The highest university admission requirements are significantly lower than last year in Denmark. This is after students no longer get a bonus for quickly starting their studies.
No more inflated requirements near the Danish top grade of 12.
Last year, students needed a near-perfect grade point average of 11.9 to get into psychology via the standard Danish quota 1 admissions system. The highest requirement at the University of Copenhagen this year is almost one whole grade point lower. 11.0 is the admission requirement this year for the molecular biomedicine programme.
It is clear why the requirements have dropped. A so-called quick start bonus, implemented in 2009, multiplied grade point averages by 1.08 if students started degree programmes no later than two years after secondary school. This has now been abolished, and with it the soaring admission requirements.
UCPH does not consider this a bad thing, according to Pernille Kindtler, who is Head of Section at the Education & Students unit.
The requirements we have now are at a more reasonable level.
Pernille Kindtler, Head of Section, Education & Students
»It is really positive. The University of Copenhagen has been against the quick start bonus for some time. It pumps up the grades artificially, and we do not think there is any academic reason why you would be better at studying if you apply within the two year window,« she says.
The problem with the high grade point requirements, Pernille Kindtler adds, is that they lead to an upper secondary school student perception that if you are not perfect and get 12 in all your exams, you cannot get into your preferred study programme.
»The requirements we have now are at a more reasonable level, where you can say: Okay, I have to do well, but it is not the end of the world if one exam goes awry. We have seen young people who considered it a disaster if they got a [second-highest Danish grade of, ed. ] ‘10’. This is not how it should be,« she says.
In a press release, the Minister for Higher Education and Science Ane Halsboe-Jørgensen (S) says that with the bonus discontinued, the lower requirements were expected.
She also sees it as a positive step away from the grade race:
»I hear from many young people that they feel pressured by the massive focus on achieving high grades, and that this has a negative impact on their well-being. The lower grade requirements can hopefully help move things in the right direction. At the same time, I think it is worth remembering that half of [Danish] study programmes do not actually have grade requirements,« she says.
You still, however, need a high grade average from upper secondary school to get into a number of study programmes at the University of Copenhagen. Here are the eleven study programmes with the highest grade requirements this year:
1. Molecular biomedicine: 11.0
2. Psychology: 10.9
3. Actuarial mathematics: 10.9
4. Political science: 10.6
4. Medicine: 10.6
6. Anthropology: 10.4
7. Veterinary medicine: 10.3
8. Dentistry: 10.2
9 Comparative literature: 10.0
10. Sociology: 9.9
10. Mathematics – economics: 9.9