Do you think universities are going to be "kinder" for 2021 & 2022 applications?

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oopwoop
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I'm from Italy and we can all agree that Italy and the UK (along other countries of course) have been greatly impacted by the pandemic. Do you think that universities are going to take that into consideration when it comes to applying? Obviously there aren't many extra-curricular activities available for us, and our mental health has been influenced by COVID too. Is the bar going to be lower for 2021 & 2022 applicants?
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Johnny ~
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It's an organic process. If there are enough suitably qualified candidates to give offers to, no, the rest won't get a free pass unless the university wants to e.g. increase its intake for some reason. If not, then standards may fall for some candidates (probably the weaker ones that sat on the threshold between offer and rejection).

It's obviously worth noting that there are vast differences in how selective courses are. A course that had a pre-COVID offer rate of 80 or 90% will have to be more accommodating if the things you say are true than a course with a 10 or 20% offer rate.
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oopwoop
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(Original post by Johnny ~)
It's an organic process. If there are enough suitably qualified candidates to give offers to, no, the rest won't get a free pass unless the university wants to e.g. increase its intake for some reason. If not, then standards may fall for some candidates (probably the weaker ones that sat on the threshold between offer and rejection).

It's obviously worth noting that there are vast differences in how selective courses are. A course that had a pre-COVID offer rate of 80 or 90% will have to be more accommodating if the things you say are true than a course with a 10 or 20% offer rate.
So it basically all depends on the mean of the applicants?
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8013
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I had A*AA iAL predicted. I have 290+ UMS in all subjects in my AS in Oct. I think that my AS can convince the unis that I am under estimated by teachers.
I hope even Imperial will consider that! I think no new offers for me is because the 3 left want to continue considering me with the latest results.
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oopwoop
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(Original post by 8013)
I had A*AA iAL predicted. I have 290+ UMS in all subjects in my AS in Oct. I think that my AS can convince the unis that I am under estimated by teachers.
I hope even Imperial will consider that! I think no new offers for me is because the 3 left want to continue considering me with the latest results.
If you don't mind me asking, which unis have you applied to?
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ecolier
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(Original post by oopwoop)
I'm from Italy and we can all agree that Italy and the UK (along other countries of course) have been greatly impacted by the pandemic. Do you think that universities are going to take that into consideration when it comes to applying? Obviously there aren't many extra-curricular activities available for us, and our mental health has been influenced by COVID too. Is the bar going to be lower for 2021 & 2022 applicants?
Not for Medicine, that's for sure: https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho....php?t=6766498

For EU applicants, unless you have settled / pre-settled status then you'd be competing with international students.
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Mesopotamian.
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If anything, for certain degrees, COVID has created a more competitive environment. Universities might be more relaxed in their requirements (although not necessarily grade requirements), but there are more applicants so it’s proving a tough year for this admission cycle. I suspect 2022 entry will be similar given the second round of exam cancellations.
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oopwoop
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(Original post by Mesopotamian.)
If anything, for certain degrees, COVID has created a more competitive environment. Universities might be more relaxed in their requirements (although not necessarily grade requirements), but there are more applicants so it’s proving a tough year for this admission cycle. I suspect 2022 entry will be similar given the second round of exam cancellations.
Genuine question, how is COVID correlated to the amount of applicants increasing?
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Mesopotamian.
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(Original post by oopwoop)
Genuine question, how is COVID correlated to the amount of applicants increasing?
People haven’t been able to sit the exams and received CAGs and a similar system will occur this year with exams having been cancelled. This means that a lot of people missed their grades and couldn’t secure a place for 2020 entry and therefore had to reapply again in the hopes of being able to sit exams this year. Exam cancellations also meant that people who were already on a gap year couldn’t get the grades they needed and thus needed to take a second gap year to reapply. So these people plus the year 13s of the 2020-21 cohort are all competing against each other.
A lot of people also deferred their offers so this reduces the amount of space available for the upcoming cycle.

This years exam cancellations will compound those factors again and so it’ll probably be similar or worse for 2022 entry - especially for courses and universities which pre-covid were pretty competitive anyway.

That’s my speculation.
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becausethenight
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(Original post by oopwoop)
Genuine question, how is COVID correlated to the amount of applicants increasing?
What Mesopotamian. said, plus this year the number of A/A* grades increased by something ridiculous like 80%, so I'd imagine there will be some applicants too who on doing much better than expected, decided to take a gap year and aim for a competitive course - more people with medicine/dentistry/Oxbridge rejections will have the grades to reapply, for example. Many of those grades will have been awarded post-U turn, possibly after those students had been rejected and gone into clearing, so there's a massive incentive to have another go.
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lil_hellgirl
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yeah to be honest it entirely depends on how popular/competitive a course is & how low the acceptance rate is for a uni.
for example, for a degree in a media or arts subject, there will probably be a lot more lenience than for a degree in medicine or astrophysics. (they may lower the entry requirements if not enough students qualify for it)
it also depends on factors such as how many 'top grade' students have applied to said course and whether an applying student is from a low income/disadvantaged background (may receive additional consideration).
also, as someone else highlighted, many many 2020 students deferred their offers to 2021 so there will be limited spaces on most courses. hope this helps
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polscistudent
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I don't think requirements would change, although they might be more lenient towards extra-curricular activities. Everything depends on how many students actually apply. If the pandemic goes on, they might have fewer applicants than usual. Then, it might be easier to get in or to be closer to the top in a waiting list. If the pandemic stops, a lot of people who postponed by a year would then apply and you might have a lot more applicants than normal (making courses more competitive). What's going to be interesting is to look at international students. EU students will drop due to their fee status. Non-EU students might drop as well (people might be less willing to go abroad after witnessing the mess of the pandemic or some people might have experienced a drop in their income and be less able to pay the very high international fees). So my guess is that, if the pandemic goes a little better, UK students numbers will go higher, int'l students will go lower. Since int'l students are very profitable for universities, you might have some higher chances than in, to say, 2019.

Obviously this is just a thought exercise, as nobody can predict the future (as it should be very clear after having lived through 2020).
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nickymoon22
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(Original post by oopwoop)
I'm from Italy and we can all agree that Italy and the UK (along other countries of course) have been greatly impacted by the pandemic. Do you think that universities are going to take that into consideration when it comes to applying? Obviously there aren't many extra-curricular activities available for us, and our mental health has been influenced by COVID too. Is the bar going to be lower for 2021 & 2022 applicants?
I guess it depends on the Uni you are going, I don't know, I feel like some Uni takes in consideration more what It's going on than others do, I mean I'm worried too as I will go to Uni this year. I f you don't mind me asking which Universities are you applying for?
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mnot
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(Original post by oopwoop)
I'm from Italy and we can all agree that Italy and the UK (along other countries of course) have been greatly impacted by the pandemic. Do you think that universities are going to take that into consideration when it comes to applying? Obviously there aren't many extra-curricular activities available for us, and our mental health has been influenced by COVID too. Is the bar going to be lower for 2021 & 2022 applicants?
The reality is uni's & courses which fill up will maintain standards, courses which have room will likely lower the requirements so to fill up the course.
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PQ
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"kinder" implies that universities aren't "kind" to applicants every year. Universities don't reject applicants for fun or out of spite but out of genuine concerns that an applicant is capable of succeeding on the course (or because the course is over subscribed and they have to reject capable applicants in order to keep cohort sizes controlled).

The continuing problems with postgraduate and international recruitment is hitting the finances of Russell Group universities hardest - particularly London universities who have also just had their London weighting for teaching cut completely (about £4.5m per university). So that under recruitment and financial pressure could well mean universities boosting capacity for undergraduate intakes. Not because they feel like being "kind" to applicants but because if they don't then there are likely to be even more staff redundancies. https://www.timeshighereducation.com...uring-pandemic
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_wdw0703_
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(Original post by oopwoop)
I'm from Italy and we can all agree that Italy and the UK (along other countries of course) have been greatly impacted by the pandemic. Do you think that universities are going to take that into consideration when it comes to applying? Obviously there aren't many extra-curricular activities available for us, and our mental health has been influenced by COVID too. Is the bar going to be lower for 2021 & 2022 applicants?
Hello. There is a zoom call between universities that are allowing students to talk to universities about being 'kinder' with applications and grade tomorrow. If you pm me with your email i can be sure to forward the email x
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oopwoop
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(Original post by PQ)
"kinder" implies that universities aren't "kind" to applicants every year. Universities don't reject applicants for fun or out of spite but out of genuine concerns that an applicant is capable of succeeding on the course (or because the course is over subscribed and they have to reject capable applicants in order to keep cohort sizes controlled).

The continuing problems with postgraduate and international recruitment is hitting the finances of Russell Group universities hardest - particularly London universities who have also just had their London weighting for teaching cut completely (about £4.5m per university). So that under recruitment and financial pressure could well mean universities boosting capacity for undergraduate intakes. Not because they feel like being "kind" to applicants but because if they don't then there are likely to be even more staff redundancies. https://www.timeshighereducation.com...uring-pandemic
I apologize, I should've expressed myself better. By "kinder", i meant to ask if universities' standards were going to be lower when it comes to the next applications Thank you so much for your reply; it was very informative!
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Stumpy1001
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(Original post by oopwoop)
I'm from Italy and we can all agree that Italy and the UK (along other countries of course) have been greatly impacted by the pandemic. Do you think that universities are going to take that into consideration when it comes to applying? Obviously there aren't many extra-curricular activities available for us, and our mental health has been influenced by COVID too. Is the bar going to be lower for 2021 & 2022 applicants?
My uni (SOAS) they have a detriment policy in place that takes in to account covid when assessing assignments. How and what the criteria is anyone's guess. I suppose it could be a form of placebo, maybe they aren't marking less harshly but just want you to think that so you don't get stressed。
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ozzyoscy
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There'll probably be two types of people looking over applicants:

One who thinks the 'assessments' kids have for these 2 years will make grades meaningless and more focus will be on earlier GCSE grades and, dare I say, the applicant themselves and who they are.

Others that won't overthink it and just pretend the predicted grades etc. are fact to go the easy route of least resistance.
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econmitch
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(Original post by oopwoop)
I'm from Italy and we can all agree that Italy and the UK (along other countries of course) have been greatly impacted by the pandemic. Do you think that universities are going to take that into consideration when it comes to applying? Obviously there aren't many extra-curricular activities available for us, and our mental health has been influenced by COVID too. Is the bar going to be lower for 2021 & 2022 applicants?
I think it will be but not really by any proactive choice of the universities. If people do worse and don’t meet requirements as high as the uni usually expects, they don’t have much choice but to still accept them. They need money and they won’t just not hand out places. Would say the most elite unis will probably not change greatly but as a whole the bar will likely have to naturally be lower.
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