The Committee Stage of the Higher Education Bill began in the House of Commons this month, scrutinising the Bill clause by clause. The Sutton Trust was mentioned by Conservative MP Ben Howlett who brought up the Scottish research to infer that tuition fees increase access into higher education by removing a cap on places.

Shadow Universities Minister Gordon Marsden quoted the Sutton Trust during a debate on the importance of all universities having a contextual admissions policy, arguing:

If the transparency duty is to have any impact, it needs to include as many different dimensions of participation by social background as possible. The Sutton Trust, too, believes that the Bill does not go far enough in that area. It says that transparency is fundamental, but continues: “evidence suggests many universities are favouring more privileged candidates even when levels of attainment are taken into account… The Bill should be amended to require universities to publish their contextual admission policies clearly on their websites to encourage applications from students from disadvantaged backgrounds.”

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