Performance indicators & league tables

HESA performance indicators

Each year, the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) publishes a set of performance indicators for all UK higher education institutions. These generally cover areas such as widening access and participation, student retention and success rates, employment statistics, and research performance. The indicators are based on student, staff and finance data returns all higher education institutions are required to make to HESA each year.

League tables

A number of national newspapers publish annual league tables ranking UK universities. These are influential within the sector for a number of reasons, but are particularly important in informing student choice. The league tables have become an established part of university life, in spite of widespread concerns about the various methodologies used in their compilation, and the desirability of having such league tables at all.