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Two hundred and two bids were received for a total of 35,811 student places by the deadline of 11 November.

Of these, 34 bids were from higher education institutions and 167 bids from further education colleges, for students on higher education courses. One application was received from another publicly funded provider of higher education.

The 'margin' places are available to those universities and colleges charging an average, net annual tuition fee of £7,500 or less and meeting other criteria. Full details of the new student number control system, and the bidding process, are in 'Student number controls for 2012-13 - Invitation to bid for student places' (HEFCE 2011/30).

HEFCE will inform universities and colleges of the outcome of their bids in January/early February 2012 following an assessment process which will take account of demand, quality and average fee.

If, following the assessment process, the eligible bids exceed the 20,000 numbers available we will allocate places on a pro-rata basis.

Student numbers for successful bids will be included in the announcement of recurrent funding to be made in March 2012.