The Higher Education Participation and Partnerships Program (HEPPP) provides funding to universities listed in Table A of the Higher Education Support Act 2003 to implement strategies that improve access to undergraduate courses for people from regional and remote Australia, low socio-economic status (SES) backgrounds, and Indigenous persons. HEPPP also helps to improve the retention and completion rates of those students.
The legislation guiding the HEPPP is the Higher Education Support Act 2003.
2021 Reform of Equity Funding
On 19 October 2020, the Australian Parliament passed the legislation for the Job-ready Graduates Package (the package).
As part of the Job-ready Graduates package, from 2021 the HEPPP has been refocused to support students who are:
- From regional Australia
- From remote Australia
- Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander
- From low SES backgrounds
This change provides more opportunities for regional Australia.
The key objective of the HEPPP is to promote equality of opportunity in higher education by improving:
- outreach to widen aspiration and promote higher education to persons from a low SES background, persons from regional areas and remote areas, and Indigenous persons; and
- the extent to which persons from a low SES background, persons from regional areas and remote areas, and Indigenous persons access, participate, remain and succeed in higher education, and obtain higher education awards.
Distribution of HEPPP funds:
From 2021, grants will be made to eligible higher education providers each calendar year based on the provider’s respective share of domestic undergraduate students from a low SES background, students from regional areas and remote areas and Indigenous students.
Prior to 2021, grants were made to eligible higher education providers each calendar year based on the provider’s respective share of domestic undergraduate students from a low SES background.
HEPPP funding allocated to each university is shown in the following spreadsheet.
2010-2022 HEPPP Participation Allocations
For further information on the calculation of grant amounts see the Higher Education Support (Other Grants) Guidelines 2022.
Student Equity in Higher Education Evaluation Framework (SEHEEF)
In response to the 2017 ACIL Allen Evaluation, and stakeholder feedback about the implementation of the HEPPP, the Department engaged the Institute for Social Science Research at the University of Queensland to co-design the Student Equity in Higher Education Evaluation Framework (SEHEEF).
The SEHEEF has been co-designed with universities to effectively structure and guide three levels of evaluation:
- a national program evaluation of the Higher Education Participation and Partnerships Program (HEPPP),
- quality improvement evaluations of individual HEPPP-funded university programs and activities; and evaluations of the effectiveness, and
- impact of individual HEPPP-funded university program and activities.
The SEHEEF will support universities to evaluate Commonwealth funded equity programs and activities in order to build an evidence base of what works, and to ensure that lessons are learnt once and shared often.
The SEHEEF will be implemented in 2022 in consultation with the higher education sector.
HEPPP evaluation (2017)
View the evaluation report for HEPPP.
Previously the HEPPP had two components:
- Participation component: to increase the participation of current and prospective domestic students from low SES backgrounds in accredited undergraduate qualifications at eligible providers.
- Partnerships component: to increase the total number of people from low SES backgrounds who access and participate in higher education through effective outreach and related activities with appropriate stakeholders.
HEPPP Access and Participation Plans set out each eligible institution’s suite of strategies in relation to the Participation component.
From 2011 to 2014, Partnerships funding was allocated through competitive grants rounds.
Projects funded through this component can be found on the following pages:
- HEPPP 2014 Partnerships projects
- HEPPP 2013 Partnerships projects
- HEPPP 2013 Partnerships Competitive Grants Round
- Nationally Significant Projects Addressing the Behrendt Review 2013
- HEPPP 2011 Partnerships Competitive Grants Round
National Priorities Pool
National Priorities Pool Program is a program under the Indigenous, Regional and Low SES Attainment Fund (IRLSAF). Prior to 2021, the National Priorities Pool was a component of the HEPPP and provided funding for projects that support the more effective implementation of HEPPP nationally and at the institutional level. Projects funded through the former National Priorities Pool can be found on the following pages: