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HE Statistics for the UK 2012/13

Overview of the academic year 2012/13

The HESA publication Higher Education Statistics for the United Kingdom 2012/13 is released today. This National Statistics publication gives a statistical overview of higher education (HE) in the 2012/13 academic year including data from HESA and other statistics producers. Commentary, summary tables and charts are provided in the free online introduction.

UK Higher Education in 2012/13

Details from the 2012/13 introduction include:


544,750 UK domicile UCAS applicants and 407,390 acceptances [Table A].


2,340,275 HE students at HE institutions (HEIs), plus 186,455 HE students at FE colleges [Table B].

56% of HE students are female [Table C].

43% of students studied science subjects. The most popular subject area was business & administrative studies which was studied by 14% of students [Table D].


787,900 HE qualifications were awarded, of which 51% were first degrees and 33% postgraduate [Table E].


89% of leavers were in some form of employment or further study six months after leaving. 6%were unemployed [Table F].

Medicine and dentistry leavers had the lowest rate of unemployment after leaving at 0.2%. Computer science leavers had the highest rate at 12.9% [Table G].

382,515 staff were employed in HEIs on 1 December 2012. 185,585 (49%) were academic staff [Table H].

45% of academic staff were female. 36% were employed on fixed-term contracts [Table I]


UK HEIs had a total income of £29 billion of which 40% came from tuition fees [Table J]

Student Loans

The Student Loans Company lent almost £4.5 billion in tuition fee loans which was a significant increase from 2011/12 [Table K]

HE Statistics for the UK Publication

Higher Education Statistics for the United Kingdom 2012/13 is a National Statistics publication including data from HESA and other statistics producers covering all aspects of Higher Education in the UK.

The 50 tables in the publication include

  • Student, Staff, Finance and Destinations data from HESA
  • Applications and admissions data from UCAS
  • Data from the Student Loans Company on student support provision
  • Information on participation and graduate rates for 30 countries from the OECD
  • Data from the Labour Force Survey on qualification rates over time.

Higher Education Statistics for the United Kingdom 2012/13 is available to purchase now as an electronic download from our website.

The free online introduction includes commentary, summary tables and charts and provides an overview of the key trends in higher education over the last five years.

Notes for editors

  1. Press enquiries should be directed to:
  2. In the above data 0, 1, 2 are rounded to 0. All other numbers are rounded up or down to the nearest multiple of 5. Percentages are calculated on un-rounded numbers.
  3. HESA appreciates the collaboration of all the bodies that have made data available for this publication, and in particular that of our colleagues in the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS)Welsh GovernmentScottish Government and the Department for Employment and Learning (Northern Ireland) with whom we have worked closely in preparing it, in accordance with the arrangements approved by the UK Statistics Authority.
  4. The contents of the publication Higher Education Statistics for the United Kingdom 2012/13 are based on previously available or published information from the HE sector.
  5. Definitions of the terms used in this press release can be found here.
  6. HESA cannot accept responsibility for any inferences or conclusions derived from the data by third parties.


Press Release

Press Officer