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The University of Southampton
Student and Academic AdministrationAbout SAA

Management Information

The Management Information (MI) team in SAA Registry works closely with the Student Records Team and Faculties on the statutory requirements of collating and validating student data in the institution, as it forms the basis of statutory returns to external funding bodies. The MI Team validates data that is extracted and submitted to the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA), the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) and other agencies.

The Team analyses requirements, locates and sources appropriate student data and designs MS Office-based systems and Qlikview applications to collate, analyse, interpret and present data. It is responsible for developing reporting requirements using student data.

Scheduled work includes:

The team is always happy to discuss new reporting requirements with colleagues. To contact the Management Information Team, please direct your enquiry to 


Statutory Returns: HESA

The SAA MI Team is responsible for compiling a number of statutory returns on behalf of the institution. These include:

• HESA Student Returns

• The funding council's Higher Education Students Early Statistics Survey (HESES)

• Medical & Dental Survey

• DLHE population for the Careers Service

• The National Student Survey population from HESA

• The Key Information Set (KIS).


Who are HESA?

HESA was set up in 1993 following a Government White Paper 'Higher Education: A New Framework', which called for more coherence in higher education statistics. HESA is now the central source for higher education statistics and has standardised and streamlined the data collection and publication process to become a respected point of reference.

It is funded through subscriptions from the institutions and by charging their customers for providing data. They collect data either because a Statutory Customer (such as government departments and funding bodies) states a requirement for it or because the higher education sector needs the data for its own purposes.


Why is the HESA Student Return important?

 The HESA Student Return is now used for a number of high profile publications and funding calculations including:

• National Student Survey target list;

• Institutional performance indicators;

• The Times Higher Education Supplement;

• The Guardian League Tables;

• The Times Good University Guide;

• Destination of Leavers from HE survey target list;

• Higher Education Management Statistics (produced by HEFCE);

• HEFCE regional statistics;

• Comparison of HESES re-creation based on the cost sector norms for subjects;

• Research Degree Qualification Rates (RDQRs);

• Widening participation allocation of funding;

• Research Activity Survey (RAS) re-creation;

• Higher Education Students Early Statistics Survey (HESES) re-creation.


Who is included in the Student Return?

In general, the Student Return will be collected in respect of all students registered in the reporting institution who follow courses that lead to the award of a qualification or institutional credit. The specification of the record uses the term 'instance' to describe a student's engagement with the institution aiming towards the award of a qualification(s) or credit.

We return all students with a student status of AS, LE or SU (i.e. active students, leavers and suspended students) unless:

• they are on a pre-sessional programme or;

• they are on a non-credit bearing programme or;

• have an enrolment status of

- eligible to enrol

- non-showing entrant.

In addition, HESA supply us with a list each year of those students who they expect to be returned. These will be students who have been returned in previous years without a leaving data and so, whatever their status, we need to return a record for them.


Statutory Returns: HESES

Higher Education Early Statistics Survey (HESES)

HEFCE's Higher Education Early Statistics Survey (HESES) requires that in December each year, all higher education institutions provide information about student numbers. From this, HEFCE calculates the amount of funding to be allocated to each insitution in the following year.

Students (their full time equivalent - FTE) are counted in terms of:

• Mode and level of study;

• Funding body (HEFCE / NHS / NCTL / none);

• Price group;

• Fee status (fundable / non-fundable by HEFCE).

Price groups are derived from the HESA cost centres associated with the modules upon which the students are registered. In the case of non-modular programmes, we use the cost centres associated with the programme.

Data for the compilation of this return is assembled, validated and returned to HEFCE by the SAA MI Team.

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