Fears for state pupils as top universities insist on A* at A-level

Universities could turn away increased numbers of state school pupils from the poorest backgrounds as a number of elite institutions begin asking for the new A* grade at A-level, the government's watchdog on fair access to higher education has warned.

In an attempt to distinguish the best candidates amid increasingly fierce competition for places, some top universities are asking for A* grades – requiring marks of at least 90% – for the most sought-after degree courses. Cambridge has made A*AA its standard offer for most subjects this year, while Imperial has requested it in seven courses and University College London in four. The London School of Economics will begin using the A* for six courses next year, while Bristol plans to introduce it in three departments.

“Research has shown that the propensity to achieve the A* is far more likely in the independent sector, so asking for it would undermine our commitment to widening participation.”

via Fears for state pupils as top universities insist on A* at A-level | Education | The Guardian.

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