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Higher Education Student Statistics: Alternative Providers, 2017/18 - Qualifications achieved

Statistical Bulletin Experimental SB254

How many qualifiers from APs are there?

The total number of qualifications achieved in 2017/18 from undergraduate designated courses at APs was 15,815. This was an increase of 3% in the number of qualifications achieved from undergraduate designated courses in 2016/17. The largest increase, both in absolute and percentage terms was amongst other undergraduate qualifications. The only level of study to see a drop in the number of qualifications achieved between 2016/17 and 2017/18 was HNC/HND qualifications.

In 2017/18, first degree qualifications accounted for 46% of undergraduate HE qualifications obtained on designated courses at APs.

What is a qualifier?

A qualifier is a student who gained a qualification during the academic year in question. This is useful for restricting data to a cohort of graduates. See the qualifications obtained population definitions for more detail.

Figure 10 - Alternative provider qualifications obtained by level of qualification obtained

Academic years 2015/16 to 2017/18



Of those gaining a classified first degree:

  • The percentage of students achieving a first or upper second has remained stable at 58% over the period 2015/16 to 2017/18.
  • A larger proportion of female students gained a first or upper second class honours than male students.
  • A larger proportion of part-time students gained a first or upper second class honours than full-time students.
  • Amongst publicly funded HE providers, 76% of those gaining a classified first degree obtained a first or upper second in 2017/18.

There were 180 students who qualified from a designated course with an unclassified first degree in 2017/18. These students are excluded from Figure 11 but included in the total number of first degree qualifiers in Figure 10.

Figure 11 - Percentage of first degree qualifiers on designated courses obtaining each classification

Academic years 2015/16 to 2017/18


Figure 12 shows that on designated courses in 2017/18:

  • More qualifications were awarded in law than any other subject area.
  • Among undergraduates, business & administrative studies saw more qualifiers than any other subject.
  • Science subject areas accounted for 9% of qualifications awarded.

Figure 12 - Alternative provider qualifications obtained on designated courses by subject area and sex

Academic years 2015/16 to 2017/18


Release date

14 February 2019, 9:30



Release frequency

Annual - view all releases (2014/15 - onwards)


Children, education and skills

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Rebecca Mantle

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