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Graduate Outcomes Statistical Releases FAQ

This FAQ relates to the structure and contents of statistical releases on the HESA website. More detail is available in the dissemination section of the Survey methodology. If you have a question that is not answered here please email [email protected]

For detailed questions and answers about tables in the releases please see: Graduate Outcomes statistical releases - detailed questions and answers
If you have a question about the data in any release please contact [email protected].
Information about publication dates can be found in Upcoming data releases.

General

The Experimental Statistical Bulletin Higher Education Graduate Outcomes Statistics: UK, 2017/18 provides high level findings and characteristics of graduate outcomes at a national level. It provides a useful overview of the survey results and is published alongside an assessment of data quality.

Higher Education Graduate Outcomes Statistics: UK, 2018/19 will be published on 20 July 2021.

The open data release HE Graduate Outcomes Data is a larger suite of open data tables providing a more detailed view of the data. This will be updated with data for 2018/19 on 27 July 2021.

We may also publish Ad-hoc Statistical Bulletins - statistical analyses published where there is a pressing need for official statistics in the public interest.

HESPA (Higher Education Strategic Planners Association) have produced a guide to using and interpreting Graduate Outcomes data:

Download Graduate Outcomes: A Guide to Using and Interpreting the Data

Experimental statistics are official statistics that are defined as newly developed or innovative and undergoing evaluation. They are published with the aim of involving users and stakeholders in the assessment of their suitability and quality. Users should exercise caution when using data from experimental statistics, and evaluate the quality and coverage of any data they intend to use in the context of the intended application to ensure that it is fit for the user’s purpose.

Graduate Outcomes is a new survey conducted differently from previous surveys and producing different information. These new experimental statistics are not comparable with the results of the earlier Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey.

Please see this blog post for more details: ‘Why Graduate Outcomes statistics are experimental’

The design and content of the Statistical Bulletin and open data release were informed by an informal consultation with representative sector organisations and public authorities. The intention of these outputs is to make the survey data as useful and accessible as possible. Please see this blog post for more details: ‘How to publish Graduate Outcomes data?

If you have comments or suggestions to improve the statistical outputs, please use the feedback buttons in the right hand menu of any Bulletin or open data page.

Definitions: Graduate Outcomes gives definitions for each data field used in table titles, filters, and column and row headings.

Industrial and occupational classifications shows the codes and groupings for industries and occupations used in tables showing the activities of working graduates.

The Quality report is a broad assessment of the quality dimensions of the Graduate Outcomes data and provides information on any known general or specific quality issues.

Known quality issues with specific data items are highlighted in notes under tables, where relevant. It is important to read and understand these notes so that you can engage with the data in an informed and considered way.

Statistical Bulletin

Statistical Bulletins provide high level findings of a data stream at a national level. They provide a useful overview of the data on a particular subject. These are official statistics and include a summary assessment of data quality. HESA produces Statistical Bulletins for its Student, Staff and Graduate Outcomes data collections: Statistical bulletins and first releases

The key headline results of the Graduate Outcomes survey are published as charts on the summary page.

Other pages of the Bulletin are arranged by theme, with data presented in interactive Google tables and charts. The source data for each figure can be downloaded in CSV format to view in Microsoft Excel or other statistical software. Download data is provided as rounded data to preserve the confidentiality of survey responses (see Rounding and suppression to anonymise statistics).

Important information about specific tables is given in notes under the table, and general information is provided in the Notes page. It is essential that users read and understand these notes as they provide vital contextual information about the data.

The design and content of the bulletin was informed by consultation with representative sector organisations and public authorities to make the survey data as useful and accessible as possible. Please see this blog post for more details: ‘How to publish Graduate Outcomes data?

The Statistical Bulletin provides a national level overview of the data. HE provider level data is included in the larger open data release published a few days after the Bulletin.

The Statistical Bulletin provides an overview of the survey results. More detailed breakdowns of results are included in the larger open data release published a few days after the Bulletin.

If you need a data breakdown that is not included in the open data release you can request a Tailored Dataset from Jisc. See Other Graduate Outcomes dissemination products and services below.

Please see the Definitions and Notes which provide detailed explanations of each data item that make up the columns, rows and filters for each table.

Further supporting information on the open data homepage for graduates gives context and background to the Graduate Outcomes survey and the statistics produced from it.

On 18 June we provided a webinar for data users that outlined the main findings of the survey and a walk-through of the Statistical Bulletin. The recorded webinar and a list of detailed questions and answers about the data are now published at Graduate Outcomes statistical releases - detailed questions and answers.

If you have questions about the published statistics that are not answered by the supporting material please contact [email protected] or [email protected].

Open data release

The open data release ‘HE Graduate Outcomes Data’ is a large suite of open data tables providing detailed views of the data.

The release covers seven pages of interactive Google tables and charts on different themes within the survey results.

At the top of each table you’ll find filters which you can use to restrict the table to particular populations (e.g. only show postgraduate leavers or Scottish HE providers).

Tables 1 to 8 and 18 show survey results broken down by HE provider. 

Under each table are links where you can Download table or Download source data.

The Download table link provides a CSV version of the data table you have selected using the filters. This will normally open in Microsoft Excel.

The Download source data link provides a CSV file containing all the data available for building the Google table, including breakdown for all the available filters.

For some tables the source data is a very large CSV file which may be too big to open in Microsoft Excel directly (over 1,048,576 rows). Other options for opening very large CSV files include using the Data > Get & Transform Data > From Text/CSV process in Excel, or opening the file using different statistical software.

If you need a data breakdown that is not included in the open data release you can request a Tailored Dataset from Jisc. See Other Graduate Outcomes dissemination products and services below.

Please see the Definitions and Notes which provide detailed explanations of each data item that make up the columns, rows and filters for each table.

Further supporting information on the open data homepage for graduates gives context and background to the Graduate Outcomes survey and the statistics produced from it.

If you have questions about the published statistics that are not answered by the supporting material please contact [email protected] or [email protected].

Using the statistics in external provider communications

Upon release of the Statistical Bulletin on 20 July 2021 at 09.30, the embargo on sharing 2018/19 data outside of your provider expires. Please do refer to the guidance note on use of final provider survey data for further guidance on how the data can be used.

Please refer to the guidance note on use of final provider survey data for further guidance on how the data can be used. This includes compliance with the Collection Notice, data subjects’ rights, free text box data and more.

Please ensure that whenever you use, reproduce or reference any survey response data you include an attribution and caveat on behalf of HESA in the form below:

“Contains HESA Data: Copyright Higher Education Statistics Agency Limited 2021. 
The Higher Education Statistics Agency Limited cannot accept responsibility for any inferences or conclusions derived by third parties from its data.”

Where the format of reproduction does not lend itself to the use of the full attribution clause and caveat (for example, on social media and visual display screens), the following shorter version is acceptable:

“Contains HESA Data © HESA 2021 (www.hesa.ac.uk)".

Other Graduate Outcomes dissemination products and services

HESA data analytics services are now delivered by Jisc. Heidi Plus is a web-based business intelligence platform providing a range of HESA datasets, with the ability to perform sector benchmarking and analyse trends over time.

Jisc will notify users by email when new Graduate Outcomes data is released into Heidi Plus.

Read more about Heidi Plus on the Jisc website.

HESA data analytics services are now delivered by Jisc. Graduate Outcomes data will be available for data requests after the Statistical Bulletin has been published.

Read more about Tailored Datasets on the Jisc website.