Today, UCAS has released their first set of official data following the June 30th application deadline, and the future continues to look bright for higher education.
Applications this year have been remarkably robust, as predicted back in February during a Kortext webinar by Sir Steve Smith, former Vice Chancellor of University of Exeter and current International Education Champion.
During the event, Sir Steve said:
Universities have a lot of skills… What has hit us is the popularity of university. Everyone thought people wouldn’t go because of Covid – They went in record numbers…
That sentiment rings true once more, with the June 30th deadline to apply to up to five courses simultaneously seeing a total of 682,010 applicants taking advantage of this. In total, the applicants made almost 3 million applications – an increase of 6% compared to last year.
In turn, this saw almost 2 million offers extended to them by universities and colleges in the UK.
Who’s been applying?
Despite there being fewer births between 2002-3, the number of 18-year-olds who have applied for university this year has increased by 10%; accounting for 43.9% of all applications.
However, it’s not just school-leavers who are making the jump to higher education.
Last year, mature students accounted for a very low percentile of all applicants, but this year, the percentage sits at 11%; the highest mature student figure for years.
This is concurrent with a study published back in April, by Aviva. They conducted a poll that found that 66% of workers were rethinking their careers and looking to learn new skills as a result of the pandemic.
UCAS Chief Executive Clare Marchant said:
Today’s numbers show the clear demand for undergraduate study and apprenticeships is growing… Universities are ready to welcome more students onto courses this autumn and have worked hard to be flexible, enabling students to progress to their next level of study.
What does this mean?
It means great things are coming – UCAS predicts the rise in applications this year means more students than ever starting higher education in the autumn. The rise in applications has also seen a 20% increase in offers to students from the most disadvantaged backgrounds, allowing more opportunities for all.
Are you ready for it?
We are! In the academic year of 20/21, we saw the pages accessed by students increase by an incredible 154% to 144 million pages. At Kortext, we have developed our platform and expanded the capacity to enable even more universities to empower these future difference makers. – Best of luck to all of the applicants; let’s hope Results Day next month helps them begin their higher education experience!