More students ready to take next step despite pandemic

Record numbers of students are set to take their next step this summer, with new UCAS data released today showing applications and university offer-making increasing, plus searches for apprenticeships continuing to rise.
Posted Thu 8 July 2021 - 00:01

Today’s publication of the latest undergraduate application data from UCAS following the 30 June deadline shows there are more applicants than in previous years, with a corresponding rise in offers from universities. 

UCAS is predicting that increases in applications and offer making will see a record number of students starting university or college in the autumn.

As of 30 June 2021, the final date to apply to up to five courses simultaneously, a total of 682,010 applicants (+4% on 2020) made 2,955,990 applications (+6%), resulting in 1,998,690 offers (+3%) made by universities and colleges. 

Looking just at UK 18 year olds, there are 311,010 applicants (+10% on 2020), who made 1,474,900 applications (+12%), resulting in 1,147,460 offers (+10%) from universities and colleges. Applications and offers are up in each of the four nations of the UK.

View the June 2021 deadline applicant figures dashboard

Applications to the most selective universities have increased and offer-making from these institutions is also up from last year’s high – including a 20% rise since 2019 in offers to students from the most disadvantaged backgrounds.  

UCAS’s CareerFinder, which helps students find jobs and degree/higher apprenticeships, saw a record 1.35 million searches in the last 12 months, up 37% from 986,000 in 2020. These searches have resulted in 225,000 job applications, an increase from 181,000 last year (+24%).

UCAS Chief Executive Clare Marchant said: “Today’s numbers show the clear demand for undergraduate study and apprenticeships is growing, rising significantly during the pandemic. 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.

“Publishing new insight throughout the cycle increases transparency in admissions, and students, parents, teachers and universities can have confidence the process is once again as fair as possible, with results day on the horizon.

“Though not every student will find themselves in the position they had initially hoped for, they still have a wide range of options, including undergraduate courses and apprenticeships. Clearing and our apprenticeship service is now open and UCAS is supporting students throughout the summer online, including on TikTok, Facebook and Instagram.

“There is a full range of post-secondary options and pathways available, not just applying for an undergraduate degree. All the help and advice they need from UCAS online will give them an excellent start to their career.”

Ends


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Notes for editors

Download the additional offer-making analysis (3.88 KB)

UCAS, the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service, is an independent charity, and the UK's shared admissions service for higher education.

Our services support young people making post-18 choices, as well as mature learners, by providing information, advice, and guidance to inspire and facilitate educational progression to university, college, or an apprenticeship. We manage almost three million applications, from around 700,000 people each year, for full-time undergraduate courses at over 380 universities and colleges across the UK.

We also provide a wide range of research, consultancy and advisory services to schools, colleges, careers services, professional bodies, and employers, including apprenticeships.

 

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