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Publications and Statistics

This page contains links to all the research and publications which have influenced and informed the development of the Quality Mark.

Quality Mark Publications and Statistics

Every year we ask FES and HEIS with the Quality Mark to submit statistics relating to their implementation of the QM scheme via an online system. The reports from previous years can be read and downloaded below.

You can access the online system (2012 onwards) and read through the guidance notes for the new return. Quality Mark institutions will have received an email with your username and password. If you need them again please email

Quality Mark Annual Statistical Report,  Academic Year 2012-2013 (June 2014) 

The information in this report has been collected from 62 Higher Education Institutions and 25 Further Education Colleges. This is the second year in which we have collected this information from Higher Education colleges in this format.

Further Education Colleges were invited to join the Quality Mark for the first time in 2012, following the pilot phase in 2009-2011, and this is the first time we have collected data from them. As a result we now have a more rounded snapshot of the experiences of care leavers in post-16 education. 

Quality Mak Universities' Annual Statistical Report, 2011/12 (June 2013)

This report is an analyses of the data received this year, relating to the academic year 2011/12, and provides some really interesting statistics which are useful indicators for where support can be further developed within institutions. 
The collected data in this report cannot be compared to previous years as we substantially reviewed the data we ask for from institutions, in order to make the process easier, and to improve the accuracy of the data. 

Quality Mark Universities' Annual Statistical Report 2010/11

Please note that this earlier report refers to the previous set of returns and is designed to show an overview of trends and patterns relating to care leaver students and activities at Quality Mark institutions.

Assessing the Impact of the Buttle UK Quality Mark in Higher Education (June 2013)

Image of front page of report

This research, conducted by York Consulting LLP and funded by the KPMG Foundation,
assesses the impact the Quality Mark has had on support for care leavers in higher education since its development in 2006. 

The report reveals a dramatic improvement in awareness of the barriers that care leavers face in higher education as well as the provision now in place for them at HEIs since the introduction of the Quality Mark in 2006. 

Support across Quality Mark institutions still varies and the report highlights the need for all to strive to achieve the top 'exemplary' level of assessment for their Quality Mark. 

Annex A: Evaluation Framework

Annex B: Student Survey

Please note: For the glossary, the equivalent to an Access Agreement in Wales is a Fee Plan. 

The Buttle UK Quality Mark Model: Working with your institution to support Care Leavers in HE (April 2012)

Dr Louise Comerford Boyes, a ResearchBradford research front page Fellow from the University of Bradford completed a report in April 2012 on the impact of the Quality Mark for higher education.

The report highlights the benefits of the Quality Mark to HEIs in for example, building effective cross-sector collaboration, providing a basis for external evaluation, as well as a framework to develop strategic cross-departmental working.

A Quality Mark for Care Leavers; a Pilot Study for Further Education (July 2011) 

The strong success of the Quality Mark led to many requests from the further education sector to consider a similar FE commitment to Care Leavers. Buttle UK acknowledged that many young people choose to stay in further education, sometimes to then go on to complete HE qualifications. In October 2009 therefore, Buttle UK embarked upon an 18-month development programme for an FE Quality Mark, with a pilot of 25 further education colleges drawn from different areas of the United Kingdom.

The pilot found an urgent need for a Quality Mark for the FE sector and as a result Buttle UK now offer a Quality Mark for FE institutions as of January 2012. The report summarises the development, implementation and impact of the programme, and draws conclusions and recommendations on the potential for a national roll out.

FE pilot report front page

Case study on the impact of IOE research into 'Going to University from Care' (September 2011)

The Institute of Education produced a report in September 2011 analysing the impact the By Degrees study has had on local and central government policies and on the provision by universities for young care leavers. 

By Degrees: From Care to University (2005)

In 2004, Buttle UK completed the first ever research study of university students with a background in local authority care.

Read or download a Summary of the final 'By Degrees' Report's Findings, or read or download the final 'By Degrees' Report 'Going to university from care'.

Front page for by degrees research         

QM Colleges

QM Universities