Surge in Chinese Applicant Numbers

Posted by Richard Ward in

Image courtesy of Flickr, Creative Commons

The number of Chinese students applying to study at UK universities has increased by 30% since last year, with numbers exceeding those from Northern Ireland for the first time.

Ucas revealed this week that it had received nearly 20,000 undergraduate applications from students in China, versus 18,520 from Northern Ireland. It is expected this figure could be even higher as not all Chinese applications are made via Ucas.

Commenting on the figures, the universities minister, Chris Skidmore, said: "International students bring huge cultural and economic benefits to the UK. These figures show we are making good progress in our ambition to open up world-leading higher education to anyone who has the potential to benefit from it and I'm confident that we can go even further."

There has also been a rise in the number of British 18-year-olds applying for places, up 1% since last year. This increase came despite a fall in the overall 18-year-old population.

EU applicants also increased by a similar percentage to 50,650 despite ongoing uncertainty surrounding the final outcome of Brexit, whilst those from outside the EU jumped by 8%.

Clare Marchant, Ucas chief executive, added: "The global appeal of UK higher education has never been clearer, with record demographic-beating application rates in England and Wales, and the steep rise in international applications, especially from China."


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