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UCAS End of Cycle Data - University of Nottingham reconfirms it has ended unconditional offers

Thursday, 30 January 2020

The University of Nottingham has reconfirmed it has ended unconditional offers ahead of today's (January 30) published UCAS figures. The university announced in January 2019 that it was ending the practice of making unconditional offers with effect from September 2019.

The University took the decision in December 2018 to end its High Achievers scheme, introduced in 2014 to secure and support the most talented students. The scheme’s use of unconditional offers initially proved useful in attracting applicants from disadvantaged backgrounds and delivered modest gains in student recruitment and conversion in targeted subjects.

However, with many applicants now receiving three or more unconditional offers from different universities, Nottingham’s use of unconditional offers to demonstrate the University’s faith in particularly talented applicants was no longer relevant.

The University was also concerned at the reported variation between predicted and actual A-level results for some students who held unconditional offers from universities, indicating that some pupils may lose motivation at a critical period in their studies.

Selective universities like Nottingham will always compete legitimately for talented applicants. However, we want everyone to be fully confident that they are admitted purely on their merits and potential. That is why we ended the use of unconditional offers.
University of Nottingham Registrar Dr Paul Greatrix

Dr Greatrix added: "While it is right that autonomous institutions should set and regulate their own admissions policies, we hope that colleagues across the sector will consider joining the growing number of institutions who are ending this particular practice.

“Of course, the most accurate way of securing applications lies in the sector adopting a different approach to the admissions process. We are keen to learn the outcomes of the UUK review of admissions and work with the opportunities it may present."

The University believes that all students should maintain their independent study skills right through their schooling to ready them for the challenge of studying at Nottingham.

The University honoured unconditional offers made in the 2018/19 recruitment cycle, reflected in today’s UCAS data, and will continue to make unconditional offers where applicants have completed their qualifications and hold their results. The University has also introduced a new contextual offers policy for 2020 entry applicants to support the recruitment of students from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Emma Thorne - Head of News
Email: emma.thorne@nottingham.ac.uk
Phone: 0115 748 4734
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Notes to editors:

The University of Nottingham is a research-intensive university with a proud heritage, consistently ranked among the world's top 100. Studying at the University of Nottingham is a life-changing experience and we pride ourselves on unlocking the potential of our students. We have a pioneering spirit, expressed in the vision of our founder Sir Jesse Boot, which has seen us lead the way in establishing campuses in China and Malaysia - part of a globally connected network of education, research and industrial engagement. The University’s state-of-the-art facilities and inclusive and disability sport provision is reflected in its status as The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021 Sports University of the Year. We are ranked eighth for research power in the UK according to REF 2014. We have six beacons of research excellence helping to transform lives and change the world; we are also a major employer and industry partner - locally and globally. Alongside Nottingham Trent University, we lead the Universities for Nottingham initiative, a pioneering collaboration which brings together the combined strength and civic missions of Nottingham’s two world-class universities and is working with local communities and partners to aid recovery and renewal following the COVID-19 pandemic.

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