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HEFCE closed at the end of March 2018. The information on this website is historical and is no longer maintained.

Many of HEFCE's functions will be continued by the Office for Students, the new regulator of higher education in England, and Research England, the new council within UK Research and Innovation.

The HEFCE domain - - will continue to function until September 2018. At this point we will close the site entirely and all its information will only be available from the National Web Archive.


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Key facts

8.3 per cent fall in part-time undergraduate entrants

7th successive year these numbers have fallen

Numbers of part-time undergraduate entrants fell for a seventh successive year.

An estimated 100,000 students started part-time undergraduate courses at English providers in 2016-17, which was a fall of 8.3 per cent (9,000 students) on the previous year and an overall decline of 61 per cent (159,000) since 2010-11.

A majority of part-time undergraduate students are studying on courses at a level below first degree, such as foundation degrees, HNDs and HNCs. Students on these courses made up almost two-thirds of all part-time undergraduates in 2015-16.

The number of entrants to part-time first degrees has not fallen as sharply as those to other undergraduate programmes, but still declined by about 32 per cent between 2010-11 and 2015-16. The decline has been most severe among older students and those studying at lower levels of intensity.

Page last updated 2 March 2017