UCAS figures show rise in university applications

16 July 2010

Commenting on UCAS figures showing an 11.6% rise in applications to UK higher education, Director General of the Russell Group Dr Wendy Piatt said:

“Competition to enter leading universities has always been keen. The continued rise in applications to study provides yet more evidence that tuition fees are not putting bright students off trying to get a place at university including those from disadvantaged backgrounds. Applicants are realising that higher education, particularly at Russell Group institutions, provides most graduates with a considerable salary premium. It is only fair that graduates contribute to the cost of the education from which they have benefited.

“In the present economic climate - where universities are already dealing with over £1 billion in cuts – there are tough choices to be made. Trying to maintain the quality of the student experience must be a greater priority than expanding the number of places.

“Protecting the quality of the UK’s world-class universities is essential if the country is to work and think its way out of its current economic difficulties.”

Notes to Editors

  1. Graduates earn, on average, 20-25% more than people who did not go to university. This represents approximately £160,000 over a working life. Research has shown this figure is quite a bit higher for people who went to a Russell Group university, with a further salary ‘top-up’ of around 10%.

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