The higher education Green Paper: everything you need to know

What Fulfilling Our Potential: Teaching Excellence, Social Mobility and Student Choice means for the higher education sector

November 6, 2015
Houses of Parliament at night

The higher education Green Paper was published on 6 November 2015, but what is it, and what does it mean for employees of the sector?

According to the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, the proposals are designed to:

  • introduce a Teaching Excellence Framework that will deliver better value for money for students, employers and taxpayers
  • increase access and success in higher education participation for those from disadvantaged and under-represented groups
  • create a new single gateway for entry and create a create common system for all providers
  • establish a new Office for Students to promote the student interest and ensure value for money, and to reduce the regulatory burden on the sector

The consultation also considers the implications of the proposals on the research landscape.

Times Higher Education will be following the development closely. In the meantime, here are some articles that will help you understand what the Green Paper might mean for you.


News and analysis: the higher education Green Paper

Green Paper overview: ‘Office for Students’ and new fee regime proposed
Hefce and Office for Fair Access would be merged into new body under government proposals, while Green Paper also suggests ministers could set fee caps

The higher education Green Paper at a glance
Some of the key points to take away from the government’s consultation document on the future of higher education

The Green Paper and TEF: framework paves way for variable fees
Most institutions likely to be able to increase fees in 2017-18, with subsequent awards to allow for further rises

What the Green Paper means for teaching
The proposals will be detrimental not just to scholarship but to quality teaching in higher education, says Joanna Williams

What the higher education Green Paper means for research
Much is to be decided on who will distribute research funding, but a metrics-based ‘mini-REF’ may raise eyebrows, says David Matthews

More private providers and ‘exit’ plans for universities
John Morgan looks at Green Paper plans to make it quicker for private colleges to access public funding and become universities

Green Paper reaction
See how the sector reacted as the Green Paper proposals were unveiled

Higher education Green Paper: have universities really neglected teaching?
Richard Black on the ‘lazy and self-serving argument’ that research and teaching are in competition

Higher education bill in doubt as nervous Tories consider other options for Green Paper
Absence of legislation would leave plans to create new student and market-focused regulator unable to proceed


A BIS consultation on the proposals is currently open. You can take part here (closes 16 January, 2016).

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