University student number controls confirmed

17 Oct 2011

The Higher Education Funding Council for England has confirmed that 20,000 places will be removed from the historical allocated student numbers of universities for next year, when the new fees regime begins.

Universities will be able to bid to regain these places but only if they are charging net fees of less than £7,500 (the average fee set by English universities is £8,509).

The new market in student places was announced in the White Paper in June but only after most universities had already set their fees for 2012-13, leading many to complain the government was moving the goalposts.

 HEFCE also confirmed that universities will be able to recruit unrestricted numbers of students who attain A-Level grades of A,A, B (or equivalent).

The full announcement can be found here:

Shabana Mahmood MP, Shadow Minister for Higher Education, has accused the government of creating a “race to the bottom” by shifting student places to lower-charging universities and FE colleges.

She added: “To make things worse the government is pressing ahead with these proposals even though it hasn’t yet responded to the consultation to the White Paper which floated these ideas in the first place, thereby making a mockery of the entire process”.


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