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University of Kent 57th in Equality Ranking

William Bowkett

Bill is the Website News Editor for InQuire. He’s currently doing a BA in politics, and therein lies his interest. If you’re looking to break regular news online, both locally and nationally, drop him an email at

A new report has been published by the Higher Education Policy Institute (HEPI) focusing on class equality across the UK’s 132 universities.

The University of Kent was ranked 57th in the United Kingdom for admitting a balanced intake of rich and poor students.

The assessment concluded that less elite universities had better equal access than prestigious institutions.

Prestigious institutions like Cambridge, St Andrews, Bristol and Oxford were placed near the bottom of the table, whilst the University of Hull came out on top.

The report’s calculations work by dividing neighborhoods into five social groups, according to the proportion of young people accessing higher education. In an ideal world, each university would take a fifth of its students from each group, according to the institute.

A spokesman for Cambridge University criticised the Polar data for “effectively [assuming] that people living on the same street have the same likelihood of entering higher education as their neighbours.” Additionally, the study does not take into account household income and access to education.

Iain Martin, Vice-Chancellor of Anglia Ruskin University, co-authored the report into class equality. He said that despite efforts to boost equal access to higher education: “We do not have an educational level playing field.”

HEPI Director, Nick Hillman added that: “This analysis reveals which universities reflect our society best and those which have further to travel.

“The best way to deliver fairer access to selective institutions is the same as the best way to deliver widening participation overall, which is to provide more places.”

Top 10 universities for class equality

Edge Hill
Plymouth College of Art
York St John
Leeds Beckett
Anglia Ruskin
Cardiff Metropolitan

Bottom 10 universities for class equality

St Andrews
Robert Gordon

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