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Frequently asked questions

This page outlines frequently asked questions about data collection in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes questions at a general data collection level as well as any collection specific ones which will be added to as they emerge. If you have a question and it's not covered here then please do email [email protected].

General Collection FAQs

Will you be accepting electronic signatures on sign off forms?

Yes. Due to colleagues working remotely we will allow electronic signatures this year on sign off forms and record contact change forms. Please note that the HESA offices are closed so please email your forms rather than posting them.

How do I request that you look at guidance for a field not currently listed as having exceptional guidance?

We actively encourage you to raise any areas that you feel may benefit from a review of the existing guidance in light of the pandemic. Please email these examples through to the Liaison team via [email protected].

Will you be adjusting your quality rules to account for the exceptional guidance?

We will not be making changes to our quality rules in light of the guidance changes.

When errors are triggered in the Data Collection system but the data has been checked and is genuine, you need to request a switch. This is because your file will not pass the validation requirements of the collection deadlines if there are any remaining errors.

Please email your switch request to Liaison, stating which rule is causing the error to be triggered and for how many records, together with an explanation as to why the data is genuine.

This will then be forwarded to your funding council/regulator for them to review. They may agree the switch, ask for more information or state how they wish the data to be returned so that an error is no longer triggered.

This request should be sent well in advance of any deadline, to allow sufficient time for a decision to be made.

When a switch has been agreed, it will be applied to your data for the count specified and the data will be reprocessed. This will resolve the error.

If the count increases, the rule will be triggered again, and you will need to request that the count on the switch be increased. This will be forwarded to your funding council/regulator for approval.

How do I let you know about a problem with completing our submission(s)?

If you anticipate any issues with making your submission(s) to HESA please do get in touch as early as possible so that we can help support you with your specific problem. You can either call or email the Liaison team on +44 (0) 1242 388531 or [email protected].

I think I need some extra training to help me with this submission, how can I go about this?

Our Training team have a wide range of options avialble to help support you. We provide a variety of live, web-based and bespoke training opportunities, helping you respond to the statutory data requirements of your provider. Further information can be found here.

Additionally our e-learning focusses on data collection and HESA system training. We offer a range of online short courses and pre-recorded webinars available here.

If you can't find the support you require listed please do get in touch with the Training team via [email protected] and they will be happy to discuss your needs.

 

How do I change my Record Contact?

Record Contacts are administered by HESA. If you hold a Record Contact role and need to delegate this to someone else in your organisation, please complete this form and send to the Liaison team.

If an existing Record Contact is not able to delegate a new contact, then the nomination of a new Record Contact must be approved by your provider’s Accountable Officer (England and Wales) or Head of Provider (Scotland and Northern Ireland). Please ensure the form is completed fully and send it to the Liaison team.

How do I ask for an extension?

Providers in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales are able to request an extension to certain deadlines. If you anticipate not being able to meet the published deadlines please do get in touch as soon as possible via [email protected] and we can issue you an extension form and provide you with support.

What is happening with deadlines this year?

C19054 - Student Alternative Record

It has been agreed with statutory customers we are temporarily changing the requirements around the deadlines for the Student Alternative Record https://www.hesa.ac.uk/collection/c19054) this year.  HESA and Statutory customers will be using the Return and Commit deadlines as points to check in with providers about their progress rather than as hard deadlines or regulatory obligations.  Therefore no written confirmation will be required if these deadlines are not met. HESA recommends that providers follow the normal timeline to progress through this year’s data collection, as achieving the Return and Commit milestones ensures that providers and HESA are well placed to achieve signed off data record by the Sign-off deadline.  Note that the existing Sign-off deadline remains in place.

Providers should notify the OfS via [email protected] and complete a HESA Late Sign Off form, to be signed by the Accountable Officer if this deadline is not met.

If you foresee any issues with meeting this timetable or reporting data to HESA this year, please contact the Liaison team and/or your funder/regulator as early as possible. This will allow us to provide additional support and guidance as required

 

C19051 Student Record

It has been agreed with statutory customers we are temporarily changing the requirements around the deadlines for the Student Record (https://www.hesa.ac.uk/collection/c19051) this year.  HESA and Statutory customers will be using the Return and Commit deadlines as points to check in with providers about their progress rather than as hard deadlines or regulatory obligations.  Therefore no written confirmation will be required if these deadlines are not met. HESA recommends that providers follow the normal timeline to progress through this year’s data collection, as achieving the Return and Commit milestones ensures that providers and HESA are well placed to achieve signed off data record by the Sign-off deadline.  Note that the existing Sign-off deadline remains in place.

English providers should notify the OfS via [email protected]fficeforstudents.org.uk and the completion of a HESA Late Sign Off form, to be signed by the Accountable Officer if this sign-off deadline is not met.

Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish providers should notify HESA if they are unable to meet the Sign-Off date.

If you foresee any issues with meeting this timetable or reporting data to HESA this year, please contact the Liaison team and/or your funder/regulator as early as possible. This will allow us to provide additional support and guidance as required

 

C19052 AOR Record

It has been agreed with statutory customers that we are temporarily changing the requirements around the deadlines for the AOR Record (https://www.hesa.ac.uk/collection/c19052/timescales) this year.  HESA and Statutory customers will be using the Return and Commit deadlines as points to check in with providers about their progress rather than as hard deadlines or regulatory obligations.  Therefore no written confirmation will be required if these deadlines are not met. HESA recommends that providers follow the normal timeline to progress through this year’s data collection, as achieving the Return and Commit milestones ensures that providers and HESA are well placed to achieve signed off data by the Sign-off deadline.  Note that the existing Sign-off deadline remains in place.

English providers should notify the OfS via [email protected] and the completion of a HESA Late Sign Off form, to be signed by the Accountable Officer if this sign-off deadline is not met.

Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish providers should notify HESA if they are unable to meet the Sign-Off date.
 
If you foresee any issues with meeting this timetable or reporting data to HESA this year, please contact the Liaison team and/or your funder/regulator as early as possible. This will allow us to provide additional support and guidance as required.

 

C19025 Staff Record

It has been agreed with statutory customers that we are temporarily changing the requirements around the deadlines for the Staff Record (https://www.hesa.ac.uk/collection/c19025/data_collection_schedule) this year.  HESA and Statutory customers will be using the Return and Commit deadlines as points to check in with providers about their progress rather than as hard deadlines or regulatory obligations.  Therefore no written confirmation will be required if these deadlines are not met. HESA recommends that providers follow the normal timeline to progress through this year’s data collection, as achieving the Return and Commit milestones ensures that providers and HESA are well placed to achieve signed off data by the Sign-off deadline.  Note that the existing Sign-off deadline remains in place.

English providers should notify the OfS via [email protected] and the completion of a HESA Late Sign Off form, to be signed by the Accountable Officer if this sign-off deadline is not met.

Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish providers should notify HESA if they are unable to meet the Sign-Off date.
 
If you foresee any issues with meeting this timetable or reporting data to HESA this year, please contact the Liaison team and/or your funder/regulator as early as possible. This will allow us to provide additional support and guidance as required.