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Higher Education: Admissions

Volume 475: debated on Wednesday 7 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills how many people aged (a) over 25 and (b) over 30 years enrolled on a first degree course in a higher education institution in each year since 1997; and if he will make a statement. (202200)

The latest available information is given in the table. Comparable figures for the 2007-08 academic year will be available in January 2009.

UK domiciled entrants1 to first degree courses by age English higher education institutions, academic years 1997-98 to 2006-07

Academic year

25 and under

26 to 30

Over 252

Over 302

All entrants

1997-98

213,805

16,875

48,930

32,055

262,735

1998-99

210,985

15,530

46,475

30,950

257,460

1999-2000

212,465

14,100

43,900

29,800

256,365

2000-01

212,900

12,625

40,780

28,155

253,680

2001-02

223,035

13,080

43,520

30,445

266,555

2002-03

233,330

13,245

44,215

30,970

277,545

2003-043

241,180

17,970

65,135

47,165

306,310

2004-05

245,215

18,805

67,570

48,765

312,785

2005-06

261,970

18,900

67,115

48,215

329,085

2006-07

250,300

17,335

60,680

43,345

310,980

1 Includes entrants to both full-time and part-time courses.

2 These columns contain double counting as entrants aged over 30 are shown in both.

3 For years earlier than 2003-04, figures for the Open University have been excluded as they are not available separately for first degree entrants, only for all undergraduates. From 2003-04 onwards, figures for first degree entrants are available and have been included. Therefore, figures before 2003-04, and figures from 2003-04 onwards, cannot be directly compared.

Note:

Figures are on a snapshot basis as at 1 December excluding those writing up, on sabbatical or dormant and are rounded to the nearest five.

Source:

Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA).

Latest figures from UCAS, covering applicants to full-time undergraduate courses only, show that, after the small downturn in 2006, applicants who were accepted for entry in 2007 increased. For accepted applicants from the UK, figures show a rise of 5.5 per cent. to 364,500, with those from England showing a 6.1 per cent. rise to 307,000, the highest ever.

Latest figures for students applying for entry in 2008, show as at the end of March, applicants to full-time undergraduate courses show a year-on-year rise of 5.5 per cent., with those from England up by 6.2 per cent.