The number of EU students applying for medicine, dentistry and veterinary degree courses in the UK has fallen in the wake of Brexit.

Uni application form
Early deadline applications from EU students have fallen by 9%, UCAS has revealed. Image: Christopher Hall / Fotolia.

University admissions service UCAS gathered figures for the above three courses – as well as those applying for Oxford and Cambridge – and discovered applications for these courses with an early deadline of 15 October had fallen by 9%.

End of a trend

Four days before the early application deadline, ministers announced these students will be able to access funding for the duration of their degree. This arrangement will be honoured even if the UK leaves the EU during this time.

Overall, the number of UK students applying by 15 October rose by 3% to 39,440, while applications from EU students fell from 6,860 to 6,240 – ending a trend of annual increases in recent years.

The main UCAS deadline for students applying to study courses from next autumn is 15 January.

Small percentage

Nicola Dandridge
Nicola Dandridge.

Nicola Dandridge, chief executive of Universities UK, said: “Only a small percentage of applicants apply by this date and we must wait until the main January deadline before we see the full picture for this application cycle. We know demand from overseas for UK university courses remains strong due to the high quality of British universities.

“This fall does, however, highlight the importance of ensuring prospective European applicants are made fully aware of the fees and financial support arrangements well in advance of the applications window. It is important also that we make clear European students continue to be welcome in coming to the UK to study.”

Important contribution

A Government spokesman added: “International students make an important contribution to the UK’s world-class universities.

“It is too early in the application cycle to predict reliable trends, but the overall increase in applicant numbers is positive and suggests even more students will be able to benefit from higher education next year.”

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