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  • University – the best times of our lives?

    7 March 2019 by Graham Galbraith

    A guest blog kindly contributed for University Mental Health Day by Graham Galbraith, Vice-Chancellor at the University of Portsmouth. When my generation reflects on our university days, we tend to think they were the best years of our lives. These days, with the media focus on poor student mental health, young…

  • Degrees of inequality

    6 March 2019 by Tim Blackman

    A guest blog kindly contributed by Tim Blackman, Vice-Chancellor, Middlesex University Degree classification and inequalities in higher education are the focus of two recent Office for Students reports and regulations. Both these issues are informed by statistical analyses by the OfS that make much of ‘unexplained variation’. However, very different…

  • Yes, the grade reliability problem can be solved

    4 March 2019 by Dennis Sherwood

    This guest blog from Dennis Sherwood marks the third in a series about grade reliability. “Have you read that blog about one grade in every four being wrong?” “Yes. I have. I had no idea that the results of school exams were so unreliable. And so variable by subject too…

  • Tuition fees: views and perceptions of prospective students

    1 March 2019

    This guest blog has been kindly written for HEPI by Andy Nicol, Managing Director at QS Enrolment Solutions The Augar review into post-18 education is set to have a profound impact on the funding of higher education in the UK. With knock-on effects on how students and prospective students make decisions about the value for money and return…

  • Review of ‘Engines of Privilege: Britain’s Private School Problem’

    27 February 2019 by Nick Hillman

    HEPI has recently hosted book reviews of Melissa Benn’s ‘Life Lessons: The Case for a National Education Service’ and of ‘Social Mobility and its Enemies’ by Lee Elliot Major and Stephen Machin. Here, Nick Hillman reviews a third important new book about education and social mobility: ‘Engines of Privilege: Britain’s Private School…

  • 1 school exam grade in 4 is wrong. That’s the good news…

    25 February 2019 by Dennis Sherwood

    This guest blog has been kindly contributed by Dennis Sherwood, an independent consultant. In my HEPI blog of 15 January, I presented evidence to show about one school exam grade in every four, as awarded each August, is wrong. That matters. Life-changing judgements – university admissions (or not), apprenticeship places (or not), the need for a re-sit (or not) – are being…

  • Are degree apprenticeships fit for purpose?

    22 February 2019 by Tom McEwan

    This guest blog has been kindly written for HEPI by Tom McEwan, Senior Researcher at Policy Conect and author of a new report on degree apprenticeships. In my speech at the launch of Degree Apprenticeships: Up to Standard?, I pivoted on a phrase which I heard throughout our inquiry: ‘degree apprenticeships are a great idea, but … ’. The remark drew a telling chuckle from the audience. Upon the launch of the model in 2015,…

  • The cap that doesn’t fit: Student numbers in Northern Ireland

    18 February 2019 by Brian Murphy

    This guest blog has been kindly written for HEPI by Professor Brian Murphy, Director of Access, Digital and Distributed Learning at Ulster University. Ulster University has four campuses across Northern Ireland and 27,000 students. It is the largest provider of undergraduate higher education in Northern Ireland and the second largest on…