Percentage point made

March 10, 2011

In your report "Doctor yes: the rise and rise of PhDs as standard" (17 February), you state: "Not only do pre-1992 universities have a higher proportion of academics with PhDs, they are also increasing that proportion more quickly than post-1992s (62.7 per cent, up from 60.4 per cent five years earlier, compared with 29 per cent, up from .6 per cent over the same period)."

However, your emphasis on proportions doesn't tell the whole story. Using your figures, the number of PhDs at pre-92 universities rose from 604 to 6 per thousand academics, which is an increase of 3.8 per cent, while the number at post-92s rose from 6 to 290, an increase of 5.1 per cent.

Therefore, the percentage increase in the number of academics with PhDs was greater at the post-92s.

Ben Atkinson, Hertfordshire

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