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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 The information on this website is historical and is no longer maintained.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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Student engagement

We are working with various partner organisations to develop student-engagement policies and inform institutional practice. This page explains our key activities in this area.

We are currently working with the Quality Assurance Agency, the Higher Education Academy, the National Union of Students (NUS), Universities UK and Guild HE.

This forms part of our commitment to working in partnership with other organisations who are concerned with the interests of students.

What is The Student Engagement Partnership?

We aim to help students and their associated representative bodies become partners in the student experience. This means giving students an active role in the development, management and governance of their institution, its academic programmes and their own learning experience.

The Student Engagement Partnership (TSEP) supports this aim by delivering targeted support for student engagement activity within institutions. This activity will reflect the priorities of HE providers, HEFCE and other HE sector bodies.

The Partnership will support and influence local and national student engagement activity. It will:

  • act as a central point for staff working in HE providers, students unions, guilds or other such organisations wishing to develop or improve their local student engagement activity
  • support institutions to develop effective ways of engaging with all students, with a particular focus on hard-to-reach groups and students less likely to be engaged
  • assist its core funders in meeting their aims to promote student engagement
  • assist the wider HE sector and Government in developing knowledge of issues related to student engagement and partnership at sector and national level
  • be open to all institutions, students’ unions, guilds or other organisations, not just those with unions affiliated to NUS.

The rationale for the Partnership draws on the successful work of sparqs (Student Participation in Quality Scotland). This has been running for 10 years in Scotland and its centralised approach has resulted in national progress.

How is the Student Engagement Partnership funded and supported?

We will contribute up to £770,000 over three years. GuildHE and the Association of Colleges also provide funding, and NUS provides in kind support by hosting the Partnership. 

Page last updated 9 October 2015