Useful higher education websites

Australia | Europe | UK | USA


Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER)

ACER’s mission is to create and promote research-based knowledge, products and services that can be used to improve  learning across the life span.


The Council of Australian Postgraduate Associations (CAPA)

The Council of Australian Postgraduate Associations (CAPA) was formed in 1979. It is a membership based non-profit organisation. CAPA's main role is in protecting and promoting the interests and needs of Australia's 300,000+ postgraduate (PG) students. CAPA is the national voice on postgraduate issues and it communicates the interests and perspectives of postgraduate students to the Federal Government, Federal Opposition and minor parties, and higher education peak bodies. This website provides access to PG policy documents, discussion groups and the latest news.


Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations  (DEEWR)

The Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations is the lead government agency in Australia providing national leadership in education and workplace training, transition to work and conditions and values in the workplace. The site includes the latest news on higher education, government policy and programs.


Universities Australia

Universities Australia was established on 22 May 2007 as the main body representing the university sector. Universities Australia represents Australia's 39 universities in the public interest, both nationally and internationally. Universities Australia acts as a consultative and advisory body for all university affairs, making submissions to public inquiries of interest to the university sector, and preparing statements on major issues. It seeks to influence politicians, the community and opinion leaders, in order to secure the best possible outcomes from government funding and regulatory decisions, and the actions of other groups and individuals related to the university sector. This site provides members and non-members with access to key policy, submission and review documents, advice and guidance.


Canadian Association of College & University Student Services (CACUSS)

CACUSS is a professional bilingual association representing and serving those individuals who work in Canadian post-secondary institutions in student affairs and services. Since 1973 CACUSS has provided professional development services and programs for members in all the Canadian provinces. It provides information on conferences, awards and grants to members, resources such as presentations and publications, on-line directory of contact information for CACUSS members and an internet-based career development tool for new and continuing student affairs and services professionals.


Canadian Federation of Students (CFS)

The Canadian Federation of Students and the Canadian Federation of Students-Services were formed in 1981 to provide students with an effective and united voice, provincially and nationally.The Canadian Federation of Students-Services enables students' unions to collectively pool their resources to provide student owned and operated services such as Travel CUTS, the International Student Identity Card, the Studentsaver Card,, the Student Work Abroad Program (SWAP), and the National Student Health Network. This site contains information on campaigns, research, and services.


Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

This website provides information on the Canada Student Loans Program and the Canada Student Grants Program for Canadians attending post-secondary education in most provinces and territories.


Ministry of Training, Universities and Colleges

This website provides information on university study in Ontario, Canada



European Access Network

The European Access Network encourages wider access to higher education for those who are currently under-represented, whether for reasons of gender, ethnic origin, nationality, age, disability, family background, vocational training, geographic location, or earlier educational disadvantage. The EAN is the only European-wide, non-governmental organisation for widening participation in higher education. It is organised for educational purposes and operates under English Law. Membership is open to all those with an interest in widening access. Through this site, you can access European countries higher education news. You can also access event, publication and research project information via this site.


European Commission:  Education and Training

The role of the European Commission is to support the efforts of member countries in education and training. It provides support on all areas of lifelong learning such as school, higher education, vocational and adult learning.


European Higher Education Area (EHEA)

The European Higher Education Area (EHEA) was launched in March 2010 to coincide with the 10 year anniversary of the Bologna Process at the Budapest-Vienna Ministerial Conference. This website is aimed at supporting and advancing the Bologna process. This site contains a range of useful documents, an extensive work programme for HE different activities, a Bologna archive, event information and useful links to relevant European organisations.


European Students Union

The European Students' Union (ESU) is an umbrella organisation of 45 National Unions of Students (NUS) from 38 countries (March 2011). The aim of ESU is to represent and promote the educational, social, economic and cultural interests of students at the European level towards all relevant bodies and in particular the European Union, Bologna Follow Up Group, Council of Europe and UNESCO. This website lists seminars, training, campaigns and conferences relevant to students. It also provides information and a variety of publication for both students, policy-makers and higher education professionals.


Netherlands Organisation for International Cooperation in Higher Education (Nuffic)

Nuffic engages in: managing programmes on the instructions of the Dutch government, the European Union and third parties; providing reliable information about Dutch and foreign higher education; strengthening the position and raising the profile of Dutch higher education and scientific research; evaluating diplomas and promoting the transparency of education systems; combining knowledge and expertise and making knowledge and expertise available; performing activities for third parties that are not financed by public funds insofar as such activities are in keeping with the frameworks of government policy.The site provides a range of information for university staff and students looking ot go to university.


Action on Access

Action on Access is the national provider of coordination and support for widening participation and access to higher education in the UK. The website is a well-used electronic event and publication platform which reaches over 2,000 practitioners. Action on Access works with institutional leaders and practitioners; policy makers; funders and stakeholder groups to promote inclusivity and diversity, challenge exclusion and lobby for the widest broadest possible access to higher education.



AMOSSHE is the UK Student Services Organisation. This organisation informs and supports the leaders of student services (student affairs). The organisation has 149 UK higher education institutions who are members of AMOSSHE.  AMOSSHE’s aim is to promote the development and sharing of good practice within student services in the HE sector at a national level.


Admissions to Higher Education Review

This website provides information on a major UK Government review headed up by Professor Steven Schwartz. The final report was submitted in September 2004.  This website contains the full report and a range of other useful information



Aimhigher was an initiative by the former Department for Education and Skills DfES), now the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS), working with the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE). The body ceased in July 2011. Its aim was to raise the aspirations of underrepresented groups in higher education and increase diversity in higher education. Although Aimhigher no longer exists, the website of resources and information is still available


All Ireland Society for Higher Education (AISHE)

AISHE is a professional society promoting the professional recognition and enhancement of teaching and learning in higher education in Ireland through a range of activities including seminars, conferences, publications, and provision of online community forums and services.


Association for Learning Technology (ALT)

ALT is a leading body in the United Kingdom (UK) that brings together practitioners, researchers and policy makers in learning technology. Membership consists of most UK universities, individuals, colleges, government and corporate bodies. ALT publishes a journal, ALT-J, a newsletter, ALT-N, and supports an annual conference. The site contains a resource database with downloadable documents that include guides for staff new to teaching with technology.


Association of University Administrators (AUA)

The AUA is a membership organisation for professional service staff and academics. Membership offers the opportunity to gain an understanding of the key issues and new ideas in HE management, both nationally and internationally. The AUA offers many different networking opportunities to:

  • share good practice;
  • develop knowledge of the sector;
  • provide professional development opportunities.


Athena SWAN (run by the Equality Challenge Unit)

The Athena SWAN Charter is a scheme that recognises excellence in science, engineering and technology (SET) employment for women in higher education.


Back on course (ends September 2012)
Back on course is an impartial advice and guidance service for people who have withdrawn from higher education before completing their studies. We offer support to people who are interested in returning to education or exploring other positive options, such as employment, training or apprenticeships. Back on course is funded by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) as a three year project, and managed by The Open University in partnership with UCAS. HEFCE funding comes to an end on 31 July 2012 and, as a result, the project will progressively close until 30 September 2012. Students whose details are passed to the project before mid-June will be contacted and offered the full service, as normal. They are also planning a final research and evaluation report, which will be published at the end of the year. This will analyse the characteristics  of early leavers, and will seek to identify key issues that the sector can use to inform future policy on student retention and success.


Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS)

BIS is a UK government department that brings together all of the levers of the economy in one place. Its policy areas are broad and cover areas such as skills and higher education to innovation and science to business and trade. This website contains policy documents that impact on higher and further education.


DirectGov Student Finance

This Government website contains comprehensive information on tuition fees and the range of support available to HE students including details on how to apply for these services. Online applications for financial support can be submitted via this website. Alternatively application forms for financial assistance can be downloaded from here and returned in the post.

DirectGov Career Development Loans

This Government website has information about Career Development Loans (CDLs) including details on how to apply. CDLs are bank loans and undergraduates would typically only apply for one if they are not eligible for the standard HE support package. Many students enrolled on postgraduate courses or their second undergraduate programme will fund their course with a CDL.


Equality Challenge Unit (ECU)

ECU works to further and support equality and diversity for staff and students in higher education across all four nations of the UK, and in further education in Scotland. ECU works closely with colleges and universities to seek to ensure that staff and students are not unfairly excluded, marginalised or disadvantaged because of age, disability, gender identity, marital or civil partnership status, pregnancy or maternity status, race, religion or belief, sex, sexual orientation, or through any combination of these characteristics or other unfair treatment. The website provides advice, information and guidance.


Higher Education Academy (HEA)

The HEA is an independent organisation funded by grants from the four UK higher education funding bodies, subscriptions from higher education institutions, and grant and contract income for specific initiatives. The HEA works with individual academic staff, discipline groups and senior managers in institutions to identify and share effective teaching practices in order to provide the best possible learning experience for all students. The site has extensive resources. It is worth looking at the different HEA subject centre websites for specific subject information and advice. You can access them via the main website.


Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA)

HESA  is the official agency in the UK for the collection, analysis and dissemination of quantitative information about higher education. It was set up by agreement between the relevant government departments, the higher education funding councils and the universities and colleges in 1993. It was established following the White Paper  Higher Education: a new framework, which called for more coherence in HE statistics, and the 1992 Higher and Further Education Acts, which established an integrated higher education system throughout the United Kingdom.


Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE)

HEFCE distributes public money for teaching and research to universities and colleges and it aims to promote high quality education and research. The Council plays a key role in ensuring accountability and promoting good practice in HE. This site contains a range of advice, support and guidance on learning and teaching, widening participation, research, the economy and society, finance and assurance and leadership, governance and management.


Higher Funding Council for Wales

Higher education in Wales is offered mainly through Wales's 11 universities but is also offered at a number of further education colleges. The Higher Education Funding Council for Wales is the national, strategic body that is responsible for funding teaching and learning provision, research and other activities in Wales. The website provides a range of information including reports, publications, guidance, statistics, funding information, events and news.


Higher Education Careers Services Unit (HECSU)

HECSU is a registered charity. It supports the work of the higher education careers services in the UK and the Republic of Ireland. It funds major research projects that benefit the higher education careers sector and conducts research into graduate employment and careers decision-making on behalf of its own members and external bodies. It also provides research services to support HEI careers services to investigate the key questions they face. This website includes information about research conducted by HECSU, HECSU funded research and development projects, news and other relevant work. HECSU's Development Plan is included and it contains five distinct themed areas:

  • Practitioner research and PROP;
  • Labour market information;
  • Careers guidance;
  • International comparisons;
  • Career learning and development.



JISC offers leadership and support to UK educational organisations at a local, national and international level. It provides resources, knowledge and expertise that colleges and universities would struggle to source individually due to cost and resource. JISC keeps abreast of developments across information and digital technology.


Key Information Sets (KIS)

Key Information Sets (KIS) are comparable sets of standardised information about undergraduate courses. They are designed to meet the information needs of prospective students and will be published 'in context' on the web-sites of universities and colleges. More information on KIS and advice for institutions can be found below.



million+ is a university think-tank and promotes general policy objectives; engages in advocacy; influences governmental decisions through evidence based policy and helps set the agenda, mobilise change and amplify unheard voices. It submits evidence to parliamentarians, government and other agencies.
million+ is at the forefront of the political debate about the role and contribution of the universities to the economy and society.
This website provides access to published research reports and policy papers.


Quality Assurance Agency

The Quality Assurance Agency known as the QAA is an independent body funded by subscriptions from universities and colleges of higher education, and through contracts with the main higher education funding bodies. Each higher education institution is responsible for ensuring that appropriate standards are being achieved and a good quality education is being offered. It is the QAA's responsibility to safeguard the public interest in sound standards of higher education qualifications, and to encourage continuous improvement in the management of the quality of higher education. The website contains reports, publications, information on assuring standards and quality and a complaints process for institutions in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. It also provides international advice.


RAE 2008

The Research Assessment Exercise was conducted jointly by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), the Scottish Funding Council (SFC), the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW) and the Department for Employment and Learning, Northern Ireland (DEL).This website publishes the result from the 2008 RAE.


Research Councils UK

Research Councils UK (RCUK) is the strategic partnership of the UK's seven Research Councils. It offers funding opportunities, fosters international collaborations and provides access to facilities and infrastructure around the world. It supports the training and career development of researchers. RCUK work in partnership with other research funders including the Technology Strategy Board, the UK Higher Education Funding Councils, business, government, and charitable organisations.


Scottish Funding Council

The Scottish Further and Higher Education Funding Council (SFC) is the national, strategic body that is responsible for funding teaching and learning provision, research and other activities in Scotland's (41 colleges and 19 universities and higher education institutions). They are more commonly known as 'the Scottish Funding Council' or 'SFC'. The website provides a range of information including reports, publications, guidance, statistics, funding information, events and news.


Supporting Professionalism in Admissions Programme (SPA)

The SPA programme was established in 2006 and works closely with higher education institutions, schools and colleges and other stakeholders on the continuing development of fair admissions and good practice in admissions, student recruitment and widening participation across the UK higher education sector. The programme is independent, funded by all the UK higher education funding bodies and comprises a small team of six who have a combined experience of over 70 years in admissions. This website highlights the research, good practice and professionalism they have found from their visits and activities, which they have developed and disseminated to support those working in admissions, student recruitment and widening participation.


The 1994 Group

This group was established in 1994 and brings together nineteen internationally renowned, research-intensive universities. The Group provides a central vehicle to help members promote their common interests in higher education, respond efficiently to key policy issues, and share best methods and practice. You can access event, publication and research project information via this site.


The Leadership Foundation in Higher Education

The Leadership Foundation provides a dedicated service of support and advice on leadership, governance and management for all the UK’s universities and Higher Education colleges- enabling transformational change. It is a registered charity (charity registration number 1101959).


The Office of Independent Adjudication (OIA)
The OIA is an independent body set up to review undergraduate and postgraduate student complaints as a result of the Higher Education Act 2004. Advice and support is free to students. The OIA deals with individual student complaints against Higher Education institutions in England and Wales. The OIA is a registered charity in England and Wales. It is funded by institutions but it is autonomous. It is a valuable resource for universities.


The National Postgraduate Committee (NPC)

The NPC is a charity to advance postgraduate education in the UK. The NPC is made up of  postgraduate student representatives from educational institutions with postgraduate students. The NPC aims to promote the interests of postgraduates studying in the UK, while remaining politically non-aligned. The Committee holds an annual conference, and publishes various guidelines and codes of practice. The site contains advice and guidance. Certain areas of the website can only be accessed via an affiliated institution's network, or to individuals connecting from home with a username and password.


The National Union of Students (NUS)

The NUS is a voluntary membership organisation which aims to help students and member students' unions. Its mission is to promote, defend and extend the rights of students and to develop and champion strong students' unions. This site provides information on campaigns, advice and support for students.


The National Union of Students (NUS) Media Centre - Research Publications

NUS conducts, commissions, and collaborates with partner organisations and academics, to develop the evidence-base  underpinning our work. Users can download research publications exploring education funding, student support and the  cost of living; the student experience in higher education; student welfare and communities; and further and higher education equality and diversity issues.  NUS research published over the past five years can be browsed here.


The Paul Hamlyn Foundation

Their mission is to help people to realise their potential and enjoy a better quality of life, now and in the future.


The Russell Group

The Russell Group represents 20 leading UK universities which are committed to maintaining the very best research, an outstanding teaching and learning experience and unrivalled links with business and the public sector. The website provides information on publications, research, news and networking facilities.


The Student Loan Company

The SLC website contains information about Student Loans available to eligible higher education students.


The Society for Research into Higher Education (SRHE)

The Society for Research into Higher Education (SRHE) is a UK-based international learned society concerned to advance understanding of higher education, especially through the insights, perspectives and knowledge offered by systematic research and scholarship. The Society aims to be the leading international society in the field, as to both the support and the dissemination of research.


UCL Transitions Website

The UCL Transition Programme supports students preparing to enter undergraduate courses as well as first years already studying. There are a number of open access resources on this site that can assist all students who are thinking about applying to university as well as students who have started their degree studies; there are links and information on academic skills, finances, accommodation, student profiles, with information and advice for schools on how to support students applying to university


Universities Scotland

Universities Scotland essentially works for the Principals or Directors of Scotland’s 19 higher education institutions. However, Universities Scotland seeks to draw upon expertise where it exists in the sector and will therefore liaise with individuals from the senior management team across all institutions where appropriate. The higher education sector in Scotland is diverse. It is made up of 15 universities, the Open University in Scotland, an art school, a conservatoire, and the Scottish Agricultural College. The website provides information on publications, news and networking facilities.



Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS)

CAS was founded in 1979 and describes itself as the pre-eminent force for promoting standards in student affairs, student services, and student development programs in the US. CAS states that its ultimate purpose is to foster and enhance student learning, development, and achievement, and to promote good citizenship. Its membership comprises of around 40  organisations and associations such as the  Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education (NASPA) and the National Orientation Directors Association (NODA).  It is an excellent portal in accessing different members’ websites.



EducationUSA is a global network of more than 400 advising centres supported by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Accredited U.S. colleges and universities as well as higher education membership association staff (e.g. NACAC, AACRAO, NAFSA, IIE, NAGAP, AIEA, CIS, etc.) are eligible to receive login access to the Higher Education section of our site.  Access provides help, advice, information and guidance.


Education Resources Information Centre (ERIC)

ERIC provides unlimited access to more than 1.4 million bibliographic records of journal articles and other education-related materials, with hundreds of new records added multiple times per week. If available, links to full text are included.  Within the ERIC Collection, you will find records for; journal articles, books, conference papers, technical reports, policy papers and other education-related material


Inside Higher Ed

Inside Higher Ed is an online source for news, opinion and jobs for all of higher education, breaking news and feature stories, daily commentary, areas for comment on every article, practical career columns, and a suite of tools to help higher education professionals get jobs and colleges identify and hire employees.


Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education (NASPA)

NASPA is the leading association for the advancement, health, and sustainability of the student affairs profession in the USA. Members of NASPA undertake a variety of functions and roles, including the vice president and dean for student life, as well as professionals working within housing and residence life, student unions, student activities, counselling, career development, orientation, enrolment management, racial and ethnic minority support services, and retention and assessment. This website provides members with access to event and publication information.


National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)

NCES is the primary federal entity for collecting and analyzing data related to education. NCES is located within the U.S. Department of Education and the Institute of Education Sciences. The purpose of the NCES website is to provide clear and complete information about NCES' mission and activities, and to serve the research, education and other interested communities.


National Resource Centre for the First Year Experience and Students in Transition

The National Resource Center for The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition’s mission is to support and advance efforts to improve student learning and transitions into and through higher education. The Centre provides opportunities for the exchange of practical, theory-based information and ideas through the convening of conferences, teleconferences, institutes, and workshops; publishing monographs, a peer-reviewed journal, an electronic newsletter, guides, and books; generating and supporting research and scholarship; hosting visiting scholars; and administering a web site and listservs. The centre’s extensive range of transitions conferences brings together ideas from across the globe.


National Association of Graduate-Professional Students (NAGPS)

NAGPS represents postgraduates at US universities. It was formed in 1986 and is formed by affiliation from student representative bodies across the United States. It serves as the umbrella organisation representing all the graduate and professional students in the country through representation, lobbying, contribution to public policy debate, initiating communication between relevant parties and bringing key issues and potential solutions to wider audiences. This site provides information on events, news and policy on graduates.


The Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE)

ASHE promotes collaboration among its members and others engaged in the study of higher education through research, conferences, and publications, including its journal, The Review of Higher Education. ASHE is headquartered at Michigan State University. The Association is a scholarly society with about 2,000 members dedicated to higher education as a field of study.


The Teaching Toolbox Newsletter

There are currently over 40 issues of the Toolbox newsletter now archived on the website hosted by the National Resource Centre for the Student Experience (NRC). The newsletter was developed by Brad Garner.

Each newsletter is no more than two pages long and each one: 

•    identifies critical and practical concerns in teaching;
•    provides a brief literature-based connection to best practices;
•    offers the directions for 2-3 easily implemented in the classroom. 

The newsletter is delivered electronically, via email, six times per year. For more information, visit the website.