ISC today reveals new data showing the continued success of independent school pupils at the top universities.
The data also revealed that strategically important subjects such as medicine and languages were taken up in particularly high numbers by independent sector pupils.
The data will be discussed by ISC’s Head of Research and Intelligence, Rudolf Eliott Lockhart, in a presentation at the body’s annual conference today.
He will argue that independent school pupils’ success when applying to university is down to their strong performance at A-level, the advice they receive from their school on applying, and the fact that they apply to the top universities in greater numbers.
He will also contend that the university admissions process is fair and based on merit, and will suggest that attempts by Government to use other criteria are unfair.
The new data, based on figures from UCAS, reveals that of all the offers which are accepted, 9.5% are accepted by ISC pupils, and yet when it comes to medicine and dentistry, ISC candidates account for 28.5% of the offers accepted; for European languages the figure is 25.7%.
These figures highlight how much universities rely on ISC pupils for these key subjects.
Mr Eliott Lockhart will tell the conference: "Our research highlights how ISC alumni go on to leading universities in very significant numbers, but it also suggests that the reasons why this takes place are patterns in applications, the high quality information, advice and guidance, and, above all else, the academic strength of the independent sector.
"This seems to suggest that university admissions are broadly fair at present. There are then real worries for the academic freedom of our universities given the significant pressure they appear to be under to amend their admissions for reasons of social engineering."
Notes to editors
ISC Mission Statement
The Independent Schools Council (ISC): working with its members to promote and preserve the quality, diversity and excellence of UK independent education both at home and abroad.
ISC represents the eight leading independent schools associations in the UK, collectively educating more than 500,000 children in 1,260 schools in the UK and select British schools overseas. In total, there are around 2,600 independent schools in the UK.
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