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Advances in HE data should be on "fast forward" -- not "pause"

Data and learning analytics are like "gold dust" in higher education, and the sector cannot afford to put advances in this area on pause, argues Graham Cooper, Head of Education at Capita Education Software Solutions.

How universities are using data to boost the student experience

The use of big data to improve the student experience is a rich seam that universities are increasingly mining. In this Good Practice Briefing, HEi-know looks at a variety of approaches that have been taken by eight universities to collect and make use of data to enhance learning, and provide better support and feedback for students.

Plus ça change: old debates over the purpose of HE rumble on

Dave Hall, Registrar and Chief Operating Officer at the University of Leicester, finds the long-running argument over whether higher education's primary purpose is utilitarian or more holistic continues to dominate debate in the media on developments in the sector.

Calls for "misleading" TEF to be scrapped in current form

The Royal Statistical Society has warned that the Teaching Excellence Framework is misleading thousands of students by failing to meet the standards of trustworthiness, quality and value that the public might expect.

UK cities that are best value for graduates revealed in new analysis

New analysis by Prospects reveals which UK cities offer the best value for money for graduates taking their first steps on the career ladder.

UK cities that are best value for graduates revealed in new analysis

Derby -- best city for graduates

New analysis by Prospects reveals which UK cities offer the best value for money for graduates taking their first steps on the career ladder. 

The Universities UK agency responsible for graduate employability analysed the relationship between graduate salaries and the cost of living in 23 UK cities.  

Derby topped the list as offering the best value for a graduate starting salary. This is down to its unusual graduate labour market with many well-paid jobs in engineering and a relatively low cost of living.

Southampton and Coventry also make the top three cities offering best value for new graduates due to their combination of a relatively strong graduate jobs market and affordable living.

Leicester and Liverpool should also be attractive destinations for those seeking value for money as, although starting salaries are among the lowest in the UK, they are relatively inexpensive places to live and therefore the graduate pound goes much further. 

The analysis also found that many of the UK's most popular student cities are among the most expensive for new graduates to start work.

Brighton, London and Oxford offer some of the highest starting salaries, yet new graduates working in those cities will have much lower local purchasing power. Graduates may be on good local salaries, but they will have low disposable incomes due to high living expenses such as rents. 

Charlie Ball, head of higher education intelligence at Prospects, undertook the analysis: "Graduates may need to think carefully about chasing the highest possible salary if it means moving to somewhere with a high cost of living, particularly rents. A graduate may need an extremely attractive offer in London, far above the average salary, for it to be worth them leaving a less expensive labour market. 

"This analysis calls into question the overall value of uncontextualised graduate salaries as a measure of graduate success. Widely available and better quality data on cost of living will improve decision-making. Graduates need to understand where value lies for their degree and whether it is worth remaining in a well-known jobs market on a lower salary or moving for more money where costs are higher. It's a common assumption that the latter choice is always better, but the data strongly suggests that it is not."
 

UK cities ranked by Local Purchasing Power2 (highest to lowest)

1.     Derby
2.     Southampton
3.     Coventry
4.     Leicester
5.     Liverpool
6.     Sheffield
7.     Nottingham
8.     Glasgow
9.     Portsmouth
10.  Bristol
11.  Leeds
12.  Aberdeen
13.  Manchester
14.  Reading
15.  Birmingham
16.  Newcastle upon Tyne
17.  Cardiff
18.  Belfast
19.  Edinburgh
20.  Cambridge
21.  Oxford
22.  London
23.  Brighton

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