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FSR record 2014/15

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Version 1.0 Produced 2015-03-05

ContextBack to top

The Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) has been established to undertake data collection and analysis about higher education in order to make possible consistent information provision about higher education throughout the UK, and to enable the universities and colleges and the funding councils to meet their obligations under relevant legislation. The formal responsibility for the provision of information to Ministers rests with the funding councils, who have agreed to engage HESA as their agent for this purpose.

HESA has the responsibility for integrating statistical data collection across all publicly funded UK higher education providers (HEPs) and subscribing alternative providers, within which there are different traditions and practices. The record has been constructed in such a way as to recognise this diversity. As far as possible, the aim has been to generate a single record that can be applied to all HEPs throughout the UK, irrespective of their different natures and funding regimes.

The coding manual sets out the requirements for the collection of data for the annual Finance Statistics Return (FSR). Throughout this manual, the term "funding council" should be interpreted as referring to the HEP's principal funding body, and therefore includes; the Higher Education Funding Council for England, the National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL), the Scottish Funding Council, the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales, and the Department for Employment and Learning (in Northern Ireland).

Record specific detailBack to top

Full details of the coverage of this record can be found in the coverage statement of the coding manual. This contains detailed information about the purpose and scope of each element of the return.

Data collectedBack to top

The FSR is collected annually from all UK publicly funded higher education institutions (HEIs) and a number of alternative providers (APs), collectively referred to as higher education providers (HEPs) by HESA, in December. It is submitted in an Excel workbook. Currently the FSR provides the primary financial statements from published accounts (Tables 1-4), cost centre-based data (Tables 5a, 5b and 7), tuition fees (Table 6a), a more detailed breakdown of income (Table 6b) and capital expenditure (Table 8). The figures recorded in the FSR must be consistent with those recorded in the audited published accounts.

Data collectionBack to top

All HESA records are collected on the basis of the HESA reporting period that determines the time period that the data being returned relates to. This ensures consistency across the data streams collected. The reporting period is from 01 August year 1 to 31 July year 2, for example, the 2000/2001 Student record was collected in respect of the activity which took place between 01 August 2000 and 31 July 2001.

Data must be returned using the templates provided by HESA for the relevant year. The Finance Statistics Return and will be distributed by HESA as spreadsheet template files to be completed and returned by HEPs. The templates (in .xlsx format) for the returns are available for HEPs to download from the FSR home page. Once completed, these files should be returned using the data collection system. To complete the Finance Statistics Record, both templates must be submitted and have passed commit stage quality rules before they can be set to credible and signed-off. Information on submitting data to HESA is available from

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