The University of Leeds is offering some students wanting to study law or business £10,000 cash and free accommodation for a year to defer their courses.
The university said an unprecedented number of students achieved the highest grades in A-levels across a wide range of subjects and like other universities it is “having to take steps to meet this unprecedented demand.”
Deputy vice chancellor Peter Jimack told the BBC in an interview the university was making the offer as some courses were full.
Jimack said the nature of teacher-assessed grades as opposed to exam-based grades had made it “harder to predict” the number of successful applicants.
Jimack told the BBC: “We’ve contacted students on a small number of programmes in two schools to let them know that we are going to make them an offer to defer to next year with an incentive of a cash payment of about £10,000 and our fee for their halls of residence in their first year being paid by the university.
“We are not putting pressure on anybody to make that choice, it’s an entirely free choice.”
In a statement, the university said: “This year, an unprecedented number of students have achieved the highest grades across a wide range of subjects and, in common with other universities nationwide, we are having to take steps to meet this unprecedented demand.
“We have already declined to participate in clearing, and we are only accepting offer holders who have met or exceeded the terms of their offer.
“The combination of subject demand, the popularity of the University of Leeds, and the much higher than anticipated level of students awarded the highest grades has resulted in an unprecedented increase in the number of students we have to accept into the Schools of Business and Law.”
The university said only a limited number of incentive packages were available and they will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis.
It said: “All eligible students have now been contacted, by email, about this offer.
“Once the limit is reached, the offer will be closed.
“We will of course secure the place of any student who does not wish to take up this offer.
“We are confident that we can accommodate all other successful offer holders across the many hundreds of other courses that we provide.”