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20 Feb 2008 : Column 757W—continued

Departmental Publicity

Tim Farron: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills what the cost has been of re-branding his Department following the change in name from the Department for Education and Skills. [162103]

Mr. Lammy [holding answer 12 November 2007]: We have used the in-house expertise of our Executive agency the Intellectual Property Office for advice on creating a visual identity for DIUS as a new Department. Where necessary (for specific design work) they have used a specialist agency already on their roster, the cost of which was £12,041 excluding VAT.

Departmental Visits Abroad

David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills how much his Department spent on overnight accommodation for Ministers overseas in the last year. [171334]

Mr. Lammy: Details of the cost of overseas travel, including the cost of travel and accommodation are contained in the Overseas Travel by Cabinet Ministers list. The latest list for the period 1 April 2006 to 31 March 2007 was published on 25 July 2007. Details for the 2007-08 financial year will be published as soon as possible after the end of the financial year. All travel is made in accordance with the ministerial code.


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English Language

Damian Green: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills how much his Department has spent on English language classes for staff in the last year for which figures are available. [177435]

Mr. Lammy: The Department does not provide or fund English language classes for staff.

The Department has signed and is committed to the Government Skills Pledge to encourage and support all staff to achieve at least a full level 2 qualification. Some element of this support may in a few cases include supporting the attainment of basic literacy. This is provided via local colleges and incurs no direct cost to the Department.

Erasmus

Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills which UK universities (a) have bid for and (b) hold Erasmus University Charters. [181083]

Bill Rammell: All UK universities, except the University of Buckingham, Edge Hill University and the University of Northampton, possess an Erasmus University Charter. The University of Buckingham and the University of Northampton have now applied to the European Commission for a Charter.

Higher Education: Admissions

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills what guidance his Department has issued to higher education institutions on keeping places available for those students waiting for their A-level papers to be re-marked. [163550]

Bill Rammell: Admissions are a matter for individual higher education institutions (HEIs) who, as independent bodies, have discretion over their own admission policies and procedures. The Department does not therefore issue guidance in this area.

The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) have told us that HEIs which are members of the UCAS scheme will keep a place open for an applicant, in the event of a missing or queried exam result, up to 31 August unless an earlier date has been agreed.

Latest published figures on the number of inquiries about results and appeals are available on the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority website at: http://www.qca.org.uk/qca_10312.aspx The Department does not collect information on the number of HE admissions affected by those inquiries and appeals.

Mr. Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills what guidance he has issued on inclusion of information about the university experience of their parents by applicants to universities. [173381]


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Bill Rammell [holding answer 11 December 2007]: The inclusion of an optional question relating to parental education on the UCAS application form was the result of a decision taken by the UCAS Board, which the Government do not sit on. That decision followed the independent Schwartz review of fair admissions to higher education, which found that it was fair and appropriate to consider contextual factors as well as formal educational achievement, given the variation in learners' opportunities and circumstances. We fully support the move to provide more contextual information to admissions officers and believe such information may help HEIs monitor the effectiveness of their widening participation initiatives. The Government have not issued any guidance on this matter.

Higher Education: Vocational Guidance

Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills what assessment he has made of changes made by universities in their provision of careers guidance following Sir Martin Harris's review in 2001. [170437]

Bill Rammell: The primary responsibility for implementing the recommendations of the Harris Report lies with the Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services. However the Government take a keen interest in this area and in the progress made. I was pleased to note that a recent survey(1) found that three and a half years after graduation 85 per cent. of respondents reported being satisfied with their career to date.

(1) The first longitudinal Destination of Leavers from Higher Education Survey (DLHE) (published November 2007)

Members: Correspondence

Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills when he expects to reply to the letter of 27 September from the hon. Member for Beaconsfield. [163948]

Bill Rammell: I replied to the hon. Member's letter of 27 September on 23 October.


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Mr. Winnick: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills when he expects to reply to the letter from the hon. Member for Walsall, North of 26 November 2007 on a constituent. [178323]

Bill Rammell [holding answer 14 January 2008]: I replied to my hon. Friend’s letter of 26 November on 11 January.

New Local Government Network: Finance

Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills what payments have the (a) Learning and Skills Council and (b) Learning Skills network made to the New Local Government Network in the last 24 months. [176675]

Bill Rammell: The Learning and Skills Council has contracted for payments of £56,417 to the New Local Government Network within the last 24 months.

The Learning and Skills Network is an independent not-for-profit organisation. Information on the payments that it makes is not held centrally.

Science: Admissions

Mr. Willis: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills how many students were admitted to a UK university to study an undergraduate course in (a) physics, (b) chemistry, (c) biology, (d) engineering and (e) computer science in each of the last 10 years. [168298]

Bill Rammell: The latest available information for students entering full and part-time courses is given in the first two tables. Figures for 2006/07 will be available in January 2008.

A new classification for recording subject of study was introduced in 2002/03 and so figures from 2002/03 onwards are not comparable to earlier years.

Recent figures for students obtaining places on full-time undergraduate courses via UCAS are shown in the third table.

Undergraduate e ntrants by s ubject of s tudy—UK Higher Education Institutions ( 1) —academic years 1996/97 to 2001/02
Subject of study
Academic year Physics Chemistry Biology Engineering( 2) Computer Science

1996/97

3,375

5,750

7,250

37,220

27,245

1997/98

3,535

5,775

7,190

37,810

29,220

1998/99

3,340

5,540

6,960

36,250

32,145

1999/2000

3,075

4,890

6,530

34,985

34,255

2000/01

2,845

4,260

6,315

34,390

38,570

2001/02

2,835

4,145

6,180

35,175

40,975

(1) Students from the Open University are excluded from the analysis.
(2) Engineering includes—General Engineering, Civil Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Aerospace Engineering, Naval Architecture, Electronic and Electrical Engineering, Production and Manufacture Engineering, Chemical, Process and Energy Engineering, Others in Engineering and Balanced Combinations.
Notes:
Figures are on a snapshot basis as at 1 December excluding those writing up, on sabbatical or dormant. Figures are rounded to the nearest 5.
Source:
Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) student record.


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20 Feb 2008 : Column 762W
Undergraduate e ntrants by s ubject of s tudy—UK Higher Education Institutions( 1) —Academic years 2002/03 to 2005/06
Subject of s tudy
Academic year Physics Chemistry Biology Engineering ( 2) Computer Science

2002/03

3,140

4,710

6,985

32,765

34,600

2003/04

3,210

4,480

7,415

31,465

27,600

2004/05

3,105

4,205

7,455

32,235

22,335

2005/06

3,210

4,440

7,905

31,940

21,675

(1) Students from the Open University are excluded from the analysis.
(2) Engineering includes—General Engineering, Civil Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Aerospace Engineering, Naval Architecture, Electronic and Electrical Engineering, Production and Manufacture Engineering, Chemical, Process and Energy Engineering, Others in Engineering and Balanced Combinations.
Notes:
Figures are on a snapshot basis as at 1 December excluding those writing up, on sabbatical or dormant. Figures are rounded to the nearest 5.
Source:
Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) student record.

Accepted applicants to full-time undergraduate courses—year of entry 2005 to 2007
Year of entry ( 1)
Subject 2005 2006 2007

Physics

2,933

2,919

3,219

Chemistry

3,463

3,581

3,895

Biology

4,900

4,288

4,429

Engineering

21,405

19,889

20,713

Computer Science

10,753

9,936

9,905

(1) Figures as at October 17 in each year.
Source:
UCAS

Student Wastage

Mr. Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills what the drop-out rate amongst students in England studying for a first degree was in the most recent period for which figures are available. [161942]

Bill Rammell: The performance indicators in higher education, published by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA), include an indicator of projected non-completion. The proportion of UK-domiciled entrants to full-time first degree courses at English higher education institutions, who were projected to neither obtain an award nor transfer to another institution, was 13.8 per cent. in 2004/05. This is the latest available figure and is the lowest value this indicator has taken since the performance indicators were introduced.

The 2005/06 figure will become available in 2008.

According to figures published by the OECD, the overall completion rate for Type A (first degree equivalent) courses in UK universities and colleges of higher education is amongst the highest in the OECD countries.


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