brit bpp lion

"I love your foreign cash, but not your results!"

BPP University has excluded students who don't live in the UK from its advertising material to enable it to claim it is top of the league for job prospects.

The legal education provider boasts on its website that it "ranks top for postgraduate students in highly skilled employment".

The site claims that "97.1% of BPP University graduates* in employment were in highly skilled occupations 15 months after graduating". 

A footnote explains that the statistic is "based on The Graduate Outcomes survey of 2018/19 graduates 15 months after graduating for UK students".

By using the data for UK-domiciled graduates only, the table which follows shows BPP surpassing Cambridge's score and leaving Oxford trailing in fifth place.

uni rankings

However, the source data on which the table is based, compiled by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA), also includes the results for students who are not domiciled in the UK. 

Incorporating the foreign cohort which BPP is too shy to mention depresses BPP's score to 96.1%, and elevates several other universities' marks. The effect is to drop BPP into fourth place behind Cambridge, Imperial and Oxford.

BPP's website advertises its courses to prospective students wherever they live in the world, not just to those living in the UK, so the all-inclusive result would appear to be the more useful and relevant statistic for it to use. However, while fourth place is still an excellent result, the temptation of a victory over established universities proved too great - and so foreign graduates were erased.

The picture for students is actually even murkier, because HESA's data only considers students who graduate. Research conducted by The Office for Students looked at student cohorts as a whole, and projected that just 31% of BPP students would obtain a degree and find employment. Its rankings placed the university second last in the UK, above only a training college for nannies. Unsurprisingly, BPP decided not to advertise the high proportion of students the OfS predicts will flunk their courses.

BPP declined to comment.


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Anonymous 21 January 22 09:15

Does this seriously mean that the majority of BPP undergrads fail to complete their degree? It looks that way. Absolutely scandalous if so.

Joke Shop 21 January 22 09:32

Law schools are just a money making scheme.

I remember doing the GDL and LPC with a bunch of people with 2:2s from ex-polys.

10 years later the vast majority of those unsurprisingly have not become solicitors. That’s £20k plus in fees to either marginally increase their chance of an £18k a year job as a paralegal or for no real benefit at all.

I have always thought the system should change so that only people with training contracts / pupillages can attend. That would force law firms / chambers to recruit earlier and prevent thousands of people every year throwing money down the drain for a dream that they are unlikely ever to realise. 

Gobblepig 21 January 22 09:35

If including those data drops its score to 96.1%, doesn't that still put BPP ahead of Oxford on 95.6%, RoF? Why do you say it puts it behind?

Name 21 January 22 10:14

Also, a large proportion of that 97% figure is comprised of future trainees whose firms are sponsoring the GDL/LPC/SPQE. Of course they'll be in highly skilled occupations 15 months after graduating - they'll be halfway through their third seat at that time!

Bored trainee 21 January 22 10:42

@ Joke Shop 21 January 22 09:32 - I couldn't agree more. Most of the paralegals I have worked with over the years are all LPC grads who have been doing the paralegal rounds for years and years and will likely never qualify. Given the LPC has no relevance whatsoever if you don't qualify, its an awful lot of money to spend. However as a lot of firms want the LPC even for paralegals, I can see why most do it in the hope of getting that paralegal job will lead to a TC down the line.

Lydia 21 January 22 10:51

I have seen people who do not know much on line thinking a 2 year BPP LLB is the same as Cambridge because of this kind of survey. They are not really comparable institutions. About 80% of LPC students are at BPP or UoL and a good proportion are sponsored by law firms precisely because they went to somewhere much better than BPP for their undergraduate degree. They are comparing apples and pears and the issue about if you include foreigners or not is not material to that bigger issue.

Anonymous 21 January 22 12:33

Gobblepig - because including foreign students lifts Oxford’s score. Including foreign students changes the results for each Uni in the table.

Leeds Leeds Leeds 21 January 22 15:39

Come on @Joke Shop, if we do that, where are the Bradford bad lads going to go to hang out in their shiny suits?

Ana 21 January 22 17:06

I graduated from BPP and they gave the same "bu***it* about the prospects and great future employment. How could they maintain accurate statistics if they never asked me after graduation what do I do for living? 🤔🙄🎓Many of my former fellows were in the same position.

Besides, the BSC course I did - banking and finance, got abolished a year later. They no longer run those, for good, as half of our teachers were with marketing background, which is completely irrelevant to those subjects.

"Unbelievable University", so I am not surprised of anything. 

Insider 22 January 22 20:56

BPP is a joke. Layers of management in Leeds that you would not believe. Who cares though, the hapless punters (sorry, students) pay for it all. 

Half the managers are failed lawyers themselves who could not hack private practice. 

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