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Initial Teacher Training 2018/19 - Family name

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Initial Teacher Training 2018/19

Fields required from institutions in England

Family name

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Short nameSURNAME

This field is the student's family name.

Applicable toEngland

All students.


This field is identical to the Student.SURNAME field in the Student record, with the additional requirement that as this field will be used to create the student's DfE record it should contain the student's legal surname.

In cases where the student does not split their name between family and forenames, the whole name should be entered in Student.SURNAME and Student.FNAMES should be returned as an empty element, i.e.:


This information is available from UCAS and UCAS Teacher Training (UTT).

The field length has been set to 100 characters to align this field with ISB Aligned Data Definitions.

Valid characters

The question of valid characters is significant in this field since many names include characters with accents and other diacritics that are not supported by the standard ASCII characterset. The valid characterset available for this field follows the Data Standards in the HESA record.

  • The general policy is to support all Latin-based characters for names, addresses and general text fields, but not non-Latin characters.
  • All Unicode code charts for Latin characters are supported. These are Basic Latin (excluding the C0 control characters), Latin-1 (excluding the C1 control characters), Latin Extended A, Latin Extended B and Latin Extended Additional. This set corresponds to Unicode code points U+0020 to U+007E, U+00A0 to U+024F and U+1E00 to U+1EFF
  • Schemas are built in such a way that an individual project can further restrict the set if required.

The character set chosen will support Welsh and Gaelic languages as well as all European and most other languages using a Latin-based character set.

The Unicode charts that list each of the characters in this range can be found on the Unicode web site. The specific sets that are defined here are shown in the following PDF documents:

Files must be encoded with UTF-8 and schema validation will be in place to ensure this. Providers must specify the encoding used in their XML files in the first line of the file (i.e. <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" ?>) and to ensure that their files are actually saved with that encoding. If XML files are edited with some text editors and the encoding is not specified or does not match the actual file encoding, there may be problems when submitting these files for validation.

Quality rules
Quality rules relating to this field are displayed here.
Part of
Field length100
Minimum occurrences1
Maximum occurrences1
Schema components
Element: SURNAME
Data type: NameType
OwnerISB Aligned Data Definitions

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