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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 The information on this website is historical and is no longer maintained.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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The ‘exemptions list’ for 2014-15

The student number control at each institution limits the number of students starting HEFCE-fundable full-time undergraduate studies, or a HEFCE-fundable Postgraduate/Initial Teacher Training (PG ITT) in a year.

For 2014-15, the Government asked us to extend the list of qualifications exempted from the student number control while maintaining the grade threshold for the high-grades policy at ABB or above.

A limited number of combinations of qualification types were exempt from student number controls for 2014-15. This followed support for this approach in responses to our consultation.

Purpose of the exemptions list

The exemptions list has been developed for the practical and limited purpose of implementing the Government’s student number control policy.

We would be concerned if institutions were to use the list to inform decisions about the quality of students’ qualifications, the admission of individual applicants, or students’ eligibility for scholarship, bursary or fee waiver schemes.

Universities and colleges are autonomous organisations. It is entirely up to them to decide the suitability of candidates. In pursuing fair admissions, they should continue to consider all student applications to their institution, in the ways in which they have done traditionally, to ensure fair admissions solely on academic merit, and not make offers that exclude qualifications simply because they are not on the exemptions list. 


Page last updated 16 March 2015