Record number of university offers for minority students

Imran Marashli 4 February 2015

The latest UCAS statistics have revealed the largest ever gap between women’s and men’s admission to UK universities and Higher Education, with female admissions further outnumbering male admissions.

The data also shows that there were also all-time highs in the number of disabled students and black and Asian ethnic group acceptances last year.

The existing gap between male and female applicants widened further to an unprecedented 57,800 in 2014; women now outnumber men in two thirds of university subjects.

Acceptances for students from Asian and black ethnic backgrounds reached record levels of 45,000 and 30,000 respectively, and applicants declaring a disability who gained admission to Higher Education totalled a record 36,000.

Whilst the statistics reveal an increase in state-school successes, language and literature degrees experienced yet another drop in numbers. According to The Guardian, acceptances for Chinese numbered only 140, the lowest figure for five years.

Alex Fayard-Dody, who is studying Chinese at Cambridge, remarked: “On my course there are only 14 [students]. And year by year, less and less people [sic] apply for it. I don’t know why, because Chinese is a really important language and it should be the opposite.”

The University of Cambridge's data for the previous year's cycle show that acceptances for Home student ethnic minorities stayed at about 16%, and for Home students attending UK schools/colleges, the proportion of students from independent schools is up to 38.6% from 36.7% the year before.

Helena Blair, CUSU’s Access and Funding Officer, however noted that “The University of Cambridge still has a long way to go until it is representative of wider society and a truly level playing field for people of all backgrounds; however, the number of students working tirelessly on Access initiatives (alongside and independently to the CUSU Access Campaign) is ever-growing and their impact is great. The student voice is intrinsic in shaping this University to be accessible for current and future generations.”