Introduction: Growth in numbers in education
The number of students starting full-time undergraduate courses in UK universities this year is up by 9.7% these final figures make 2008 a record-breaking year in terms both of those applying and those being accepted to full-time higher education courses (UCAS 2008).Women continue to out number men in undergraduate numbers - 249,294 compared with 202,577, up 11.7% on 2007 compared with a 7.3% increase in male students.And the majority of full-time undergraduate students are under the age of 20 and a big number of them are from Eastern European(Guardian 2008). Results also seem to indicate that grants can entice low-income participation to prolong their education into the post-compulsory period (Middleton et. al, 2003) this was a result of the third year of the pilot project conducted by EMA 1999.
Lack of grants
Despite 2008 seeing a record breaking figure for number of students starting full-time undergraduate courses as indicated above, the amount of student support available for children of middle-income parents will be cut next year which means that growth in student numbers will also be cut next year to no more than 10,000 this is after the government miscalculated increases in the bill for higher education, this was confirmed by the universities secretary and revealed by the Guardian (2008) A significant number of students hoping to enter university next year are no longer going to be entitled to the grants that they were counting on and faced with the fact that they will have to be paying off sizeable debts after graduation many students may reach a point where the price to pay is too high which could mean many students not attending higher education. Many students are struggling to manage financially and prospective students may not choose their preferred course and university due to lack of funds and fear of debt (Forsyth and Forlong, 2000) According to McCarthy and Humphrey’s (1995) study of students at...