Stat of the day: 9.9%

The percentage of comprehensive school students that took a media studies A-Level last year, despite the fact that the subject is considered too 'soft' by top universities.

by Emma Haslett
Last Updated: 09 Oct 2013
If you're a straight A student who fancies their chances at Oxbridge, be warned: all subjects may be equal, but some are more equal than others, if Conservative MP for South West Norfolk Elizabeth Truss is to be believed. According to Truss, A-Level students are being 'mis-sold' 'soft' A-Level subjects like Media Studies or Tourism.

Of the list of 'facilitating' subjects (ie. serious subjects that are more likely to be seen favourably by universities) published by the prestigious Russell Group of Universities (which includes Oxbridge), apparently only 15% of comprehensive school pupils and 11% of sixth-form college students took them last year, compared with 38% of private school and 37% of grammar school students. As an example, twice as many grammar and private school students took Maths than comprehensive or sixth form college students.

Truss is adamant there needs to be a chance: 'It is time [qualifications watchdog] Ofqual put an end to the myth that mathematics and media studies are 'equivalent'', she said. Hmm... suddenly makes all the hard work MT put into its media & communications degree seem a bit inadequate...

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