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Students Definitions 2000/01

Coverage

Higher education (HE) students are those students on programmes of study for which the level of instruction is above that of courses leading to the Advanced Level of the General Certificate of Education (GCE A-levels), the Advanced Higher Grade and Higher Grade of the Scottish Certificate of Education (SCE Advanced Highers/Highers), or the BTEC or SCOTVEC National Certificate/Diploma (ONC/OND).

The HESA Student Record contains information about individual enrolments, which, because a student can be enrolled on more than one programme of study, will exceed the number of students.

The HESA standard registration population has been derived from the HESA July Individualised Student Record and ensures that similar activity is counted in a similar way irrespective of when it occurs. The population splits the student experience into �years of programme of study�; the first year of which is deemed to start on the commencement date of the programme with second, and subsequent years, starting on, or near, the anniversary of that date. Registrations are counted once for each �year of programme of study�. Short course registrations are counted in the standard registration population regardless of whether they are active on the 1 December of the reporting period. Dormant students, incoming visiting and exchange students from overseas, postdoctoral students and students studying for the whole of their programme of study outside of the UK are all excluded from this population.

The former 1 December standard HE population has been derived from the HESA July Individualised Student Record. It includes all higher education enrolments as at 1 December 2000 except:

  1. dormant students (those who have ceased studying but have not formally de-registered)
  2. postdoctoral students
  3. students studying for the whole of their programme of study outside of the UK
  4. students who left the institution prior to 1 December 2000, or who commenced a programme of study after this date.

From 2000/01 onwards, incoming visiting and exchange students have been excluded from the standard population since there was an element of double-counting with both outgoing and incoming students being included in previous analyses.

The HESA session HE population has been derived from the HESA July Individualised Student Record. It includes all higher education enrolments active at any point in the academic year 1 August 2000 to 31 July 2001 except:

  1. dormant students (those who have ceased studying but have not formally de-registered)
  2. incoming visiting and exchange students
  3. postdoctoral students
  4. students studying for the whole of their programme of study outside of the UK.

From 2000/01 onwards, incoming visiting and exchange students have been excluded from the session population since there was an element of double-counting with both outgoing and incoming students being included in previous analyses.

The HESA qualifications obtained population is a count of student enrolments associated with the award of an HE qualification (excluding HE institutional credits) during the period 1 August 2000 to 31 July 2001 inclusive. This population includes qualifications obtained during the 2000/01 reporting year, which were returned to HESA by 9 November 2001.

From 2000/01 onwards, the qualifications obtained population excludes qualifications awarded to incoming visiting and exchange students. This population also now includes awards from dormant students.

Rounding Strategy

Due to the provisions of the Data Protection Act 1998 and the Human Rights Act 1998, HESA now implements a strategy in published and released tabulations designed to prevent the disclosure of personal information about any individual. These tabulations are derived from the HESA non-statutory populations and may differ slightly from those published by related statutory bodies. This strategy involves rounding all numbers to the nearest 5. A summary of this strategy is as follows:

  1. 0, 1, 2 are rounded to 0
  2. All other numbers are rounded to the nearest 5.

So for example 3 is represented as 5, 22 is represented as 20, 3286 is represented as 3285 while 0, 20, 55, 3510 remain unchanged.

Total figures are also subject to this rounding methodology; the consequence of which is that the sum of numbers in each row or column will rarely match the total shown precisely.

Average values, proportions and FTE values prepared by HESA are not subject to the above strategy, and will be calculated on precise raw numbers. However, percentages calculated on populations which contain less than 50 individuals will be suppressed and represented as �..� as will averages based on populations of 7 or less.

Full-time Equivalent

Student full-time equivalent (FTE) data represents the institutions assessment of the full-time equivalence of the student during the reporting year 1 August 2000 to 31 July 2001. FTE data is based on the HESA session population.

Further Education

Further education (FE) students are those students on programmes of study for which the level of instruction is equal to or below that of courses leading to GCE A-levels, SCE Advanced Highers/Highers, or the BTEC or SCOTVEC ONC/OND.

Certain analyses use the HESA standard FE population. The population has been derived from the HESA July Individualised Student Record. It is a count of all enrolments at HE institutions studying at FE level as at 1 December 2000 except:

  1. dormant students (those who have ceased studying but have not formally de-registered)
  2. incoming visiting and exchange students
  3. students studying for the whole of their programme of study outside of the UK
  4. students who left the institution prior to 1 December 2000, or who commenced a programme of study after this date.

Mode of Study

(Applies to HESA populations except the qualifications obtained population.)

Full-time students are those normally required to attend an institution for periods amounting to at least 24 weeks within the year of programme of study, on thick or thin sandwich courses, and those on a study-related year out of their institution. During that time students are normally expected to undertake periods of study, tuition or work experience which amount to an average of at least 21 hours per week.

Part-time students are those recorded as studying part-time, or studying full-time on courses lasting less than 24 weeks, on block release, or studying during the evenings only.

Other modes of study include those students writing-up theses or on sabbatical, except where these have been tabulated separately.

Writing-up students are those who are normally expected to submit a thesis to the institution for examination within a period of one calendar year (or 18 months in the case of part-time students) after the end of fee-paying enrolment.

(Applies to HESA qualifications obtained population.)

Full-time students are those whose study was recorded as full-time (described as above), including sandwich students. Awards from dormant status and those writing-up theses are also included where a student�s mode of study was previously full-time.

Part-time students are those whose study was recorded as part-time, or studying full-time on courses lasting less than 24 weeks, on block release, or studying during the evenings. Awards from dormant status and those writing-up theses are also included where a student�s mode of study was previously part-time.

Level of Study

The level of study is taken from the qualification aim of the student.

Postgraduate programmes of study are those leading to higher degrees, diplomas and certificates (including Postgraduate Certificate of Education (PGCE) and professional qualifications) and usually require that entrants are already qualified to degree level (i.e. already qualified at level three of the national qualifications framework).

Higher degrees include doctorates, masters degrees and higher bachelors degrees.

In analyses where postgraduate level of study is disaggregated into postgraduate research and postgraduate taught, the following groupings are used:

Postgraduate research where the qualification aim is a research-based higher degree. These programmes of study include doctorate, masters, postgraduate bachelors degrees and postgraduate diplomas or certificates (not PGCE) studied mainly be research.
Postgraduate taught where the qualification aim is a taught-based higher degree. These programmes of study include doctorate, masters, postgraduate bachelors degrees and postgraduate diplomas or certificates studied not mainly by research including PGCE and professional qualifications.
Other postgraduate includes postgraduate diploma, certificate and professional qualifications, PGCE, institutional postgraduate credit and no formal postgraduate qualification.

Undergraduate programmes of study are first degrees with or without eligibility to register to practice (doctor/dentist/veterinary surgeon), first degrees with qualified teacher status (QTS)/registration with the General Teaching Council (GTC) for Scotland, enhanced first degrees, first degrees obtained concurrently with a diploma and intercalated first degrees, Higher National Diploma (HND), Higher National Certificate (HNC), Diploma of Higher Education (DipHE), Certificate of Higher Education (CertHE), foundation courses at HE level, NVQ/SVQ levels 4 and 5, professional qualifications at undergraduate level and other undergraduate diplomas and certificates. Entrants to these programmes of study do not usually require an HE qualification.

First degree includes first degrees, first degrees with eligibility to register to practice (doctor/dentist/veterinary surgeon), first degrees with QTS/registration with the GTC for Scotland, enhanced first degrees, first degrees obtained concurrently with a diploma and intercalated first degrees.

Other undergraduate includes qualification aims below degree level such as HND, HNC, DipHE, CertHE, foundation courses at HE level, NVQ/SVQ levels 4 and 5, post-degree diplomas and certificates at undergraduate level, professional qualifications at undergraduate level, other undergraduate diplomas and certificates, other formal HE qualifications of less than degree standard, institutional undergraduate credit and no formal undergraduate qualifications.

First Year Students

First year students are based on the HESA standard registration population who commenced their programme of study in the reporting period relevant to the data collection year. In some cases the student�s first year of study may be the second or later year of a programme, for example if they transfer from another institution.

Domicile

Domicile data is supplied to HESA in the form of postcodes (UK domiciled students) or country codes. Postcodes are mapped to counties, unitary authorities and UK nations following consultation with Geoplan Postcode Marketing. Countries are mapped to geographical regions following consultation with the Department for Education and Skills. Where no data is supplied about the student�s domicile, fee eligibility is used to determine whether domicile is UK or overseas.

UK domiciled students are those whose normal residence is in the UK, including the Channel Islands and Isle of Man.

Of those students from overseas, other EU students are those whose normal residence is in countries which were European Union (EU) members as at 1 December of the reporting period. Other overseas students are those whose normal residence prior to commencing their programme of study was outside the EU.

Age

Age is as at 31 August 2000.

Subject Areas

Programmes of study have been aggregated to 19 broad subject areas. The relationship of the academic content of the programme to the 19 areas has been compiled according to the following rules:

  • a programme with a single subject is allocated to that area
  • if a combination of two subjects lies within one area, the programme is allocated to that area
  • if a combination of two subjects lies within more than one area, with a major/minor split, the programme is allocated to the area relating to the major part of study
  • if a combination of two subjects lies within more than one area, with an equal split, the programme is allocated to the �Combined� area.

It should be noted that all subject combinations (major or minor) containing initial teacher training (ITT) are included in the �Education� subject area.

Major Subject

The 19 broad subject areas are disaggregated into 161 Principal Subjects. Similarly to above, rules are used to determine the principal subject as follows:

  • a programme with a single subject is allocated to that subject
  • in a combination of two subjects with a major/minor split, the programme is allocated to the major subject of study
  • in a combination of two subjects with a balanced split then if the two subjects fall within the same subject area the programme is allocated to a �balanced combinations within subject area� category, otherwise it is allocated to a �balanced combinations across subject areas� category.
  • in a combination of three subjects (which are treated as balanced combinations), if the three subjects fall within the same subject area then the programme is allocated to a �balanced combinations within subject area� category, otherwise it is allocated to a �balanced combinations across subject areas� category.
  • all subject combinations (major or minor) containing initial teacher training (ITT) are included in the �Teacher Training� subject.

Highest Qualification on Entry

It should be noted that a student�s highest qualification on entry is not necessarily that which was required for entry to the programme of study. Categories used are:

Postgraduate qualifications (excluding PGCE) includes all postgraduate degrees, diplomas and certificates excluding the PGCE.

PGCE - with and without QTS/GTC registration.

First degree of UK institution - plus undergraduate qualifications with QTS.

Other graduate and equivalent qualifications include graduate qualifications obtained outside the UK, NVQ/SVQ level 5 plus any other qualifications at graduate level not listed above.

HE credits include Open University credits and credits from other UK HE institutions.

Other HE and professional qualifications include certificates and diplomas of education, HNC or HND (including BTEC and SCOTVEC equivalents), diplomas in HE, NVQ/SVQ level 4, professional qualifications, foundation courses at HE level and other HE qualifications of less than degree standard.

GCE A-level/A-level equivalent qualifications, SCE Highers and equivalent - includes any combination of these qualifications plus GNVQ/GSVQ level 3, NVQ/SVQ level 3, BTEC and SCOTVEC ONC/OND.

Access courses - accredited and unaccredited.

GCSE/O-level qualifications only; SCE O grades and Standard grades - includes any combination of these qualifications.

Other qualifications include Baccalaureate, foundation courses at FE level, and any other qualifications not listed above.

No formal qualification held - the institution does not require the student to hold a qualification on entry or it is known that the student has no formal qualification.

Not known/sought - nothing is known about the student�s qualifications on entry to their programme of study.

Ethnicity

The ethnicity categories are those used in the 1991 Census of Population (Source: Office of Population Censuses and Surveys) and are consistent with those used by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). For continuing students, where the information is not already known, institutions have the option of recording the student�s ethnic group as not yet sought. As a result, some institutions have not returned ethnicity data for some of their students. In addition, students may choose not to reveal their ethnicity. HESA therefore advises that the figures reported in analyses are derived from a subset which may not be representative of the total student population.

Disability

The disability categories indicate the type of disability that a student has on the basis of their own self-assessment, and are consistent with those used by UCAS. For continuing students, where the information is not already known, institutions have the option of recording the student�s disability as not sought. As a result, some institutions have not returned disability data for some of their students. In addition, students are not obliged to report a disability. HESA therefore advises that the figures reported in analyses are derived from a subset which may not be representative of the total student population.

Location of Institution

The allocation of an institution to a geographical region is done by reference to the administrative centre of that institution. There may be students registered at institutions who are studying in regions other than that of the administrative centre of the institution.

The Open University is counted as a wholly English institution. The administrative centre is located in England, although The Open University teaches throughout the UK.

Classification of First Degrees

The classification of a undergraduate degree indicates the qualification class that the student obtained. Certain qualifications obtained at first degree level are not subject to classification of award, notably medical and general degrees. These, together with ordinary degrees, have been included within the unclassified category. Third class honours, fourth class honours and the pass category have been aggregated. Lower second and undivided second class honours have been aggregated.

Expected Length of Study

The expected length of study is the length applicable to the programme of study as a whole even though particular students may have different lengths of study, e.g. because of direct entry into the second year. The length of time includes holiday time and will normally include time for examinations relating to this part of the study programme.