Unconditional offers: a warning from history


Back in the 1990s,  I got a two E offer to study history at University College London, and I have always felt grateful for it.  Following the current debate about unconditional offers, however, I am starting to wonder if I have been thinking straight.  When I got my offer letter (no emails in those days), it came with an accompanying blurb the gist of which was that they would be disappointed if I actually got two Es but wanted to give me the security of a definite university place.  That was all OK.  I had no intention of getting two Es.  I was doing A levels I cared about and wanted to excel in, but I was also doing economics.  The economics department at my school wasn’t sparkling, and I had never really enjoyed the lessons.  If I am being honest my first thought on reading my offer letter was…

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