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August 2006/29 (web only)
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This report is for information only

Provision of higher education study by location


These tables show all students who are registered at institutions in England and are studying for a higher education qualification, by the geographical area in which the learning takes place.

To: Heads of HEFCE-funded higher education institutions
Heads of further education colleges with HE provision
Of interest to those responsible for: Student data, Audit, Finance, Planning
Reference: 2006/29
Publication date: August 2006
Enquiries to: Kathy Christie
tel 0117 931 7366

Executive summary and description of tables (read online)


Provision of higher education study by location 2004-05

[ MS Excel 64K | Zipped Excel 10K ]

Executive summary


1.   These tables present the numbers of students who are registered at institutions in England and are studying for a higher education qualification. Information is derived from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) data and the Learning and Skills Council Individualised Learner Record (ILR) collections. Their purpose is to show the geographical area in which the learning takes place.

Key points

2.   This is the second in an annual series, but it cannot be used to investigate trends because the categories and populations we use change as we try to improve the quality and usefulness of the information.

3.   The tables we published last year (HEFCE 2005/22) were based on 2002-03 data. This year they are based on 2004-05 data as we were able to use the data that institutions submitted, rather than having to wait for post-submission data corrections to be archived.

4.   This year, for the first time, we have excluded duplicate records. This must be done after submission and may result in differences between the tables institutions have seen and those we publish in this document. In particular, if a student is returned by a higher education institution and taught by a further education college, and is also returned by that college, we have excluded the college's return from the tables.

Action required

5.   No action is required; this document is for information only.

Description of the tables

6.   The numbers in the tables should be taken as a guide only. Although we publish these tables annually they do not form a time-series and should not be used for analyses of trends. Any dramatic differences between years are likely to be due to changes in definitions or reporting rather than to changes in the sector.

7.   The main tables presented are headcounts and full-time equivalents (FTEs) by registering institution, teaching institution and subject; and by Government Office Region, Learning and Skills Council local areas, mode and level. Supplementary tables of headcounts and FTEs by registering institution and campus are provided for those higher education institutions (HEIs) that returned students at campuses which are some distance from their main campus.

8.   Numbers registered at HEIs are based on the HESA population. Numbers registered at further education colleges (FECs) are from the ILR, and the population used has been closely derived from that used for HEIs.

9.   Students on distance learning courses, on their sandwich year out, or studying for research degrees are excluded. The tables include only students that are registered in England. Students franchised to an English institution from outside England are excluded.

10.   The headcounts for those studying combinations of subjects are not apportioned to the relevant subject areas: each headcount was assigned to one subject area only. The FTEs are apportioned. For example, if a student is studying a balanced double subject of mathematics and physics, then their FTE is assigned 50 per cent to mathematics and 50 per cent to physics. Similarly, the headcounts of partially franchised students are not split between the institutions they attend; however, the FTEs are split.

11.   Duplicates have been removed. For example, students returned both by an HEI as franchised to an FEC and by that FEC, are excluded from the FEC numbers. In all, 4,379 of the HESA records and 5,391 of the ILR records were excluded as duplicates (3,912 and 5,174 headcounts respectively).

12.   The main headcount tables have been rounded to the nearest five. The names of institutions are those current in May 2006.