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Dear Vice-Chancellor or Principal

1. This circular letter notifies institutions of the release of the HESA funding and monitoring data 2010-11: funding data reconciliation exercise. This exercise compares the data returned to Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) with other data submitted to HEFCE: Higher Education Students Early Statistics (HESES), Research Activity Survey (RAS) and Co-Funded Employer Engagement (CFEE) returns. In previous years this annual communication was called the ‘Statistics derived from HESA data for monitoring and allocation of funding’ and in 2011 was published as a numbered publication rather than a circular letter, HEFCE 2011/13. A response may be required (see paragraph 5).

2. We will write to all heads of institutions, HESES contacts and RAS contacts separately, informing of the outcome of this exercise and providing them with the necessary access keys to the outputs. Further information is in paragraph 13.

3. We strongly encourage institutions to review their own outputs accompanying this exercise as it is an essential element of all institutions’ data quality processes. It will help institutions to:

  • identify discrepancies between forecasts for within-year HEFCE funding returns, such as HESES and RAS, and the outturn position for 2010-11
  • identify errors in HEFCE funding returns.

4. Our funding allocations are informed by the data provided by institutions. If we find, either through reconciliations with HESA or other organisations’ data, or any data audit, that erroneous data have resulted in institutions receiving incorrect funding allocations, we will adjust their funding accordingly (subject to any appeals process that may apply and the availability of our funds).

5. Therefore, where discrepancies occur between HEFCE funding returns (such as HESES) and the outturn position for 2010-11, and these discrepancies exceed any of the selection thresholds listed in Annex A, we will request a formal response to this exercise. The response, in the form of an action plan, should explain all material differences between the funding return and its re-creation.

6. Any funding adjustments arising from the reconciliation of a re-creation from HESA student data of 2010-11 HESES, RAS or CFEE data (HESES10, RAS10 or CFEE10, respectively, or from the comparison of cost centre assignments based on sector norms for subjects with the HESES10 re-creation, are likely to affect the funding previously announced for 2010-11 (2011-12 only for RAS) and all subsequent years.

7. We notified institutions of the release of the summaries of funding and monitoring data in HEFCE Circular letter 07/2012 ‘HESA funding and monitoring data 2010-11: funding summaries and next steps’. The 2012-13 funding summaries we made available are:

  • 2012-13 widening participation (WP) allocations
  • 2012-13 teaching enhancement and student success (TESS) allocation
  • 2012-13 QR RDP supervision fund allocation.

8. Changes to the exercise since 2009-10 are described in Annex B. Annexes are available alongside this letter.

9. The ‘Funding data reconciliations’ area on the HEFCE web-site provides further detail regarding the reconciliation exercise.

Action required

10. We require selected institutions to make a formal response, as detailed in paragraph 5.

HESA funding and monitoring data 2010-11: funding data reconciliation exercise outputs

11. The following outputs accompany the 2010-11 exercise:

  • HESES10 re-creation
  • HESES10 re-creation based on sector norms for subjects
  • RAS10 re-creation
  • CFEE10 survey re-creation. This output is not produced for Northern Irish higher education institutions.

12. The algorithms used to generate the re-creations of HEFCE funding returns (that is, HESES10, RAS10 and CFEE10) are the same as those used for the ‘HESA funding and monitoring data: web facility’, HEFCE Circular letter 21/2011, except as detailed in Annex B.

Further information

13. Guidance is available in the funding and monitoring area of our web-site. Some areas that may be of interest are:

  1. Extranet locations, deadlines and documentation, including technical information (such as algorithms and problems of fit), can be found in the ‘2010-11 funding and monitoring data overview’.
  2. Information on how to obtain data from the HEFCE extranet can be found in the ‘How to access outputs’ guide.
  3. Guidance on how to submit an action plan in response to this exercise can be found in the ‘HESES, RAS and CFEE re-creation action plan’ guide and the ‘HESES re-creation based on cost centre sector norms action plan’ guide.

14. For further information or guidance please contact Alastair Kendall (tel 0117 931 7184, e-mail hesa_heses_stats@hefce.ac.uk).

 

Yours sincerely

 

Sir Alan Langlands

Chief Executive

 

Date: 1 June 2012

Ref: Circular letter 13/2012

To: Heads of HEFCE-funded higher education institutions, Heads of universities in Northern Ireland

Of interest to those
responsible for:

Student data, Planning, Finance, Audit

Enquiries should be directed to:

Alastair Kendall, tel. 0117 931 7184, e-mail hesa_heses_stats@hefce.ac.uk