Universities Wales Weekly Wrap Up – 4 September 2015

New Regulatory System for Higher Education

The Higher Education (Wales) Act 2015 became law in March. This has meant changes to HEFCW’s powers – and, in particular, an enhanced role as a regulator of higher education (HE) in Wales.

Under the new Act, HEFCW has specific duties relating to:

  • Fee and access plans
  • The quality of education
  • A Financial Management Code for regulated institutions 

Most of HEFCW’s powers under the new legislation come into force on 1 September 2015, after which time regulated institutions must:

  • Comply with the fee limits set out in their fee plans
  • Co-operate with HEFCW as it monitors their compliance with fee limits
  • Comply with guidance and co-operate with HEFCW in relation to assessing the quality of education.
  • Take into account any guidance from HEFCW relevant to improving or maintaining the quality of education.

Dr David Blaney, Chief Executive of HEFCW, said: “The new Act will strengthen and clarify our relationship with universities, while ensuring their academic freedom continues to be protected.  Universities won’t necessarily notice a shift in our relationship as we move towards a stronger regulatory role, but we will be working with them to ensure a smooth transition and to ensure our new duties are carried out effectively.”


Times Higher Education Awards 2015 Shortlist Announced

The shortlist for the THE Awards 2015 has been announced and full details can be found here.  Welsh Universities are well represented, appearing in the following categories:-

  • Excellence and Innovation in the Arts – Swansea University
  • Research Project of the Year – Cardiff Metropolitan University
  • Outstanding Contribution to Innovation and Technology – Cardiff University and Cardiff Metropolitan University
  • Outstanding International Student Strategy – Cardiff Metropolitan University

The results will be announced on 26 November at a ceremony at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London.