding in the light of these comparisons. Details of how we will compare data are given in Annex N. It is not possible to create an exact mapping between the FEFC ISR data and HEIFES data; so although Annex N gives details of the mappings we will use, it cannot be used to derive HEIFES2000 data.
Audit of HEIFES99
20. The HEIFES99 data audit exercise audited 10 colleges. The audits highlighted areas in which some colleges are incorrectly interpreting the HEIFES guidance. The findings included:
21. The findings are included under Common errors in the 1999 HEIFES survey in Annex A, paragraphs 9 to 25.