Record number of applicants to Oxford

first_imgThe number of applications to Oxford for 2015 entry has risen sharply. Oxford have received 18,325 applications for approximately 3,100 places this year, representing a substantial five percent increase from 12 months ago, when there were 17,484 applications for the same number of places.Cambridge have not revealed their exact figures for this year, but have confirmed they are not expecting to see an increase in the 16,720 applications made for 3,300 places that they received for 2014 entry.It is believed that many students have been deterred by Cambridge’s decision to introduce more stringent entry requirements at A Level.The University of Oxford commented, “through our outreach activities Oxford aims to attract talented candidates from as wide a range of backgrounds and schools as possible. We are pleased that today’s figures suggest we are succeeding in encouraging more bright students than ever before to apply to Oxford.”The fall in Cambridge applications comes as the university tightens entry requirements for science courses.It has been suggested that the advice given by schools has contributed to the widening gap between Oxford and Cambridge applications, with Alexi Andriopoulos, a PPEist at Univ saying, “the head of the Oxbridge admissions at my school said don’t apply to Cambridge if you don’t average 89 UMS at AS whereas Oxford is worth a go as long as you’ve got decent GCSE results.”However, Lucjan Kaliniecki, a human scientist at St. Catz, disagrees, stating, “I think prospective students aren’t so fickle that they are attracted to the most colourful leaflet worded in the cuddliest tone. I applied to Oxford rather than Cambridge because of the course and nothing else.”Oliver Wright, a first year at Lincoln, thinks that students looking to avoid the tough A Level results demanded by Cambridge might be to the detriment of state educated pupils, saying, “if anything this development makes Oxford more inaccessible: it just means Oxford are looking at things like confidence when being interview and performance in pre interview tests all of which tend to favour people who can be specially coached, rather than performance in exams. This might discourage state school applicants.”It is not just Cambridge applications that are down on last year: UCAS reports that in the month of October 56,360 applications were made to all institutions, representing a reduction of three percent from the year before, with the number of English students showing considerable decline to its lowest level in over five years in contrast to the increase in applications from foreign students. There has also been a marked decrease in the number of students applying for medical and veterinary courses.With Oxford increasingly holding the claim of being more over-subscribed than Cambridge, there are worries from some students that the daunting numbers will put off some prospective applicants, with one student saying, “It’s all very well and good to get one over on Cambridge, but if it scares off future applicants who would thrive at Oxford then surely the news isn’t actually very positive, especially if the combination of tough entry grades at Cambridge and tough numbers at Oxford means Oxbridge applications fall overall.”last_img

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