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Interim Widening Participation Strategic Statements

Frequently asked questions

These frequently asked questions aim to help institutions interpret and implement Circular letter 11/2012: ‘Interim widening participation strategic statements for 2012-13

 Last updated 1 June 2012

Page last updated 1 June 2012

Which institutions need to submit an interim widening participation strategic statement?

All Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) including those with only postgraduate provision are required to submit a statement. We also require those further education colleges that expect to have over 100 full-time equivalent directly HEFCE-fundable student numbers in 2012-13 to submit a statement. This includes providers awarded numbers through the bidding process for 2012-13 ‘margin’ student numbers. 

By HEFCE-fundable student numbers, we broadly mean all higher education students domiciled in the UK or another EU country (‘home and EU’ students) other than: 

  • those whose provision is funded by another EU public source
  • those on a course that is not open to any suitably qualified candidate
  • students aiming for a qualification no higher than one they already have (with some exceptions)
  • postgraduate research students. 

The term covers some students that may not in fact attract HEFCE funding to their institutions, (for example where we expect tuition fees to cover the full cost of provision, or where students who do not complete their year of study are not counted in our funding calculations). 

Further information about this definition is available from our annual HESES/HEIFES publication.

Is there a template for the return?

No. Institutions are free to submit documents to us in MS Word or PDF format and there is no minimum or maximum page limit. 

Please note that submissions should be made via the HEFCE extranet by 22 June 2012.

How do I access the extranet?

The HEFCE extranet is an encrypted and authenticated web-site which you must use to submit your interim widening participation strategic statement. 

Letters with detailed instructions on how to access the HEFCE extranet and submit statements were sent to heads of institutions, widening participation and access agreement contacts (where applicable) on 30 April or 1 May 2012. 

If you have any queries please contact Richard Smith (r.smith@hefce.ac.uk, 0117 931 7151) for further information.

Will we be required to make a submission in 2013-14?

Yes. The interim widening participation strategic statement covers academic year 2012-13 only. Guidance will be issued next year for three-year widening participation strategic statements to cover the period 2013-14 to 2016-17. 

Our longer-term strategic information requirements will be determined through the shared strategy for widening access to, and student success in, higher education that will be developed with OFFA.

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