As the first drop in A-level grades appears, there are also a record amount of University places available meaning even those that miss their grades can still get a place at university. “It is not a huge drop and so I wouldn’t think it anything that we need to worry about as a whole, however with the UK slowly coming out of it’s recession it is helpful that those that may have slightly missed the mark on their A-levels can still get that much needed lace at university, get a degree, be a graduate and ultimately help them get a better career start!” says Sam Mouden, Managing Director of The Ixl Company, based in South Quay, Canary Wharf.
The overall pass rate has dropped to 98%, down 0.1%, which may seem such a small amount, but when you’re looking at around one million A-level entrants, that is almost 1000 students that haven’t passed. “The thousand or so that haven’t passed can happily apply to university and have a very high chance of being accepted due to the extra places available this year and so shouldn’t cause too much of an issue, it will just be a very big sign for them to really get their heads down and study at university, if they get in that is!” says Emma, receptionist at The Ixl Company, South Quay.
Not only are extra places available at university, it seems there is a bit of a ‘buyer’s market’ going on as universities are competing to attract more students, meaning opportunities of cheaper university fees could be possible and so 2014 is potentially the best year to apply. “It’s perfect for lower income families, or those that got the lower grades as universities really are fighting to get more and more students studying with them. I heard that a student got two C’s and a D and got into university when he actually needed three B’s” says Sam Mouden, managing Director of the Ixl Company, South Quay.
However, this could have a rather large impact on the graduates coming from these universities in a few years’ time when they complete their degrees that they start this September. “I think as good as it is for these students to still have the opportunity of university, the obvious part is that they are already having a much easier ride than those before them, by gaining entry to the university of their choice without even getting close to the grades they should, and so this poses the threat that the behavior of not working and studying hard enough may continue and so we will see an increase in university drop outs as well as lower grades when they finally do graduate” says Emma Clarkson, Receptionist at The Ixl Company, South Quay, Canary Wharf. So will this ease of entry to university mean lower results in the next few years? Will it mean more students dropping out and still having to pay back student loans?
“It’s pretty safe to say a year or two shouldn’t hurt, but if students results continue to drop and university places continue to rise, there will be stage that a degree won’t stand out on a CV and we will be back to where we started with young graduates struggling to get work” Says Sam Mouden, managing Director of The Ixl Company, Canary Wharf.