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Use of data

HEFCE uses a number of different data sources, including HESES and HEIFES data, as well as individualised student data returned to HESA and to the Education and Skills Funding Agency.

Institutions sometimes request that this data be amended.

Data amendments

We expect that the data we use will be the final version submitted and signed off as correct by the head of institution. This approach also allows for consistency with published data.

From April 2017, HEFCE will only accept amendments to signed-off, or finally submitted, data in exceptional circumstances.

To be accepted for amendment, errors will have to be widespread, significant and make a material difference to HEFCE’s use of the data. This will be determined through a HEFCE assessment process.

Amended data may affect more than one HEFCE process. When assessing proposed amendments, we will consider their effects on multiple purposes in the categories below:

  • funding
  • regulation and assurance
  • quality and academic performance, including the Teaching Excellence and Student Outcomes Framework (TEF) and Annual Provider Review (APR)
  • public information, including Unistats and the National Student Survey (NSS)
  • statistical or policy analysis.

The data amendments panel

A HEFCE data amendments panel will assess all proposed amendments, and will judge if the identified errors are widespread and significant. This means that:

  • the data must be substantially incorrect
  • the errors do not involve re-interpretation of the data
  • the errors must affect a sufficiently large proportion of student records.

We will consider the impact of the amendments separately for the different purposes of the data; we may require and process amendments for one purpose without implementing all the implications for other purposes.

For example, an error may require correction for regulatory purposes but we will not process the funding implications if they are not material.

HEFCE will only process implications for a specific purpose where the impact on that purpose is material.

Once an amendment has been assessed by the panel we will not consider substantively the same amendment again. Institutions will be informed of the panel decision and will have an opportunity to appeal within a short timescale.

Panel schedule

Data amendment panel meetings will be scheduled to fit in with the timescales needed to process data for the purposes listed above.  

Deadlines will be published in the guidance documents produced for these purposes. For example, see:

The full schedule will be published on the website when available.

How to request an amendment

If you believe there are errors in your institution’s data you should in the first instance follow any specific published guidance given.

If there is none available, please email recurrentgrant@hefce.ac.uk with details of the error(s).

 

 

Page last updated 19 October 2017