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


HEPI aims to produce around a dozen pieces of high quality research and analysis each year – all reports are available free of charge here on our website and are generally also available in hard copy from the HEPI office.

  • REALITY CHECK: A report on university applicants’ attitudes and perceptions

    4 July 2017

    Since 2006, HEPI has run the Student Academic Experience Survey, generally in conjunction with the Higher Education Academy. This shows a big gap between students’ prior expectations and their time in higher education. It also shows the degree to which prior expectations are met explains students’ perceptions of value for money and…

  • 2017 Student Academic Experience Survey

    7 June 2017 by Jonathan Neves (HEA) and Nick Hillman (HEPI)

    The UK-wide HEPI / HEA Survey was first undertaken in 2006. This year’s results are challenging, showing students have: falling perceptions of value for money; continue to display relatively low wellbeing compared to the rest of the population; and have yet to love England’s high-fees model of funding undergraduate education. There are…

  • Whither teacher education and training?

    27 April 2017 by John Cater

    John Cater, the Vice-Chancellor of Edge Hill University, looks at the history of teacher training over the past half a century. Most of the recent reforms – such as a push for more school based teacher training – have antecedents. But policymakers have often missed the lessons from the successes…

  • Return on investment? How universities communicate with the outside world

    30 March 2017 by Richard Garner

    Richard Garner is the UK’s longest-serving education correspondent and has worked at the Times Educational Supplement, the Mirror and the Independent. In this HEPI Occasional Paper, he questions whether universities are making the most of their opportunities to work with the media. Through a series of colourful anecdotes, he reveals…

  • Reforming BTECs: Applied General qualifications as a route to higher education

    23 February 2017 by Scott Kelly

    The dramatic rise in the number of university students holding BTECs raises important questions about the purpose of the qualification and whether it should be treated by policymakers as part of an academic or vocational pathway. Scott Kelly discusses these issues and makes a number of recommendations for policymakers and…

  • Rebooting learning for the digital age: What next for technology- enhanced higher education?

    2 February 2017 by Sarah Davies, Joel Mullan and Paul Feldman

    This publication shows where digital technology can support higher education leaders and policymakers to boost student outcomes, increase teaching quality and enhance the student experience. It identifies some of the most promising practice from the UK and around the world, and sets out the key opportunities to make the most…

  • The determinants of international demand for UK higher education

    12 January 2017 by Gavan Conlon, Rohit Ladher and Maike Halterbeck

    These two reports were commissioned by HEPI and Kaplan from London Economics as the first major econometric assessment of the big changes facing the UK higher education sector – including Brexit – and what they mean for institutions and students. Among the wealth of data, they show any further crackdown on international students…

  • Alternative providers of higher education: issues for policymakers

    5 January 2017 by John Fielden and Robin Middlehurst

    In this HEPI paper, two authors with considerable expertise in evaluating higher education systems around the world assess higher education institutions that are not funded directly by taxpayers – known in the UK as alternative providers. Since the start of the century, alternative providers have been growing rapidly. This raises…