HEIR Network

Higher Education Institutional Research Network

Past Events

2021-22 Events 

Our first free lunchtime online session of 2022 will be taking place on Friday 4 March 2022 from 12:00 – 14:00.  Watch this space for joining details. We’ve listened to your feedback from last year’s events on themes you wanted to focus on and are delighted to bring you this session where we will explore how qualitative approaches to data analysis can provide new insights into student feedback. Dublin City University are our hosts and we welcome four fabulous speakers: Professor Elizabeth Cleaver, Dr Darragh McCashin, Dr Martin Hayes and Abbirah Ahmed.  


2020-21 was a busy year for the Network Planning Group. We took advantage of the experience and skills we gained from hosting our annual conference online for the first time in 2020 at the University of Brighton and established a series of free online 2 hour lunchtime sessions on matters of direct relevance and interest ot our members.

The Guardian University Guide: the methodology behind the compilation

In September 2021 we focussed our attention on the matter of Universiy league tables and had an in-depth session focusing on all things to do with the Guardian University Guide. The Director of Intelligent Metrix the company behind the rankings, Matt Hiely-Rayner, led the event and took us through the principles behind the guide, the overall approach to the compilation, details of the methodology for each metric and the ways in which providers can engage with the process, followed by a question and answer session.

If you would like to view the recording of the session – please click here to watch via Youtube.

If you are interested in the slides from the presentation these are also available below.

The Future of National Student Surveys in the UK and Ireland: reflections, perceptions and challenges: 

In June 2021 we hosted our second session which joined our UK and Ireland members together to share insight and experiences of each sector’s national student surveys.

As both the UK and Ireland move to review their long-standing national student survey systems and assess their effects on sector policy, this event sought to identify the facets of these surveys that are most valuable to institutional researchers. After hearing from those responsible for leading the reviews in each country, discussion groups were formed to cover topics aimed at establishing the design features that contribute to the validity and breadth of student representation, and the detail and techniques that support insightful analysis. Sessions will also discuss the impediments to meaningful insight and consider how reviews might address these.

Meeting the OfS APP Monitoring Return

In February 2021 the HEIR Network hosted its first free online lunchtime session aimed at those responsible for providing evidence of impact and the monitoring and evaluaiton of Access and Participation Plans. The Office for Students (OfS) Director for Fair Access and Participation, Chris Millward, joined us to set the scene and provide the context on the new approach of the OfS to APPs.

HEIR 2021 Annual Conference  22 – 24 September 2021
The University of St Andrews hosted the Higher Education Institutional Research Network 2021 annual conference.  The conference was held online over three half days from Wednesday 22 to Friday 24 September 2021.  The theme of the 2021 HEIR conference was Inclusive Institutional Research.  The conference explored wide-ranging ways in which institutional research can lead to inclusive practices across the sphere of HE activities. Visit the conference website here.