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Collection specification and technical content

The Data Futures collection specification is a product of extensive work with Statutory Customers, HE Providers and sector bodies. Through this collaborative development the collection specification has been refined, accommodating the needs of Statutory Customers and executed in a way as to minimise the resulting impact upon providers.

As with any working document a collection specification needs to flex and adapt to the future requirements of a dynamic policy environment. This will mean changes, but the collection specification for Data Futures has been structured in such as way to ensure that these changes are not fundamental. An iterative schedule of releases will allow for modifications to be made, at a similar frequency to those of an established collection specification (for example the Staff record).

There are still some areas of development, which can be found on the collection specification consultations page. In addition to feeding back through consultations, you can provide feedback to our Liaison team as we will continually refine the data specification based on your feedback.

Collection specification: activity and information

Specification: ongoing development
Description Summary of requirement Status

XSD doesn't allow UKPRNs

There are a few errors in the XSDs being produced since version 1.0.0 on 31 March - any field which allows a UKPRN to be submitted as well as others codes (such as ModuleDeliveryRole.HESAID and OffVenueActivity.HOSTID) do not currently support unions and so the UKPRNs cannot be submitted in the schema. The generic codes can be submitted, but nothing else. 

21/9/20: XSD generation currently being worked on by the development team. 

XSD has 'action' references There are a few errors in the XSDs being produced since version 1.0.0 on 31 March - the actions contained within this are no longer relevant in a discrete collection. These will be removed in a future release.  10/9/20: XSD generation currently being worked on by development team. 
XSD maximum occurences  There is an error in the XSD produced in version 1.4.0 on 26 August - the maximum occurences within many entities is now displaying as unbounded. This should be showing the same values as appeared in the version 1.3.0 release.  10/9/20: Awaiting fix to XSD. 


What do you need to know about the collection specification?

With the release of the revised Data Futures collection specification some additional context has been provided about:

  • contextual information about the data model
  • the structure of the data model

More information about the collection specification

Collection specification consultations

We are continuing to review elements of the data model and associated specification items. We have arranged an overview of these, and previous items according to status:

  • Available for consultation: we will announce when these are available and update this page.
  • Under consideration: items may rely on another item being consulted or reviewed.
  • Resolved specification items: items previously consulted on, with links to outcomes documents.

Visit the collection specification overview

Student - Data Futures coding manual

The current version of the Data Futures coding manual provides access to:

  • Overview of the record
  • Collection specification
  • Collection specification guidance

Access the Student - Data Futures coding manual

Key concepts

As part of our work to provide ongoing updates on the progress of Data Futures, the following new key concept is now available:

  • Discrete collection

Learn more about key concepts

Business requirements

For the Data Futures programme the business objectives provide an outline of the needs that the HESA Data Platform (HDP) is being developed to meet. The requirements have been developed with and signed off by Statutory Customers to ensure alignment on the planned aspects of the delivery.

Visit Data Futures business requirements