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Breakdown of income, expenditure and number of staff for the higher education sector for September 2017 to August 2018.

Finance of higher education institutions

  • Total income of the Welsh higher education sector was reported as £1.57bn, 5% (£71m) more than 2016/17.
  • Total expenditure of the sector was £1.57bn, 3% (£53m) more than in 2016/17.
  • Income through tuition fees continued to rise. Tuition fee and education contracts now make up 56% of income (£874m).
  • The fall in Funding Council grants continued for an eighth year. Income from Funding Grants fell by 5% (£9m).
  • Research grants made up 13% of the income of Welsh universities, a similar proportion to what has been reported previously in recent years.
  • Welsh universities spent £882m on staff in 2017/18. This represented over half (56%) of all costs.

Staff at higher education institutions

  • The number of staff at Welsh universities decreased by 225 (1%) in 2017/18, to 20,870.
  • Cardiff University employed the most staff (7,070), over double the next largest – Swansea University (3,525).
  • Glyndwr University was the smallest university in terms of staff numbers, employing only 470 in 2017/18.
  • Just under half of all staff (49%) were on academic contracts.
  • Just under two thirds of staff were full-time for academic contracts, and two thirds for non-academic contracts.
  • Of those who weren’t on an academic contract, 3,860 were in professional or technical occupations. 3,955 were in administrative and secretarial occupations and 995 were in ‘elementary occupations’.
  • 54% of all staff positions were filled by women. However, they held only 46% of academic roles. Two thirds of all part-time staff were female.
  • 11% of academic staff members reported they were able to teach through Welsh. 45% of those were actually doing so.

Further information

Based on statistics produced by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA). Finance comparisons made with previous years use figures which are re-stated in the most recent financial statements available.


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Lucy Teague

Telephone: 0300 025 6695

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Telephone: 0300 025 8099

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