Analysis

Universities speak out on fall in degree applications

​In the face of reductions in applications for nursing degree programmes, universities in England are working harder than ever to address the challenges.
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Applications for nursing degree programmes in England have fallen significantly in the past year, with the government set to scrap bursaries from August 2017

New data from the University and College Admissions Service (UCAS) shows a 23% drop in the number of applicants making at least once choice for a nursing course in England.

The figure fell from 43,800 in January 2016 to 33,810 in January this year, with shortfalls in applications from mature students particularly evident.

Last July the government confirmed it would scrap bursary funding for nursing students and replace it with loans, beginning in August this year. The RCN says the latest UCAS figures ‘confirmed its worst fears’.

The college says it consistently warned the government that removing the bursary would result in decreased applications.

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