League games

March 5, 1999

You were obviously annoyed by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service denying you easy access to information that UCAS stakeholders (as represented on the board) have declared as confidential to institutions. And just as publication of data during an application cycle can be misleading, so your opinion piece was worse (THES, February 26). There is no suggestion UCAS should not openly publish comprehensive data on applications. Its annual report is freely available. But, like the other league tables to which you refer, this is about results, not about the process - we do not get tables of school examinations before the courses are over.

And to suggest institutions will not know how many applications they have for their own courses is bizarre. Comparative data can be obtained from our institutional planning service.

If the sector believes UCAS should continue to distribute the fortnightly applications digest in the format that allowed you to construct yet another league table that can be misleading, then I am sure the board will respond.

Michael Goldstein Chairman, UCAS

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