TALENTED pupils from poorer backgrounds who apply to Glasgow University are now identified as soon as they apply.

Staff take details of the postcode area a potential student comes from - with those in areas of multiple deprivation immediately flagged.

Admissions staff can then provide lower offers to those students to ensure the disadvantages they faced growing up do not count against them.

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The university already lowers its offers to candidates from deprived backgrounds under its successful Top-Up initiative - as long as they complete a rigorous entry scheme.

Critics of such initiatives have accused universities of "dumbing down", arguing that pupils who do not achieve standard entry grades should be rejected to preserve academic integrity.

However, research has shown Top-Up students do just as well as those accepted under traditional routes.