Top universities accused of BTec snobbery

Top universities have been accused of ‘institutional snobbery’ for failing to recognise vocational qualifications increasingly used by poorer teenagers as a route to higher education, writes Michael Savage for The Guardian.

Almost half of white working-class and black British students in England are now reaching university with qualifications such as BTecs, according to new research from the Social Market Foundation (SMF) think tank. However, some of Britain’s most prestigious universities still fail to recognise the qualification. Campaigners warn that it creates a barrier to entry for disadvantaged students and acts as a brake on social mobility.

New figures reveal that the number of school-age students studying for at least one BTec tripled between 2006 and 2014 to 150,000. Across England, 44% of white working-class children who make it to university have at least one BTec, according to the SMF. Its research also found that 48% of black British students accepted to university have at least one BTec qualification, and 37% enter with only BTec qualifications. Some universities fail to mention BTec entry requirements on their course pages and entry guides, or place very narrow limits on when they will be considered. Others actively refuse to consider BTecs.
Full report on The Guardian site