Student record 2020/21 - Data collection schedule
Version 1.0 Produced 2020-07-30
The document below is designed to guide providers through the stages of data submission for the Student record.
Please note it is anticipated that the collection will open on time and that HESA will quality-assure the data broadly in line with the existing timetable. However, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the deadlines are currently under review while the impact on providers’ ability to make data returns is assessed.
At a glance
|From August 2020||Data capture and collation|
|January 2021||Validate data locally using validation kit|
|March 2021||C20051 Data Collection system opens|
|15 September 2021||Nil-return confirmation|
|15 September 2021||Return|
|21 September 2021||Commit|
|21 September to 01 November 2021||Data quality checking period|
|01 November 2021||Final Commit|
|08 November 2021||Sign-off|
HESA is required to report any providers who miss any of the deadlines detailed in the schedule to the relevant statutory customer. These are the return, nil-return confirmation, commit, final commit and sign-off deadlines.
Providers in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are required to complete an extension form if they anticipate that the return and/or commit deadline will be missed. Providers in England are required to complete a late form for all missed deadlines. Please note that the Accountable Officer is required to sign the late form for the final commit and sign off deadlines, however, they should be kept informed of any missed deadlines. For all administrations the reason for late submission or extension will be shared with your primary regulator or funder.
Providers are reminded to make use of the HESA Liaison team and to make them aware of any issues that could impact on your providers ability to meet these deadlines.
Providers should read the C20051 Student record coding manual and associated documentation for details of the requirements for the return.
During these months providers will need to load and maintain local student record systems including: registration, enrolments, qualifications and, if applicable, the UCAS data for HESA.
HESA's data quality assurance processes are outlined in the Validation overview.
The C20051 validation kit is made available to download from: Validation kits.
The validation kit enables providers to test their data locally ahead of the data collection system opening. Providers are strongly encouraged to use the validation kit as part of their data preparations.
The C20051 collection database is available on the data collection system (https://datacollection.hesa.ac.uk) giving providers the opportunity to test files against quality rules ahead of the return deadline.
The C20051 Student Data Collection system will release functional components of the system to providers incrementally.
It is a provider’s responsibility to ensure that they are progressing reasonably towards the return deadline; if any issues become apparent or you require assistance with the submission process then please contact Liaison. HESA does monitor provider interactions to feed into their own risk assessments and this information may be shared with the primary regulator or funder of a provider.
Providers are required to submit a Nil return form to indicate that their provider has no provision which meet the eligibility criteria for the Student record as specified in the coverage of the record. The completed form needs to be emailed to Liaison before 5pm on 15 September to guarantee this will be actioned on the deadline. The form is available from the coding manual and needs to be signed by the provider’s Accountable Officer (England) or Head of Provider.
Providers are required to send one complete data file that has passed schema and business stage validation and has no entry profile errors to HESA by 23:59 on 15 September 2021.
Complete data is defined as all students that are in coverage of the record for the reporting year. It is not permitted to return dummy data, however HESA accept that due to late exam boards qualification awarded data may not be included by this deadline.
Where business errors are triggering for genuine data, a switch will need to be requested. This request should be sent to Liaison by email detailing the rule and an explanation for why this data is genuine, in good time prior to the return deadline.
Providers are advised to send complete data that has no remaining errors and have committed the data on the Data Collection system by 23:59 on 21 September 2021. This schedule allows the maximum amount of available time for data quality checking.
Where errors are triggering for genuine data, a switch will need to be requested. This request should be sent to Liaison by email detailing the rule and an explanation for why this data is genuine, in good time prior to the commit deadline.
Where a provider requests that their file is decommitted before HESA data quality analysts have been able to check the file then this will count as a missed deadline.
This is an iterative process during which providers may need to submit, commit, review and decommit their data several times to ensure the final submission is credible. The suite of web reports available on the Data Collection system should be reviewed by the provider to ensure that the data submitted is a credible representation of your organisation.
During this period Data Quality Analysts at HESA will examine data committed by all providers. Please note that the Office for Students will also raise data quality queries for providers in England during this time. If any anomalies are found queries will be raised through the Issue Management system. Nevertheless, providers are in a better position to recognise more detailed anomalies within their data, using local knowledge of the intricacies of their own organisation. As a consequence, providers are required to either resubmit their data to amend these anomalies, or provide an explanation in the Issue Management system as to why these apparent anomalies are genuine.
HESA analysts aim to check files within 5 working days following a provider committing their file and responses to data quality queries raised by HESA will be reviewed within 2 working days. However, during busy periods i.e. around the commit deadline please be aware that this may take slightly longer.
Upon satisfactory completion of this process data will be set to credible.
Providers are required to commit their final file on the Data Collection system by 23:59 on 30 October 2021.
Once the file has been committed it will be checked by a HESA Data Quality Analyst and this can result in additional data quality queries that require a response. Providers should be aware that data quality checking can take up to 5 working days and should therefore ensure that they have sufficient time to make any required changes based on these queries and/or respond to these queries ahead of the sign off deadline. All data quality queries need to be resolved before the data can be set to credible.
Providers are required to have their data marked as signed off on the Data Collection system by 6 November 2021. The sign off form needs to be emailed to Liaison before 5pm on 6 November to guarantee sign-off on the deadline.
Once a provider's data has been set to credible on the Data Collection system, the 'sign off’ button can be selected which allows the sign-off form to be downloaded for completion. The sign-off form must be completed by the provider’s Accountable Officer (England) or the Head of Provider. Once completed, the form should be emailed to [email protected] Please note that the transaction number on the sign-off form must correspond to that of the data being signed-off.
Sign-off completes the data collection process. Timely sign-off ensures that your data is included in any data deliveries to statutory customers, as well as onward uses of the data for publications and analysis.
Providers should download and keep copies of all relevant reports that they are likely to need during the year. This will be necessary as access to the site will be restricted after the collection has closed. Providers are advised to review their expected population reports in preparation for the following collection.
Targets that were set during the collection will be sent to providers and should be reviewed. The record contact will be notified by email once targets have been assigned in the Issue Management system and providers should ensure that processes are put in place to implement any changes to data collection required.
If a provider is aware of any errors in their data, then they should inform their primary funder or regulator. Providers in England should notify Office for Students through the data amendments process. This may result in a request for the provider to go through fixed database. Providers should also notify HESA so a data intelligence note can be created.
Contact Liaison by email or on +44 (0)1242 388 531.