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Page last updated at 07:37 GMT, Thursday, 20 August 2009 08:37 UK

'Competitive year' for A-level students


Hundreds of thousands of teenagers are set to receive their A and AS-level grades, and results are expected to improve for the 27th year in a row.

A record number of students have applied for university, and thousands are likely to be disappointed.

But higher education minister David Lammy, discussing the results on the Today programme, stated that reports that thousands of well-qualified applicants were being turned away were misleading.

"Last year there were three thousand young people who got straight A's that didn't go to university," he says.

"Because, for example, they had a particular course and a particular institution in mind and they didn't get an offer at that institution so they re-apply, they do extra things during their gap year to build up, if you like, their CV.

"For a whole range of reasons you can have outstanding candidates that don't go in their first attempt but re-apply the following year".

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