Home Current students Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) Survey

Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) Survey

About the survey

The survey we are asking you to take part in is a national survey of everyone who has recently qualified from any university or HE college in the UK. The information you provide will also be very useful to us at the University of the Highlands and Islands, to advise our current students about the opportunities that might be available to them.

Of those who obtained qualifications across the UK in 2013/14, 79% responded to the survey. Of these, 71% reported that they were working and a further 6% were working and studying. 12% were undertaking further study only. 6% of leavers were assumed to be unemployed. More results can be found at https://www.hesa.ac.uk/sfr217.

If we don’t hear from you we will try to contact you again, possibly by phone, so please let us know if you change your email address or phone number. If we can’t get in touch with you at all, we may try to get information about what you were doing from someone else, either at the university/college or someone we can reach using the contact information you have previously provided. If you don’t want us to do this, or you don’t want to give us any information at all, please tell us. Below are details about what happens to your information after it is sent to us.

A follow-up survey is planned for three years’ time so that we can get even more information about the early careers of those with HE qualifications. You might be asked to take part in this follow-up survey as well, which will be carried out by a different organisation. The current survey may also be audited – that is, checked to make sure it has been carried out correctly. If you don’t want to take part in the follow-up survey, or to be contacted during an audit, please let us know. You can also let us know that you do not want to take part in the follow-up survey by ticking the box at the end of the questionnaire.

What happens to your information?

The personal data that you supply is held and processed by the University of the Highlands and Islands and the Academic Partner(s) at which you are enrolled and/or taught.  We will use this data to supply information, which we are required by law, to a number of official agencies, for example the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) or the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA).

We will also use this data for the purposes of academic administration, statistical and promotional purposes, and providing you with various services.  Otherwise, your personal data is not disclosed to anyone else, except that if you name the university, the Academic Partner, or one of its employees as a referee, we may use the data to help us compose the reference.

We will send information from this form to the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA). This data will be linked to other information held about you as a student, including information you gave when you enrolled, and details of the qualification you gained. Information about the uses of this data is available in the Student Collection NoticeYour HESA record and survey responses will not be used in any way that could be used to make decisions about you.

HESA collects, and is responsible for, the database in which your HESA record is stored. HESA uses this information in its own right, for example to publish statistics about leavers from higher education.  All uses of the HESA record must comply with the Data Protection Act 1998.  HESA is a registered charity and operates on a not-for-profit basis.  It may charge other organisations to whom it provides services and data.

The HESA record is used for three broad purposes :

Purpose 1 - Public functions

The HESA record is used by some organisations to help carry out public functions connected with education in the UK.  These organisations are data controllers in common of the HESA record under the terms of the Data Protection Act. Such organisations include:

  • Department for Business, Innovation and Skills
  • Welsh Government
  • Scottish Government
  • Department for Employment and Learning, Northern Ireland
  • Higher Education Funding Council for England
  • Higher Education Funding Council for Wales
  • Scottish Further and Higher Education Funding Council
  • Department for Education
  • Research Councils
  • The Data Service (on behalf of the Skills Funding Agency)
  • The National College for Teaching and Leadership
  • The National Health Service
  • Office For Fair Access and any successor bodies.


These organisations may link information from the HESA record with other information they hold.  The HESA record may also be used by other organisations to help carry out public functions that are not connected with education.  Such users include the Office for National Statistics and the National Audit Office who may use the data to fulfil their statutory functions of measuring population levels and monitoring public expenditure.

Purpose 2 - HESA publications

The HESA record is used to produce statistical publications.  These include some National Statistics publications and online management information services.  HESA will take precautions to ensure that individuals are not identified from the data which are processed for Purpose 2.

Purpose 3 - Equal opportunity, research, journalism and other processing in which there is a legitimate interest

HESA and the other data controllers listed under Purpose 1 may also supply data to third parties where there is a legitimate interest in doing so.  Examples of use for this purpose include:

  • Equal opportunities monitoring
  • Research - This may be academic research, commercial research or other statistical research where this is in the public interest
  • Journalism - Where the relevant publication would be in the public interest e.g. league tables
  • Provision of information to students and prospective students

Users to whom data may be supplied for Purpose 3 include:

  • Higher education sector bodies
  • Higher education providers
  • Academic researchers and students
  • Commercial organisations (e.g. recruitment firms, housing providers, graduate employers)
  • Unions
  • Non-governmental organisations and charities
  • Local, regional and national government bodies
  • Journalists

Data supplied by HESA to third parties is supplied under contracts which require that individuals shall not be identified from the supplied data.  A copy of HESA’s current agreement for the supply of data is available.

About the HESA DLHE Collection Notice

The HESA DLHE Collection Notice is regularly reviewed.  The most up to date version can be found at www.hesa.ac.uk/fpn.  Minor updates to the DLHE Collection Notice (including organisation name changes and clarification of previously specified purposes) may be made at any time.  Major updates (such as a new purpose) will be made no more than once per year.

Your rights

Under the Data Protection Act 1998 you have rights of access to the data HESA holds about you.  You will have to pay a small fee for this.  For further information about the HESA record please see www.hesa.ac.uk/dataprot or email

We will send information from this survey to the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA). The uses that HESA makes of your survey responses described in detail.