Nicola Dandridge, Universities UK: Dip not as great as feared
30 January 2012 Last updated at 14:07 GMT
University applications from UK students for the first year of higher tuition fees are down by 8.7%, according to figures from the admissions service.
With fees rising to up to £9,000 per year, the impact has been biggest for England's universities - down by 9.9%.
Nicola Dandridge, chief executive of Universities UK, said the dip in applications from 18-year-olds was not as great as many had feared.