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To AABe or not to ABBe (a very challenging question). Paul Teulon – Head of Admissions King’s College , London. Student Number Control (AAB). 1990s through to mid-2000s – student number expansion Late 2000s – student number controls tightened up, demand for places starts to outstrip supply

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to aabe or not to abbe a very challenging question

To AABe or not to ABBe(a very challenging question)

Paul Teulon – Head of Admissions

King’s College , London

student number control aab
Student Number Control (AAB)
  • 1990s through to mid-2000s – student number expansion
  • Late 2000s – student number controls tightened up, demand for places starts to outstrip supply
  • Selective universities chose to grow PGT and international students rather than UK/EU home
  • Government perhaps seeking levers to increase intake amongst the best HEIs in England
student number control
Student Number Control
  • Universities can potentially recruit an infinite number of ‘AAB equivalent’ students
  • Universities have a Student Number Control for ‘non-AAB equivalent students’. Small tolerance band, fines imposed if these are not met.
  • Within that a sub-total for SIVs (Strategically Important and Vulnerable Subjects), Physical Sciences and Modern Languages
  • Number of places reduced in SNC to allow for AAB+ growth
which hei could be affected most
Which HEI could be affected most
  • Oxford and Cambridge
    • 90% AAB+ Tutorial system and costs likely to prohibit growth
  • Russell Group university
    • 60% AAB+ Could grow – but high level of competition
  • Mid-ranking HEI – post 1992
    • 25% AAB+ Might lose out to RG/prestigious HEIs looking to grow
  • Lower ranking HEIs
    • Almost no AAB – reduction in SNC, but predictable
    • Some FE in HE could be awarded some of 20,000 extra places
  • If a university wanted to grab more AAB students then could they?
    • Competition from other HEIs
    • Less students applying to university (7-8% in England)
    • Academic Staff in place
    • Staff:Student Ratio – NSS
    • Physical estates constraints
    • Grade requirements in excess of AAB
    • Not all qualifications are equal – Access to HE
    • Around 70,000 AAB+ students in the UK
offer making
Offer Making
  • Based on predicted grades – only 10% predicted correctly across their base three A-level subjects
  • Students who apply as AAB+ likely to end up as non-AAB?
  • AAB+ offers give the HEIs more control over their SNC
  • Make more offers in case of increased/perceived competition?
firm and insurance
Firm and Insurance
  • Might students choose to make different decisions with their Firm and Insurance?
  • Firm AAA Insurance AAB
  • Firm AAA Insurance ABB
  • Firm AAB Insurance AAB
  • Firm AAB Insurance ABB
aab vs wp
  • AAB encourages selective universities to take more traditional students as Access to HE and other more vocational subjects not included
  • Higher grades mean that a larger proportion of your students are likely to come from independent schools and from traditional backgrounds
  • AAB and WP(OFFA) are perhaps pulling in opposite directions
what should students do what should you encourage advise
What should students do, what should you encourage/advise?
    • Better to stick with original choice unless originally aspired to or declined an AAB choice due to lack of confidence in grades
    • Course content/structure check essential
    • May encourage students in 2012/13 to work to achieve ABB or higher to give them a perception of greater choice
    • May encourage grade inflation by Universities in 2012-13
  • Adjustment Period/Changing Choices/Clearing
    • Be realistic about choices and vacancies
    • Check accommodation, scholarships –may not be available
    • Shortlist of 5-10 possible “targets”
    • Check possible vacancies before clearing starts in August
what should students do what should you encourage advise1
What should students do, what should you encourage/advise?
  • 2013 entry: make students aware of ABB issue but play it down
  • 2012: brief meeting/communication with your Y13 students?
  • Avoid complacency or raised expectations
  • Medics – 4,000 unplaced Medics for 2012 entry as of 16th May 2012. Many will achieve AAA-ABB at A level
  • Contact your key feeder Universities - possible flexibility at the ABB-AAB borderline
  • Beware grade inflation – Unistats/Guardian/KIS will have actual UCAS tariff on entry for 2010-11
  • Encourage points/grades spread on future UCAS choices

x1 aspirational/worth a punt

x3 on or close to realistic predictions

x1 good fall-back choice

aab and snc aston university position and response
AAB and SNC – Aston University position and response
  • 35-40% of our students achieved AAB+ or equivalent, higher for ABB+
  • 1,300 “core” places (SNC), 2,000 places overall
  • Require 700 students with AAB+ or equivalent
  • BTEC – all Aston students required DDD from 2010
  • Placement Year Fee (£1,000) and extensive Scholarships also allowed Aston to bid for 290 additional Govt places in the “Margin” despite standard fees of £9,000
  • 70% of Aston students on Sandwich or Year Abroad Degrees with £1,000 or zero fees
  • The Squeezed Middle?
    • AAB+ Aston Excellence Scholarships irrespective of family income (£4,000 over 4 years inc placement year)
trading up releasing into clearing changing from cf to ci choice
“Trading Up”, Releasing into Clearing/changing from CF to CI choice
  • If they are not eligible for adjustment it still frowned upon unless for good reason
  • Will they get accommodation, other uncertainties?
  • Is it really the best choice for them – outside influence?
  • Is it really a “better University?”
  • Are they actually eligible for adjustment?
  • Are they making a rational decision?
  • Likely to increase in 2012 despite Adjustment
missed the grades applied late better grades clearing and confirmation
Missed the grades/Applied Late/Better Grades?Clearing and Confirmation
  • Be proactive
    • Get them ALL to check passwords etc with UCAS Track/Apply
    • Phone (don’t email) and visit
    • Be persistent but realistic
    • Email/text correspondence from Universities common
    • Check accommodation deadlines etc
  • Be flexible, have a Plan B before results day just in case. 2012 entry AAB issue may be interesting but risky too
  • Not all results published in mid August….IB, BTEC etc in July
  • Find Clearing vacancy information
    • UCAS, University Websites, Telegraph
  • Speedy (not rushed) but rational decisions….and don’t be in Ibiza
last minute changes and no shows
Last minute changes and no shows
  • Some Universities plan/allow for this in their target numbers but now harder due to funding/date change, especially for non-AAB candidates
  • Frustrating – your students may be missing out on a place held open by someone else
  • Just as common for popular courses as for clearing entry/recruiting courses
  • Essential to let a Firm Choice University know asap
  • Around 3 students in every 100 UK wide
  • Encourage good advice and communication
  • Encourage students to come in to school/college on results day to see you.
realistic but positive
Realistic but positive….
  • Vast majority get 4 or more offers (80% plus)
  • Applications per place often quoted – don’t forget students are making 4 other applications.
  • The debate dominated by a few thousand applications for a small number of highly selective courses - less than 2% of total.
  • Check entry requirements and specific requirements (eg A/AS/BTEC/GCSE/IB etc)
  • eg: Aston: 2011 entry: 12,000 UK/EU applications for 2,000 places: c80% of applicants received conditional offers. Average Grade on entry: AAB-ABB from best 3 A levels (390+ UCAS Points)
quality it s not just the usual suspects graduate level jobs 2010 graduates
Quality: It’s not just the “usual suspects”….. “Graduate Level” Jobs: 2010 Graduates

1. Imperial College London 95.7%

2. London School of Economics 95.6%

3. King’s College London 88.8%

4. University College London 87.8%

5. Aston University 87.7%

6. Cambridge University 86.6%

7. Bath University 85.4%

8. Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen 84.9%

9. Warwick University 84.4%

10. City University 84.0%

11. Bristol University 83.3%

UK average c70%. Aston above 20 of the 24 Russell Group Universities

Source: HESA, Sunday Times University Guide – September 2011. Employed Graduates in “Graduate Level” employment

thanks for listening and keep in touch
Thanks for listening and keep in touch
  • Any questions or comments?

[email protected]

[email protected]

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