HE Policy Update

HE & Research Bill

A second reading of the higher education and research bill followed by progression to the committee stage is expected before the summer recess. The government has two windows of opportunity to achieve this: one of seven working days between 6 June and 14 June; and another of 19 working days between 27 June and 21 July.

International Students

The Financial Times has reported on the latest ONS migration statistics which show that tighter post-study visa rules have led to a 6% drop this past year in the number of people outside the EU applying for student visas. Migration Statistics Quarterly Report: May 2016. (ONS).

Student Loans

A petition to protest at the government’s retrospective changes in the terms and conditions of student loans has reached 100,000 signatures in the past three days. The high level of support means that parliament must consider debating the issue. Student loan payback petition tops 100,000 signatures (BBC News).

Teaching and Research

Jane Forster has written a blog on Wonkhe about the future of linking teaching and research. You can view the blog here.

Fee Caps

The Minister of State for Universities and Science has announced that the rate of inflation applying to maximum fees for institutions demonstrating high quality teaching will be 2.8 per cent in 2017-18. However in order to charge the maximum fee, universities must resubmit the access agreements that they have with the Office for Fair Access. Fee caps and inflationary increases for 2017-18 (OFFA).

Sutton Trust

A report published by the Sutton Trust finds that by year 9, almost 65% of girls thought it was ‘very important’ to go to university, compared with 58% of boys. You can view the report here.


A report for Sense about Science has found that the government has no central record of how it spends around £2.5 billion a year in research for policy. Only 4 out of 24 government departments maintain a database of research they have commissioned. You can view the report here.

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