University to honour offers for ‘most courses’ after A-Level grade changes

Anglia Ruskin University has said it will honour outstanding offers where students now meet the grades for “most courses” this year.

But the institution cannot guarantee a place for others, including prospective medical students, where student numbers are capped by external bodies.

The higher education sector has been thrown into confusion by a government U-turn on the process to award A-level results – with students’ grades much higher across the board as a consequence.

ARU assured students on Tuesday (August 18) that if they already have a place then that remains secure.

But for other prospective students, such as those who were not awarded a place based on the A-level grades issued using the algorithm system last week, but whose final grades have been revised upwards using teacher assessments meaning they have now met the conditional offer previously extended to them by the university, their position remains unclear.

The university said it was “working hard to find solutions for everyone,” but it said some courses – such as medicine, for which the intake is limited by government regulations – are now full, and it is awaiting government guidance on how to proceed before it can make firm guarantees.

‘For a small number of courses it is dependent on external body agreement’

The university told the Local Democracy Reporting Service: “For most courses, we will honour offers to applicants whose centre-assessed grades meet the course requirements.

“However, for a small number of courses it is dependent on external body agreement due to limited professional placements.

“For example medicine, we are waiting for guidance from the Medical Schools Council, who are in consultation with the Department for Education, about the availability of places on medicine courses.”

The university said that, until it receives guidance from the necessary regulators,  it cannot say whether every student who met their offer for courses such as medicine will be guaranteed a place either this year or next.

A spokesperson for the university said: “At ARU we recognise that students and their loved ones have found the last few days incredibly confusing and stressful.

“We are keen to help ease this difficult situation as much as we can and give all applicants a fair chance of studying with us.

“We are being as flexible as we possibly can for prospective applicants. If you’re looking to apply to ARU, please get in touch and have as much information as possible to hand, including centre-assessed grades, calculate grades and mock A-level grades. Our decision will be based on the highest of these grades in each subject.

“We would like to assure applicants who already have a place at ARU, that this is secure. Some of our courses, for example medicine, are now full for September because they are restricted by government regulations or the availability of professional placements, and in such cases we are awaiting government guidance and working hard to find solutions. There are however still places available on other programmes.

“Please visit our website at  aru.ac.uk/clearing, or you can call us on 01245 686868.”

The Medical Schools Council has said those hoping to study medicine or dentistry are in a “uniquely difficult situation”.

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