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


In recent years, HEPI has produced around 20 reports a year. They are all available free of charge here on our website and are generally also available in hard copy from the HEPI office. (The version on the website should be regarded as the version of record.)

  • Unheard: the voices of part-time adult learners

    6 February 2020 by John Butcher

    In this paper, John Butcher challenges policymakers and the English higher education sector to act urgently to address the decline in part-time higher education. Although the drop in part-time student numbers has been well-reported in a series of quantitative studies, the problem persists. The dramatic reduction in part-time learners disproportionately…

  • Social Mobility and Higher Education: Are grammar schools the answer?

    23 January 2020 by John Furlong and Ingrid Lunt

    HEPI’s last foray into the debate on academic selection suggested grammar schools are successful in helping their poorer pupils reach highly-selective universities. In this response, a diverse set of voices use the latest evidence to challenge the idea that grammar school systems serve pupils better than comprehensive schools. This collection…

  • A Languages Crisis?

    9 January 2020 by Megan Bowler

    This paper takes stock of the state of language learning in the UK, as the country teeters on the edge of Brexit and becomes used to being led by the first Prime Minister in over 50 years to have studied Languages at university. The author, Megan Bowler, a Classics student…

  • Social mobility and elite universities

    12 December 2019 by Lee Elliot Major and Pallavi Amitava Banerjee

    Much of the heavy lifting on widening participation in higher education to date has been undertaken by newer and less selective higher education institutions. The access challenge therefore remains greater at more selective institutions. They could learn from the best practice that exists in less selective universities. It will take…

  • Students or data subjects? What students think about university data security

    5 December 2019 by Rachel Hewitt and Michael Natzler

    Higher education institutions collect and hold huge amounts of data on students, whether for regulatory purposes or to gather information about students’ experiences. In this report we explore students views on data security, learning analytics and the information universities hold and share on students’ health and wellbeing.

  • 2019 Election Briefing

    20 November 2019 by Nick Hillman and Rachel Hewitt

    As the country prepares for its third general election in five years, this HEPI Policy Note provides a guide to some of the most important outstanding questions in higher education policy. It is aimed at general readers and specialists alike. HEPI is non-partisan and works with people across the political…

  • Student loans for those on long prison sentences

    24 October 2019 by Ruth McFarlane

    This report recommends that the Student Support Regulations for England and Wales should be amended to extend student loan eligibility to include people in prison who have more than six years to run on their sentence.

  • At what cost? Students’ views on Augar, funding and the cost of living

    10 October 2019 by Rachel Hewitt

    In this new Policy Note, Rachel Hewitt, HEPI Director of Policy and Advocacy, reports on the results of a new poll of students on Augar, funding and the cost of living. Key points: Students’ views are mixed between the current tuition fee model and Augar’s recommendation to lower fees: 40%…