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University places

Universities such as Warwick give out many more offers than places e.g there are 400 places for economics (and related subjects), what would happen if for whatever reason 600 people made Warwick their firm, or more realistically even 420 people as they have limited space
Reply 1
Original post by Anonymous #1
Universities such as Warwick give out many more offers than places e.g there are 400 places for economics (and related subjects), what would happen if for whatever reason 600 people made Warwick their firm, or more realistically even 420 people as they have limited space

Warwick would need to take the people who made Warwick their firm choice and got the required grades, plus people who didn't get a place at their firm choice but had Warwick as their insurance choice and got the grades Warwick required. This is the same situation as it would be for any university that found itself in that position.

University admissions offices have a lot of experience in judging how many offers to make to avoid being in the situation of significantly over-recruiting, but of course it can still happen.

For many courses, it just means that the university (and the relevant school(s)/department(s)) concerned will have to deal with more students than they were planning for. On many courses that just means finding larger lecture theatres than planned, and more timetabled slots for running small-group sessions such as seminars and problem classes, etc. There might be need for more PhD students to run sessions/do marking. But it's largely an administrative issue.

Where particular issues arise is with courses where there are hard limits on resources -- for example lab spaces for science courses or workshop spaces for engineering courses.

I've heard of some universities in the past asking students on affected course if they'd like to defer their admission to the following academic year, and in some cases the university has offered financial incentives for the students to do that.

This happened during Covid, where the mitigations resulted in significantly more students being given higher grades that might have been expected -- see https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11067651/Universities-pay-students-15-000-defer-number-getting-Level-grades-rises.html for example.
Students on campus at the University of Warwick
University of Warwick
Coventry
Reply 2
Original post by Anonymous #1
Universities such as Warwick give out many more offers than places e.g there are 400 places for economics (and related subjects), what would happen if for whatever reason 600 people made Warwick their firm, or more realistically even 420 people as they have limited space

They have to take people if they meet their offers - in the past places were capped and unis were fined when they took too many students! I can remember this happening to Warwick ...
This scenario played out a lot under COVID where TAG and CAG grades didn’t have the usual spread of results. As above, everyone who firmed and met their offer in full had to be accepted, (but it also meant a lot of very near misses who normally have been accepted were rejected, eg. A*A*BB wouldn’t have been enough for an A*AA offer).

Some unis offered incentives for students to defer, but that was unusual.

Unis are good at balancing their offer volumes and will try to oversubscribe a little to balance out natural attrition.

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