Russell Group statement ahead of A-level results day

13 August 2014

Speaking ahead of A-level results day, Dr Wendy Piatt, Director General of the Russell Group of Universities, said:

“Good luck to everyone getting their results tomorrow. 

“It is pleasing that more students have chosen to study facilitating subjects at AS-level this year. We hope they will keep studying them through to A-level because they give students greater choice and more options for studying at Russell Group universities. In particular we are really pleased to see numbers taking AS-levels in modern foreign languages are up 5.6% this year. 

“Some Russell Group universities may still have places available in some subjects for students who have done better than expected. There may also be places available for highly-qualified students who have narrowly missed out on their first choice. We encourage those students to get in touch with UCAS to see whether there may be places available to them.

“Getting a degree can be a great stepping stone to a good job and successful career. Evidence shows that Russell Group graduates earn more, on average, than those at other universities, over the course of their careers.” 

Notes to Editors

The importance of choosing the right subjects at A-level 

•In some schools students are not getting the right advice and guidance on the subjects to study which means many good students haven’t gained the qualifications they need to apply to the most competitive courses and universities. Universities need students not only to have good grades, but grades in the right subjects for the course they want to apply for.

•Our universities are very clear about preferred subjects where relevant.  We have published Informed Choices to improve information about how subject choices at school can impact on university applications.  It includes advice on the best subject combinations for a wide range of university courses and advice on the best choices for those who want to keep their options open.

•Students who know what degree they want to study should look at university websites and speak to staff to understand what subjects they need. For those students who are not yet sure, doing one, two or three facilitating subjects will help keep the widest range of options open.

The value of a good university education

A good degree from a good university is worth it: 

  • Research undertaken by the Centre for Economics of Education has identified a wage top-up of up to 10% for a graduate from a Russell Group university compared to those from a modern university.
  • Tuition fees do not have to be paid up-front by students. In England loans and bursaries are available to cover costs and graduates only repay their loans when they are earning a good salary (of at least £21,000 a year) and even then they will only pay back a small proportion of their income (9%) above £21,000.
  • There may also be places available, through the UCAS Adjustment process, for those who have done better than expected. 


For information about Clearing and Adjustment places at our universities you will need to visit universities' websites or call UCAS on 0371 468 0468.

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