About us

IHE is the fastest growing representative body for higher education in the UK and the champion of new providers, specialist institutions and higher education SMEs.

Who we are

IHE is the UK membership organisation and national representative body for independent providers of higher education, professional training and pathways.

Our mission is to represent, support, advise and promote independent providers of tertiary education and training across the UK who share our values of diversity, flexibility, innovation, student focus and collaboration. We also seek to promote these values across the wider sector by advocating for policies.

When we talk about higher education, professional training and pathways, we consider each of these three elements to be essential to our vision for the UK’s post-18 (or ‘tertiary’) education sector, and many of our members integrate all three into their provision, but we also use ‘higher education’ as shorthand for the full spectrum. We do not consider the binary division of higher education and further education to be relevant to the skills and knowledge needed in the 21st century or the varied pathways we each travel through a lifetime of learning.

Find a member

Our members include some of the boldest innovators in higher education today

Who our members are

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With over 70 different organisations in our membership, they range from micro providers in niche subject areas with fewer than 100 students, to modern conservatoires and institutes at the cutting edge of their industries, to large publicly listed education businesses operating across multiple disciplines and global markets.

Our members include some of the boldest innovators in higher education today, alongside some of the original pioneers in their fields. Often embedded within their industry these institutions are driven by their vocation to cast wide the net of opportunity, while helping to drive up the standard of skills and knowledge across new and evolving professions. Our members are independent in their approach and in the path that they follow, but they choose to integrate themselves into a community of practice and to be highly responsive to the changing needs of learners, employers, professional bodies and other organisations with whom they collaborate.


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