Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 20 December 2014

University hopefuls wait on results

As of the end of July, 367,490 applicants were holding 'conditional offers'
As of the end of July, 367,490 applicants were holding 'conditional offers'

Hundreds of thousands of would-be students are on tenterhooks waiting to find out if their exam grades will be good enough to secure them their university place.

New figures reveal that as of the end of July, 367,490 applicants were holding "conditional offers" - meaning that their spot on a degree course is dependent on them achieving certain exam results.

The numbers of potential students with a conditional offer is up 3% (around 12,000) compared to last year, data published by the admissions service, Ucas, shows.

A breakdown of the statistics shows that English applicants are the largest group waiting for their places to be confirmed, with 275,610 holding conditional offers, along with 13,490 in Northern Ireland and 14,390 in Wales. Applicants in these nations are mainly waiting for A-level results, which are published on Thursday, August 14.

A further 18,470 Scottish applicants have conditional offers, Ucas said, and they are mainly waiting for Scottish qualification results, due to be released tomorrow.

The data also reveals that 17,240 EU applicants are waiting for exam grades to have university places confirmed, along with 28,280 overseas students from outside Europe - this is the highest number recorded for this group.

Overall, around four fifths (80%) of people placed in higher education through Ucas get their place through a conditional offer, the admissions service said.

In an analysis note Ucas said: "At the end of July, although some applicants have been placed (for example, those with BTEC qualifications), most applicants are holding conditional offers.

"Around 90% of the conditional offers held at this point will be resolved in a short period in August as, first, Scottish results and then A-level results are released. On the July 29, 2014 (a week before Scottish results day) there were 367,000 applicants holding a conditional offer. This is 12,000 (3%) higher than at the same point in 2013."

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