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Last Updated: Thursday, 27 January, 2005, 06:50 GMT
Fewer Welsh studying in England
Lecture hall
There is a fall in the number of students leaving Wales
Fewer students are leaving Wales to go to university, according to figures published by the admissions service Ucas.

The figures show a 5% drop in the number of Welsh students taking up places in English universities.

Other trends show more students are starting university after the age of 25.

The figures also show a fall in the overall number of people in Wales entering higher education.

The latest batch of figures from Ucas, the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service, show where everyone in the UK took up university places in 2004.

There is a decline in the number of Welsh and Scottish students opting to cross the borders to study in England.

From Wales, 5% fewer people enrolled at English universities than in the previous year, while in Scotland, 9.6% fewer students went to England to study.

Variable fees

Alongside that figure, there was a 1.9% increase in English people studying at Welsh universities.

While students entering higher education in 2004 will not be affected by plans to charge variable annual fees, they are due to be introduced in English universities from 2006.

They will mean that universities will be able to charge up to 3,000 pounds a year for their courses

In Wales, the fees have been ruled out until at least 2007.

In Scotland, there is a system where graduates pay an "endowment" in place of student fees.

The Ucas statistics show that, overall, there was a 1% drop in number of people from Wales going to any UK universities, compared to a 3.1% increase in 2003, and 3.9% increase in 2002.

And in Wales, 7.3% more over-25s enrolled in higher education in 2004.

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