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How we calculate your Subscription fee

HESA is now part of Jisc. Jisc is now the data controller of personal data previously controlled by HESA. Pages on the HESA website are being updated to reflect this change. Please see updated Privacy information.

HESA abides by guidelines linked to its role as designated data body.

We follow two main principles:

1. In allocating costs to any given service or activity, a proportion of HESA overheads and indirect costs are allocated to that service or activity. We are unable to cost an activity as a marginal activity, meaning that every line of business is fully cost-reflective.

2. The Higher Education and Research Act 2017 (HERA) requires the distribution of costs between England and the rest of the UK to reflect the differences in services provided. England cannot subsidise other nations and other nations cannot subsidise England. This contributes to the Subscription fees being different in each country.

Payment and invoice timing

Our Subscription year runs from 1 August to 31 July. 

Each year’s Subscription fee covers the costs of Statutory and non-statutory activity in that year, made up of direct and indirect or overhead costs. 

To fulfil its responsibilities as the Designated Data Body, HESA is required to notify the OfS of providers who have not paid by the date specified in this notice. Please refer to the HESA subscription fees - Late payment information page for further information.

Per-provider and per-student fees

To allocate fees fairly between nations and between providers, we share the Subscription across two components: 

  • Per-provider fee. 
  • Per-student fee. 

The per-provider fee reflects the fact that a significant amount of the costs incurred by HESA are fixed and driven by provider numbers rather than student numbers. 

The per-provider fee remains fixed for the Subscription year.

Subscriber category  Per-provider fee per annum
England Approved £2,500 
England Approved (fee cap) £4,000
England further education college (FEC) £1,000
Teach-out and limited designation £2,000
Scotland full subscriber £3,000
Wales full subscriber £3,000
Wales further education college (FEC) £2,000
Northern Ireland full subscriber  £3,000
Northern Ireland further education college (FEC) £0 (Graduate Outcomes only

The per-student fee ensures that smaller providers are not disadvantaged as larger providers pay a greater proportion of the costs.

Subscriber category Student fee
England £2.02
Scotland £1.86
Wales £2.02
Northern Ireland £2.02

Cost apportionment: national differences

The cost of these activities is allocated to collections, as mandatory collection requirements differ across the UK.

The national requirements for collections are then used to apportion the costs to the nations. To do this, an appropriate cost driver is used for each collection. For example, the number of students for the Student collection or number of staff for the Staff collection.

Once the total cost for a nation is identified, where appropriate these costs are split between Statutory and non-statutory collections.

A total cost, including an appropriate proportion of overheads, as required by the Higher Education and Research Act 2017 (HERA), is then attributed to each nation.

As part of our drive to provide subscribers with the best value for our services, we have made every effort to keep costs down. Although we were able to absorb the impact of inflation for 2023/24 and keep subscription costs static, subscription costs for 2024/25 do reflect a 3% increase on the amount we will collect from the sector as a whole (compared to the current cpi rate of 4.2%). Notifications will be sent, as appropriate, to finance teams with full subscription details.

Optional services subscription

Graduate Outcomes

Please refer to the Graduate Outcomes Subscription page for the detail and rates of this element of your Statutory Subscription.

Aggregate Offshore record per-student fee

Providers who have offshore students, registered at their provider in the UK, and returned to HESA as a subset of the Aggregate Offshore collection will pay 50% of the per-student rate (for a given provider). 

The total Aggregate Offshore fee will be capped at £7,250 for each academic year.

Heidi Plus

Depending on your subscriber category Heidi Plus may be part of your Statutory Subscription or an optional service. Please see Heidi Plus Subscription for details.


The Statutory HESA Subscription is treated as a Statutory requirement and as such falls outside the scope of VAT and no VAT will be applicable to the above charges. If this treatment changes VAT will be charged at the applicable rate.

Questions about billing and fees

Why does an English Approved (fee cap) provider have a higher per-provider fee to pay than a Scottish provider involved in more collections?

  • The total cost of data collection, assurance and dissemination is higher in England than in Scotland. The main reason for this is that cost drivers are more closely linked to provider numbers than student numbers. England has a much higher number of providers than the rest of the UK, making the costs higher for England than for other nations.