Research and analysis

Privately funded providers of higher education in the UK

This report summarises findings from research commissioned by BIS into privately funded providers of higher education in the UK.


Privately funded providers of higher education in the UK


This report presents an authoritative picture of privately funded providers of Higher Education (HE). It examines existing privately funded providers of HE in the UK. Around 250 providers completed a detailed data return and other robust sources were used to be able to develop a core set of information for over 450 privately funded providers.

It looks at:

  • numbers of students
  • governance
  • courses
  • fees
  • accreditation
  • facilities
  • expectations for the future

The research also included a survey of around 1500 students studying at privately funded providers. This explored why they had chosen to study with their provider, what they thought of the experience, and their outcomes.

The report shows that privately funded providers can offer variety and choice, and also additional capacity for HE. It also makes recommendations concerning mitigating the risks of greater volatility across the sector, and maintaining quality and reputation.

Published 24 July 2013