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The UK's only independent think tank devoted to higher education.


The HEPI Blog aims to make brief, incisive contributions to the higher education policy landscape. It is circulated to our subscribers and published online. We welcome guest submissions, which should follow our Instructions for Blog Authors. Submissions should be sent to our Blog Editor, Josh Freeman, at [email protected].

  • Let’s hear it for university admissions staff

    10 June 2014

    New research published by the Department for Education has recommended that universities operating contextualised admissions should treat selective and non-selective state schools differently. It is an important contribution to the debate on school type versus school performance. Earlier this year, some people wondered if the battle was over when HEFCE said…

  • Speech to Policy Exchange Education Conference, 7th June 2014

    7 June 2014 by Nick Hillman

      Higher education policy doesn’t stop at the weekend in think-tank land, at least not when there’s less than a year to a general election. So Policy Exchange hosted an event today looking ahead to the educational policies that might be presented to the electorate in 2015 – see #PXed2015…

  • Why are PhDs so rarely publishable?

    6 June 2014 by Nick Hillman

    This new Debate section of the HEPI website was established partly to bolster HEPI’s evidence base by giving people an opportunity to submit their ideas and partly to provide a new forum to debate topical higher education issues. One question we would love your thoughts on is why are PhDs so rarely publishable in…

  • Grants for all!

    2 June 2014

    The beefed-up Wonkhe website is going from strength to strength at the moment. Recent interesting additions include a piece by Mark Leach on higher education wonks and one by Carl Lygo of BPP University on the true costs of a good higher education experience, which refers to the recent HEPI / HEA Academic Experience Survey…

  • Australia, Germany and students’ perceptions of value-for-money

    16 May 2014

    Yesterday, the Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive of the University of Staffordshire, Professor Michael Gunn, said: “Too many politicians and political advisers look to the US where many students do not complete or default on their loans and to Australia to provide answers to what they hope will be some higher…

  • Nadine Dorries versus the University of Bedfordshire

    15 May 2014

    Nadine Dorries has just tweeted: @NadineDorriesMP: Written to former Labour Minister, now head of Bedfordshire University since 2012 to ask why university has done so badly in league tables It’s an interesting way for an MP to hold a local university to account. It doesn’t seem inherently unreasonable for an…

  • Higher Education and the 2015 general election

    30 April 2014 by Nick Hillman

    In a new book published today by Bright Blue, I argue: that tuition fees are probably here to stay; that higher education is unlikely to be a major election issue in 2015; and that the Coalition should change course on international students. The chapter is written in a personal capacity,…

  • Are career advisers wrong?

    29 April 2014 by Nick Hillman

    Yesterday I spoke to a careers guidance conference. It was very good to interact directly with those who are in charge of giving advice to young people on their futures. As I said in my speech, my own experience as a secondary school teacher running a pre-university course showed me…

  • Australia…and North Korea?

    26 April 2014 by Nick Hillman

    Having travelled a lot over the last few weeks, I’ve been musing on HE in other countries. Perhaps nowhere are the differences so stark as in two of the countries I’ve visited: Australia and North Korea. In 2012, Australia removed student number controls for undergraduate places at public universities. With…