Council Blames Competition for Lower Than Expected Returns
13th Feb 2020
New analysis on student enrolment figures suggest poorer students have more equal access to less prestigious universities.
Calculations for the Higher Education Policy Institute (HEPI) put Hull University top for accepting a balanced intake of rich and poor students.
Meanwhile, institutions like Cambridge, St Andrews, Bristol and Oxford were placed near the bottom of the table.
Although Cambridge University welcomed a new take on the data, a spokesman for the institution cited that the HEPI analysis relies on a single measure, adding "widening participation in higher education is a complex issue."
Every year, admissions figures, known as Participation of Local Areas, divide neighbourhoods into five categories, according to the proportion of young people attending university.
HEPI suggests that in an ideal world, each group would equate to a fifth of the student intake.
In this study, the 2016 Polar data was used to rank each of the UKs 132 universities in terms of how near they came to this target.
Alongside Hull University, other institutions that ranked highly include, Derby, Edge Hill, Chester, Plymouth College of Art, York St John, Leeds Beckett, Worcester, Anglia Ruskin and Cardiff Metropolitan.
A spokesman for the Russell Group of universities, which have several institutions near the bottom of the table, said members were "committed to encouraging students from disadvantaged backgrounds to enter and succeed in higher education."
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