14 August 2015

Record Students Going to Uni, More unis to Charge £9k, New Complaints System…

Record number of students going to uni

A-level-GradesOver 400,000 students have so far been accepted on to a university course, up 3% on last year. This is despite a 0.1% fall in students receiving an A* or A grade compared to last year’s results.

Overall, an impressive 98.1% of students passed their A Levels (A*-E) which isn’t so shabby.

Our take: Congratulations to all those students who have accepted their offer and are officially registered on a uni course – the next step is to prepare yourself and read up on some of our guides such as what to take with you. If you didn’t get what you wanted, don’t worry. We have a guide to Clearing to help you out and remember this is not the end of the world. You still managed to survive two years of stressful studying!

Uni application system needs overhaul

Record UCAs AppsApplying for uni can be a difficult decision – who do you put as your first choice? What if you don’t get the grades? Your fate is then sealed, months after you made your decision, when you finally get your results. Maybe you do better than expected and kick yourself for not applying to a different uni.

The former higher education minister Bill Rammell wants the whole application system to change so that students apply to university after they get their results. He believes that this would be a fairer system for students as it wouldn’t rely on predicted grades.

Our take: Bill Rammell raises a good point. Applying to uni can be so stressful, and some students underestimate themselves, putting off a better uni out of fear of rejection. If you know your grades first, you can make a more informed decision. However, it would be an impractical system as thousands of students would apply and decisions by unis made within a few weeks. It’s an interesting idea, nonetheless.

More unis charging £9k tuition fees

myths about tuition feesThe Reddin Survey of University Fees by Thecompleteuniversityguide.co.uk has found that 113 out of 120 English and Welsh universities will be imposing the maximum £9k a year tuition fees for students starting this year.

Only six unis will be charging less than £7k a year.

Our takeOriginally, unis could only charge the maximum £9k a year if they met certain criteria e.g. helping poorer students get in to uni. So, what’s changed? Are all unis doing this or are they following the rest of the crowd, charging the full whack because they can? Then of course there’s the argument over whether or not the fees are worth it – our Student Money Survey earlier this year showed that 55% of students didn’t think their course offered value for money.

New Consumer Ombudsmen launched

Know when to complainThe Consumer Ombudsmen has been set up to help shoppers dealing with faulty goods, a dodgy service or bad home repairs. The Ombudsmen will have the power to legally force a company to refund or replace an item or even apologise to a customer (so is it basically my mum?).

Some companies will ignore complaints or just offer a few vouchers or a ‘sorry’, but the Ombudsmen should help customers get real results. The Ombudsmen will look at complaints about services or goods purchased after 1st January 2015.

Our take: How often have you complained, and got an unsatisfactory result that you had to put up with as it was all that was offered? It’s not right – really, companies should want to offer great customer service and keep our business. As it doesn’t always work out that way, the Consumer Ombudsmen is a welcomed way of helping customers fight back. If you need help complaining, we have a guide to help you get results here.

Clothing company offers discount for failing A Levels

bad-a-levelDidn’t get the grades you wanted? UCAS’ Clearing will help you get a place at uni, but in the meantime you can use your disappointment to your own advantage as the clothing company Hype are offering a 50% discount to anyone who seriously messed up their A Levels.

Just send them a Tweet of your results. Every cloud has a silver lining and all that…

Our take: It’s kinda funny but maybe not those who are disappointed by their results and need to find a place but this could take their mind off of their misfortune. So many companies are using A Level results to get people to spend money to celebrate good grades so it’s about time someone did something different.

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