There are many enduring myths and misconceptions about higher education in the UK, some based around specific institutions and others on the university experience.
Here we look at some popular myths about universities, applications and courses and assess whether they are true or false.
London School of Economics is the hardest university to get in to
FALSE Judging by posts on forums like thestudentroom.co.uk, many students think the London School of Economics (LSE) is the hardest university to get in to. However, according to The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2018 (paywall), Oxford is the hardest, with an offer rate of just 24.7 per cent, followed by the University of the Arts London with a 25.9 per cent offer rate. LSE does have strict admissions requirements, but on the table it is in sixth place, with an offer rate of 37.1 per cent.
University X will reject your application if they see you’ve applied to University Y
FALSE This is a commonly repeated myth that can be easily busted. University admissions teams can only view your application and personal statement, they do not have any information about your other choices.
The only exception is Cambridge and Oxford as you’re not allowed to apply to both of these universities.
University X doesn’t like applicants from Wales/state schools
FALSE Universities want the best students for their courses, and base their admissions decisions on a range of factors, including your grades, personal statement and interview performance. Where you’re from and what school you attended, however, will not count against you.
LSE graduates are paid the most
TRUE This one does seem to be true, at least according to this report from 2016, which says that both male and female LSE graduates earn more than those from any other university. It says this is because LSE focuses on high-paying subjects like economics and law.
More information and resources
UCAS has produced a list of higher education myths, while The Student Room has busted a list of UCAS myths.