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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 The information on this website is historical and is no longer maintained.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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There are 15 core colleges and 32 partner colleges from across the UK  taking part in the Enhancing Professional and Technical Education project to design a new framework which will enhance teaching and learning. At the core of the project is the development of a culture in which teachers make regular visits to employers, to bring real-life experience and work-based projects back to the classroom for students to tackle. This gives students the opportunity to learn how to apply the skills they’re learning on their course to the real world of work.

Nick Davy, Higher Education Policy Manager at the Association of Colleges, said:

‘There is increasing demand for employees with practical skills at a higher level, such as a Foundation Degree or a Higher National Diploma, as the labour market changes and 3.6 million skilled older people will leave the workforce in the next 10 years. We are looking forward to working closely with the participating colleges to see how we can improve learning to ensure more graduates have the skills employers need from their staff.’

The funding was announced at the Association of Colleges Higher Education Conference on Wednesday 4 March 2015.

Professor Madeleine Atkins, Chief Executive of HEFCE, said:

‘Further education colleges have a vital role to play in the development and delivery of high-level technical knowledge and skills, which are a priority for local and national economic growth.

‘HEFCE is delighted to be working with the Association of Colleges and other partners on this project, which aims to bring about a step change in higher technical education scholarship and teaching practice. It will benefit the wider sector by deepening employer engagement, enhancing higher technical education, and improving students’ learning experiences and outcomes.’

For further information about the Enhancing Professional and Technical Education project, visit


The colleges involved are:

Lead college name

Partner college names

East Kent College, Broadstairs

North West Kent College and College of North West London

Peterborough College

South and City College Birmingham and Huntingdonshire Regional College

Hull College

Bradford College and Blackpool and the Fylde College

Leicester College

Derby College and Central College Nottingham

Myerscough College, Preston

Sparsholt College and Bishop Burton College

Petroc College, Barnstaple, Devon

South Devon College and City College Plymouth

New College Nottingham

The Sheffield College and Highbury College

Macclesfield College (Cheshire Consortia)

Warrington Collegiate, South Cheshire College and
Mid Cheshire College

New College Durham

Hartlepool College of Further Education and Darlington College

East Surrey College, Redhill

Guildford College of Further and Higher Education
Northbrook College

Hereford College of Arts

South Gloucestershire and Stroud College and
Mid Cheshire College

Doncaster College

Hull College and Rotherham College

North Lindsey College, Scunthorpe

Rotherham College of Arts and Technology and
Great Yarmouth College

Northbrook College, Worthing

East Surrey College and Sussex Downs College

West Nottingham College, Mansfield

Birmingham Met and Burton and South Derbyshire College


  1. The National Union of Students, the Higher Education Academy and the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education will provide ongoing support and expertise during the Enhancing Professional and Technical Education project.
  2. AoC’s membership includes 336 colleges in England, including general further education, sixth form, tertiary and land-based colleges. It supports, represents and protects the interests of its member colleges, as well as the rest of the further education sector.
  3. HEFCE funds and regulates universities and colleges in England. HEFCE invests on behalf of students and the public to promote world-leading research, teaching and knowledge exchange.