Toff luck chaps! State school kids do better at uni than students from private schools

New research shows state educated applicants with the same A-levels as their private peers are up to 8% more likely to get a first or 2:1…


State school pupils are more likely to get a better degree than their privately educated counterparts – according to a new survey. 

Government research showed that students educated in the state system were 8% more likely to get a first or 2:1 than privately educated students with the same A-level results.

The Sunday Times reports that unis will use the results to justify giving lower offers to state school applicants as their A-level results hide their true talents. The findings will fuel the debate over which form of education is better.

They might get a better degree, but have they got a variety of coloured chinos?

Sir Steve Smith, vice chancellor of Exeter, said: “Students who come in with lower offers from the bottom 40% of schools perform as well if not better at degree level than students who come in from better-performing schools with higher A-level grades.”

Exeter, along with Bristol and Leeds, openly offers lower grades to state applicants. A third of Exeter students are privately educated.

Exeter openly offers state applicants lower grades...

Exeter openly offers state applicants lower grades…

The research looked at 132,000 students who started in 2007/08 and how likely they were to achieve firsts or 2:1s depending on their background.

Students achieving A and A* were found to have little difference in their degree result. But those who attained BBC were up to 8% more likely to achieve a good degree than those from private.

The findings are likely to renew calls for pupils with “potential” to be given a chance to attend top unis.

Vince Cable, the business secretary, and David Willets, the higher education minister, will use the research as part of a national strategy to get more state applicants into the best universities.

In 2011/12, only 57.7% of Oxford students were state educated...

In 2011/12, only 57.7% of Oxford students were state educated…

Oxford, Cambridge, Durham and St. Andrews all guarantee students with the right grade predictions an interview if they meet “contextual data” requirements. In 2011-12, only 57% of students came from state schools, compared to the national average of just over 88%.

The Office for Fair Access has warned institutions to be more “ambitious” in admitting poorer students.