Enrolments rising

May 26, 1995

English universities enrolled 5 per cent more higher education students in 1994/95 than in the previous year, and 43 per cent more than in 1990/91.

The number of higher education students in universities and colleges in the United Kingdom now stands at 1.5 million - the equivalent of 2.5 per cent of the population.

These statistics, the first to be jointly produced by the Department for Education and the new Higher Education Statistics Agency, are provisional.

They cover estimates for all 182 institutions returning data to HESA, and grossed-up estimates from approximately 40 per cent of FE colleges within the scope of DFE and Further Education Funding Council records. The statistics show the total number of higher education enrolments at English institutions stand at 1,389,600.

The number of full-time enrolments is 907,400 and part-time enrolments are 482,200.

For the UK as a whole the estimated total number of HE enrolments at higher education institutions is 1,495,200. Nineteen per cent of these enrolments are at postgraduate level, 66 per cent at first degree level and 14 per cent at other undergraduate levels.

Three in ten students are part-time, and one quarter of first-year undergraduates this year were part-time.

A third of full-time home students and nearly half of all first-year students are over 21.

The HESA student record, which forms the main source of data for the 1994/95 enrolment figures, differs from the Universities Statistical Record and the DFE's further education statistical return, which were the main sources in previous years.

To provide a comparison with previous years, 1994/95 student numbers for England have been published by HESA and the DFE in a form which reflects as closely as possible the coverage and definitions used in previous years.

These comparisons show a slight increase in the percentage of female students, from 48 per cent in 1993/94 to 49 per cent in 1994/95. They also show that postgraduate enrolments increased by 10 per cent and first-degree enrolments by a 7 per cent.

Over the past five years postgraduate enrolments have increased by 2 per cent. The number of full-time enrolments increased by 7 per cent between 1993/94 and 1994/95 and the number of part-time enrolments grew by 1 per cent in the same period.

The number of enrolments of UK and EC students rose by 5 per cent between 1993/94 and 1994/95, and during the same period the number of overseas students enrolling rose 11 per cent. The number of "other undergraduate HE enrolments", including students on diploma courses, fell by 3 per cent.

Included in the data for the first time are some students who are on credit and award-bearing courses in the former UFC-funded universities which were previously included in a separate USR record and Open University students.

First-year home student enrolments on courses in publicly funded higher education (thousands)

Fulltime, Parttime

Postgraduate 62.2, 65.7

First degree 4.8, 49.9

Other Undergraduate 46.0, 68.8

Total 383.0, 184.4

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