HEFCE funding for 2012/13

HEFCE received its annual grant letter from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) at the end of January and has now announced its funding decisions for the academic year 2012/13.

The total BIS grant for 2012/13 is £5,311 million, compared to £6,507 million for 2011/12: a reduction of 18.4%. The grant letter from BIS spelled out the government's priorities for spending on higher education, including:

  • providing additional support for high-cost subjects such as medicine, science and engineering and for strategically important and vulnerable subjects
  • widening participation and improving retention rates
  • encouraging knowledge exchange and engagement with business and the community
  • encouraging efficiency
  • controlling the cost of student support

These priorities are reflected in the following key decisions made by HEFCE:

  • funding for undergraduate teaching will only be available for the high cost subjects of medicine and dentistry, science, engineering and technology
  • for the first time, there will be up to £1,100 available for students on some taught postgraduate (PGT) courses in 2012/13
  • funding for students who started this year or earlier will be scaled back by 1%
  • the ring-fencing of funding for science and research, which was announced last year and which is due to continue until 2014-15, has been maintained; there will be no funding for research rated as 2* in the Research Assessment Exercise 2008, and 3* and 4* research will be funded on a 1:3 ratio
  • Higher Education Innovation Fund (HEIF) funding for knowledge exchange and social benefit has been maintained

Read the BIS funding letter to HEFCE

Read the HEFCE decisions on funding

Read the Russell Group response to HEFCE's decisions

What happens next?

HEFCE is expected to announce its allocation of funds to individual institutions on 22 March 2012. At the same time it will announce its decision on 2012/13 student number controls for individual institutions. Funding to institutions will be reduced by £3,800 for every full-time undergraduate student over-recruited in 2011/12: the rate of reduction for over-recruitment in 2012/13 has not yet been decided, but is likely to be significantly higher.  HEFCE will publish a consultation document later this month on new arrangements for teaching funding from 2013/14.

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