Responding to the latest analysis of undergraduate applications data published by UCAS, Universities UK Chief Executive Alistair Jarvis said:
"It is very encouraging to see more people of all ages and backgrounds choosing to study at UK universities, recognising the broad range of benefits that a university degree will bring them throughout their lives.
"We are particularly pleased to see record numbers of applications from disadvantaged students, the increase in applications from mature students, and the high demand for nursing courses.
"The fall in demand from EU applicants is a source of concern. The UK Government and universities must continue to demonstrate how much they value European students by working together to promote the UK as a high quality destination for study and by offering new forms of financial support."