The University of Oxford has published its annual undergraduate admissions statistics covering the period 2016-18, which you can view by clicking here. Below Rector Professor Sir Rick Trainor and Tutor for Admissions Professor Conall Mac Niocaill comment on Exeter College’s admissions data for that period.
Exeter College actively promotes diversity amongst its students, staff and visitors, recognising the contributions to our academic mission made by individuals from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences. We welcome the University’s second annual release of admissions statistics, which provide a snapshot of the 2016-18 intake to the UK-based undergraduate student body of the College.
The report identifies a number of areas where the demographics of the college’s undergraduate body have changed since last year’s report: the proportion of state school students has risen from 49.1% in 2015-17 to 55.9% in 2016-18; we have seen an increase in the proportion of students from BME backgrounds from 12.7% to 14.0%; and an increase in the proportion of students from low-income (ACORN categories 4 and 5) backgrounds from 5.9% to 7.9%.
The report also identifies areas where we have made limited progress, albeit it is only in the context of one extra year of data. Exeter College has a low proportion of UK Black and Asian students in its undergraduate intake in the 2016-2018 data, a pattern which was also evident in last year’s data release. This, in part, relates to the demographics of our target area for outreach, Devon and Cornwall, which are amongst the least ethnically diverse of UK regions. We have a clear goal to increase the proportion of BAME students admitted to the college, and we are refocussing our outreach efforts more explicitly in this direction. We funded 10% of all Oxford places in the Target Oxbridge programme this year, a programme specifically focussed on improving the chances of black and mixed race students in their applications to Oxbridge via a mentorship programme, and are looking to develop further partnerships in this area. We have recently appointed a full-time access and outreach officer, with a doubling of resource, and will be making significant further investments in access over the coming years.
We have committed to supporting the new “Opportunity Oxford” Programme which is aimed at students from more disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds and will offer additional support to these students to help them transition successfully from school to Oxford. We are also developing a college-based bridging programme: “Exeter Plus” which will offer additional bridging and on-course support for students from underrepresented backgrounds.
Overall the statistics snapshot presents a mixed picture for the college. Exeter College strives to attract academically excellent applicants from all backgrounds, and we are committed to ensuring that our undergraduate population is admitted solely on the basis of academic achievement and potential, and to selecting from the broadest possible applicant pool.
Professor Sir Richard Trainor (Rector) & Professor Conall Mac Niocaill (Tutor for Admissions)