Monday 14 October 2013

The new regulatory framework

It’s been quiet on this blog lately, as I haven’t managed to put together the time to start and finish a whole blog post. The new regulatory framework may not seem quite as newsworthy as it did when I started this post, but to be honest it was never very exciting anyway – the focus of this blog is on regulation and funding in English HE, so we only ever aspired to the lowest values of ‘newsworthy’.

The new regulatory framework for English Higher Education, to be honest, looks a bit of a mare’s nest. Here it is set out on one side of A4 courtesy of HEFCE’s recent publication on the subject.

Thursday 31 January 2013

Yet another post about UCAS data

UCAS have now published their data for applications to the 15 January deadline. By this stage, almost all school-leavers who are going to apply have applied, and a significant proportion of the Overseas and older applicants have also applied. Because the data are taken with reference to an actual deadline this dataset, unlike the earlier UCAS data releases, provides a reasonably firm basis for taking stock of this years’ recruitment position.

Wednesday 16 January 2013

Marks out of Ten

A good habit I have picked up from Brad DeLong is to go back over one’s work from time to time and identify the things one has gotten wrong. He calls this ‘marking my beliefs to market’. Reading through the last year’s blog posts I can see a number of pieces about the UCAS recruitment cycle. I’ve already published my self-defence on that one here, and I continue to think that the 2012 recruitment cycle was a lot less than catastrophic.
On the other hand I posted a number of pieces on the degree awarding powers of the University (ex-College) of Law confidently predicting that they would not be transferred with the sale of the College’s teaching business, but I proved to be completely wrong about that. The Government decided that the degree awarding powers did not pertain to the Chartered corporation once called ‘the College of Law’, but pertained to the actual teaching business which the College used to run. Therefore a change of control of this business automatically meant a change in control of the degree awarding powers.

Monday 7 January 2013

UCAS Data: 2013 Cycle

UCAS have now published their mid-December data on the 2013 cycle, and the press coverage has been mainly downbeatperhaps because UCAS has not tried the faintly ludicrous ‘late surge’ spin that they put on the equivalent data last year.

Friday 21 December 2012

Applying Student Number Controls to Alternative Providers with Designated Courses

Mayan Zodiac CircleToday is supposed to be the last day in human history. I felt it would be a fitting epitaph to spend a few of my last hours on the earth writing a thousand words on the BIS consultation on alternative providers and the SNC: an exercise in existentialist policy analysis, if you like.
If the world can last that long, the deadline for responses to the BIS consultation is 23 January 2013, so there will still be a little while to reflect on this when we get back from the Christmas break.

Thursday 27 September 2012

Clearing 2012: How wrong was I, and why?

Back in July, I wrote a little blog post confidently predicting that this year’s Clearing would be less interesting than was widely expected:

Somebody, somewhere will have a bad experience in Clearing because somebody, somewhere always does, but there is no reason to expect a pattern or trend. Those who do badly this year may do well next. Life staggers on much as before.

Mark Leach was kind enough to post it on WonkHE, so it gained rather more prominence than my typical blog post. Since then, anyone watching the press will have read about the unmitigated disaster that has rolled over institutions high and low. It seems I was too sanguine.

Wednesday 12 September 2012

London Met Again

Last week’s post about London Metropolitan leaped almost instantly into my top-ten of all time, as measured by pageviews. Not that it takes a whole lot of pageviews to achieve that in my case, but it is enough to persuade me to write a follow-up post.

Most people will be aware that London Met has taken legal action against the UKBA. The form of this legal action will take is judicial review. Judicial review is a process which does exactly what it says on the tin: the decision taken by a public body (in this case the UKBA) is reviewed by a judge. There is no nonsense here with a jury. If the judge determines, on review, that the decision was wrong he (or she, but as this is an English judge we are talking about, almost certainly he) may quash it.