University application rates from disadvantaged areas: my ‘grounds for cautious optimism’ graph UPDATED

by Stephen Tall on July 24, 2013

Six months ago I published a graph showing an important trend: the narrowing gap in university application rates between 18 year-olds from the most disadvantaged areas and the most advantaged areas.

In the light of UCAS’s latest figures it’s time to update it. The good news is that the trend shows the same outcome — a greater proportion of young people from disadvantaged areas are applying to university than ever before:

university disdvantaged application rates 2013 fc 2011


Quick question. The graphic relates to applications, while the statement refers to numbers actually going to university. Given that the number of 18 year olds is actually falling, can you confirm that the statement that a higher number from disadvantaged backgrounds are actually going to university than ever before? Thanks.

by Tim Pollard on July 24, 2013 at 12:13 pm. Reply #

No, it's a greater proportion rather than a greater number – the actual number of 18 year-olds in the population as a whole is falling substantially for demographic reasons, which is why I talk about the rates not the numbers as it allows direct year-on-year comparison.

by Stephen Tall on July 24, 2013 at 4:52 pm. Reply #

[…] progress had been seen 6 months previously too, as the ever excellent Stephen Tall explains in this post, and the graph above. Stephen is right that optimism at this news should be ‘cautious, but […]

by Should Clegg say sorry, for saying sorry? | Digital Politico on July 25, 2013 at 9:53 am. Reply #

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