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Dear Colleague

Review of Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (Early DLHE) Survey


A review of the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education Survey (Early DLHE) is currently underway. It is a fundamental review of the survey and supporting systems and processes in advance of 2011/12 implementation, with particular reference to the content of the survey instruments, methodology, coverage, functionality of the DLHE Online Survey, possible technical update and the interaction between the Early and DLHE Longitudinal surveys. The review comes at a time when there is significant interest in destinations data at a political level, in particular the provision of careers information to prospective students and so the review is also integrating findings from relevant external research that has taken place, namely studies funded by BIS and HEFCE.

The review commenced in March this year and a Review Group of Statutory Customers, institutional representatives and technical experts as well as members of HESA staff have been working on the development of the proposals set out below.

1) Timing of the Early DLHE Survey

The review created an opportunity to investigate whether or not six months after completion of studies is the best time to survey leavers - a question that has been present since the inception of DLHE in 2002/03. The ‘best time' relates to the timing being a good predictor of later outcomes and now that two DLHE Longitudinal surveys have taken place there is data available to enable this investigation into the survey timing.

Analysis was undertaken using the 2004/05 DLHE Longitudinal Survey activity grid data as well as the Early DLHE Survey data for the 2004/05 cohort. Approximately 40,000 2004/05 leavers from higher education who initially responded to the six month Early DLHE Survey responded to the Longitudinal Survey three years later.  Section D of the DLHE Longitudinal Survey questionnaire included an activity grid which asked leavers to report all activities that they had been involved in since finishing their course.  Analysis included comparing the activities reported at the Early DLHE Survey stage with data from several time points (9, 12, 18 and 24 months) for the whole DLHE Longitudinal Survey population and then making comparisons over time for specific groups of leavers.

There was no evidence from the analysis that suggested that six months was sufficiently poor at indicating leavers' outcomes later in their careers, that it must be changed, thus starting a new time series, delaying availability of data and potentially reducing response rates. It is therefore proposed that the timing of the Early DLHE Survey remains at six months after completion of studies.

Colleagues are invited to comment on the proposal to retain the six month timing of the Early DLHE Survey.

2) Coverage

The survey population for DLHE is defined in relation to a number of factors including qualification awarded, mode of study and domicile. Below are a number of proposals for change to the criteria that determines whether or not a leaver is to be surveyed. Analysis of the impact of broadening the coverage for each institution has been undertaken and will be made available for reference to the DLHE record contacts at individual institutions.

2.1 Qualification awarded

When the HESA Student Record was redeveloped for 2007/08 the coding frame for qualifications was overhauled. The qualifications previously included in the DLHE population were mapped to this new and more detailed coding frame and the list in the current definition derived (with a few additions made in 2009/10 to reflect perceived omissions from the original list).

Currently many of those achieving professional qualifications are excluded from the survey population and it is acknowledged that the number studying for professional qualifications is on the increase. In order to broaden the coverage of the survey to include the missing professional qualifications it is proposed that the coverage of the survey is extended to include all HE qualification types, apart from credits. 

Colleagues are invited to consider the proposal to include leavers from all HE qualification types in the DLHE population, apart from credits .

2.2 Mode of study

When the DLHE Survey replaced the FDS in 2002/03 one major change was the inclusion in the population of those who had studied for their qualifications part-time. This had a significant impact on the scale of the survey for many institutions. Now the only students excluded from the population on criteria related to mode of study are those who receive their awards from dormant status.

The argument for excluding these students in the past has been that since it is likely that they have been in the labour market longer than six months at the point at which they gain their award, the data captured will not be comparable with that for other leavers.

The reason that postgraduate research (PGR) students are often recorded as dormant status at the end of their programme is that there is a time lag between submitting a thesis and the senate or relevant body confirming the award.  If the confirmation is in the following academic year the institution can only use the dormant status mode code as the student has not been actively following a programme of study during the academic year. The reason that some undergraduate students are coded dormant status is due the fact that they may need to retake exams in the next academic year but with this being their only engagement with the institution, the dormant code would be the most appropriate.

The exclusion of those who receive their awards from dormant status has a more significant effect on some types of provision and on some institutions. Analysis of data from the 2008/09 HESA Student Record suggests that there were approximately 18,400 leavers excluded from POPDLHE because of their dormant status, who would otherwise have been included (on qualification awarded, domicile and ENDDATE criteria) - 1,150 PGR students, 5,850 PGT and 11,400 UG . A further 4,400 leavers who were dormant were also excluded as the ENDDATE reported pre-dated the period for the survey.

The number of postgraduate research qualifiers included in the survey is particularly reduced by excluding qualifiers from dormant status. To address this, many institutions and particularly the Research Councils, would like to see included in future DLHE populations those who received their awards from dormant status. There is limited interest however from other of HESA's Statutory Customers, so it is therefore proposed that the surveying of qualifiers from dormant status is restricted to PGR students. These students are identifiable from the HESA Student Record and so the decision could be made to exclude them from standard publications if it is shown that the destination patterns are significantly different from the remainder of the PGR survey population, however the data would be available for those who require it.

Colleagues are invited to consider the proposal to include all PGR students in the DLHE Survey in future.

2.3 Domicile There are two proposed changes to the domicile criteria for the DLHE Survey population:
2.3.1 Non-EU international leavers

The survey population currently includes those leavers whose domicile prior to starting their course were within the EU (or the Channel Islands/Isle of Man).  Those from outside of this region are excluded. Prior to the year 2000 these students were included in the FDS, but the decision was taken to remove them as the response rate was very low and the majority were returned with only the information ‘overseas leavers returned home, no further details available'.  HESA is aware that many institutions do, however, still attempt to survey their non-EU international leavers for their own purposes.

In 2009 the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) commissioned a research project (International Student Tracking Survey) to track international leavers, one of the outcomes of which was to be an assessment of the feasibility of including these leavers in the DLHE Survey. With advances in technology and hence different ways available of maintaining contact with leavers it was thought that it might now be possible to obtain more and better information. With increased interest and ever growing numbers of international students this is considered to be very important information.

Having considered the recommendations from the draft BIS report (not yet published), members of the Review Group concluded that it would be feasible to include non-EU international leavers in the standard DLHE Survey. HESA's Statutory Customers are currently considering whether or not surveying these leavers should be a statutory requirement. If not, it is proposed that those institutions that do currently survey these leavers should be encouraged to return this data to HESA along with the rest of their DLHE data.

Colleagues are invited to indicate whether or not their institution currently surveys its non-EU international leavers and the implications of this being compulsory.

2.3.2 Incoming exchange students

It has recently come to light that while incoming exchange students are excluded from HESA's standard registration population derived from the HESA Student Record and also from the qualifications obtained population, they are currently included in POPDLHE. There are approximately 1,000 of such students in POPDLHE each year. It is proposed that in future these students are excluded from POPDLHE as they are from other populations.

Colleagues are invited to consider the proposal to remove these leavers from the DLHE Survey population.

3) Questionnaire

The survey instruments, their content and how they are used, need to be reviewed periodically to ensure that they reflect the data required by both Statutory Customers and institutions, the methodologies used within institutions and developments in survey techniques. Below are a number of proposals for consideration which have been developed in order to encourage leaver participation in the survey, the collection of required data and easing the burden for survey practitioners in mind.

3.1 Proposed new content

The content of the questionnaire was last reviewed for 2007/08 implementation. For this current review each Statutory Customer reassessed their requirements for the data from each question on the questionnaire and the resulting proposals for change were discussed by the wider Review Group. The proposed questionnaire content can be viewed alongside a mapping document detailing the changes from the current questionnaire to the proposed new questionnaire.

The proposed changes to the questionnaire content include improvements to the instructions for the completion of each section, addition and removal of options, as well as revised placing of some options among questions and  the language used throughout revised.

There are also a number of more significant changes to the questionnaire content proposed;

a) Section A

It is proposed that Section A that currently comprises two questions asking about employment and further study status on the census date moves to the ‘main' activity and ‘other' activities model used for the DLHE Longitudinal Survey. This approach asks the leaver to select what they consider to be their main activity on the census date and then to select all other activities they are undertaking concurrently.

The reason behind this proposal is to enable leavers to select what they consider to be their main activity on the census date; it has long been recognised that this may not be the activity that they spend the most time doing, nor may it be related to their long-term plans. This model would be able to pick up those engaged in ‘portfolio careers', i.e. those who are doing something to enable them to get to the career (e.g. trying to become self-employed) they want but are otherwise working in order to earn a living. The proposal includes merging some of the options in the current Q1 and Q2, but the detail is not lost as it is captured later in the questionnaire.

b) Salary  

The DLHE Longitudinal Survey includes an alternative model for capturing salary data which has been adapted for proposed inclusion in the Early DLHE Survey. It allows leavers to give a monthly, weekly or hourly rate if they are unable to calculate their annual salary. If an hourly rate is returned the leaver should enter approximately how many hours a week they work. There is also an instruction for those who are paid in a currency other than pounds sterling to provide an approximate figure in pounds sterling.

Capturing annual salary information about the leaver's ‘main' employment is the first part of the proposed new two-stage salary question; the second part captures total earnings for the year for those who were employed in more than one job. The option ‘I do not wish to give this information' has been removed as capturing salary information is to be encouraged. If the leaver does not complete the question, or refuses to provide the information over the telephone, then the question will be left unanswered.

c) Use of JACS for coding subject of study, training or research                              

The current Q21, together with Q20, capture information about the study, training or research that the leaver is undertaking on the census date. The information from Q20, i.e. name of course registered on, can help in completion of Q21, which asks for the subject area of the study, training or research undertaken, and this combined information is used to generate the SOC (Standard Occupational Classification) code returned to HESA.

This field (field 34) started out as PROFSOCT, Professional subject of training but the questions relating to this field have evolved over time and now ask for the subject of the study, training or research that the leaver is doing, rather than just the subject of any professional training undertaken. In light of this evolution it seems more appropriate to use a subject-based classification as a means of coding the subject studied. It is therefore proposed that the JACS (Joint Academic Coding System) classification is used for coding subject of further study, training or research. JACS has recently been reviewed so that it reflects current subject provision. Although the new version (JACS 3.0) will not be used for the HESA Student Record and HESA Staff Record until 2012/13, it is proposed that JACS 3.0 would be used for subject coding in the DLHE Record so that a subsequent change does not need to be made after only one year.

d) Section E

The inclusion of questions relating to the leavers' original study (Section E) in the DLHE Survey has long been a contentious issue. The three questions in Section E are aimed at leavers who studied their original course at a part-time mode and ask them to focus on their motivation for choosing that mode as well as capturing information about whether or not this study was supported by an employer. The argument for inclusion of the trio of questions in the DLHE Survey has been that it is the only opportunity to gather this information. Arguments against are that these questions do not strictly fit with the rest of the questionnaire and the possible inaccuracy of the data as the leaver is asked about what motivated them to do their original course when being surveyed so long after commencing the course; what the leaver considers to be their motivation may change over time.

The proposal is to remove these three questions from Section E of the DLHE Survey but Statutory Customers would instead require that the data from Q29 is captured through the HESA Student Record; there is a requirement to understand why students have chosen to study part-time and it is critical to understanding their study patterns and outcomes. Whether or not there should be any attempt to capture the data from Q30 and Q31 through the HESA Student Record as well has not yet been decided.

Colleagues are invited to consider whether or not there is a requirement for all of the information currently collected as Section E in the DLHE Survey, or is the data captured in Q29 sufficient? Colleagues are also invited to consider in conjunction with this the cost and practical implications of collecting this data (either just Q29 or all of Section E) as part of the HESA Student Record.

e) Employability

There is strong political interest in capturing data about how higher education prepares leavers for employment by providing them with the skills, competencies and knowledge required for employment. It is therefore proposed that the final question on the DLHE questionnaire asks about employability. There are two approaches; the first includes a list of skills and attributes and asks the leaver to consider to what extent their HE experience helped them to develop these on a scale of one-to-ten. This model would provide detail which would allow for identifying where improvement work is needed in the institution. The second is a much shorter model, asking the leaver to indicate on a scale from ‘very well' to ‘not at all' how well their experience in higher education prepared them for work and/or provided them with the necessary skills and knowledge to start and run a business. Both options are included in the proposed questionnaire content.

Colleagues are invited to comment on the proposed new content, in particular on the five significant proposals detailed above. Colleagues are also invited to highlight any other areas where change might be required, although HESA cannot guarantee that these will be considered as part of this review. These areas will however be noted for inclusion in any future DLHE review.

3.2 Methodology

The methodology for the Early DLHE Survey has remained largely unchanged since the DLHE Survey was introduced; the development of the DLHE Online Survey has been the most significant change. The current methodology requires institutions to use any version of the standard questionnaire for the first phase of data capture, attempting to obtain as much information as possible from leavers. Telephoning can then take place using a reduced set of questions on the telephone script, some of which must be answered in order for the response to count. There is some flexibility available using this methodology but it is limited to use of the versions of the standard questionnaire, e.g. some institutions with good email address information use electronic data capture first and then use the postal questionnaire. It is recognised that the quality and quantity of the different types of leavers' contact details varies across institutions.

In order to increase the flexibility for institutions, it is proposed that the methodology rules be relaxed so that institutions can choose their own methodology sequence. Each institution would be able to choose a sequence which they consider to be the most effective for achieving a good level of response from their leavers. For example, an institution might wish to start with telephoning at the start of the data capture period instead of sending out postal questionnaires. The consequence of this increase in flexibility is that it would necessitate a single version of the questionnaire for all methods of contact, so that the full set of data can be captured from all leavers regardless of method.

As it stands the proposed questionnaire is 26 questions long; five shorter than the current questionnaire and exactly the same number as on the current telephone script. In order to assess the impact of using the full questionnaire for telephone interviews, analysis was undertaken on leavers' responses to the non-core questions on the telephone script. The analysis revealed that the percentage of non-core questions answered is very high; typically there was a 80-90% response to each non-core question (apart from salary, 40%). Therefore there should be relatively little impact on institutions having to use the full questionnaire for telephoning, as, in the main, institutions are currently asking all of the questions on the telephone script and the proposed questionnaire comprises exactly the same number of questions as the telephone script.

It is acknowledged that third party response continues to be a valuable method of obtaining data about leavers and institutions have come to rely on this contact to boost responses. However, obtaining a response from a third party should always be a ‘last resort', as it is preferred that as much data as possible is obtained from leavers and a third party may only be able to answer the core questions on the telephone script. Switching to a single questionnaire for all methods of contact would mean that a set of core questions for use only when speaking with a third party would need to be in place as third parties will continue to be unable to answer all of the questions reliably. 

Do colleagues welcome an increased flexibility of the data capture methodology recognising that this requires using a single version of questionnaire, meaning that all questions should be asked of all leavers, regardless of contact method?

3.3 Format

Until analysis of the responses to the consultation has taken place, it is not possible to say exactly what the content of the questionnaire will be. There are indications that the content will not fit into the current four side format of the paper questionnaire (especially if the font size is to be increased, which has long been an aim in order to improve readability). Initial investigations suggest a six side alternative format, still with a finished fold size of A4 but with an additional page which would fold into the middle. At this point it would be useful to know if institutions envisage any difficulties with moving to a new format for the paper questionnaire, such as the six side format, for example it is acknowledged that institutions use mailing machines to add the addresses of leavers to the paper questionnaire; would an alternative format work with such machines?

Colleagues are invited to consider the format of the paper questionnaire in particular focussing on a potential move to a six side format.

3.4 Use of coding boxes

In previous consultations HESA has consulted on the use of the coding boxes in the right hand margin of the paper questionnaire and telephone script and the message has always been that these are used by institutions. HESA would again like to invite institutions to consider their use of these coding boxes for coding paper questionnaire or telephone responses. It might be that if the coding boxes are not used by institutions they can be removed, thus creating more width for the content of the questionnaire and removing any coding-related content from the proposed single version of the questionnaire. Institutions should refer to the proposed development of an input-only version of the DLHE Online Survey (below) when considering this. Also it is proposed that some guidance is prepared for use when telephoning institutions and so if coding boxes are still required for telephone responses then they could be added to this separate material.

Colleagues are invited to consider their use of the coding boxes on the current paper questionnaire and telephone script.

4. SOC 2010

In June 2010 ONS published the updated version of the Standard Occupation Coding - SOC 2010 ( It is planned that the DLHE Survey moves to using SOC 2010 as part of the implementation of the outcomes of this review. 

Colleagues will be aware that following publication of SOC 2000 the decision was taken to commission a bespoke version for DLHE containing an additional (fifth) digit of detail in some areas to allow more specific coding of graduate-level jobs.  Changes made by ONS for SOC 2010 mean that some of this additional detail can now be coded using the standard version (for example separate codes for solicitors and barristers). However, there remain a number of areas where using the standard version will result in less detailed information than can currently be obtained.

HESA has undertaken analysis of the data from the most recent DLHE return (2008/09) in order to identify those areas within SOC 2000 where the fifth digit codes are used extensively and provide significant additional information. These have then been compared with the codes available in SOC 2010 to assess how much of this detail would continue to be lost - although the extent of change in the coding frame means that this cannot be an ‘exact science'. The resulting analysis identifies a range of areas where detail currently available would be lost without the addition of a fifth digit in SOC 2010.

One particular area of concern is the identification of academic researchers (SOC 2010 codes 2110 to 2119) as research scientists are not differentiated from other scientists.

There are a number of options for the use of SOC 2010:

  1. Use SOC 2010 to code DLHE data and forgo the additional detailed coding
  2. Use SOC 2010 to code DLHE data but also collect in the record all of the job title information, allowing additional analysis within specific codes if required
  3. Commission a fifth digit for SOC 2010 as was the case for SOC 2000.

The third option above does have significant cost implications. Research would be necessary to identify the areas where a fifth digit is required (using the HESA data and analysis as a basis) and what the 5-digit codes should be. It may be possible to re-use some of the detail from the 5-digit codes from SOC2000, but this may be limited because of the extent of change made by ONS to the standard coding frame and these codes may in any case be out of date.

The use of a fifth digit would also mean that there would be a need for a bespoke version of CASCOT for use in coding, which also has cost implications.

Colleagues are invited to consider if the standard (four digit) SOC 2010 provides sufficient detail or would using the standard version have a significant impact on use and analysis of the DLHE data. 

5. Centralising SIC and SOC coding

As part of this review, HESA has been investigating centralising the coding of SIC and SOC. Up until now only SIC coding has been explored as there are other decisions about SOC 2010 (discussed above) which need to be made first. Centralising SIC and SOC coding would be beneficial to both those who capture data and those who use the data; it would reduce the burden on institutions who currently code the responses, while data users would have consistency of coding across institutions. As part of the investigation into centralising SIC, HESA has been working with an organisation which holds a database of names of employers, locations and industries (coded to SIC). In order to assess the matching and coding to SIC of information captured as part of the DLHE Survey approximately 38,000 records from the DLHE Online Survey System were supplied to the organisation. Using the data from the current questions 7, 9 and 10 a high percentage of UK records were matched to SIC electronically, with most of the remainder matched manually. Additionally, manual coding allowed SIC codes to be assigned to non-UK records. Other information that the leaver would not necessarily be able to provide could also be made available, e.g. company turnover, an indication of public or private sector as well as number of employees (allowing this question to be removed from the questionnaire).

If centralised SIC coding is adopted, a coding exercise would be undertaken after the DLHE data collection had closed. Rather than matching and coding batches of data as it is received by HESA, this would be a single large-scale coding exercise. The results of this would be fed back to institutions. In addition it might be possible to provide a look-up service for leavers responding to the survey online to select their employer from a list searching by name, town or postcode.

Colleagues are invited to consider the proposal to centralise SIC coding.

6. XML

The current DLHE is submitted by HE institutions using either fixed-length or comma-separated ASCII text files; this approach goes back to the first FDS collection in 1994/95. Data exchange formats have developed significantly since the early 1990s and HESA aims to adopt relevant technical standards in all of its records.

HESA currently uses eXtensible Mark-up Language (XML) for the collection of all student data; the Student Record, the Aggregate Offshore Record and the ITT In-year Record. XML provides a robust mechanism for the transfer of complex data structures and greater flexibility for the onward development of the record structures. It also allows a wider (and more precisely defined) character set to be used and provides for a more sophisticated approach to validation.

XML is a recommendation of both the Education Skills and Children's Services Information Standards Board (ISB) and the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). HESA has previously stated the aim of moving all record-based collections to XML and this review provides the most suitable opportunity for the DLHE Record to make this move for the foreseeable future.

Some views on the impact of moving the DLHE collection to XML were solicited from the technical community (Corporate Information Systems Group (CISG) through the UCISA JISCmail list) earlier this year. The question of moving the return to XML provoked responses from institutions, the UCISA CISG committee and from one of the major student system suppliers who include DLHE processing as a part of their offering. No objections were raised about the move to XML itself - most noting that it would bring the DLHE collection into line with the rest of the HESA student data. With the support of the technical community and software suppliers it is proposed that the DLHE collection be moved to XML.

Colleagues are invited to consider the proposal that the DLHE collection be moved to XML.

7. Input-only version of the DLHE Online Survey

HESA is aware that some institutions use the DLHE Online Survey System to enter and code responses that have been made on the paper questionnaire and/or through telephone interviews. While HESA has no objection to this use in principle, it is aware that this is not really what the system was designed for and so it does not fully suit this purpose.

In November 2008 institutions were consulted about a number of issues relating to the DLHE Online Survey System, in particular about the use of the system for inputting responses and the possible development of an input-only version. There was much support for a specially-developed version of the DLHE Online Survey for inputting paper and telephone responses.

Again the technical community were consulted earlier on in this review about the expansion of the Survey System for this purpose. It is clear that the major student systems suppliers offer some DLHE functionality and those institutions that utilise these offerings will benefit from full integration with the core student records (contact and course details being especially important here).

There is not therefore a requirement for HESA to provide a comprehensive survey management system, and so HESA is only considering expanding the current DLHE Online Survey System to provide an input-only version for institutions. Therefore HESA would like to gauge if there is still a significant level of support for this from the sector.

Colleagues are invited to consider the proposal to provide an input-only version of the DLHE Online Survey.

8. Proposed changes for 2010/11

Along with the proposals detailed above for implementation in 2011/12 there are two proposed changes for implementation 2010/11.

8.1 Salary question

There is currently significant interest in salary data as public information and by prospective students. While some salary information is available from the Student Loans Company it is patchy and not available at individual level. Therefore it is proposed that the salary question in DLHE becomes a core question for all methods of data capture from 2010/11. There will continue to be an information declined tick box available on the online version to enable leavers using this method to proceed. This tick box will be removed from the paper questionnaire to encourage leavers to provide salary information. If no salary is returned then this will be a valid response. This question will be highlighted as ‘core when speaking to the graduate' as Q29 is on the current telephone script in order to ensure that the question is asked of all leavers. It is suspected that the low response for the salary question is because it is not currently being asked of all leavers.

8.2 Country codes

In 2007/08 the HESA Student Record adopted the National Statistics Country Classifications 2006 (NSCC). It is understood that some institutions are struggling to work with different country code lists in their internal systems and would welcome this change being made to align with the DLHE Record as soon as possible. It is therefore proposed that the country codes used for the DLHE Record should be aligned with those used on the HESA Student Record.

Colleagues are invited to comment on these proposals for implementation in 2010/11.

For information

Third party response and DLHE Longitudinal opt-out

Currently all leavers are asked at the end of all methods of response if they would be content to be contacted in the future and invited to take part in a follow-up survey, and that if so, their contact details would be forwarded to the contractor undertaking that follow-up survey. Those responding on behalf of a leaver are also asked this question. There has long been some concern about asking a third party whether or not the leaver they are responding for would be content for their contact details to be passed to a third separate organisation undertaking the DLHE Longitudinal Survey. In order to ensure that the survey does not conflict with data protection guidance those responding on behalf of the leaver will no longer be asked the follow-up question at the end of the questionnaire.  The leaver would then be excluded from being contacted as part of the DLHE Longitudinal follow-up and so their contact details would not be passed to the contractor undertaking the survey. This change will be implemented for 2010/11.

Discontinuation of the provision of HTML

In November 2008 colleagues were consulted on a number of proposals for the development of DLHE-related systems and processes. This included the use of HTML which HESA provides in order for institutions to host a local electronic version of the DLHE questionnaire. Analysis of the responses revealed that use of this provision was minimal and so institutions have already been informed that this provision will be discontinued with effect from 2011/12.

DLHE Good practice

Colleagues may be aware of the good practice project that has been running in parallel with this review which culminated with a seminar in August providing copies of a DLHE Good practice manual to institutional colleagues. For more information colleagues can refer to the DLHE support centre. This Good practice manual has been produced for use for the January 2011 (DLHE Survey 2009/10) and April 2011 and January 2012 (DLHE Survey 2010/11) surveys. The manual will then be updated to reflect the changes made to the survey following this review.

Action required

Institutions are invited to comment on the proposals outlined in this consultation document and also to make any other relevant comments. Responses should be sent by email to [email protected] by 29 October 2010.

Next steps

Impact analysis of the proposed changes set out above will be undertaken by HESA colleagues during the consultation period and will be considered along with the analysis of the consultation responses. This impact analysis will be undertaken to ensure that any proposed changes are technically feasible and are compatible with HESA policy and products.

Following collation of the responses to this consultation and further discussion within the Review Group, recommendations for change will be presented to HESA Board in December.

Institutions will be informed of the agreed changes in February 2011.

Yours sincerely

C. Jane Wild
Director of Operations

Contact Liaison by email or on +44 (0)1242 388 531.